Thesis & Dissertation

What is an Electronic Thesis or Dissertation?

The University of Maryland, Baltimore County has entered into an agreement with ProQuest to accept Electronic Theses and Dissertations (ETD). Students submit their documents directly to Proquest, and the Graduate School evaluates them online for formatting and legibility. If you need to make corrections, you’ll receive an email from the Graduate School detailing what needs to be done.

Once all corrections are made, the Graduate School accepts the document, and, provided you have passed all necessary departmental and university checks (see your department and the Graduate School for more info) for graduation, you are cleared to graduate. After this process is complete, the Graduate School “delivers” the documents officially to ProQuest, who logs, indexes and publishes them on Digital Dissertations, a nationwide clearinghouse of theses and dissertations, to which the vast majority of U.S. theses and dissertations are submitted. After delivery, if you need to make corrections or changes, you will deal directly with ProQuest, as administration of the documents shifts to them.

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Graduate School deadlines for thesis and dissertation submission are listed here. These deadlines indicate the date by which your academically complete document must be submitted to the system. An academically complete document is one to which all examining committee-ordered revisions have been made.

  • Fall: December 1st
  • Summer: August 1st
  • Spring: May 1

As long as your academically complete document is submitted by the deadline (even without correct Graduate School formatting), it is considered to have met the deadline. Any formatting changes requested by the Graduate School can be made after the ETD editors evaluate your document during the submission process.

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Materials Available to Help You

The Graduate School’s requirements for all theses and dissertations are outlined in detail in the Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Style Guide. Anyone submitting a Thesis or Dissertation document should consult these requirements prior to beginning the ETD process.

In addition, thesis and dissertation templates for Word and LATEx are available. The documents come pre-formatted to the standards set forth in the Style Guide.

ProQuest also provides a guide for Preparing your Manuscript for Submission.

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Policy on the Remote Participation of Committee Members

All members of the Final Defense Committee shall endeavor to be physically present for Masters Thesis and Doctoral Dissertation defenses. If an extenuating circumstance will prevent a Committee member from being physically present, the Associate Dean of the Graduate School may authorize members of the Committee to participate remotely. Remote participation must occur in a synchronous form of communication that allows the Committee Members and the Degree Candidate to see and hear each other. In addition, the Candidate must ensure that the remote participant has access to the thesis or dissertation and the presentation.  As a general rule, the Degree Candidate must be physically present at his/her departmental defense.

The obligation to request authorization for remote participation by a Committee Member rests with the Degree Candidate. The request must be sent to the Associate Dean of the Graduate School at least two weeks before the defense date. This request alerts the Graduate School regarding incoming signatures, and also provides an opportunity for the Associate Dean to clarify any issues concerning the communications and signatory procedures.

At the conclusion of the Defense, the Dean’s Representative on the Committee shall send the Report of Examining Committee to the remote participant to sign. After signing the form, the remote participant shall scan and send it DIRECTLY to the appropriate Graduation Coordinator in the Graduate School (and cc any others, e.g. the Chair, Dean’s Representative, and Graduate Program Coordinator). If scanning is not available, the remote participant shall fax it and then mail it. “Third party” conveyance of the remote participation’s signature (i.e. by the Committee Chair or Dean’s Representative) is NOT permitted.

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Serving On Committees After Leaving In Good Standing

The following are guidelines approved by the Graduate Council for serving on Thesis and Dissertation committees for Regular or Associate Graduate Faculty who have left the University in good standing.

At the discretion of the Dean or Associate Dean:

  • For committees that were formed before the faculty member left the University, faculty may retain their graduate faculty status to fulfill minimum number of associate or regular members on a committee. Faculty who leave the University cannot Chair an existing committee but may serve as co-Chair. The time limit for this rule shall be two (2) years with an option for the program to reconfirm for additional two-year periods.
  • Faculty who maintain an adjunct appointment may continue as an Associate member and thus can chair a thesis committee but not a dissertation committee.
  • For all committees formed after the faculty member has left, the former faculty member serves as an Outside Member and a CV is required. Special Graduate Faculty status is not required.
  • With prior approval by the department and/or program, faculty who have been granted emeritus status, and who are actively involved in research and their department, may retain their graduate faculty status, including chairing a committee.

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