Dissertation (Thesis) Requirements

Both the chair of the student's committee (disseration advisor) and the student are responsible for assuring the completion of a draft of the thesis and for adequate consultation with members of the Doctoral committee well in advance of the oral examination. Major revisions to the dissertation should be completed before this examination. The dissertation should be in its final draft in a form and style that meets Graduate School and BBH Program requirements. With appropriate notes, bibliography, tables, etc., at the time of the oral examination; both the content and style should be correct and polished by the time that this final draft of the thesis is in the hands of the committee. Again, there should be an adequate period of time (at least two weeks) between the delivery of the final draft of the thesis to committee members and the scheduled oral examination and thesis defense.

When the doctoral candidate has satisfied all requirements for the degree and has submitted an acceptable thesis to the Doctoral committee, the BBH Professor-in-Charge will recommend to the Dean of the Graduate School that the final oral be scheduled. The examination is oral, open to the public, and related in a large part to the thesis; but it may cover the whole field of study of the candidate without regard to courses that may have been taken at Penn State or elsewhere. The final examination must be scheduled with the Graduate School at least three weeks before the examination is to be held. A favorable vote of two-thirds of the members of the committee is required for passing. If the candidate fails, it is the responsibility of the Doctoral Committee to determine whether another examination may be taken. The results of the examination are reported to the Dean of the Graduate School through the BBH Professor-in-Charge and will be entered upon the candidate's official record.

The student is responsible for knowing and meeting all requirements of the Graduate School and of the BBH graduate program. Such matters as full-time versus part-time status, residency, load, continuity of registration are examples of countless items that relate to orderly, legal and quality graduate programs. The Graduate School typically issues a calendar of deadline dates each semester, which is available in Kern Graduate Building. The student is also encouraged to watch bulletin boards and notices distributed to student mail boxes.