ETD Approval Deadlines

Graduating Spring 2024: Friday, May 3, 2024 at 5:00PM
One-Credit Extension: Friday, May 31, 2024 at 5:00PM
Graduating Summer 2024: Friday, July 26, 2024 at 5:00PM
One-Credit Extension: Wednesday, August 21, 2024 at 5:00PM


Blue button for submission portal


Submission Portal

After Dec 2020, students will submit drafts and final copies to the Graduate School's ETD Submission Portal instead of submitting through email.

Draft vs. Final Version

Students will submit drafts of their ETD to the ETD Submission Portal. They will receive feedback via email from the Formatting Advisor on changes that need to be made to their formatting.

After your ETD draft has been reviewed, you have successfully defended, and you are ready to submit a final document, upload your final PDF to the ETD Submission Portal. Do not upload a final until you have submitted at least one draft and the Formatting Advisor has personally instructed you to upload a final.

Submission Checklist

The Submission Checklist is a shorter version of all of the formatting rules, listing the most commonly seen formatting mistakes. You will be required to complete all of the checklist steps before the final PDF can be submitted to the portal.

Supplemental Files

Files containing data pertaining to your ETD should be uploaded to the ETD Submission Portal during the final upload.

If doctoral students choose to submit through ProQuest/UMI, they should also submit the same supplemental files. Non-proprietary, openly documented formats are always preferred:

  • Text: plain text (ASCII, UTF-8), PDF/A, CSV, TSV, XML
  • Image: PDF/A, JPEG/JPEG2000, PNG, TIFF, SVG (no Java)
  • Audio: FLAC, AIFF, WAVE
  • Video: AVI, M-JPEG2000
  • Compressed/archived formats: GZIP/TAR, ZIP
    • Files should only be compressed and/or archived when it is necessary due to large file size or the need to gather files together in a particular directory structure in order for them to be understood.
    • We encourage the use of structured organization, such as the BagIt format, within a compressed/archived file.

Raw data files can be included in ScholarWorks along with your ETD and any supplemental files. The library may also suggest you publish your data through an online repository.

Visit the Library Data Services webpage for more information on a data management strategy.


In a small number of cases, students may choose to have their ETD held for a one-year proprietary period before being published on ScholarWorks. An example of a situation that would warrant this one-year proprietary period is a PhD student who has applied for a patent based on information that will be in their ETD and is waiting for the patent to be approved.

The information you provide during your final upload will be used by the MSU Library to archive your ETD. You will choose if you would like your paper to be published immediately on MSU's ScholarWorks repository, or if you would like publishing to be held off for a one-year proprietary period.

Filmmaking Students

Science and Natural History Filmmaking students must also submit a copy of their film. Submit a compressed H264 file (under 5GB) or a sharable link to the Formatting Advisor. If your film is larger than 5GB please contact the Formatting Advisor for alternate submission options. Films will be archived on the ETD Film archive with MSU Domain access only.

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) and Education (EdD) Students

After ETD approval by the Graduate School, you can optionally submit your ETD as a PDF through ProQuest/UMI Dissertation Publishing. Please read ProQuest's Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for important information. There is no fee for traditional publishing, but open access publishing is $95. (Note: your document will already be in the MSU Library's open access database ScholarWorks.)

PhD and EdD students must also complete a Survey of Earned Doctorates (SED).

Disused Certificate of Approval (COA) Form

The Submission Portal replaces the need for the Certificate of Approval (COA) form.

The Submission Portal final upload serves as the official record of your ETD submission to the Graduate School and indicates that all committee-required changes have been completed. Upon approval by the Graduate School, your committee chair and co-chair will be notified that your ETD submission has been completed. No signatures from your committee are required.