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Theses and Dissertations

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The Graduate School is pleased to introduce — new for the Spring 2018 term — Your Clemson University Thesis or Dissertation: Guidelines, Tips & Tools, a guidebook assembled, edited and maintained by the Graduate School’s communications and manuscript review staff with input from the University’s administrators, faculty, and graduate students. We thank the Office of Enrolled Student Services, Clemson Libraries, and Clemson Computing and Information Technology (CCIT) for providing information on record-keeping, archiving, and technology training.

Note that basic manuscript requirements have not changed! They're simply more accessible in a single, searchable PDF.

The guidebook organizes all information from this Theses & Dissertations portion of the Graduate School’s website into one file, allowing us to streamline the web pages. The PDF file is fully searchable and interactive, with a linked table of contents and working links throughout the text.

The instructions, recommendations and procedures outlined in Guidelines, Tips & Tools draw from years of tradition — several centuries of scholarly publishing norms as well as decades of Clemson University Graduate School formatting standards — but they also reflect the changing technology that brought us from print publishing into digital publishing and archiving and the global electronic dissemination of research scholarship.

By detailing the six essential steps of the formatting and submission process and collecting supplemental information in three appendices, Your Clemson University Thesis or Dissertation: Guidelines, Tips & Tools aims to provide all the resources and links you’ll need to complete your thesis or dissertation, and to help you present a work that you, your advisory committee, your department, and Clemson University will be proud to share.


About Deadlines

As you enter your final semesters in graduate school, you’ll need to know when deadlines are coming up so you can plan ahead, structure your schedule, and minimize your stress level as you approach graduation day. Check the Graduation Deadlines calendar often.

In graduate school, as in professional life, missing deadlines has consequences. Missing the GS2 Plan of Study filing deadline incurs late fees. Missing certain deadlines may delay your graduation or prevent you from participating in graduation ceremonies; the deadlines for completing your comps, submitting your final-official transcript to Graduate Admissions (see “What does ‘Official Transcript’ mean?” at the Admissions FAQ web page), filing your ­committee-signed GS7 form, submitting your final ETD, and ordering your diploma and graduation attire are examples.

Under certain extenuating circumstances, the initial manuscript submission date for format review may be flexed by a day or two, but be advised you’ll leave yourself less time for making revisions if you miss the first deadline.

Extenuating circumstances may include personal illness or injury, sudden illness of an immediate family member or committee member, military deployment, and visa issues. They do not include job-related or personal travel, scheduling of your defense too close to — or on the day of — the submission deadline (please do not do this!), missing committee signatures on your GS7, or an unexpected number of content revisions required by your committee following your defense. If you think you may be late with initial submission of your ETD and have a legitimate reason, discuss options with your advisor and send an email to Manuscript Review. If you think you may be late turning in your GS7, email Enrolled Services to see if they’ll accept it late.

The final manuscript revision deadline is just that: final, not flexible. The week between the initial and final manuscript deadlines is for format changes only. It’s not intended to buy you extra time to finish rewriting or to wait for copyright permissions.

If you think you may miss the final manuscript deadline, which is also the final GS7 deadline, you may discuss with your advisor the option of delaying your graduation until the following semester. If you can complete all of your requirements, including an accepted manuscript, by the last day of registration for classes for the coming semester, you will be cleared to graduate at the end of that semester without having to enroll in credit hours or pay tuition. Check with Enrolled Services for the exact deadline for each semester, and please notify them that you plan to delay your graduation.


Steps in the Electronic Manuscript Submission Process

  • FORMAT: Format your manuscript according to the Graduate School’s requirements.
  • DEFEND: Defend your thesis/dissertation, make any revisions required by your committee, and submit your signed GS7M or GS7D form.
  • CONVERT: Convert your manuscript to a PDF file.
  • SUBMIT (upload for review and publication): Follow the instructions for uploading your manuscript for review. Please note: you must read through the information on the SUBMIT page prior to uploading your manuscript. PRINTED HARDCOPIES are not accepted for either review or publication.
    Please be aware that there are no longer any fees required to upload, publish and archive your thesis or dissertation.
  • WAIT FOR RESULTS: You will receive a results email within approximately one to three business days. If your manuscript is approved, you have finished; congrats!
  • REVISE: If revisions are required, you’ll need to make those revisions as detailed in the email from Manuscript Review, convert your revised document to PDF, upload, and wait for a response again. This process will be repeated until your manuscript is accepted. Be aware that many manuscripts require at least one round of revisions. Also, your manuscript will not be approved until Enrolled Services has received your signed GS7 form and updated your status in their database.
               [PhD candidates ONLY: Complete the Survey of Earned Doctorates.]
  • BREATHE: You’ve finished. Congratulations!

Additional Resources

Read details online about each step in the manuscript process using the buttons below.

Format pageDefend pageConvert pageSubmit pageRevise pageFinished page