Last day to apply for summer graduation without paying a late fee. $50 fee begins on 5/26/18. On 7/1/18, a $75 late fee will be applied. Fees are valid for one year.
Graduating This Semester?
You Need To Apply for Your Degree
1. You must apply for your degree in myWSU. The deadline to apply without a late fee is Friday, March 2, 2018 by 11:59 pm. You must apply by this date for your name to appear in the Commencement Program. Go to your myWSU Student Center tab, under the ‘WSU General’ box (right-hand side of your screen) for instructions:
Click on ‘Details’ and the system will walk you through the process.
2. Once you have completed and submitted (including the fee) your Application for Degree, the Graduate School will review your graduate record, known as a degree audit.
3. You will be notified in your myWSU Student Center under your My Communications Center telling you what you must do in order to graduate this semester. Failure to resolve all ‘To Do’ issues means we will not be able to award your degree and you will not graduate.
L👀k for that Notice here on you Student Center tab, in your myWSU:
Taking Your Exam?
ALL students planning to graduate must schedule a final exam with the Graduate School. Before scheduling your exam you must do 2 things:
a) Be enrolled for research credits – see your program’s requirements (700/701/702/800s)
b) Apply for Degree (see instructions above) before your Final Exam.
2. 10 working days before your exam date: the completed Final Exam Scheduling form and your thesis/dissertation must be submitted by your department to the Graduate School. The thesis must be sent as a PDF attachment to email@example.com and the dissertation uploaded to ProQuest.
3. ALL Graduate School forms are located at: https://gradschool.wsu.edu/facultystaff-resources/18-2/
4. The Exam Scheduling form must be downloaded in your browser for it to work properly:
(This menu is located at the top, right-hand corner of your browser)
Payment is made at the time of completing/submitting the online Application for Degree in myWSU. This deadline is also the last day to apply for a Graduate Certificate.
Degree, Graduate Certificate, and Graduation Application
How to Apply for Degree or Graduate Certificate, and Graduation in myWSU
How to add a diploma address to ensure prompt receipt of your diploma or certificate.
1. Log into myWSU using your network ID (NID) and password. Click on the Profile tile, followed by the Addresses link on the left side of your screen.
2. Click Add Diploma Address and enter the mailing address where you would like to receive your diploma or graduate certificate. Diplomas and certificates are mailed approximately 6 to 8 weeks following graduation – keep this in mind when deciding where the Graduate School should mail these documents.
How to apply for graduation with a degree or certificate. NOTE: You must allow popups for myWSU on your browser to complete this process. Without popups enabled, you will not be able to pay your graduation fee and your application for graduation will not be saved within myWSU.
1. On your myWSU homepage, click on the Academic Advising tile, followed by the “Apply to Graduate” link on the left side of your screen.
2. On the Apply to Graduate page you should see your program and an “Apply for Graduation” link. Click the link to start the application process.
3. On the next screen, select the term you expect to graduate from the dropdown menu. Only terms you are able to apply for graduation will be displayed.
Pay close attention to the information displayed once you have selected your graduation term. Click “Continue” followed by “Submit Application” when you are ready to proceed.
4. This brings up the Payment Verification screen showing the total amount to be charged and gives you the option to either Pay Now or Click here to make any corrections. If everything is correct, click “Pay Now” to proceed to the payment screen.
NOTE: If a new window does not open, you must enable popups for myWSU, then restart section two of these instructions. Your application is saved only after successful payment.
5. On the Graduation Payment window, follow the directions carefully to complete payment of the graduation fee. After payment, your application is complete.
1. Thesis/Non-Thesis Options and Requirements. The thesis is a scholarly, original study that is a significant contribution to the knowledge of the chosen discipline. The master’s degree candidate’s committee members must read and return drafts of theses to the student within a reasonable period of time. The Faculty Senate’s Graduate Studies Committee recommends that committee members hold drafts for no longer than 30 calendar days.
Prior approval for use of human subjects, animals, or biohazardous materials in research is required. If the student plans to utilize human, animal, or biohazardous materials subjects for research, he/she must contact the Office of Research Assurances (see Chapter 11 for additional policies and resources concerning research). Please note that departments/programs should ensure that all procedures have been followed and forms filed with the appropriate offices; they can also determine the appropriateness of such narrative within the thesis. The Graduate School only seeks verification that University approval has been granted.
No material in the thesis or special problem/project submitted to fulfill the requirements of a degree may be restricted in any way; the thesis must be made available through the Washington State University Libraries for inspection by any interested parties.
After passing the final oral examination for thesis students, the student must submit the thesis to the Graduate School for final acceptance. Details for submitting the thesis can be found in Chapter 6 (General Academic Requirements). Non-thesis students may be required to take a comprehensive examination, or submit a written paper, and/or give an oral presentation as part of their non-thesis 702 project. Information regarding any non-thesis special problem/project option is available by contacting the degree-granting unit directly.
2. Final Master’s Examination. A final examination and/or balloting meeting is required for all master’s candidates. This examination is intended to test the candidate’s ability to carry out a critical dialogue integrating and interpreting material in the major and supporting fields with emphasis on the work presented in the thesis or non-thesis special problem/project. Non-thesis master’s degree students may not have a formal examination; however, at a minimum, the committee must hold a ballot meeting, scheduled through the Graduate School, to determine if the student has satisfactorily met all of the program requirements. Information regarding any non-thesis, special problem/project final exam requirements is available by contacting the degree-granting unit directly.
- The student must have completed or be enrolled in all the required course work, have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0, have met all admission contingencies, and be registered for the remainder of their research credits–a minimum of two credits of 700 (thesis option) or 702 (non-thesis option) (unless otherwise specified in the Faculty Senate approved curriculum) for the semester or summer session in which the final examination is to be taken. The scheduling form must be submitted to the Graduate School 10 (ten) or more working/business days prior to the anticipated examination. The candidate must send a PDF copy of the completed thesis draft to the Graduate School at firstname.lastname@example.org when submitting the scheduling form.
- The candidate’s committee is responsible for approving all aspects of the final thesis before students may schedule the final examination. When committee members sign the Thesis Acceptance/Final Examination Scheduling Form, they indicate that they have read and approved a printed or electronic thesis, suitable in content and format for defense and submission to the Library. They also indicate their acceptance of the date, time, and place of the final examination.
- For non-thesis master, the Non-Thesis Final Examination Scheduling Form should be used.
- The Application for Degree must be completed in myWSU if this is the student’s initial application for degree. The graduation fee must be paid before the final exam is scheduled.
A member of the student’s committee will be appointed by the Graduate School to serve as the Graduate School liaison regarding the examination process (balloting, etc.). A student, department chair, graduate program director, committee member, or any other concerned member of the WSU community may request that the Graduate School provide an independent observer to be present at any final examination/ballot meeting. The name of the individual making the request will be held confidential. All such requests will be fulfilled by drawing upon a member of the Graduate Mentor Academy. All repeat examinations or defenses will have such an independent, outside representative. During the scheduling process, the Graduate School will notify the student, committee and department chair/program director if a Graduate Mentor has been assigned to an exam.
a. Taking More than One Examination During the Same Semester
A student may take a final examination for a thesis master’s degree during the same semester that he/she takes the preliminary or final doctoral examination, if the degrees are from different disciplines, and the student has the approval of both faculty advisory committees and program chairs/directors. The same procedures and policies apply for scheduling the second examination, and the student will have to apply for graduation for both degrees and pay the $50 fee for each application, if both are final examinations.
If the student is defending both a thesis master’s degree and a doctoral degree, the examinations must be scheduled on separate days, with a minimum of three weeks (15 working/business days) in between the examinations (there will be no exceptions to this policy). This period includes time for completion and full submission of the thesis, as well as announcing the doctoral exam. If the thesis master’s degree is in the same discipline as the doctoral degree, the student may not take the exams in the same semester and student must defend the master’s degree before defending the doctoral degree. If the discipline is different, the student may defend the doctoral degree first.
b. Examination Environment:
- For students participating in on-campus programs, final examinations shall be held during regular working hours of an academic session in an academic environment either on the Pullman or non-Pullman campus, or by videoconference over Academic Media Services (AMS) or similar technologies. If held over AMS, at least one committee member must be physically present in the room with the student.
- Students in approved Global Campus programs have the option of taking their final examinations during regular working hours of an academic session either on campus or via technology approved and available through the Global Campus. Arrangements are to be approved by the faculty committee and program chair and made in accordance with the Graduate School’s examination environment policy and process.
- Individual programs may determine which faculty are eligible to vote, but in all cases, any faculty wishing to vote must be in attendance during all of the examination and must have participated in the assessment of the student’s examination work. If a faculty member wishing to vote must leave the room or the online session during the examination, the examination is to be recessed until said member returns.
- Individual programs determine in their bylaws which faculty can participate in the graduate program and thus are eligible to vote. In all cases, any eligible faculty wishing to vote must be in attendance during all of the examination. If an attending faculty member eligible to vote must leave the room or the online session during the examination, the examination is to be recessed until this member returns. It is a best practice that any faculty member voting on the examination outcome should have assessed all components of the student’s work being evaluated during the examination, including written documents submitted before the scheduled examination (specifically the thesis or master’s project). At the discretion of the major program (department) chair, members of the WSU faculty from other graduate programs may be present and may ask questions. However, these faculty are not eligible to vote.
Exceptions to this policy regarding the examination environment, including when and where the examination is held, the use of technology, and the presence and participation of faculty, must be requested well in advance of the exam and will be made by the Dean of the Graduate School only under unusual circumstances.
c. Examination Process:
- Final examinations for thesis master’s students are public. All faculty members, regardless of discipline, are encouraged to attend.
- The examination should not exceed two-and-one-half hours (including the student’s seminar presentation).
- The examining committee shall include the members of the master’s committee, whose chair presides, and any other member of the faculty in attendance.
- A member of the student’s Committee will be appointed by the Graduate School to serve as the Graduate School liaison regarding the final examination process (balloting, etc.).
- Although any member of the public at large may attend a final examination, including an examination for a Global Campus program via approved Global Campus technology, only faculty members may ask questions and vote, assuming they have participated in the assessment of the student’s examination work.
- All members of the master’s committee must attend and vote. Ballots must be cast, signed and dated, and the student must be informed of the outcome before the examination is adjourned.
- If a faculty member wishing to vote must leave the room or the online session during the examination or balloting discussion, the examination or discussion is to be recessed until said member returns.
- In situations in which faculty participate over AMS videoconference or other approved Global Campus technology, actual signed ballots may be sent to the Graduate School liaison immediately following the exam via confidential fax or emailed as a pdf file. No other format is acceptable. The Graduate School liaison should include these ballots in the packet for the Graduate School. The Graduate School liaison will return all ballots and paperwork to the Graduate School as soon as possible and no later than five working/business days after the exam. If submitting the ballots electronically to the Graduate School, they should be emailed to: email@example.com
Under extraordinary circumstances, on the recommendation of the student’s committee and upon the advice of the Graduate Studies Committee, the Dean of the Graduate School may approve alternate arrangements.
d. Final Thesis or Non-Thesis Requirement:
- A copy of the examinee’s thesis must be available for public inspection in the department/program offices for at least 5 (five) working/business days prior to the final examination. Copies must also be furnished to members of the candidate’s committee at least 5 (five) working/business days before the final examination.
- In the case of a non-thesis degree, a written presentation will be offered at the discretion of the committee chair.
e. Examination Outcome:
The candidate shall “pass” if the number of affirmative votes is equal to or greater than the minimum listed in the table below. If the number of votes exceed the numbers listed in the table, then a minimum of 75% of the examiners must cast an affirmative vote for the student to pass. In the event of a failed examination, a second and final attempt may be scheduled after a lapse of at least three months. When scheduling for a second exam, the scheduling form must be submitted at least 15 working/business days in advance of the exam day. A member of the Graduate Mentor Academy will be appointed by the Graduate School and must be present for a re-examination. The entire committee must be present and vote. A student who has failed two examinations will be dismissed from the Graduate School. The only exception to this re-examination policy is if a member of the Graduate Mentor Academy (appointed by the Graduate School) presided over the student’s first exam and agrees that a re-examination is not an appropriate disposition of the case (see Chapter 1, Section E.2, Examination Failure). Should there be procedural irregularities or extenuating circumstances during the first or second examination, the student has the right to appeal to the Graduate School in the event of examination failure.
Table of Master Final Exam Votes
|Number of Examiners Qualified to Vote||Minimum Number of Examiners Voting to Pass|
3. Second Master’s Degree
Up to a total of 12 hours of graduate credits that have been applied toward a master’s degree at Washington State University may be applied toward a second master’s degree. Such credit will be granted only for graded course work earned at Washington State University and completed with a grade of “B” or higher. Application of such credit toward a student’s program for a second master’s degree is subject to departmental recommendation and approval by the Graduate School. No credit in 600- and higher-level courses completed before fulfillment of all requirements for the first master’s degree may be applied toward a second master’s degree program.
Lori Bedient is a veterinary medical resident in the combined anatomic pathology/Ph.D. program at Washington State University. She received her B.S. in agriculture and D.V.M. at Kansas State University. While a veterinary student, Dr. Bedient had the opportunity to attend Aquamed, an intensive aquatic pathobiology program at Louisiana State University. Here she found a deep passion for both cultured and wild aquatic health issues. After graduation, she practiced small animal medicine for three years before returning to academia. She is most interested in opportunities in aquatic pathology and toxicological research and hopes to teach pathology after finishing her residency. She is a U.S. Army veteran, serving as a nurse in Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan and numerous stateside and overseas assignments. She and her husband have two little girls that keep her busy in her spare time.
Jacob Bray is a Chemical Engineering Ph.D. student at Washington State University under the guidance of Dr. Jean-Sabin McEwen. In this program, he will be focusing on catalysis research. In 2013, Jake graduated from Michigan Technological University (MTU) with a degree in chemical engineering. During his time at Michigan Tech he spent 15 months in Kentucky as a process engineering co-op for Domtar Paper Company. Jake is also the co-founder of a start-up alternative agriculture company, Northern Aquaponics LLC, which won the best technology award of $10,000 at Central Michigan University’s New Venture Competition in 2013. Following graduation, Jake began his career as a chemical engineer for the mid-western utility company, We Energies, working as the subject matter expert for all of the We Energies power generation assets in areas such as air quality control, waste water treatment, and various process and project operations. Jake married Maria, his fiancée of six years, this past September in their hometown of Marquette, Michigan. They enjoy spending time with their two dogs, Maple and Lentil, adventuring outdoors, and have a passion for coffee and coffee roasting, good breweries, spicy foods, and long road trips.
Jonathan Eagle is a Ph.D. student in plant pathology, interested in researching disease resistance and integrated disease management using cultural, chemical, biological, and biotechnological approaches. Jonathan earned his B.S. in biology at Henderson State University, where he was a member of the Honors College, a student leader, and an office assistant for the College. He served as president of the Biology Club, was president of the Henderson Honors College Heart and Key Service Organization, and was an active member of the Student Government Association. He is also a member of Beta Beta Beta, the Biological Honors Society as well as Gamma Beta Phi International Society. In 2014, Jonathan worked in in the laboratory of Dr. Javier Brumos at North Carolina State University as part of an NSF funded REU program, where he studied the regulation of auxin biosynthesis, examining specifically the effects of either activating or repressing selected transcription factor on the activity of the master auxin biosynthetic gene TAA1. Following his research, Jonathan presented at the Summer Undergraduate Symposium at NCSU. The summer of 2015, Jonathan traveled to Belize to conduct fieldwork on marine conservation and ecology as a member of the Undergraduate Teaching Assistant Program at Henderson.
Rachel L. Gewiss is a Ph.D. student in the School of Molecular Biosciences at Washington State University, with plans to study reproductive biology. Rachel earned her bachelor’s of science in genetics, cell biology, and development from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. A large part of her education there was doing research in Dr. David Zarkower’s laboratory for three years. Her senior thesis encapsulated her work on the potential role of Sox9 in sexual transdifferentiation of the mouse ovary. Rachel also spent a summer working at the Jackson Laboratory through their Summer Student Program in 2015, where she looked at the molecular role of RNA-modifying enzymes in the testis under the guidance of Dr. Robert Braun. After completion of her Ph.D., Rachel plans to continue research in academia in the reproductive biology field. Outside of the laboratory, Rachel is an avid curler, and was part of the 2013 University of Minnesota team that won the College Curling Nationals. She was also the Journal Club facilitator for the Genetics, Cell Biology, and Development Club. Rachel loves spending time in nature, playing the viola, and going to petting zoos.
Noe Gomez is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Animal Sciences at WSU. Originally from Santa Barbara, California, Noe went on to earn a B.S. in animal science with a minor in biology from the California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo in 2014. He then relocated to the University of California, Davis, were he conducted research in the area of ruminant physiology and completed an M.S. in animal biology in 2016. At WSU, Noe will be working in the laboratory of Dr. Min Du conducting research in the area of nutrient metabolism. After his Ph.D., Noe hopes to get some experience as a livestock nutritionist before returning to teach and conduct research at the university level. His primary objective is to contribute to the field of science, which seeks to improve the efficiency of food production along with teaching the next generation of agricultural scientists. When not in the lab or covered in cow manure, Noe enjoys competitive volleyball games, long runs across the Palouse, and guitar jam sessions with his musically talented friends.
James R. Hepler is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Entomology under the supervision of Dr. Elizabeth Beers. His research focuses on integrated pest management for the brown marmorated stinkbug, an invasive insect pest of deciduous tree fruits. James graduated from the University of California, Riverside, where he earned his bachelor’s of science in entomology and plant biology. As part of his University Honors thesis he conducted two years of research into the reproductive behaviors of the carob moth, a pest of dates, under the direction of Dr. Thomas M. Perring. After earning his Ph.D, James intends to become a professor of entomology to combine his enthusiasm for agricultural pest research with his desire to teach others. James is active in his church’s college ministry and served as the president of The Well Christian Club at UC Riverside during his senior year. He is an avid long-distance runner, and enjoys traditional archery, hiking, and caring for his backyard citrus and pomegranate trees in Riverside, California.
Benjamin W. Lee is a Ph.D. student working under Dr. David Crowder in the Department of Entomology. He investigates how patterns of landscape and climate can affect the distribution and spread of insect pests and plant pathogens in agricultural fields. Ben earned a bachelor’s of science in entomology at Cornell University in the spring of 2016. While at Cornell, he conducted research on the physiology and ecology of the native and invasive lady beetles of New York State, resulting in the publication of his senior thesis. After graduate school, Ben would like to use his knowledge of agricultural and landscape ecology to improve subsistence farming in developing countries. He is a strong proponent of supporting local foods and farmers, and is a wine enthusiast who hopes to someday receive a master sommelier certification.
Becky H. Lee is a Anatomic Pathology Residency/PhD student in the Department of Veterinary Pathology and Microbiology at Washington State University. Becky recently graduated from a 4-year veterinary medicine program and received her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from the University of California, Davis. Using the summer during her vigorous veterinary school training, Becky completed research projects involving sequencing genomes and identifying genetic markers as therapeutic targets. Her most recent work with the T35 NIH Program at Stanford University is currently in the process of being published, and exemplifies comparative medicine in applying human medical therapies to animal disease. Upon starting at WSU, Becky hopes to find a research environment that can further expand her interests in comparative medicine and pathology. As extracurricular at UC Davis, Becky continued to develop her passion for shelter animals, and was an avid participant of fostering neonatal kittens and a Chihuahua rescue program. She enjoys outdoor adventures such as hiking, and is a novice photographer with her husband and animal family. She also enjoys at-home activities such as cooking and fiber art.
Alice Olson is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Molecular Plant Sciences and a part of the National Institute of Health Biotechnology Training program. She will be working with Dr. Helmut Kirchoff and Dr. Mark Lange to study photosynthetic membranes and terpenoids, respectively. Alice graduated with her bachelor’s of science in Environmental Science at the University of Wisconsin – Stout. While she was there she worked with Dr. Vande Linde on developing new methods for preventing the uptake of the heavy metal cadmium in crops. After obtaining her Ph.D., Alice plans on pursuing research in plant molecular structure. While working on her bachelor’s, Alice worked as a chemistry tutor, naturalist educator, and teaching assistant. She has a deep passion for teaching others about what she’s learned and helping them find success in their own lives. She also enjoys spending time outdoors, playing board games, and traveling.
Mikayla M. Strauss is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Crop and Soil Sciences under the supervision of Dr. Kim Campbell and Dr. Arron Carter. She will be working with high throughput phenotyping in winter wheat. Nikayla received her bachelor’s degree in Soil and Crop Sciences with a concentration in plant genetics, breeding, and biotechnology from Colorado State University. During her time at CSU, she worked for the winter wheat breeding program under Dr. Scott Haley and was awarded the Triticeae Coordinated Agriculture Project grant for undergraduate research. With this grant, she developed a KASP marker assay for a novel trait in winter wheat, and also presented this research in the undergraduate research competition at the SASES national meetings. Also while at CSU, Nikayla was president of the Agronomy Club for two years. After completing her Ph.D., Nikayla hopes to become a cereal grain breeder. In her free time Nikayla enjoys hiking, backpacking, shooting, fishing, snowshoeing, and dancing.
Kaitlin Witherell is a Ph.D student in the Department of Immunology and Infectious Disease. She will be doing rotations in three laboratories for the first year and then select from one of those to begin her research project. She has a bachelor of science degree in Microbiology from the University of California Davis. While there, she worked at the University of California Davis Comparative Pathology Laboratory identifying microbes, particularly pathogenic microbes in a variety of submitted research animals including: fish, mice, rats, rabbits, and many others. For one summer she was a student lab assistant in a neurobiology laboratory. She also conducted research for two summers as an intern at Biolog Inc. After completing her Ph.D., Kaitlin would like to eventually run a microbiology laboratory in industry studying infectious disease. Outside of school, Kaitlin enjoys hiking, kayaking, jogging, baking, and spending time with friends and family.
2017-18 ARCS Scholars
Brent Arnoldussen is a first-year Ph.D. student in the plant pathology department under the supervision of Dr. Mark Mazzola. His project will focus on the genotypic effects on the variation of exuduate composition of apple rootstocks, and their subsequent effects on recruiting beneficial microbes to the rhizosphere, which impart resistance to apple replant disease. Brent earned two BS degrees in horticulture and biology from The University of Wisconsin-River Falls. While there, he was highly involved in a variety of undergraduate research projects, most notably, his Ronald E. Mcnair Scholars project, looking at the effects of mycorrhizal helper bacteria on the colonization and growth of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. Brent also worked on the Northern Organic Vegetable Improvement Collaborative project for 3 years for Dr. Silva. In addition, he has done work with bioremediation, a project which was presented at the National Council on Undergraduate Research (NCUR), and two projects working with molecular genetics for a strawberry and ageratum breeding program on campus. At UWRF Brent served as president and treasurer of the Student Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture and served as the student liaison on the faculty sustainability working group. Coming from an agricultural background, Brent’s main interest is in growing much of his own food and working with community farms and organizations to teach people about food production, as well as outdoor activities like fishing and backpacking. Upon the completion of his degree, Brent hopes to hold a faculty position working in research and extension in fruit or vegetable crop pathology, working to make production more economically and environmentally sustainable.
Megan Asche is a first-year Ph.D. student in the Department of Entomology under the supervision of Dr. Richard Zack. She specializes in honeybee biology and agroecology. Over the next three years, Megan will be investigating the apiculturally significant predator/prey relationship between the family Vespidae and the species Apis mellifera (L.). Her master’s work was done at Washington State University where she studied the foraging and hygienic behavior of honeybee strains. Megan was awarded a B.A. in design from Western Washington University in 2007. She worked as a professional designer for over six years before beginning her career in science. Megan is an award-winning macro insect photographer and has contributed to many international scientific and outreach publications. After completing her Ph.D., Megan wishes to work within the commercial beekeeping industry before returning to academia.
Rachel M. Bone Relat is a veterinarian and first-year student in the Combined Residency in Anatomic Pathology PhD program. Rachel graduated with honors from the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine in 2017. In addition to her anatomic pathology residency, she will also pursue a Ph.D. through the Department of Veterinary Microbiology and Pathology. Currently, her interests are in virology, aquatic medicine, and herd health disease outbreak prevention. While attending veterinary school, Rachel was sponsored by Winrock International and the USAID to work in Bangladesh with local researchers and farmers to develop molecular techniques used to diagnose shrimp diseases. Prior to veterinary school, Rachel attended the University of Rhode Island and completed a M.S. in biology, specializing in sustainable agriculture and food systems under the guidance of Dr. Marta Gomez-Chiarri. Rachel earned her B.S. in ecology, behavior, and evolutionary biology with a minor in conservation biology from UCLA. During her academic tenure, Rachel has studied aquatic parasites in Costa Rica, effects of plant-based diets in carnivorous fish, and herpes viruses in sturgeon. After completing her Ph.D., she hopes to pursue her love of aquatic diseases within academia. Rachel is a 3rd generation veterinarian whose father and grandfather graduated from the College of Veterinary Medicine at Washington State University. While at UCLA Rachel played club water polo, and was nominated as an All-American Honorable Mention for her role as goalie. Married this past June, Rachel and her husband are looking forward to new opportunities for outdoor adventuring, and for her to improve her fly casting while in Washington.
Cody Cockreham grew up in New Mexico playing basketball, wrestling rattlesnakes, and trying to avoid the scorching desert sun. After graduating with a B.S. in chemical and materials engineering from New Mexico State University, he is pursuing his Ph.D. in chemical engineering at Washington State University. His research prior to WSU includes working on synthesizing metal-organic frameworks for use in carbon capture technologies at New Mexico State University and developing electrospinning methods to control fiber diameter for in-situ vascular grafts at the University of Pittsburgh. For Cody, the most important thing in his current research and his career is to improve sustainability through new environmentally cleaner technologies because he is interested in preserving the natural beauty of the Earth. At New Mexico State University, Cody was the president of the Biomedical Engineering Society and a guest judge for the home brewing class. Cody has visited twenty countries in Europe and loves to travel.
Sedelia Dominguez earned a B.S. in biology with a minor in chemistry at St. John’s University in Queens, New York. While at St. John’s, she conducted research for two years with Dr. Rachel Zufferey of the Biology Department. Her research included the study of arthropod-born protozoan parasites that cause important diseases in humans and animals. Over the span of two years, she conducted a combination of genetic, molecular and cell biology, and biochemical approaches. Soon she will be receiving a publication for a review on lipidomics and anti-trypanosomal chemotherapy. She hopes to continue to conduct her research in disease prevention and treatment at the CDC. Over the course of the past two years, Sedelia traveled to Honduras and Ghana to provide health preventives, treatments and education for underdeveloped communities. Outside the lab, Sedelia enjoys working out and spending time with family and friends.
Amanda L. Foreman is a first-year Ph.D. student in the Department of Veterinary Microbiology and Pathology. She is a NIH Protein Biotechnology trainee, and will be completing rotations in laboratories in the Immunology and Infectious Disease program. Amanda earned B.S. and M.S. degrees in animal and nutritional sciences at West Virginia University. Her undergraduate and graduate work at West Virginia University examined the roles of nutrition on avian health and performance. This research lead to a publication on the effects of different diets on the health and well-being of cockatiels. She then completed a graduate certificate in infectious disease control at Thomas Jefferson University. At Thomas Jefferson University, Amanda’s research focused on developing a rabies virus based therapeutic colon cancer vaccine. Furthermore, she developed cell-based assays to show the success of the vaccine in vivo. This research lead to a publication on the effects of CD4+ T-cell help on antitumor immunity. While completing research at Thomas Jefferson University, Amanda also worked full-time at the biotechnology company Wuxi Apptec. She worked in the viral clearance department to determine the efficacy of drug purification processes in different pharmaceutical companies. Upon graduation from Washington State University, Amanda would like to become a principal investigator in academia focusing on preventative and therapeutic approaches to infectious diseases. When not engaging in scientific research, she spends her time outdoors with her dog, home brewing, and reading.
John A. Hadish is a first-year Ph.D. student who will be doing rotations in the Department of Molecular Plant Sciences. He is interested in applying the latest genetic techniques to agriculture in order to pursue a more sustainable and environmentally friendly world. John earned his B.S. degree in biology from Luther College where he was a part of several research projects and was a recipient of a McElroy Grant. He also was an NSF intern at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center where he performed research on developing a CRISPR Cas9 genome editing tool for Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. While at Luther John ran on both the varsity cross country and varsity track teams, and was involved in the schools chapter of Beta Beta Beta Biological Honor Society. He enjoys camping, gardening and reading science fiction books.
Ellis Hammond-Pereira will be a first-year Ph.D. student in the School of Chemical Engineering under the direction of Dr. Steve Saunders. He will begin research on the development of yolk-shell based nanocomposites to homogenize heterogeneous catalysts. Ellis earned his B.S. degree in chemical engineering from Oregon State University. During this program, he worked as a learning assistant, and helped pioneer the Engineering Learning Assistant program at Oregon State under Dr. Milo Koretsky. The program was successfully implemented and is still in use. After completing his Ph.D., Ellis aims to conduct research and development of semiconductors. He is driven by a love of taking in and sharing knowledge, which has led him to consider a career in higher education. In his spare time, he enjoys both writing and deconstructing music, graphic design, video games, and fencing.
Lee Opdahl is a first-year Ph.D. student in the Department of Crop and Soil Sciences under the supervision of Dr. Tarah Sullivan. The subject of his dissertation research will be in the area of metal and micronutrient transformations by the rhizosphere microbiome that enhance plant nutrition and crop productivity. Lee earned his M.S. degree in animal science, and his B.s. degree in biology, microbiology, and biotechnology with minors in chemistry and psychology at South Dakota State University. During his master’s degree, he worked to identify candidate cellulose-metabolizing bacteria in the rumen of beef cattle, resulting in two articles soon to be submitted for publication. After his Ph.D., Lee will work for Ralco Agriculture based out of southwest Minnesota, where he will conduct research on crop enhancing products such as micronutrient fertilizers and seed treatment. Lee enjoys many outdoor activities including hiking, fishing, and canoeing, and also enjoys global travel, which he plans to do more of once he has completed his Ph.D.
Gregory L. Pearson will be pursuing his Ph.D. in the Department of Veterinary Microbiology & Pathology at Washington State University starting fall 2017. His primary research interests are focused on rickettsial organisms, but he is generally interested in vector-borne disease. Gregory earned a B.S. in exercise science with a minor in biology and a M.S. in biology at Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania. As a graduate student, Gregory completed a thesis under the supervision of Dr. Alison L. Fedrow, which was entitled “The surveillance of ticks and tickborne pathogens in the understudied region of southwestern Pennsylvania.” Also during this time, he was chosen as an intern for the Naval Research Enterprise Internship Program (Summer 2016, Summer 2017) and worked in Dr. Allen L. Richards rickettsial diseases laboratory at the Naval Medical Research Center in Silver Spring, Maryland. As an undergraduate at Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania, Gregory competed on the track and field team as a discus, shot put, and hammer thrower. He is regularly involved in weightlifting, playing sports, and hiking or other adventurous outdoor activities.
Kelly M. Ramsay is a first-year Ph.D. student in the Department of Immunology and Infectious Disease at Washington State University. She is also pursuing a residency in veterinary anatomic pathology through the Department of Veterinary Microbiology and Pathology and College of Veterinary Medicine. Currently, Kelly is exploring various labs, but she ultimately hopes to investigate zoonotic diseases that could ultimately lead to the improvement of both human and animal health. Kelly earned her B.A. degree in English literature and creative writing, with a minor in chemistry, from California State University, Long Beach. She then went on to intern at a marine mammal rehabilitation facility, as well as an exotic feline breeding and research center. She earned her D.V.M. at the University of California, Davis. During this time, she developed an interest in pathology and research. Volunteering at clinics that practiced a “one health” approach (the concept that human, animal and environmental health are inextricably intertwined) further drove her interest in researching diseases that affect both humans and animals. During her clinical year, she was an extern with the Johns Hopkins University Department of Comparative Pathobiology, as well as the National Cancer Institute at the National Institutes of Health. After completing her residency and Ph.D., Kelly hopes to pursue a career in academia. This would allow her to pursue all her favorite aspects of pathology: diagnostics, teaching and research. In her free time, Kelly loves nature, traveling, weight lifting, dancing and discovering new craft breweries. Recent adventures include sledding down a volcano in Nicaragua, surfing in Kauai and hiking Half Dome in Yosemite National Park.
Matthew D. Romero is a first-year Ph.D. student in the Department of Biomedical Sciences under the supervision of Dr. Jean Celli. He is principally interested in host pathogen interactions, particularly the molecular mechanisms used to bolster immunity or evade immune detection. Matthew completed both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Texas Tech University in microbiology. While in Lubbock, Matthew conducted research on bacterial toxins derived from human pathogens and how host cells respond to intoxication. Additionally, Matthew has taught several laboratory courses in immunology and microbiology and appreciates the opportunity to educate and communicate with young scientists. Outside of the laboratory, Matthew enjoys a few rounds of bowling, a few games of racquetball and a couple pints of homebrewed beer. Cooking is something Matthew is passionate about, and loves shopping in farmer’s markets for new or fresh ingredients to try in a dish. He is hoping to pursue a career in the biomedical industry, and is fortunate for the many opportunities provided by Washington State University to meet this goal.
Jessa Thurman is a first-year P.hD. student entering the Department of Entomology under the supervision of Dr. William Snyder. She will investigate parasitoid-host interactions for natural pest control in agricultural systems. Jessa earned her B.S. in biology from Hendrix College, where she also completed two years of research on the seed dispersion of anachronistic fruits alongside independent research on new species of gall wasps from Costa Rica under the supervision of Dr. Matthew Moran. After finishing her undergraduate degree, Jessa embarked on a year-long Thomas J. Watson Fellowship to study different applications of entomology in Australia, Thailand, Malaysia, Peru, and the United Kingdom. The various projects within each country ranged from studying entomophagy, the consumption of insects, to using insects to control pests in tropical crop systems. While on the Watson Fellowship, Jessa was also awarded a William J. Fulbright to study the biological control of arthropod pests in macadamia nuts using parasitoid wasps for 2018. After completing her Ph.D., Jessa plans to further develop the methodology and social work required for using natural pest control. Jessa has worked as children’s librarian for six years and thoroughly enjoys teaching kids of all ages about the outdoors. She also organized TEDx events for her college and ran a local radio show on scientific research from Arkansas, her home state.
Joel A. Velasco is a first-year Ph.D. student in molecular plant sciences under the supervision of Dr. David Gang. His research seeks to elucidate the genomics of biosynthetic pathways that produce novel and important plant specialized metabolites. Joel earned his B.S. in biology with a botany emphasis from Boise State University. While there, he conducted two years of research into the effects of drought on the symbiotic association between arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and Artemisia tridentata (sagebrush) under the direction of Dr. Marcelo Serpe. Joel also participated in the NSF-CEPCEB REU Program in Next Generation Plant Biology at the University of California Riverside for two summers under the guidance of National Academy of Sciences member Dr. Julia Bailey-Serres, which resulted in a publication that is currently in the review process. After completing his PhD, Joel wishes to pursue a postdoctoral position at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Germany with the hopes of obtaining the experience necessary to secure a position at a biotechnology firm, and eventually returning to academia and continuing to broaden the knowledge about specialized plant secondary metabolite synthesis. Joel is one of nine children and is a first generation college graduate. While at Boise State, Joel was a McNair Scholar and a resident mentor for TRIO Upward Bound. He enjoys any activity that involves puzzles and critical thought. He is also an avid music listener and live-music enthusiast.
Halle Weimar is a first-year Ph.D. student in the Integrative Physiology and Neuroscience Department at Washington State University. Born and raised in Kennewick, Washington, she earned a B.S. in neuroscience from WSU in 2017. Continuing her studies at WSU, Halle is rotating in the laboratories of Dr. Jon Davis, who studies feeding behavior, and Dr. David Rossi, who investigates development of the cerebellum. After receiving her Ph.D., Halle plans to further refine her skills through a postdoctoral fellowship and eventually become a teaching faculty and researcher. Throughout her current and future endeavors, Halle will strive to provide high-quality research to the growing body of work surrounding the human brain and nervous system. In addition to neuroscience, Halle enjoys hiking, photography, and travel.
I’m planning to graduate this semester.
What do I need to do?
Complete at the beginning of your graduation semester before submitting any exam information:
- Enroll for your research (700, 701, 702, or 800) credits (2 cr. minimum, you may need to register for more). If in doubt, contact the Academic Coordinator in your graduate program.
- Apply for Degree for Spring 2019 or Fall 2019 graduation (choose the semester in which you will take your final exam and graduate). Pay the fee via your myWSU account.
- Spring 2019 Deadline: March 1, 2019 at 11:59 p.m. (to avoid a late fee) – Application open
- Summer 2019 Deadline: May 24, 2019 – Application open
- Fall 2019 Deadline: October 4, 2019 at 11:59 p.m. (to avoid late fee) – Application opens 6/10/2019
The earlier you Apply for Degree, the sooner we will be able to perform your degree audit (referred to as a “To-Do”).
NOTE: This is not the same as signing up to walk in Commencement. To Register for Commencement, please see the Commencement website.
One month before your exam date (or earlier):
Download the Scheduling form. Notice this is a fillable PDF, so download the form by clicking on the download button (generally located at the TOP right-hand part of your screen). Once you’ve downloaded it using Adobe Acrobat, READ Page ONE. On Page TWO, provide the information asked for and *SELECT the EXAM TYPE you are scheduling. COMPLETE all details as indicated, SAVE your scheduling form, and then PRINT it out and obtain all signatures (students: remember to also sign it yourself).
*Once you select the Exam TYPE, information will appear on screen which is applicable to this specific type of exam. Read this information carefully.
Three weeks before your exam date:
After ALL signatures have been obtained on your scheduling form, keep a copy for yourself and SUBMIT the completed, ORIGINAL SCHEDULING FORM to your ACADEMIC COORDINATOR. (This will allow your coordinator a few days’ time to review the form to ensure it is complete and to UPLOAD/SUBMIT it to the Graduate School Graduate Records Management (GRM) portal).
Ten working days before your EXAM DATE (or earlier):
- Your completed scheduling form must arrive at the Graduate School (sent via our GRM portal by your Academic Coordinator/program). If it is not complete, it will be returned for completion (which will necessitate your form to be corrected and re- submitted and it will then be LATE!).
- Your FINAL DRAFT thesis or dissertation must be uploaded to ProQuest (PhD) or sent to firstname.lastname@example.org (Master’s theses). Please see the Submission Guidelines/Formatting Requirements pdf. Your thesis/dissertation is reviewed for proper formatting before we can schedule your exam.
Scheduling forms may be submitted to the Graduate School before deadline; however, if you do that, ALL information on the form must be the true/correct information for the exam. Do not submit the scheduling form thinking you can change or complete the date/time/locations — doing so causes problems, including delayed scheduling/double or triple handling of an exam (inefficient use of staff time) or your exam not being scheduled at all (worst-case).
WSU Graduate School Policies and Procedures:
Chapter 7 – Master’s Degree (letter ‘D’ is the section that discusses the master’s final exam) – ALL Master’s degree students must submit a scheduling form for their final exam. https://gradschool.wsu.edu/chapter-seven-d/
Chapter 8 – Doctoral Degree (letter ‘E’ is the section that discusses the doctoral final exam). https://gradschool.wsu.edu/chapter-8-e/
For students submitting a Master’s thesis or Doctoral dissertation:
Here are the submission instructions and formatting requirements. We will review your dissertation right before we schedule your exam, so be sure to watch for that email and keep it for your use/reference. If your written document looks to be in good order, the changes we identify should be minimal.
DEADLINES and PROCEDURES (Instructions/Steps) for Master’s and Doctoral Degrees are found on our FORMS website under ‘D’ (for Deadlines).
Other helpful documents (on our FORMS website):
- *Thesis and dissertation Word template is recommended
- Thesis and Dissertation Formatting and Submission Requirements
- Thesis/Dissertation Final Acceptance Checklist
Don’t forget to:
- Plan ahead
- Monitor your WSU email
- Maintain good communication with your committee and your graduate program
- Have a really good semester!
WSU Graduate School
Programs and Graduations
Doctoral Research. Prior approval for use of human subjects, animals, or biohazardous materials in research is required. If the student plans to utilize human subjects, animals or biohazardous materials for research, he/she must contact the Office of Research Assurances (see Chapter 11 for additional policies and resources concerning research).
1. The Dissertation Requirement. All doctoral programs require that a candidate prepare a dissertation. The dissertation is a scholarly, original study that represents a significant contribution to the knowledge of the chosen discipline. The student must enroll for research (800) credits while preparing and defending the dissertation.
The doctoral committee is responsible for ensuring that the student has followed an appropriate format and that the content is acceptable. The graduate committee members must read and return drafts of dissertations to the student within a reasonable period of time. The Faculty Senate Graduate Studies Committee recommends that committee members hold drafts for no longer than 30 calendar days.
Washington State University participates in the ProQuest Dissertation Publishing program and submits all dissertations to this organization for publication upon acceptance. No material in the dissertation may be restricted in any way; the dissertation must be made available through the Washington State Libraries and ProQuest for inspection by any interested parties. If copyrighted material is included in the dissertation, written permission must be obtained from the copyright owner to reproduce the material in the dissertation. Such written permission must be submitted to the Graduate School at final acceptance.
Following a passed oral examination, the student must submit the dissertation through the Graduate School’s official dissertation submission process for final acceptance. Detailed instructions for submission of the dissertation can be found in Chapter 6 (General Academic Requirements).
2. Scheduling the Final Defense Examination. The completed Dissertation Acceptance/Final Examination Scheduling form must be submitted to the Graduate School at least 10 (ten) working/business days in advance of the examination date. It is necessary to present an electronic copy of the dissertation that is complete in format at the time of scheduling. The examination must be scheduled at least four months, but less than three years, after satisfactory completion of the preliminary examination.
The Dissertation Acceptance/Final Examination Scheduling Form is to be signed by all members of the student’s committee. When committee members sign the Dissertation Acceptance/Final Exam Scheduling form, they are indicating that they have read and approved a printed or electronic version of the thesis, suitable in content and format for defense and submission to the Library. They also indicate their acceptance of the date, time, and place of the final examination. Responsibility (including financial) for changes in format after the Dissertation Acceptance/Final Examination scheduling form is signed rests with the graduate program rather than with the student. Content changes are always the responsibility of the student. Students must complete the Application for Degree within my.WSU before scheduling a final examination.
All fees, including the graduation fee and the optional copyright fee, must be paid before scheduling the final defense. The Graduate School will schedule the student’s final examination upon receipt of the completed Dissertation Acceptance/Final Examination Scheduling Form and a properly formatted, draft copy of the dissertation, which will be returned to the student.
Doctoral candidates must deliver a complete copy of the dissertation to the program chair/director at least 5 (five) working/business days prior to the oral defense. This copy can serve as the public copy and be displayed at a public place designated by the program. Program requirements for the number of copies of the dissertation to be distributed prior to the examination and after the examination vary. Students should check with their graduate program to ascertain program requirements.
3. Final Doctoral Defense Examination. A candidate for a doctoral degree must pass a final oral examination that primarily shall be a defense of the dissertation but may cover the general fields of knowledge pertinent to the degree. The student must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0, have completed or be enrolled in all the required coursework, have met all admission contingencies, and be registered for a minimum of 2 (two) hours of 800 credit at the beginning of the semester or summer session in which the final examination is to be taken. Final examinations will include discussion of the completed dissertation (which is suitable in format and content for submission to the library). Under extraordinary circumstances, on the recommendation of the student’s committee and program chair, the Dean of the Graduate School may approve alternative arrangements.
The candidate’s committee is responsible for approving all aspects of the final dissertation before students may schedule the final examination. When committee members sign the Dissertation Acceptance/Final Examination Scheduling form, they indicate that a typed (or electronic) dissertation suitable in format and content for submission to the Library has been given their approval; they also indicate their acceptance of the date, time, and place of the final examination.
The examining committee shall include the doctoral committee and any other members of the faculty in attendance. The chair of the student’s committee will chair the final examination and be responsible for its conduct.
A member of the student’s committee will be appointed by the Graduate School to serve as the Graduate School liaison regarding the examination process (balloting, etc.). A student, department chair, graduate program director, committee member, or any other concerned member of the WSU community may request that the Graduate School provide an independent observer to be present at any final examination/ballot meeting. The name of the individual making the request will be held confidential. All such requests will be fulfilled by drawing on a member of the Graduate Mentor Academy. All repeat examinations or defenses will have such an independent, outside representative. During the scheduling process, the Graduate School will notify the student, committee, and department chair/program director if a Graduate Mentor has been assigned to an exam.
Examination Environment and Process:
- For students participating in on-campus programs, final examinations shall be held during regular working hours of an academic session in an academic environment either on the Pullman or branch campus, or by videoconference over Academic Media Services (AMS) or similar technologies. If held over AMS, at least one committee member must be physically present in the room with the student.
- Students participating in approved Global Campus programs have the option of taking their final examinations during regular working hours of an academic session either on campus or via technology approved and available through the Global Campus. Arrangements are to be approved by the faculty committee and program chair and made in accordance with the Graduate School’s examination environment policy and process.
- All final examinations are public, and all faculty members, regardless of discipline, are particularly encouraged to attend those of interest to them. Although any member of the public at large may attend final examinations, only faculty members may ask questions and vote.
- All members of the doctoral committee must be present at the oral examination and ballot meeting, and all must vote.
- Individual programs determine in their bylaws which faculty can participate in the graduate program and thus are eligible to vote. In all cases, any eligible faculty wishing to vote must be in attendance during all of the examination. If an attending faculty member eligible to vote must leave the room or the online session during the examination, the examination is to be recessed until this member returns. It is a best practice that any faculty member voting on the examination outcome should have assessed all components of the student’s work being evaluated during the examination, including written documents submitted before the scheduled examination (specifically, the dissertation). At the discretion of the major program (department) chair, members of the WSU faculty from other graduate programs may be present and may ask questions. However, these faculty are not eligible to vote.
- The final doctoral examination may not exceed two and one-half hours (including the student’s seminar presentation).
- There is no separation into major and minor fields; all examiners vote on the total examination.
- In situations in which faculty participate over AMS videoconference or other virtual meeting technology, signed ballots must be sent to the Graduate School’s liaison (normally the committee chair) immediately following the exam via confidential email as an image file. The Graduate School liaison must include these ballots in the packet returned to the Graduate School.
- The packet of completed ballots and the Ballot Memorandum must be returned to the Graduate School within five business days after the examination.
Exceptions to this policy regarding the examination environment, including the use of technology and the presence and participation of faculty, must be requested well in advance of the exam and will be made by the Dean of the Graduate School only under unusual circumstances.
The candidate shall pass if a minimum of three-fourths of those voting so indicate (see Table of Doctoral Preliminary and Final Exam Votes below). In the event of a failed final examination, a second and last attempt may be scheduled after a lapse of at least three months. When scheduling for a second exam, the scheduling form must be submitted at least 15 working/business days in advance of the exam day. A member of the Graduate Mentor Academy will be appointed by the Graduate School and must be present for a re-examination. The entire committee must be present and vote. A student who has failed two examinations will be dismissed from the Graduate School. The only exception to this re-examination policy is if a member of the Graduate Mentor Academy (appointed by the Graduate School) presided over the student’s first exam and agrees that a re-examination is not an appropriate disposition of the case [see Chapter 1, Section E.2, Examination (Preliminary or Final) Failure]. Should there be procedural irregularities or extenuating circumstances during the first or second exam, the student has the right to appeal to the Graduate School in the event of examination failure.
Table of Doctoral Preliminary and Final Exam Votes
|Number of Examiners Qualified to Vote||Number of Examiners Voting to Pass|
4. Second Doctoral Degree. Applicants holding a doctoral degree or having completed all requirements for the doctoral degree may be admitted to a second doctoral program at Washington State University under the following conditions and with the following provisions governing enrollment and the academic program:
- If the applicant is admissible to the Graduate School and to the doctoral program to which he/she is applying and explanations for seeking a second doctorate are acceptable to the program, the applicant may be admitted as a degree-seeking graduate student in the doctoral program of his/her choice.
- While the process outlined above is underway, the applicant may be considered for admission as a not-advanced degree candidate (NADC) (not a degree candidate) in the program to which he/she is applying for doctoral studies. If accepted by the Graduate School and the program concerned, the applicant may enroll as a NADC student without the usual restrictions controlling transfer of credit from NADC to degree-seeking status. The applicant for a second doctoral program who accepts NADC status should understand that this is not merely a formality prior to admission to a doctoral program. NADC status admission in no way implies ultimate admission to a doctoral program.
- The Academic Policies of the Graduate School will govern the enrollment and programs of all students studying for the second doctorate. There will be a special requirement that all of the 15 minimum credit core requirements must be graded course work at the graduate (500) level and taken at Washington State University. If the student has taken the first doctoral degree at WSU, the student must take a minimum of 15 core-graded credits toward the second degree; none of the research credits from the first degree may count toward the second degree. Second doctoral degree students (NADC status) will be eligible for appointment as teaching and research assistants for a maximum of two academic years and two summer sessions.
Final Oral Examination
All master’s degrees (except non-thesis EdM students electing the internship option) require a final oral exam. You must have a minimum GPA of 3.00 on both your program and cumulative graduate transcript to schedule the final oral examination.
All coursework with a grade of I appearing on the program of study must be completed prior to scheduling the final oral examination.
You must schedule your exam with the Graduate School two weeks in advance to allow time to audit your program of study.
Preliminary Oral Examination
In order to be admitted to candidacy for the doctoral degree, you must pass a comprehensive preliminary examination conducted by your committee. The purpose of this exam is to determine your understanding of your major and minor fields and to assess your capability for research. The exam may cover your proposed research topic, although no more than one-half of the test should be devoted to specific aspects of the proposal. The preliminary exam is taken near the completion of all coursework on the Program of Study.
Final Oral Examination:
At least one complete academic term must elapse between the preliminary exam and the final exam. The examination committee will consist of the same members as for the preliminary examination, although substitutions may be made if approved by the department/program or college and the Graduate School.
Process for Scheduling Your Exam
- Review the Graduate School Policies and Procedures Manual (Chapter 7: Master’s; Chapter 8: Doctoral)
- Your approved Program of Study (for this degree) must be on file at the Graduate School.
- You must be enrolled and registered for the required number (2) of 700/800 credits during the semester in you take the final oral examination.
- Apply for Degree. Your “Application for Degree” must be on file in myWSU and the graduation fee(s) paid before the final oral examination may be scheduled. Contact the Graduate School if you need to UPDATE your Application for Degree.
- Complete the Final Examination Scheduling Form with assistance from your department’s Academic Coordinator; this includes reserving rooms at all locations.
- Your committee members sign the Final Examination Scheduling Form, indicating that they agree to attend at the date/time/location; that the student is ready for this exam; and that a dissertation/thesis suitable for submission has been given preliminary approval. You must obtain the department-level signature on the Scheduling Form.
- The signed Final Examination Scheduling Form must be submitted to the Graduate School at least 10 working days prior to the examination date (or 15 working days if a Graduate Mentor is requested. See below for information about Graduate Mentors).
- An electronic copy of your dissertation or thesis must be submitted at the same time as your Final Examination Scheduling Form. This submission does not constitute final acceptance. The Graduate School schedules the student’s examination upon receipt of the completed Final Examination Scheduling Form.
- Master’s candidates must send their draft thesis in PDF format to email@example.com.
- Doctoral candidates must upload their draft dissertation to UMI/ProQuest at http://www.dissertations.wsu.edu, and choose the appropriate publishing method (Traditional or Open Access). Publishing fees (all doctoral candidates), and copyright fee (optional for doctoral candidates only) must be paid to UMI/ProQuest before scheduling the final exam.
- At least five working days prior to the oral defense, doctoral and thesis master’s candidates must deliver a complete copy of the dissertation/thesis to the Department or Program Chair. This copy can serve as the public copy and be displayed at a public place designated by the
- Check with your department to ascertain the requirements for the number of copies of the dissertation/thesis to be distributed prior to the examination.
When scheduling a re-examination (second/final attempt), the student must turn in a completed Final Examination Scheduling Form a minimum of 15 working days before the date of the exam.
Your Oral Defense
The first part of the exam is the defense, a presentation which may be open to all interested parties. After the thesis defense portion, the examination committee excludes all other persons and continues examining your knowledge of your field.
Graduate Mentor Academy
Graduate students may need guidance and support during challenging aspects of their program, including preliminary examinations and defenses. The Graduate Mentor Academy serves graduate students by representing the Graduate School during examinations and defenses. To find out more about the Academy and the assistance it offers, visit HERE.