Checklist for Master's Students

  • Obtain and review copies of departmental handbooks or other documents outlining specific program requirements from the graduate program director.
  • Complete prerequisite/deficiency requirements early in the program. If applicable, request the advisor to submit a letter to the Graduate School stating the prerequisite/deficiency requirements noted on the admission letter have been completed.
  • Select a major professor.
  • Select a research topic in consultation with the major professor if completing the thesis or report option.
  • Select a supervisory committee. A minimum of three graduate faculty, including major professor serve as the supervisory committee. Check with the major professor or department head to determine if there are departmental or program requirements regarding composition of the supervisory committee. If a faculty member from another university is appointed, a vita is required. Approval from the Dean of the Graduate School must be obtained prior to submission of Program of Study. 
  • Prepare a program of study in consultation with the major professor. Review Preparing a Master's Program of Study. The program of study form can be downloaded from this website. Choose one of the following program options (subject to the approval of your department or program):
    • Thesis: a minimum of 30 hours of graduate credit including a maximum of 6 to 8 hours of master's thesis research credit.
    • Report: a minimum of 30 hours of graduate credit including a maximum of 2 hours of master's report credit.
    • Non-thesis / non-report: a minimum of 30 semester hours of graduate credit in course work only, but including evidence of scholarly effort, such as term papers or production of creative work.
    • NOTE: Some master's degrees require more than 30 hours. Follow departmental guidelines on number of required hours and course work requirements.
  • Schedule meeting with the supervisory committee to discuss the Program of Study and research, if applicable. Obtain supervisory committee members' signatures on the approved Program of Study. It is suggested to provide a copy of the proposed Program of Study to the supervisory committee prior to the meeting.
  • Submit the original of the approved Program of Study signed by all members of the supervisory committee, the major professor, the department head or graduate program director, and the student to the Graduate School. The Program of Study should be submitted after completing nine hours of graduate credit and no later than the semester prior to graduation.
  • If changes need to be made to the Program of Study, submit a Program/Committee Change form to the Graduate School. 
  • Approval of Proposal for a thesis or report, if required by the program. Follow specific departmental guidelines for preparation and presentation of the proposal. Follow departmental timelines for submission of proposal to the supervisory committee.
  • Obtain approval form from Institutional Review for Use of Human Subjects and/or Animals, or other compliance requirements, if applicable, prior to collecting data. Please Note: If using human subjects or animals you will need to complete the Training and Educational Modules for Researchers. This is mandatory for IRB approval. Please refer to the University Research Compliance Office for more information and to complete the training modules. This applies to all research projects.
  • Collect and analyze data, if applicable.

  • Review deadlines on the Graduate School website.
  • Write thesis or the report, if applicable, following departmental guidelines and formatting specified by the Graduate School. Download Templates and Tutorials.
  • If applicable, provide members of the supervisory committee a copy of the thesis or report, a minimum of 10 working days prior to the scheduled defense.
  • Submit the "Approval to Schedule Final Examination" form signed by the major professor, department head or graduate program chairperson, and all committee members to the Graduate School 10 working days prior to the examination. If completing a thesis or report, submit a copy of the abstract and abstract title page. The Graduate School will send notification via email if the degree requirements have been satisfied. Note: You must be enrolled the semester you take your final examination and graduate. The number of hours needed for enrollment will depend upon your employment status with the University.
  • Complete the iSIS Graduation Application.

  • Submit the final examination ballot to the Graduate School after signatures of the supervisory committee have been obtained. Retain one copy for personal file and give the major professor one copy.
  • Make revisions to the thesis or report based on feedback obtained from the committee.
  • Work closely with the major professor in preparing the final copy of the electronic thesis or report.
  • Complete online exit survey and K-State Alumni Association information.

Download the checklists for Master's Degrees