Apr 16, 2024  
Graduate Catalog 2011 - 2012 
Graduate Catalog 2011 - 2012 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Research, Theses, and Dissertations


Academic and Scientific Integrity

Cleveland State University is committed to maintaining academic and scientific integrity. It is the duty and responsibility of both faculty and students to conduct themselves, their educational pursuits, and their research in a manner consistent with the highest standards of honesty and professionalism. This commitment includes honesty in such tasks as taking examinations, writing papers, theses, and dissertations; recording research data; submitting proposals for external funding; and publishing the results of research. The ethical conduct of all members of the Cleveland State University community ensures the honor of the University and the trust of those within this academic community. The Graduate Dean is responsible for administering the University’s Policy for Responding to Allegations of Academic Research Misconduct that was approved by Cleveland State University’s Board of Trustees on February 12, 1997, as well as the University’s Policy for Managing Conflicts of Interest, which was revised and approved by the Cleveland State University Board of Trustees on May 27, 2003.

Research Involving Human Subjects

Students planning to conduct research involving human subjects must submit a proposal to the Institutional Review Board (IRB), prior to project commencement, through the IRB Coordinator at the Office of Sponsored Programs and Research (OSPR). The proposal must include, at a minimum, an application for project approval, a project description, and an informed consent statement. Proposal submission instructions, a proposal requirement checklist, and an application for project approval can be obtained from the OSPR in Parker Hannifin Hall, 3rd Floor, or online at http://www.csuohio.edu/offices/spr/.

Questions concerning the IRB review and approval process should be directed to the OSPR/IRB staff at (216) 687-3630.


Degree programs determine whether or not a thesis/dissertation is required for a graduate degree. A thesis/dissertation may take any of several forms, such as a scholarly essay, research report, or a creative artistic work. The format of such presentations does not need to conform to traditional standards of style where such standards are not appropriate. However, theses/ dissertations that take the form of traditional research reports should follow standard manuals of style, with any supplementary guides used by the various disciplines acceptable to the departmental graduate committee. A copy of the Thesis and Dissertation Format Guidelines is available at //http://www.csuohio.edu/gradcollege/students/pdf/proposalform.pdf and from the College of Graduate Studies. Students are strongly encouraged to review the guidelines before preparing their theses or dissertations. A copy of the guidelines are available in the College of Graduate Studies, or accessed on line at: http://www.csuohio.edu/gradcollege/students/thesis/.

A student cannot be admitted to degree candidacy, or register for thesis/dissertation work, until the student is a Regular Graduate Student. Doctoral and master’s students must complete the Thesis/ Dissertation Proposal Approval form (download from the College of Graduate Studies Web site) and obtain the required signatures prior to thesis/dissertation registration. Once a student registers for thesis/dissertation credit, he or she must register for thesis/dissertation credit each semester during the academic year (fall and spring terms) until the completion and defense of the project. (See T Temporary noncredit grades, under Grades.) The number of thesis/dissertation credits required is a departmental matter. However, the student must register for a minimum of one thesis/dissertation credit each semester until the completion of the thesis/dissertation, acceptance by the program committee, and submission for final approval to the College of Graduate Studies.

Acceptance of the thesis/dissertation requires that the signatures of the advisor and at least two other Graduate Faculty committee members appear on the document. Master’s thesis committees must be composed of at least three members. The chairperson and at least two other members must hold Graduate Faculty status. Doctoral dissertation committees must consist of at least three members. The chairperson and at least two other members must hold Graduate Faculty status. At least one member of the dissertation committee must be from outside of the unit awarding the degree. The outside member must hold Graduate Faculty status; or be approved by the Graduate Dean. Both master’s thesis and doctoral dissertation committees may have additional members beyond the minimum of three persons. To be a voting member, the additional person(s) must have Graduate Faculty status. Committee members not holding Graduate Faculty status may serve as non-voting members of the committee. To determine if a faculty member holds Graduate Faculty status, consult the College of Graduate Studies’ website at: http://graduatestudies.csuohio.edu/graduate/rosters/facultyroster.html.

All doctoral dissertations require a public defense, announced to the University community with sufficient notice.

Once the thesis/dissertation has been approved by the committee, the student must submit the final draft of the thesis/dissertation for format review and approval to the College of Graduate Studies (all corrections mandated by their committee must be done prior to the draft submission). The submission for format approval should take place not less than one week prior to the last day of instruction in the semester in which the student plans to graduate. A  preliminary format examination is mandatory for the thesis/dissertation prior to printing of the final deposit copies. However, a preliminary check does not guarantee the acceptability of the final copy. To allow ample time for completing the final copies, students are advised to schedule a format check well in advance of the deposit deadline. The final unbound copies of the thesis/dissertation, a copy of the signed Notice of Completion form and receipt of payment for microfilming (doctoral students) are deposited to the College of Graduate Studies for final approval. Delivery of the final copies to the University Library, for binding and retention in the Archives and the Circulation Department will be done by the College of Graduate Studies. The last step in completing the thesis/dissertation requirements is to submit the approved copy to OhioLINK per the instructions of the College of Graduate Studies. Prior to binding, all doctoral dissertations are forwarded to University Microfilms International for publication in Dissertation Abstracts International.

Discontinuation of a Thesis, Dissertation, or Alternate Exit Project

Should a student wish to discontinue a thesis/dissertation or an alternate exit project after receiving one or more T grades for previous registrations, the individual may request of the College of Graduate Studies Petitions Committee that W grades replace the T grades. Students who decide to switch from the thesis option to an alternate exit project, or vice versa, are not permitted retroactively to change, via petition, their registration in previous thesis or project course work.