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Thesis Submission and Defense Process

Once the thesis proposal has been approved, students should consult regularly with the adviser, and, if possible, the other committee members.  During this period students should get references, clarify ideas or approaches, and submit drafts of chapters for feedback.

Students should plan ahead to ensure that they are able to meet the thesis defense deadline for the semester in which they plan to graduate.

If you have questions about the thesis defense process, please write to gallatin.thesis@nyu.edu.

Selecting the Thesis Committee

As early in the process as possible, students should select the members of the thesis committee.

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Submitting the Thesis to the Adviser

Students are required to submit a copy of the thesis to the adviser no less than ten weeks before the anticipated defense date.

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Submitting the Thesis to Gallatin and to the Thesis Defense Committee

After the adviser has approved the thesis and thinks the student is ready for the defense, the student should submit the thesis to Gallatin and to the thesis committee no less than four weeks before the anticipated defense date.

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Scheduling the Defense

After the thesis has been submitted to Gallatin and to the thesis committee, the student should set a date and time for the defense and register this information with Gallatin at least three weeks prior to the defense. 

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Defending the Thesis

On the appointed date the student will defend the thesis in a one-and-a half hour discussion with the three members of the committee.

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Submitting the Final Thesis

Within 30 days of the defense, students must submit the final version of the thesis to Gallatin.

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Thesis Defense Deadlines

In planning the date of the thesis defense, students must adhere to the scheduling calendar below. Students should note these time allowances do not include university holidays such as spring break and the winter recess.  Therefore, if you are planning a May graduation and submitting your thesis to your adviser early in the spring semester, you will need to do this 11 weeks prior to your defense date (as opposed to normal 10 weeks), due to spring recess. Students should discuss the scheduling of their thesis completion with their advisers several months before the deadlines stated below.  

Thesis submission deadline to adviser
Thesis submission deadline to Gallatin and to second and third readersThesis defense registration deadlineTerm in which the student plans to complete the thesisFinal date to defend the thesis

 

 

10 weeks prior to the defense date




 

 

4 weeks prior to the defense date




 

 

3 weeks prior to the defense date





Summer 2015* September 23, 2015
Fall 2015 January 20, 2016
Spring 2016 May 13, 2016
Summer 2016* September 23, 2016
Fall 2016 January 20, 2017
Spring 2017 TBA

 *  Due to the limited availability of faculty during the summer months and winter recess, students should be aware that they may encounter some difficulties in finding committee members or arranging a date for a defense in January or September.  September graduation is appropriate for students who have completed most of the thesis by the late spring. Students must register for thesis advisement in the summer, if they plan on graduating in September.

Please note that these time allowances do not include university holidays such as spring break and the winter recess.

Matriculation Policy

Students must be matriculated at the time they defend the thesis. That is, students must be registered for Master’s Thesis and Defense (for students who started in Spring 2013 or earlier) or Master's Thesis II (for students who started in Summer 2013 or later). Students who need additional time to complete the thesis must then register for Thesis Advisement each term (including the summer, if they plan on graduating in September) until they have successfully defended the thesis. Note that any credits earned through Thesis Advisement are not included in the 40-credit requirement for the master’s degree.  Thesis Advisement has a special tuition rate of $400 (plus a nonrefundable registration and services fee). Students may not maintain matriculation after completing 37 credits. Rather, they must enroll in Master’s Thesis and Defense, Master's Thesis II, or Thesis Advisement (if appropriate). 

Students who defend in time for January graduation do not need to matriculate in the spring semester. Students who defend in time for September graduation do not need to matriculate in the fall term, but do need to matriculate in the summer term. Please note: only students who will defend for September graduation are required to matriculate in the summer term.