Dissertation Submission

Submitting the Doctoral Dissertation

Notification of Readers (NOR):

  • Set up by you or your program prior to dissertation submission, depending on departmental practice. If your program allows students to create the NOR you will see a Notification of Readers tile in the Dissertation Progress Reporting and Submission (DPRS) site. Contact your departmental registrar for questions and assistance.
  • Notify program of your intent to submit by February 15 (spring) or September 1 (fall)
  • Three readers are required with a maximum of five permitted. Two must be ladder or ladder-track Yale faculty, including the adviser. All readers must hold a PhD degree and a faculty position or be considered otherwise qualified to evaluate the dissertation by the DGS and the Graduate School.
  • NOR Submission Instructional video

Submission Information:

  • Dissertation submission deadlines:
    • March 15 for spring degree conferral in May/June, 5:00 pm
    • October 1 for fall degree conferral in December, 5:00 pm
    • A pdf of your dissertation may be submitted using the degree petition page in the Dissertation Progress Reporting and Submission (DPRS) site at any time within the academic year. Dissertations submitted after the above semester submission deadlines will be processed for the following degree date
    • Final changes to the dissertation must be uploaded in DPRS within 30 days of the submission deadline. To make changes to your dissertation after it has been submitted, email dissertationreaders@yale.edu.
    • Upon submission of your dissertation and approval of your readers by the DGS, a pdf of your dissertation will be automatically sent to all readers.
    • Upon request from a reader, students are required to and responsible for mailing a soft-bound copy of the dissertation to the reader.

IMPORTANT: Students who submit their dissertations before the end of the add/drop course enrollment period (see the academic calendar) are NOT eligible to register as students for the remainder of that term. Students who wish to remain registered until the end of a given semester must submit their dissertations AFTER add/drop closes in order to remain registered for that semester.

  • Submitting Degree Petition and Dissertation in DPRS:

The Degree Petition page in DPRS consists of the degree petition, links to required surveys, and a site to upload a pdf of your dissertation. No paper submission is required.

  • The dissertation title is populated from your most recent Dissertation Progress Report. You can change the final title on the petition page by clicking the “No” radio button and modifying the title. Click the save button at the bottom of the page to save the title prior to submitting the dissertation
  • Survey of Earned Doctorates – submission confirmation page
  • GSAS Exit Survey – upload first page of GSAS Survey that has your email address
  • ProQuest (ETD) Publication Agreement – detail page
  • Upload a pdf of your dissertation
  • Degree Petition and Dissertation Submission Instructional Video

Additional Questions?

Formatting the Doctoral Dissertation

Physical Requirements:

  • Double spaced
  • Exceptions: block quotations, bibliographic references, captions, footnotes should be single spaced, with a double space between each entry
  • Saved as a pdf to be uploaded on the Degree Petition and Dissertation Submission page in DPRS
  • No paper copy needs to be submitted

Margins: Left side margin of 1.5”, 1” margin on all other sides

Page Numbers

  • 0.5” from any edge
  • Preliminary pages are numbered with lower-case roman numerals, except title page and copyright page which are not numbered. The page following the copyright will be numbered (iii) and additional pages will be numbered sequentially
  • The dissertation proper begins with page Arabic number “1” and runs consecutively to the end            

Font Size

  • 10- to 12-point font
  • Same font type should be used throughout, including header, footnotes, page numbers

Order of Sections:

  1. Abstract
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright Page
  4. Table of Contents
  5. Front Matter (acknowledgements, list of illustrations or tables, etc.)
  6. Body of Text
  7. Back Matter (appendices, bibliography, supplemental figures and tables, etc.)


  • Placed immediately preceding the title page
  • Heading centered on page
  • Dissertation title and name of author must match title page
  • Text of abstract below the heading, double spaced
  • Example:


Full title of dissertation

Full name of author

Year of PhD conferral (e.g., 20XX)

Title Page

  • All text centered
  • Month and year of conferral (e.g., May or June 20XX, or December 20XX)
  • See attached example at end of guide

Copyright Notice:

  • Typed 3” below top margin
  • Format includes copyright symbol ©
  • Example:

                     © 20__ by [Student’s Name]

                     All rights reserved.

  • Note: the copyright available through ProQuest is optional and an additional fee

Tables and Figures:

  • Tables placed as close as possible to their reference in the text
  • Heading at top of table
  • Consecutive numbering throughout, or by chapter (e.g., 1.1, 1.2, 2.1, 2.2)
  • Captions placed at bottom

(Sample Title Page)

Dissertation Title: Subtitle

(first letter of each word in title should be capitalized)

A Dissertation

Presented to the Faculty of the Graduate School


Yale University

In Candidacy for the Degree of

Doctor of Philosophy


[Full Name of Author]

Dissertation Director: [Full  Name of the Advisor(s)]

(or chairperson of advisory committee)

Month Year

(month of graduation, not of submission)

Submission Policy

Dissertations for the Yale Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Doctor of Philosophy degree must be submitted to the Graduate School by 5:00 pm on March 15 for consideration at the May meeting of the degree committee, and by 5:00 pm on October 1 for consideration at the fall meeting of the degree committee. These deadlines are established to allow sufficient time for readers to make careful evaluations and for departments to review those evaluations and make recommendations to the Graduate School. No extensions of the deadlines will be granted. Dissertations submitted after the deadlines will be considered for degree conferral during the following term.

In accord with the scholarly ideal that the candidate for a doctorate must make a contribution to knowledge, all dissertations that have been accepted by the Graduate School are made available in the Yale library.

Students do not need to be registered to be eligible to submit the dissertation.

Students who complete all PhD requirements within four continuous years of full-time study in the PhD program will be registered and charged full tuition only through the term in which the dissertation is submitted. Students who take a leave of absence must complete the four-year full tuition obligation, regardless of when they submit the dissertation.

The Graduate School does not compel departments to evaluate the dissertations of degree candidates who are no longer registered. In practice, however, departments normally agree to evaluate these dissertations.