Thesis Work

Thesis Timeline

First Year of Study


Second Year Transition Form Due.  You will receive an electronic link, and will be asked to sketch some preliminary plans and some advising preferences. Thesis advisors and second readers are then assigned before the conclusion of the quarter. 

Early June

Before the end of the school year, contact your thesis advisor and set out a summer plan of work. Thesis advisors are not generally available in the summer, so setting out a plan in advance of fall quarter is a very good idea.

Second Year of Study

Fall Quarter

Work on Thesis

Winter Quarter

Work Toward A Completed Thesis

Spring Quarter

Complete Thesis

2019 - 2020 Completion Dates and Deadlines

(For Spring 2020 Graduation)     

Students in their final quarter are invited to review the UW Graduate School's page on Preparing to Graduate

Monday, March 30
First day to submit your Masters Degree Request.  To graduate, you must do so by Friday, June 5.

Monday, April 6
First draft of Thesis due to Thesis Advisor

Friday, April 17 
Master’s degree requests due if you wish to be included in Commencement ceremonies and last chance to change your name listing in the Commencement program

Friday, May 8
Revised Thesis due to Thesis Advisor and Second Reader. 

This is also a good time to set up an ETD (Electronic Thesis/Dissertation) account and explore the submission requirements and thesis publication and access options.

In addition to the pages that the UW Graduate School maintains on electronic thesis submission, the UW Lbraries offers these FAQs that explain the process and its choices

Wednesday, May 13
Spring Festival Intent to Participate. Let Graduate Office know of your intent to read at the Spring Festival and how you would like your name and the title of your thesis to appear on the program. Please also submit a 75-150 word bio at this time for the festival program.
Submit your program information via Catalyst 

Electronic Thesis Submission Workshops: learn what the process and requirements are for submitting your thesis for publication and preservation. 

•    Tues, May 19, 4 pm
•    Wed, May 20, 12 pm
•    Thurs, May 21, 5 pm

RSVP to with your preferred attendance date.

Friday, May 22
Thesis Advisor and Second Reader provide written feedback to student on thesis. If for any reason you do not meet the May 8 deadline, you will not be assured of timely feedback.

Friday, June 5
Final thesis due to Thesis Advisors with a filled-in copy of the “Master’s Supervisory Committee Approval Form.”  

Please note: You must upload a completed and signed Master’s Supervisory Committee Approval Form when you submit your thesis electronically in the ETD Administrator. The form certifyies that your faculty committee (thesis advisor and second reader) have examined the final copy of the thesis, have found it complete and satisfactory, and confirm that any and all required revisions required have been made.

Unable to Collect Signatures? Students who are experiencing difficulties collecting physical ink signatures (unable to access scanners, printers, postal delays, etc.) should refer to page 2 of the Master’s Supervisory Committee Approval Form for special instructions.

Saturday, June 6: Spring Festival

Friday, June 12, 11:59 p.mLast chance to submit a Master’s Degree Request

Friday, June 26, 11:59 pmLast chance to submit thesis electronically  

Note that June 26 extends the regular June 12 deadine by two weeks, and encompasses the period covered by the Graduate Registration Fee Waiver.  Missing this deadline will require you to enroll in Summer Quarter to submit your thesis and graduate.

Commencement Ceremonies for Class of 2020

Given restrictions on public events due to the coronavirus pandemic, the University will not hold any in-person Commencement Ceremonies or other related graduation activities this June.

Commencement ceremonies for the UW Bothell Class of 2020 will be celebrated concurrent with the Class of 2021 at T-Mobile Park in June 2021.  Class of 2020 graduate students will also be invited to a Hooding Ceremony. Registration will open for Class of 2020 graduates in Autumn 2020.

Important Commencement Dates and Deadlines 

  • April 17: Deadline to submit your name for listing in the commencement program.
  • April 28: Virtual Grad Fair
  • May 1: Virtual ceremony registration opens, custom slide website opens
  • Saturday, June 13: University of Washington will recognize graduates in a university-wide virtual celebration

See more Commencement updates and FAQs here

Notes on consequences of missed submission, or unapproved final submissions.

Scenario 1.  Thesis work is completed and approved, but the final ETD submission deadline is missed.

If students have completed all their degree requirements, including satisfactory thesis work, but miss the submission deadline for filing with the Graduate School, they can pay a Graduate Registration Waiver Fee of $250 instead of re-enrolling. This is for students who may have formatting issues as opposed to substantive issues with their final thesis. 

Scenario 2. Thesis work is not approved by final submission deadline.

Without approval of final requirements, including satisfactory completion of the thesis, students cannot graduate.  The Graduate School requires that students maintain enrollment as a full- or part-time graduate student in the quarter that they graduate.

For MFA students whose theses are not approved prior to the final ETD submission deadline, the student will need to enroll in additional credits (min. 1 CR) in the future to maintain enrolled status and file for completion/graduation in the quarter of their enrollment.  (Students do not have to go on leave for the summer if they plan to enroll in autumn). 

See Final Quarter Registration for details.