M.Sc. Thesis Defense Requirements

A thesis oral defense is required, although a public presentation and all other details are left to the discretion of the thesis committee. Students are responsible for scheduling the thesis defense date with their thesis committee. All committee members are required to attend the defense. 

A written thesis is required. It is advisable that students submit their final thesis to the thesis committee members no later than two weeks prior to the defense date. Students are required to comply with the University formatting guidelines provided by the Office of the Registrar.

There are four possible outcomes for this thesis defense:

  • Pass
  • Pass with conditions
  • Retake
  • Fail without retake

A pass is achieved when the committee agrees with no more than one dissenting vote. In the instance of a pass with conditions, the entire committee must agree on the required conditions and if they cannot, the dean decides. The deadline to complete the conditions is one month after the defense date, unless the committee unanimously agrees to change it. If the conditions will take more than one month, or more than one member casts a negative vote, one retake of the defense is permitted. The deadline to complete the retake is decided by the defense committee with a maximum of six months after the defense date, unless the committee unanimously agrees to reduce it. In the instance of a fail without retake, the decision of the committee must be unanimous. Students who fail without retake or who fail the retake will be dismissed from the University.

The final signed approval form must be submitted to the Office of the Registrar by the deadline for M.Sc. thesis library receipt forms as indicated on the Academic Calendar. Failure to submit by the deadline will result in students being graduated the following semester.