Specialist trainees may complete a thesis in order to satisfy graduation requirements for a specialist's degree. The department's procedures for completing a thesis are presented below. Trainees should also review the Thesis section in the Graduate Catalog, especially the registration requirements. See the Graduate School Thesis Assistance website for additional information about continuous enrollment requirements, writing tips, etc. See the Thesis Flowchart for a suggested schedule for completing a thesis.
All of the required forms for completing a thesis and resource links are identified below. The department forms are interactive Microsoft Word documents. Click on the link to download the form to the computer. The form should be completed on the computer. Hand written forms will not be accepted. If there is a problem downloading or completing a form on the computer, trainees should contact the Graduate Programs Office by email. Graduate School forms are PDF files.
- should have a theoretical framework as its conceptual base;
- may represent a test or a prediction derived from a theory;
- may represent an extension of an existing group of studies;
- may replicate an existing study, provided it attempts to repeat the study with some meaningful variation;
- may have as a goal the development or improvement of instrumentation (see Behavior Research Methods);
- may be ethological or statistical in nature, originating a new design, improving an existing design, or reapplying a quantitative statistical technique, etc. (see Journal of Mathematical Psychology and see Educational and Psychological Measurement);
- may be reports of surveys related to themes of professional interest (see American Psychologist);
- may be theoretical in nature providing an exposition of constructs, assumptions, interactions among constructs, translation into empirical variables, illustrations of applications, etc. (see Psychological Bulletin and see Psychological Review); and
- must investigate a real problem. If it is clear from existing literature what the answer is, the thesis poses a non-problem. However, research may be conducted to solve a practical problem, provided the solution can be generalized.
Find out more about thesis procedures on the following pages: