ETD Process Requirements

Registration and Submission Requirements

Registration Requirements

Application to Graduate (Office of the Registrar)

Submit the Online Graduation Application through OASIS, prior to the deadline for that semester. You will also complete a Graduate Exit Survey as part of the Graduation Application. This replaces the old exit survey and our office can verify completion in OASIS, so you no longer need to provide a print out of this exit survey.

Check with your department to see if they have earlier/additional submission deadlines. This process is handled by the Office of the Registrar, so if you have additional questions about the Graduation Application, they can be reached at (813) 974-5924. You must complete the Application to Graduate in order to graduate/complete your degree.

NOTE: If you are submitting your ETD in the current semester, but not planning to graduate in the same semester, you do not need to complete this step.

Commencement Registration (Commencement Office)

To register for Commencement, or for additional information on Commencement, please visit the Commencement website. You must register for Commencement in order to participate.

NOTE: If you are submitting your ETD in the current semester, but not planning to graduate in the same semester, you do not need to complete this step.

Office of Graduate Studies ETD Process Registration

While the deadline for the ETD Process Registration is the same deadline to turn in your thesis or dissertation, we strongly suggest completing this as early as possible in the semester you are submitting your ETD.

It's a relatively simple registration form, that:

  • verifies that you are registered for at least two (2) credits of thesis/dissertation hours;
  • captures information needed to complete the process and the USF Commencement Program; and
  • notifies us that you plan to submit your ETD this semester.

Students have previously had issues when they go to complete this step on the deadline, only to discover that they are either not registered for thesis/dissertation hours, or in the incorrect section. Because enrollment in that course is mandatory in order for the Office of the Registrar to change the grade, it's essential to have that corrected by the deadline. It can take several days to accomplish those changes, so it's best to be proactive and complete this registration process early.

Doctoral Students: The program for Commencement needs to be formatted and proofed for them to have the booklets printed in time for the ceremony. For Doctoral Dissertation students, we use this ETD Registration to gather all of the needed information to be printed in the program. To ensure you are listed, please complete the ETD Registration as early in the semester as possible (no later than the dissertation submission deadline).

Submission Requirements

Certificate of Approval

One of the most important documents in the ETD process, the Certificate of Approval, confirms that your committee and department have approved your thesis or dissertation. It also ensures that the Major Professor has run the ETD through a plagiarism check - see below for additional details. Students need to submit the most updated form.

We've recently updated the Certificate of Approval to a fillable PDF. Please type in everything, except the signatures. There have been a good number that were filled in by hand, and some of the information, like names and emails, is illegible. As this is the official record your ETD was approved, it needs to be clear and legible. Also, be sure you are using the most updated version by going to the link above. We occasionally get forms that are from several years ago - missing pertinent information.

NOTE: Colleges have a similar form, called the Successful Defense form, that the committee also needs to complete. Students should be aware that these are not the same and both will need to be completed. The Successful Defense form goes to the college - not to us.

ETD Plagiarism Check (For Major Professors & Students)

Unfortunately, there is a growing body of evidence that suggests scholarly works, including theses and dissertations, are not immune to various types of plagiarism. These documents are becoming increasingly accessible with the move towards Electronic Theses and Dissertations and their publication through portals, such as USF's Scholar Commons; to the best of our ability, it is critical to ensure that these documents are plagiarism-free, as evidence of this would severely damage students', advisors', and the institution's reputation. Therefore, as of Spring 2013, the Office of Graduate Studies has instituted a requirement that theses and dissertation be analyzed using plagiarism-detection software. Please click above for instructions on how to complete the ETD Plagiarism Check.

Survey of Earned Doctorates (SED) (Dissertation Students Only)

This step is for Doctoral students only. To complete this, you will need to sign up for the SED Survey. You will receive an email from the SED - read the instructions carefully. You will need to enter the PIN and password to complete the survey.

One of the final pages of the survey is the Email Notification Screen. Once on this screen, you will be asked to enter a primary and secondary email address. For your primary, list your USF email address. For the secondary, enter The completion email will be sent to both addresses. Please include a printout of the Completion Certificate with your Certificate of Approval in the packet you submit to the Office of Graduate Studies.

ETD Submission to ProQuest

ProQuest is the website we use to facilitate the ETD Review. It saves all versions of the ETD, and allows us to work with you on revising your document to meet the format requirements. You'll need to create a new account and then upload your thesis/dissertation in PDF format for review. You will receive a confirmation email once you've submitted the ETD.

Review of the ETD will generally require 5-10 business days (once all of the submission requirements have been completed) to review, although ETDs submitted close to or on the deadline may require longer review times.

Making Revisions & Submitting the Revised ETD

If the Office of Graduate Studies requires modifications to the submitted ETD, the student will receive an email with a link to an annotated PDF. You need to download the PDF to your computer and then open it in order to see the comments.

NOTE: Do not try to make corrections to the PDF or try to save the PDF as a Word document. This messes with all of your formatting, and will make it nearly impossible to make the corrections. Make the needed revisions in the Word document you originally used. We strongly suggest saving the word doc as a new copy, so that you have the original Word document if anything happens to the revised document.

The student must make all of the corrections and resubmit the corrected ETD to ProQuest at least a few days before the Office of Graduate Studies final clearance deadline. (Be sure to click on all "Submit Revision" confirmations within ProQuest – this lets us know you are ready for your revisions to be annotated!) The Office of Graduate Studies will then re-review the corrected ETD as described above. The review may require an additional 5-7 business days - depending on the current number of ETDs in review.