Beginning stage

How do I sign up for thesis credits?
No later than the first part of your senior year, you will register for thesis credits of 401 (research), or 403 (thesis) in your major academic department, (an HC designator may be used as a default if no departmental designator is appropriate). For interdisciplinary theses, consult your mentor for the appropriate designator. The credit is to allow you time for the research and will be counted toward HC requirements. Departments may also count research credits toward academic requirements.

To register for Thesis / Research / Project credits (e.g. 403, 401, 406) here are the typical steps you would need to take:

1) Already have found a mentor and completed a thesis proposal
2) Pick up a form to register for this type of credit at within departmental office of your mentor
3) Complete this form, noting the numbers of credits you wish to enroll in and have your mentor sign it
4) Return the form back to the academic department
5) Once approved, the department will do an override and send you an e-mail letting you know to go ahead and register for the credits
6) Your mentor will submit your grade to the Registrar's Office at the end of the term.

My major department already requires a thesis; do I have to do two?
No. You can adapt your major thesis into your Honors thesis; you are not required to submit two theses.

How do I use my engineering project as my thesis?
This varies based on your specific engineering discipline. Some engineering senior projects are easier to adapt to your Honors thesis than others. If your engineering project is a group project, you will need to present your portion of the work as your thesis.

I am a double major do I have to do two theses?
No. You are only required to complete one thesis.

Who needs to be on my committee?
Working as a team, you and your mentor will select the other two members of your committee. The HC Council has approved what might be termed a “two thirds rule.” That is, at least two of the members of your committee (one is the Mentor) must be senior instructor (I or II) or professorial faculty (assistant professor, associate professor, professor of research/ practice/ clinical or emeritus professor), but the third may be a Research Associate, community-based expert, or other qualified individual who is acceptable to your mentor. Your committee must be at least three people but there is no problem with it being larger.

Can I see what a thesis looks like?
Yes! You can look at hard copies of all of the theses. They are housed in the HC advising office (LInC 450). Electronic copies of more recent theses are available via the Valley Library website.

Nuts & bolts

What font do I use?
There is no firm requirement on this; use whichever is appropriate for your specific discipline.

What style/format do I use? (e.g. MLA, APA)
You should review standards used in the literature of your field and discuss with your mentor(s) which style manual might benefit you most.

If I choose to print a bound copy for the HC Archive, what kind of paper do I use?
You are required to submit a digital copy of your thesis but if you choose to also submit a bound copy. You must photocopy or print your entire original project onto white paper 16- 20 pound (standard) 8-1/2 x 11 inches, 25% or more rag content. The same paper with uniform make and watermark should be used throughout the entire document, including the front and back flyleaves, except for oversize material.

What are the margin sizes?
Left-hand margin: 1-1/2 inches (for bound copy); 1 inch or 1-1/2 inches, acceptable for digital submission

Top, right-hand, and bottom margins: 1 inch

Text should begin on the top margin. If you justify the right-hand margin, you must do so consistently throughout the entire document (except within figures and tables).

The image area should be 6 x 9 inches. The thesis title and all other material (including footnotes, figures, tables, and legends) except page numbers must be kept within the image area to permit proper binding.

The defense

Who needs to be at my defense?
Your entire committee including mentor are required to be present at your defense.

Who can I invite to attend my defense?
You are welcome to invite your family, friends, and anyone else who has been supportive of you to this point.

Where do I hold my defense?
You are welcome to use any HC classroom space. Please check with the HC front office staff regarding room availability. Your major department may also have a conference room or classroom that also meets your needs. Students have also used classrooms in the Valley Library.

My mentor is in Bolivia at a conference, can I do my defense with her on speaker phone?
Yes, although you are responsible for arranging for the technology and gaining her original signature on your thesis.

Nearly done

What form does my committee need to sign approving my thesis?
The HC has implemented DocuSign for the Thesis Submission Approval Page.  This process is initiated when a student submits the HC Defense Notification. The HC will also send further information about the submission process in response to this notification.

I can’t quite get finished in time. What happens now?
You may complete the thesis in the subsequent term to when you were initially planning on graduating. It is your responsibility to contact the Registrar’s Office and let them know which term you plan on graduating. For spring graduates, if you delay graduation until summer term you may still take part in commencement ceremonies but your degree would not be conferred until September.