image: Psychology Logo
image: Psychology Logo
image: UW - Madison Logo
image: Psychology Logo
Doctorial Dissertation and Oral Examination
About the Dissertation and Exam
Each Doctoral student shall complete a dissertation covering original research. The student will be examined by a committee of five faculty members at the University of Wisconsin, at least three from Psychology and at least one from another department. No more than one joint/affiliated faculty member may count as a Psychology faculty member. The "PhD Final Oral Committee Approval Form" must be submitted at least 3 weeks before the defense. 

Guidelines for Dissertation Proposals and Dissertation Proposal Meetings
All Psychology graduate students are required to prepare a prospectus of their proposed dissertation work and convene a dissertation proposal meeting with their 5-person dissertation committee to discuss the proposed research. The purpose of the meeting is for the dissertation committee to provide feedback on the proposed dissertation research. The format of the prospectus should be like a grant proposal (e.g., Summary of Specific Aims, Background and Significance, Preliminary Work when applicable, and Research Plan). The expectation is that the dissertation proposal meeting will be convened early enough in the development of the dissertation project so the dissertation committee can provide significant input on the research plan (design and analysis, where feasible). The student should provide a hard copy of the prospectus to the Dissertation Committee at least 1 week prior to the proposal meeting.

Warrant Process
  1. Notify the graduate coordinator via early in the semester of your intentions to complete your PhD and defend your dissertation. 
  2. The graduate coordinator will provide you with a form entitled "PhD Final Oral Committee Approval Form" once you have emailed with your intentions.
  3. Complete the form and obtain the appropriate signatures. 
  4. Return the form to the graduate coordinator in person or via mailbox at least three weeks prior to your dissertation defense date
  5. The coordinator will submit the form to the Graduate School.
  6. An official warrant for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy will be issued along with a packet of materials. The graduate coordinator will notify you when the information has been recieved and placed in your mailbox.
  7. Read all the materials in the packet carefully and fill out the necessary paperwork. You will have trouble graduating if you don't read the materials.
  8. Upon successful defense of your dissertation, present your warrant and committee's page for signatures. 
  9. Make a copy of the completed and signed PhD warrant, as well as the committee's page, and place it into the graduate coordinator's mailbox for record keeping purposes. 
  10. Call the Graduate School at 262-2433 to make an appointment to deposit your dissertation. Call at least one day in advance.
    1. There is a check list in the hand out "3 D's" for depositing the dissertation that you will recieve in the packet of information. You must bring the signed warrant, the signed committee's page, and all the other documents together with the dissertation for the final review (depositing).
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1202 WEST JOHNSON ST, MADISON, WI 53706-1611 OFFICE: (608) 262.1040 or (608) 262.1041 FAX: (608) 262.4029