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Thesis and Dissertation
ELECTRONIC Submissions

Thesis/Dissertation Office, 479 West Circle Drive, Room 118 Linton Hall, East Lansing, MI 48824
Phone: 517-355-0301
For a thesis/dissertation electronic document submission, please be sure to read the following information thoroughly.

Thesis writers who need help with statistical analysis and presentation should contact the CSTAT Office.


Step-by-Step Instructions for electronic submission of a Master’s Thesis or Doctoral Dissertation:

NOTE: We recommend taking the following steps in the order they are presented. However, if you are fighting a close deadline, you may go from Step 2 to Step 5, and then work on Steps 3 and 4 while your document is being reviewed by the Graduate School staff.


  1. Prepare your Master’s Thesis or Doctoral Dissertation following the specific instructions in the Graduate School Formatting Guide.
    This Formatting Guide sets forth the thesis and dissertation requirements established by Michigan State University. Individual departments or schools may have additional requirements or may specify requirements in greater detail. The Graduate School must approve these additional requirements. The graduate student has a responsibility to learn what, if any, special departmental/school requirements may apply. The thesis/dissertation should be prepared in accordance with the instructions of this guide.

    Michigan State University will only be accepting electronic submissions via ProQuest at www.etdadmin.com/grad.msu. The Graduate School staff reviews only the PDFs that are uploaded through ProQuest. Be aware that a submission via ProQuest does not mean that the document has been ACCEPTED. The review process is interactive and can take anywhere from a few hours to weeks, depending upon the extent of the necessary revisions and how diligent the author is when making the necessary revisions.
  2. Submit Your Approval Form to the Graduate School
    The signed Approval Form is taken as evidence that the document has been examined and approved by the major professor (or thesis/dissertation director) and committee and it also serves to document compliance with the appropriate Institutional Review Boards for the use of human and vertebrate animals for research. The approval form (with the required signatures) can be submitted to The Graduate School by email msuetds.approval@grd.msu.edu, by fax 517.353.3355 or a hard copy delivered to 479 West Circle Drive, Room 118 Linton Hall. If you used human or animal subjects in your research, the IRB or IACUC letter(s) are required and they are to be submitted via the same methods.

    IMPORTANT: A complete list of Degree Granting Units/Programs is available on the Graduate School website, www.grad.msu.edu/etd/docs/DegreeGrantingUnitsApril2014.pdf. Only the units/programs listed here are approved by Michigan State University. This information will be used on your Approval Form and Title Page. You will also encounter this same list at the ProQuest site for electronic submission. The same degree granting unit/program must be used for the Approval Form, Title Page and Electronic Submission of your document.
  3. Complete the Online Graduate School Exit Survey
    Please take a few moments to complete this survey the semester that you plan to graduate. Only students who have applied for graduation will have access to the online survey. Your participation is important and it is greatly appreciated by the Graduate School. The survey will ask you questions about your educational experience in your graduate program. The Graduate School uses data from this survey when reviewing graduate programs and to guide decisions about services and initiatives for graduate students.

    The identity of all respondents will be kept confidential and only aggregate (group) information will be made available to faculty and administrators. It takes about 5-10 minutes to complete the online survey. Please follow the steps outlined below:

    • Access the following website:
    • Enter your MSU NetID (Login Name) and Password
    • Complete all the items on the survey. When finished, click Submit.
    • If you cannot open this survey, please contact Katey Smagur by email at exitsurvey@grd.msu.edu, and include your name, student ID #, degree level (PhD, MA/MS) and semester of graduation. You will then be notified when you are able to complete the survey.
  4. Doctoral Students must complete the Survey of Earned Doctorates (SED) online
    The Survey of Earned Doctorates is the definitive source of information on the nation’s new research doctorates. Sponsored by the National Science Foundation and five other Federal agencies and conducted by NORC, the SED is critical to understanding in what specialty areas doctorates are produced and their post-graduation employment plans. Results are used by government as well as academic institutions to make decisions about graduate education funding, developing new programs and supporting existing ones.

    The ability of the survey to accurately describe doctorate earners depends on obtaining responses from all doctorate degree recipients. Your response affects decisions made for future generations of doctorate recipients.

    The SED is pleased to introduce our new electronic registration process. You will now be able to register for the SED and proceed directly to the online survey. You will also receive an email with your PIN and password as well as the URL to the survey upon registering. With this information, you can come back and finish the survey at a later date if you so choose. The registration URL is: https://sed.norc.org/survey

    Michigan State University REQUIRES verification of completion of the survey. When you submit your survey, a notification of completion will be automatically sent to the Michigan State University Graduate School Office. However, it is also recommended that at the end of the survey, you also have a copy of the ‘certificate of completion’ emailed to your own personal email for your records.

    Confidentiality Assurance: The information provided on the Survey of Earned Doctorates (SED) questionnaire remains confidential and is safeguarded in accordance with the Privacy Act of 1974 and the NSF Act of 1950, as amended. The survey data are reported only in aggregate form or in a manner that does not identify information about an individual. The federal agencies and the data collection contractor for the SED take the strongest measures to safeguard respondent confidentiality. All staff members sign binding confidentiality pledges. All processing facilities and computer systems are carefully designed and continuously tested to safeguard the information provided by institutions and respondents.

    If you have any questions about the web survey, please contact NORC: 4800-sed@norc.uchicago.edu or 1-800-248-8649.

  5. Now, go to www.etdadmin.com/grad.msu and follow the directions for submitting your thesis/dissertation to Michigan State University via ProQuest.
    Once you submit to ProQuest, your electronic submission will be reviewed by a Michigan State University Administrator for possible revisions BEFORE it is "officially" accepted and delivered to ProQuest for final publishing.

    Before you begin, please be sure you have the following:
    • Full text of the dissertation/thesis in PDF format. This must be one file. If your manuscript is in a Word or RTF format, you can convert the PDF using a PDF Conversion tool. You also must embed fonts in the PDF. After you have created your account and arrive at this section, you will find a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page for the conversion tool and embedding fonts.
    • Abstract
    • 'Optional' Supplementary files. Michigan State University does allow supplemental files (audio, video, etc.). Please note that only those files approved by the major professor/committee, as denoted on the Graduate School approval form, are allowed.
    • Advisor and other Committee Members' Names
    • Subject Category. You will be asked to choose from ProQuest's list of subject categories that best describes your dissertation/thesis subject area.
    • Degree Granting Unit/Program. A list of the degree granting units/programs of Michigan State University is available at www.grad.msu.edu/etd/docs/DegreeGrantingUnits.pdf. You will encounter the same list at the ProQuest site.
    • Type of Degree Awarded. Make sure you know the correct degree title. Michigan State University awards the following degrees: Master of Arts, Master of Fine Arts, Master of Human Resources and Labor Relations, Master of Music, Master of Science, Master of Urban and Regional Planning, and Doctor of Philosophy.

    You will be asked to create an account in order to submit. When creating your account, be sure to use an email address that you use regularly. In order to continue the submission process, you will be asked to 'confirm' your account using the email address that you provided.

    Once you 'confirm' your account, then you are ready to begin the submission process. Please be sure that you are on the Michigan State University website within ProQuest. You can do this by confirming that the MSU logo appears in the upper right hand corner.

    On the left-hand side of the site, you will see the submission steps. As each step is completed, a checkmark will appear in the appropriate box indicating that you have completed that step. In order to submit, you will need to go through each step of the process. If you need to finish your submission later (for instance, if you need to update your PDF file before uploading it), you can save your information and come back to finish. No information will be lost.

    Once you submit to ProQuest, your submission will be reviewed by a Michigan State University Administrator for possible revisions. You will be contacted via email with required revisions or with a request for missing information, BEFORE your document is officially accepted and delivered to ProQuest for publishing. You will get a response with the necessary revisions from the Graduate School within two business days from the time we receive your electronic submission to the email address provided in your newly created ProQuest account.

    After revisions are made and the document is approved, the MSU Administrator will submit your dissertation/thesis to ProQuest for publishing. You will receive an email message informing you that the document has been approved. If you should have any technical problems regarding your ETD submissionrs or questions regarding an order placed through ProQuest, they may be reached at 800-521-0600.
  6. CONGRATULATIONS!
    ProQuest will send you a congratulations email stating that they have finished processing your work. Your electronic document will be disseminated as directed by you in the publishing agreement.

Last Modified: 7/2/2014

© 2014 The Graduate School, Michigan State University Board of Trustees
MSU is an affirmative-action, equal-opportunity employer.
Linton Hall; 479 W. Circle Dr. Rm 110; East Lansing MI 48824-1044.
Phone: (517) 353-3220

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