Thesis Checklist

Lee Honors College Thesis Checklist and Brief Overview

  • Attend a thesis defense during Thesis Celebration Days (in your first year)

  • HNRS 4980: How and Why to Write an Undergraduate Thesis (in your sophomore year).

This one-credit online course is designed to assist you in successfully navigating and completing the honors thesis and will provide you with tools to facilitate your work. We recommended taking this course in the second semester of your sophomore year. Please see the honors college requirements page for approved substitutions.

  • Select a thesis topic (during the junior year).

Most students find this step to be the most difficult, so do not worry if you are struggling to select a topic. Talking with LHC advisors and faculty can help you with this.

  • Choose your thesis committee chair/mentor (in your junior year).

Your thesis chair/mentor MUST be a full time WMU faculty member. 

  • Submit your thesis declaration form (in your junior year).

You should submit this form at least three semesters prior to your intended graduation date.

  • Choose your thesis committee (in your junior year).

In addition to your thesis chair, your thesis committee should include one or two additional “experts” on your thesis topic. Work with your thesis chair to identify and invite potential committee members.

Your thesis chair will serve as your instructor for this course and it must be taken for a letter grade. This course is meant to supervise the completion and defense of your honors thesis. Please see for approved substitutions.

All information on your thesis defense form must be final. Should you need to change anything about your thesis defense after submitting this form, you must submit a new defense request form. 

Your defense request will result in a “thesis packet” which will contain your certificate of oral defense, the ScholarWorks Access Agreement Form, the evaluation rubric, and a detailed instruction sheet, which you should read very carefully. Share this packet with your committee to be completed by all of you upon completion of your defense.

  • Defend your thesis (before you graduate).

You are not required to defend your thesis in the honors college, but if you'd like to do so, please contact Ms. Jennifer Townsend via email to reserve space in the building. Should you choose to defend elsewhere, please visit the Registrar's website to reserve a room. 

  •  Submit your final approved thesis.

Upon completion of your thesis, you have up to 30 days after commencement to submit all required materials to the honors college. Please read the packet instructions carefully! Those materials are as follows:

  1. Your signed certificate, to be submitted via email.

  2. Your completed ScholarWorks form, to be submitted via email.

  3. Your rubric, completed by your thesis chair. If your chair prefers to submit the rubric directly to Ms. Jennifer Townsend, they may do so. 

  4. Your completed project as specified in the instruction sheet included in your packet which you’ve read very carefully. Please be sure that all comments, edits, etc. have been resolved in your Word docs or they will be rejected. 

  5. Any supporting documents such as PPTs.

  6. One digital 300-500 word abstract about your project submitted along with your final thesis project.

  7. Do no upload your thesis project to ScholarWorks. ALL final thesis projects, supporting documents, and abstract must be submitted either to Ms. Jennifer Townsend OR the thesis email.