Undergraduate Dissertation Timetable

Senior/Honors Thesis Timetable

You can download a PDF of the file here: thesis_plan_and_timeline.pdf

Spring Quarter (Junior Year)

By Week 5:

You should have met with

  • Amy Lowrey to discuss requirements and GPA for a senior thesis/honors thesis
  • RST Department Chair to discuss the senior Thesis
  • Identify and meet with a faculty adviser to supervise your thesis.

By Week 7

  • You should have written up a 200-300 word thesis proposal of your proposed project. This project must be conceived in consultation with your potential thesis supervisor. Typically, the thesis proposal should include
    • The central question(s) you plan to investigate
    • Potential Sources
    • A proposed timeline for the research
  • Submit an electronic copy of the thesis proposal to Amy Lowrey and to the RST Department Chair

By Week 9

The Department will review the thesis proposal and provide suggestions/approval of the thesis topic

Week 10

Meet with your thesis supervisor to discuss your research plans for the summer.


In preparation, read the The Craft of Research


Fall Quarter (Senior Year): Research

Week 1

  • Meet with Amy Lowrey to register for Thesis Units
  • Meet with your faculty adviser and get your thesis form signed
  • Return the form to Amy Lowrey so you can receive your CRN

Week 2-9

  • Research Session with the Library Research Staff on how to conduct research. All thesis students are expected to make an appointment and attend a session.
  • Conduct research on senior thesis
  • You should have completed all the research and reading for the thesis by the end of the fall quarter
  • You should plan on meeting with your faculty adviser at least once a week during the fall quarter to discuss your research and your progress on the thesis
  • Produce an abstract and an annotated bibliography
  • We will plan a minimum of two meetings with the Senior Thesis Adviser in the fall term.
  • Submit abstract to the National Undergraduate Research Conference. Deadline is usually first week of December, but students interested in presenting at NCUR, should plan on submitting their abstracts by mid-October (http://www.cur.org/ncur_2015/)

Winter Quarter (Senior Year): Writing

Week 1

  • Meet with Amy Lowrey to register for Thesis Units
  • Meet with your faculty adviser and get your thesis form signed
  • Return the form to Amy Lowrey so you can receive your CRN

Week 2-9

  • Begin writing your thesis
  • Submit abstract for the Undergraduate Research Conference.
    • All RST senior thesis writers are expected to present at the URC
    • The abstracts are generally due in early February
    • Work on your abstract with your faculty adviser and ensure that you complete all required paperwork so that your paper may be receive full consideration. Incomplete applications to the URC are automatically disqualified.
  • The thesis is approximately 25-30 pages, although some students have written a longer thesis
  • You should have a draft of your completed thesis by Week 8 of the winter quarter
  • Your faculty adviser will provide feedback for revisions etc. by the end of Week 10.

Spring Quarter (Senior Year): Submission

  • Meet with Amy Lowrey to register for units (Independent Study units)
  • Meet with your faculty adviser and get your thesis form signed
  • Return the form to Amy Lowrey so you can receive your CRN

Week 3: Student turns in complete draft to thesis adviser and notifies the RST Senior Thesis Adviser.

Week 5: Thesis adviser suggests any revisions necessary.

Week 5-7: Undergraduate Research Conference presentation (10 minute presentation, 5 minutes of questions)

Week 7: Student completes revisions and submits a final copy to the thesis adviser. The thesis should be formatted as follows:

double-spaced in with one-inch margins on each side, a title page, page, a table of contents, footnotes or endnotes in the format agreed upon with the thesis adviser, and a bibliography in the format agreed upon with the thesis adviser.

In case of an Honors Thesis, the thesis adviser (in consultation with the Department Chair) will find a second reader for the thesis to determine if the thesis is eligible for Honors, High Honors or Highest Honors.

Week 8: Based on the second reader report, the thesis adviser recommends a thesis grade to the Chair of the Department.

Students will present their thesis at an Undergraduate Research Conference (10 minute presentations, 5 minutes of questions)

Week 9: The director reviews the readers' reports and the thesis adviser's recommendation and assigns Honors, High, Honors, Highest Honors, or no honors based on the GPA and the recommended thesis grade.

Week 10: Honors Thesis receiving Highest Honors will be made available online on the RST Department Website.

Students should also plan on submitting their thesis to the following UC Davis Research Publications:

Prized Writing


Explorations: The UC Davis Undergraduate Research Journal (http://undergraduateresearch.ucdavis.edu/explorations/)

Deadlines vary, but the spring deadline is generally during finals’ week.

Students should also plan on applying for the Undergraduate Research Prize


Note: Students undertaking a thesis but who plan to graduate early should meet with Amy Lowrey and the Faculty Adviser to discuss an amended time-table.

Dissertation Timetable

– Why Is It Necessary To Prepare A Schedule For Yourself?

  • If you think that you can just start working a week before submission and come up with an incredible dissertation, then you are wrong!

  • If other websites are claiming that they can help you complete your dissertation from start to finish in three to four days, then they are trying to fool you.


thesis or dissertation

is one of the most important reports that you will ever compile in your entire college life. In most cases, the degree depends on your thesis submission which is why this research report deserves your time and proper attention.

Composing a dissertation is a demanding and grueling task. But usually months are given as a submission deadline.

Because of the long period, students tend to get lazy and keep the research work until the last possible moment and that is where they get into trouble. You need to start work from the very beginning if you want to get an outstanding grade in your thesis.

For that, it is important that you make a schedule for yourself from the start and follow it religiously. Below mentioned are few of the factors you need to keep in mind while making your dissertation timetable.

  • Keep the slot of your thesis work between 30 minutes and two hours as the brain normally starts to slow down after two hours. Usually, 1.5 hours are recommended with minimum four such sittings per week.
  • Analyze your entire day and try to find a time slot which you would otherwise waste in unproductive stuff. Allocate that to your research time. You don’t need to disturb the time where you are working out or socializing as you need those things too to relax yourself. Also keep in mind the time when you are most productive. Can you study better in the morning or night? Take that into consideration too.
  • Allocate a special drawer or cabinet where you will keep all your thesis material. This will make the entire research process organized and managed.
  • Map out your schedule months in advance, not just weeks. This will make your work consistent and give you a target to achieve.
  • Be practical in drawing the dissertation timeline; don’t be too optimistic.

Dissertation Timetable Example

1Reading and browsing for research themeUse internet and your local library until you come up with an appropriate research theme
2Finalizing the topicFinalize the theme and get it checked by the supervisor
3Developing the research aim, objective and hypothesisDevelop the aim, objective and hypothesis keeping in mind the
4Composing the Literature ReviewResearch about the past studies conducted on this theme and their results
5Developing the dissertation planDecide on the data collection and analysis method
6Design questionnaire and other data collection componentsDesigning the questionnaire and deciding upon the sample size and areas where research will be conducted.
7Collection of data
8Collection of data
9Analysis and interpretation of the dataData will be compiled in a statistical software and analyzed for results
10Drawing conclusionFindings will be interpreted in an unbiased manner and objectively
11Compilation of the reportStructure and compose report
12Compilation of the reportStructure and compose report
13Gathering proper references and bibliography that was used in the researchReferences and bibliography will be included at the end of the report
14Composing the research abstractCompose research abstract which will be included after title page
15Reviewing and rechecking the reportReview and recheck for grammar
16Submit dissertation for evaluation

Keep these tips and dissertation timetable in mind while working on your thesis and you will surely earn an outstanding grade.

Find out more on dissertation timetable and start your dissertation with proper schedule.

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