Thesis Option

Guidelines for Thesis Students

This option is for a limited number of students who must receive prior approval of their research proposal by the program director and a USJ thesis advisor.

Application Process

  • Find and secure a laboratory to work on your research as a volunteer, confirming that the institution’s insurance will cover your work in their lab. If this work is done in the same lab as your job, the thesis project must be substantially different from your paid work and must be done outside of your normal work hours.
  • Submit a letter from the principal research investigator with whom you plan to work that states that your research will be conducted in their laboratory and that the necessary supplies to complete the research will be provided through their funding.
  • In collaboration with the principal research investigator, write a preliminary plan of your research, including a basic description for the thesis application.
  • Fill out the application that you received after meeting with the GPD.
  • File the application with the University of Saint Joseph Chemistry Department. The deadlines for submitting applications are as follows:
Last date for USJ Thesis Committee meeting
Fall Semester July 15
Spring Semester November 15
Summer Semester April 1

Thesis Planning Project

  1. If approved for this option, you will enroll in CHEM 598 Research Seminar and work with your thesis advisor throughout the semester to plan your master thesis project. You will be given a writing schedule and must make sure that all necessary permissions to do the research have been filed at both USJ and the institution where the research will take place.
  2. Write a grant-style proposal that outlines the proposed experiments and includes extensive research of the literature and the current state of research in this area.

Research Process

  1. After your thesis planning document has been completed and accepted by your thesis advisor, you will begin your research. Plan to conduct the research for 3 to 9 months, depending on the time you can allot to the work.
  2. At least once a month, check in with your thesis advisor who can help you troubleshoot problems and assist you in alternative experiments.

Post-Research Process

  1. Once the research is completed and the data collected, contact your thesis advisor. You must have a meeting with your USJ committee prior to registering for CHEM 599 Thesis. This meeting must be scheduled by the following deadlines:
    Last date for USJ Thesis Committee meeting
    Fall Semester July 15
    Spring Semester November 15
    Summer Semester April 1
  2. During the committee meeting you will discuss the data, the conclusions drawn from the data and the timeline for writing your thesis — if you require one or two semesters to complete it.

THESIS WRITING PROCESS

  1. If you plan to complete it in one semester, register for CHEM599 for 3 credits and begin writing your thesis. Your thesis advisor will provide you with a writing schedule; your grade for CHEM599 depends on adhering to that schedule.
  2. If you need two semesters to complete it, you should register for CHEM599 for 1 or 2 credits and write the beginning of your thesis. Register for the additional credits (the sum of your thesis credits should be 3 credits) in the next semester and complete the thesis. Your thesis advisor will provide you with a writing schedule; your grade depends on adhering to that schedule during both semesters. For the dual semester plan you will earn two grades.

This option is for a limited number of students who must receive prior approval of their research proposal by the program director and a thesis advisor. If approved for this option, the student enrolls in CHEM 598 Research Seminar (3) and CHEM 599 Master’s Thesis (3) as part of the 30 credits. Students on the thesis track will present and defend their thesis as a culminating activity in lieu of a written comprehensive exam.

Work at USJ

Join our team.

Make a Gift

Make a lasting impact.

Mission and Values

View our mission statement and core values.

Academics

Explore

Meet Our Great Faculty

Explore the professors of USJ.

Loading...