End of the Final Year - First Submission

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You are responsible for deciding whether your thesis is ready for submission.

It could be that at first you found it hard to get going on your thesis. Now you may face the opposite problem - bringing yourself to let it go. Here you can find advice on how to know when enough is enough as well as important things to think about as you prepare to submit your thesis for examination.

The Graduate School's Top Tips for First Submission
  1. Know When Your Expected Thesis Submission Date Is
  2. Give the Graduate School Office Your Notice of Submission Three Months Before Your Submission Date
  3. Allow Your Supervisors Enough Time to Read and Comment on Your Complete Final Draft
  4. Make Sure Your Thesis Follows the University's Rules on Presentation and Binding
  5. The University's Print Services Can Take the Hassle Out of Printing and Binding Your Thesis and Can Deliver it to the Graduate School Office

Getting Finished - When is Enough Enough?

It could be that at the start of your final year you found it hard to get going on your thesis. As your final year draws to a close, you may well face the opposite problem - bringing yourself to let it go.

Ultimately, you are responsible for deciding whether your thesis is ready for submission. Remember though that you must submit your thesis by the end of your final year. In your work plan you should have taken your expected submission date into account, allowing some weeks before this date to give your supervisory team a chance to read and comment on your complete final draft.

The first thing you need to do is go back to your thesis plan:

  • have you covered everything you wanted to cover?
  • does your thesis clearly set out what your original contribution to knowledge in your discipline is and what implications stem from that?
  • have you followed the advice for developing your writing?
  • have you completed a process of successive re-drafting?

If you can answer "yes" to all of these questions, then it is likely that the work you have done is sufficient for your first submission.

Supervisor Feedback

Even if you are not entirely happy with your thesis, your supervisory team is there to provide advice. Make sure your supervisors have several weeks in which to read and comment on your thesis before the final submission deadline.

Seeking feedback from your supervisory team is very important and it is strongly recommended that you do not submit your thesis without your supervisory team having first had a chance to comment on your final draft.

Again, your supervisors may structure their feedback in a way that brings out the positives before going on to talk about any weaknesses. You will need to take a balanced approach - be pleased with the positives, but take seriously any weaknesses and listen to and act on any comments your supervisors might have for addressing these.

Notice of Submission

At least three months before your expected thesis submission date, you must formally notify the Graduate School Office of your intention to submit your thesis for examination.

This is important as it is only on receipt of this notification that the process of appointing examiners will be started – failure to provide sufficient notice may mean that examiners have not been appointed by the date your thesis is submitted and could result in a delay in you sitting your viva examination.

You should complete and submit the Word Notice of Submission Form.

Binding and Submitting Your Thesis

For your first submission, you are required to submit two copies of your thesis to the Graduate School Office:

  • both copies must be perfect bound (i.e., soft bound) – also known as thermal or hot glue binding; comb or spiral binding is not acceptable, nor is insertion into a ring binder or slide binder
  • theses which are not bound correctly will be delayed while arrangements are made for them to be re-bound at your expense
  • there is no regulation for the colour of the cover at this stage - though it is useful to re-print the title page on the cover
  • the spine of the thesis can be left blank
  • you must also submit to the Graduate School Office a completed Word First Submission Form

The University's Print Services can print and bind your thesis - for more advice, please see the Print Services Website.

Theses do not need to be submitted in person, but if you are sending yours by post you should consider using a secure means such as recorded delivery. If your thesis is being printed and bound by Print Services, they can normally deliver the bound copies to the Graduate School Office for you.

If you are not submitting your thesis in person, the first thesis submission form can be sent by email to pgresearch@le.ac.uk

You must ensure that all fees due to the University (tuition fees, bench fees, accommodation fees, etc.) have been paid in full before you submit your thesis - it will not be sent for examination if you have any outstanding debts.

Preparing for Your Viva Voce Examination

Having submitted your thesis, your next job will be to start preparing for your viva voce examination. For practical advice and tips, please see the Preparing for Your Viva Examination Study Guide.

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