Milestone Deadlines

Flexible Pacing and Registration

While registration is set up for 8 weeks (6 weeks for summer), completion dates are at the discretion of each student and vary based on capacity and time commitment, mastery of the literature review genre and scholarly writing, and the volume of reading required to become well-versed in your general and special fields and selected methodology. However, registration for a seminar course is based on a single term. You will earn an incomplete until all work is finished for the relevant seminar.

It is expected that it may take you at least two years to complete the full Exam-Dissertation Sequence. Refer to the attached table for general guidance on when you should try to complete key milestones in order to achieve a certain graduation term.

  • These dates are “no later than” dates and assume a very focused timeline – you can plan to take longer at any stage.
  • This table DOES NOT include every requirement, only key milestones to help you plan accordingly.
  • These dates do not take into consideration longer data collection timelines that might be required or quantity of revisions required at various stages.


You should plan to have your final dissertation draft approved by the end of Term 1 of the desired graduation semester. Term 2 should focus on delivering your peer and committee presentations and receiving committee, departmental, and thesis office approvals on your final dissertation.

Refer to the following related pages for requirements and additional information.