Oral and Written Defense

Steps for Completing Your Culminating Experience Project/Master's Thesis

View outside of Hensill HallIf you are a Graduate Student, in your last semester and planning to graduate, you need to write up your project report or thesis, and prepare for your Oral Defense. Please follow the steps and timeline below for writing up your project report/thesis and oral defense. We urge you to work closely with your project/thesis advisor, to clarify expectations, confirm deadlines, and coordinate other committee members.

  1. The last day to submit your "Report of Completion" is the last day of instruction (not the last day of final exams). Your committee members need ample time to read and review your written report. Plan accordinly. All programming should be done, most experiments completed and you should have a solid first draft report written by the second week of the semester. Submit the masters project/thesis write up to your project/thesis advisor for content approval no later than the 6th week of the semester. This allows you time to correct for proper grammar as well as make any other edits based on your advisor's feedback. Students completing the thesis option are referred to the Graduate Division web site(University Gradute Studies Website) for guidelines on formatting the thesis report, as well as instructions on submitting final copies.
  2. Once the project/thesis advisor approves the report/thesis, the student submits copies to all committee members for their approval of the CONTENT.
  3. Once the committee approves the write-up the oral defense is scheduled. The CS office prepares your cover sheet and two signature pages for the CER report, the Report of Completion, grade change form (if needed), as well as the announcement flyer advertising your defense. These forms will be available for your committee members to sign the day of your oral defense. We recommend that your file your GRADUATION APPLICATION once your report/thesis has been approved by your project/thesis advisor.
    • Student confers with faculty to determine the date and time all committee members are available for the Oral Defense
    • Student submits abstract and keywords to project/thesis advisor for approval
  4. Once the student has successfully completed the oral defense requirement the final version of the written report/thesis is submitted
    • The student works with the committee to resolve any issues with the report submitted in Steps 1. and 2. above. After all issues with the written report are resolved, the student is given the (official) signed signature sheets and cover sheet to include with the written report
    • The Student makes copies of the write-up:
      • Students submitting a thesis write-up are referred to the Graduate Division web site (http://grad.sfsu.edu/) for instruction on submitting final copies
      • Students submitting a project write-up should use the plastic (White) binding combs, thick black plastic sheet on the back and thick clear plastic sheet on the front. The number of copies depends upon the committee - minimal of 2 copies. The original version is provided to the office.
  5. In preparing for oral presentation, students must review instructions and guidelines for Department Preparing Oral Presentation Web Page and confirm this to their advisor.
  6. Department Writing Culminating Experience Reports (CER) Web Page