Graduation Information — Physics PhD
Congratulations on your PHYS PhD progress! As you work with your Dissertation Committee to complete your Doctoral Dissertation, the following information will help you navigate the last few steps in the process towards obtaining your degree.
Applying to Graduate
Once you know which term you plan to graduate in (Spring, Summer, or Fall), go ahead and apply to graduate via Patriot Web. The application opens a few months before the Spring or Fall semesters (January for the following Summer), and closes about a month into the term. The process is described on the Registrar's website at the link below. Please note carefully the deadlines listed in the Graduation Timelines, also linked below.
Preparing Your Dissertation
Visit the UDTS (University Dissertation & Thesis Services) web page at https://library.gmu.edu/udts# for instructions on how to prepare, format, and submit your dissertation. You will need to schedule a format review and obtain approval before submitting your dissertation. Please play close attention to the hard deadlines on the UDTS web page linked above.
Scheduling Your Defense
Once your dissertation committee agrees that you are ready, you can schedule your dissertation defense. You should plan two events: a pre-defense and the actual dissertation defense. The pre-defense should be at least 30 days before the actual dissertation defense, and can simply be a practice event with your advisor to get yourself ready.
Schedule your dissertation defense with the UDTS's Dissertation Submission deadline in mind, allowing for sufficient time for you to include any edits and/or corrections that your Committee may require.
Your dissertation defense will be a public event, and you must notify the COS Office of Academic Affairs at least two weeks in advance so that an announcement can be circulated.
For your Defense, there are two forms that you need to bring along to get approval signatures from your committee after your Defense:
- Dissertation Signature Page (to be submitted with your Dissertation)
- Doctoral Defense Form
You can get these two forms on the this website under Forms.
Lastly, also please plan ahead with the Dean's Office and Physics and Astronomy Office so that you can get all the necessary signatures for your forms after your Defense and before the Dissertation submission deadline.
Good luck with the remaining work on your dissertation. If you have any questions, please contact the graduate program advisors.