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Thesis Option

Thesis and Oral Defense

The thesis option results in a written thesis and an oral exam in which the student must successfully defend their research to a panel of faculty.

The thesis represents a major research effort. It should range between 75-100 pages, comprehensively review the scholarly literature on the subject treated, and be consistent with a thesis format. The student should begin thinking about potential thesis topics as soon as possible. Students must schedule a meeting will the Graduate Director in their first semester to discuss their interest and which faculty member has an expertise in that area.

In their first semester, a student should generate a thesis proposal. If the proposal is accepted, students will then enroll in Thesis A (PA 5399A) typically during their 3rd semester.

In Thesis A, students will produce a full draft. Students will then enroll in Thesis B (PA 5399B) where they will, in consultation with their thesis committee, revise their draft.

Students must successfully complete an oral defense of their thesis. Students who fail the oral defense of their thesis will have the choice of the non-thesis option.

Students must also submit their thesis to the Graduate College for approval. After approval, the thesis is to be sent to the Alkek Library for binding.

For additional details on the thesis process and on Graduate College requirements, see here.