The thesis, for graduate students, or the dissertation, for doctoral students, represents the culmination of your academic program. It is a major achievement, reflecting your development as a professional in your chosen field. It provides you the opportunity to demonstrate your mastery in the discipline through the production of an original piece of research. While you will have the assistance of many others in completing this project, including faculty and fellow graduate students, the finished thesis or dissertation reflects your work, your effort, and your intellectual development. You should exercise great care in preparing your thesis or dissertation in order to produce a study of which you and Valdosta State University can be proud! 

Important Dates

The following are deadlines to submit final drafts (already defended) of thesis and dissertations.

  • Summer 2024 Deadline: Friday, July 12th (No Graduation ceremony after summer semester)
  • Fall 2024 Deadline: Friday, November 22nd Graduation: December 13th 
  • Spring 2025 Deadline: Friday, April 18th Graduation: Friday, May 9

All submission deadline times are 3:00 pm. Submit final drafts at to the Graduate School  no less than 3 weeks before graduation.  Early submissions are encouraged. The Graduate School reviews for format  and compliance with Graduate School requirements only. Please Note: The review process may extend beyond commencement. 

Students are then required to make corrections (if any) before submitting to V-Text and ProQuest.  (VSU is required to maintain a final copy of every approved thesis and dissertation.  VSU's repository for this collection is the V-Text and ProQuest data bases.) See the "Helpful Hints" link.  

Guides and Procedures

  1. E-mail the final, defended version of the thesis or dissertation as a .pdf to by the published deadline.  Starting Fall 2024 all dissertation must be in APA 7th ed. Please e-mail questions separately. 
  2. Students may not graduate until the next term if the thesis or dissertations is received after the published deadline.  
  3. Include the one signed signature page in the PDF document (the page signed by all committee members in black or blue ink or electronic signature – do not date when signing, only list the defense date at bottom of page).  Students can send the signature page seperatly when first submiting the thesis or dissertation for Grad School review, but the completed signature page with the Associate Provosts, signature must be included in the final document prior to uploading to ProQuest & Vtext and  prior to binding (forward the original to the graduate school for signing via email or campus mail or as a copy in DocuSign).
  4. Include your contact information (name, phone numbers, and VSU e-mail address) if we need to contact you with additional instructions.
  5. Do not make further changes to your thesis or dissertation unless directed by the Reviewer to do so.
  6. The Graduate School reviews to ensure compliance with the required format.
  7. The Graduate School’s review can take up to 3 to 4 weeks, possibly longer depending on the number of theses and dissertations received at the same time (e.g. at the deadline). Please submit well before the deadline if possible.  The review process is completed as quickly as possible based on the order received.
  8. AFTER the review, the fully signed signature page (with the Associate Provost's signature) will be emailed to the student.  Insert the fully signed signature page in the thesis or dissertation prior to uploading it to the V-text or ProQuest data bases.
  9. AFTER the review, students are required to submit to VSU’s online repository - V-text. Click on the following link to complete the online permission form and upload the approved thesis or dissertation.   
  10. AFTER the review, submit the approved dissertation or thesis to ProQuest (printable guidelines).


 Remember: Students are not required to submit copies to be bound – this is voluntary.  If one chooses to order bound copies, students must: 

  • print/provide as many signature pages as copies to be bound for the Associate Provost's signature;
  • complete the Library’s binding fee form and pay the binding fee ($26/copy);
  • print the number copies of approved version to be bound;
  • insert signed signature pages behind copyright page; and
  • deliver to Odum Library (4th floor) - instructions are on the binding fee form.

Click here for details about items on the checklist      Printable List (PDF)

Consult advisor for program-specific requirements

  • Register for thesis or dissertation hours
  • Develop tentative proposal
  • Select committee - STOP! Committee members must have graduate faculty status - check the lists!  (Graduate Faculty List)
  • Submit Thesis or Dissertation Committee Appointment form  (at least 3 semesters before graduating)
  • Prepare a draft of proposal - obtain committee approval
  • Obtain IRB or IACUC Approval/Exemption
  • For Doctoral students: Submit Dissertation Proposal Approval form 
  • Begin research and writing (type 2 spaces after a period ending a sentence.  If only 1 space is used ensure you are consistent throughout)
  • Apply for graduation (at least 2 semesters in advance)
  • Schedule the Defense
  • Submit Thesis or Dissertation defense notification to the Graduate School.
  • Defend the Thesis or Dissertation
  • Make suggested edits from the committee (if any)
  • Proofread final version
  • Submit final version and the signed signature page to Graduate School by published semester deadlines
  • Order regalia (hood, cap/tam, gown) for graduation
  • Complete edits for the Graduate School (if any)
  • Submit final, approved thesis or dissertation.
  • Required - Submission of a copy of your thesis or dissertation in Word to the Archives by visiting V-text form web page
  • Submit a copy to ProQuest (Printable Guidelines)
  • Celebrate with family and friends at commencement!!

Click here for component (formatting) details, templates, and sample pages  

Click here for info about the paper, margins, etc. 

(Page order for a thesis or dissertation. Items with asterisks (*) are optional. )

  • Title Page
  • Copyright Page
  • Signature Page
  • Fair Use and Duplication Release Form
  • Abstract
  • Table of Contents
  • List of Figures or Illustrations
  • List of Tables
  • *Preface
  • *Acknowledgments
  • *Dedication
  • Body of Text and Nontext Elements (type 2 spaces after a period ending a sentence)
  • Endnotes/Footnotes/Text References
  • Bibliography/Reference List
  • Appendix/Appendices (if applicable)

Many forms are in PDF format. You may need to update your PDF software to view.

Helpful Hints

The items below are offered to assist students beginning their research and completing theses or dissertations. Doctoral students should also consult their program handbooks for specific forms.

Helpful Hints for Submitting a Thesis or Dissertation to the Graduate School   

Format for Thesis and Dissertations

Sample Required Pages (Title, Copyright, Signature, Fair Use, etc.)  

Graduate Writing Resources