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Paper Thesis Submission Requirements


The student must be registered or on graduation quarter status for the term in which the thesis is submitted. Registration must be completed by the end of the second week of that quarter.

Program Requirements

Candidacy must be valid when the degree is conferred. Before submission of the thesis, students should be sure that their department has documented any changes of primary adviser, and that any relevant milestones have been completed in our system. If you have any questions about the status of your milestones, please see the student services officer in your department and/or view them on your unofficial transcript online via Axess.


Students with unmet financial obligations resulting in the placement of a hold will not receive a transcript, statement of completion, degree certificate, or diploma until the hold is released by Student Financial Services. Please see that your financial obligations are in order before submission of the thesis.


The deadline for submission of theses, if you wish to have your degree conferred at the end of the quarter, is published in the Academic calendar; specific dates are posted on the dissertation main page. Some departments may set earlier deadlines for submission of theses.
Thesis deadlines are strictly enforced. No exceptions are made. The final thesis with all required signatures must be submitted to the Office of the University Registrar by noon on the final submission deadline date. The deadline is set as late in the quarter as is possible, providing the time necessary for review of the thesis and final degree requirements by the Office of the University Registrar and the department. Students are strongly encouraged to submit their theses at least two weeks prior to this deadline to insure that all requirements can be met in time for the conferral of the degree. Once a student submits the required copies of their thesis to the Stanford University Registrar's Office, no further changes are permitted.

Application To Graduate

An “Application to Graduate” should be filed through Axess early in the degree quarter but no later than the date specified in the academic calendar for that quarter; see how to apply to graduate here. Students applying for Summer, Autumn, or Winter Quarter conferral receive their diplomas at Commencement in the Spring Quarter. They must file the “Application to Graduate” by the deadline for the conferral quarter.

Copyright Review

Managing copyright is an important responsibility in one’s academic career. For this reason, students are required to review a resource on Copyright Considerations prior to submission of a thesis or dissertation for publication by Stanford. This review is one of the pre-submission criteria required of all submitting students. Produced by Stanford University Libraries in consultation with the Office of the General Counsel. The link is available in the eDissertation/eThesis Center within Axess. Students are encouraged to review this resource as early as possible in the dissertation preparation process.

Format Check and Submission Appointments

It is recommended that all students make an appointment for a both a dissertation format check and submission. Note: format checks will not be done in the final week of the submission deadline. To assure a time slot, appointments for format checks and submissions should be made well in advance. Students must submit their dissertation in the quarter in which they have applied to graduate. In order to avoid scheduling conflicts, appointments to submit dissertations will begin with the first day of the quarter for which a student has applied to graduate, and no earlier.
Appointments: For appointment scheduling, go in person to the Student Services Center at Tresidder Memorial Union, 2nd floor, file a HelpSU ticket (Request Category = Student Services, Request Type = Student Services Center), or call the dissertation appointment phone at (650) 721-1569. Include the following information: desired day for appointment, full name, phone number, and student ID.


Payment of fees should be made to the University Cashier. Your check must be made payable to Stanford University and have your student ID number as well as the following account number written on it: 1003627-10-EAIGP. Cashier hours are 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Dissertation fees can be paid by cash or check; no credit card or debit cards are accepted. Bring the receipt with you when submitting your thesis. The following fees will be charged:

$126 — binding of University-required copies of thesis.
$0.10 — fee for each map pocket or CD pocket.
$0.35 — fee for each mounted photo page or fold-out page.

The Abstract

An abstract may be included in the preliminary section of the thesis. The abstract in the body of the thesis follows the style used for the rest of the manuscript and should be placed following the signature page. There is no maximum permissible length for the abstract in the thesis.

Thesis Copies

Three unbound copies with original signature pages are required. Copies are distributed to the University Library, Archives, and the department. The author is reminded to keep an extra manuscript copy for personal use during the binding process, since copies will be inaccessible.

Obtaining Bound Copies For Personal Use

The Office of the University Registrar does not provide bound copies of the dissertation for personal use. Students who want additional dissertation copies bound for personal use have a few options for purchase.
Option 1: The student can purchase a printed copy through Stanford’s contracted bindery service. The cost is $25 per copy, payable in cash or check. To use this option, send a copy of PDF file that contains the dissertation or theses to the Binding and Finishing office in Lathrop Building 4th Floor (cross street Lausen St/Serra Mall).  Address the email to Roddy Harrison at or call with questions (650) 736-2011.
There is a 4-6 week turnaround time. Students will be informed when to pick the bound copies in the Binding and Finishing office.
Option 2:  The HF Group offers a print-on-demand service for Stanford students wanting personal bound copies of their dissertations, Engineer Thesis, or DMA Final Project. You can use their customized Stanford order form below to select options that will match the official University dissertation copy.  They also have an online cost calculator.

Certificate Of Final Reading Of Thesis

Your thesis adviser must certify that he or she has reviewed the final draft of the thesis as submitted to the Office of the University Registrar. A form for that purpose is included in this handbook and may be photocopied and used (see here). There is no need to create a new form for this purpose.