Below are step-by-step instructions on how to prepare ETDs from formatting, to converting to PDF, to the final submission to the ETD Online System. ETD authors should visit Training/Support
if additional assistance is required.
Creating and Submitting an ETD
- Write your thesis or dissertation. In order to make the process of creating your final PDF file as easy as possible, it is recommended that you begin using one of the Word or LaTeX templates as early as possible. Training in the use of these templates is available. Read the ETD Format Guidelines Manual and review the Sample ETD to familiarize yourself with the formatting requirements Because every field is different, each school may have additional requirements that supercede the ETD Format Guidelines Manual. Please check with your school to see what their requirements are.
- Read Copyright Information for Graduate Students Writing a Thesis or Dissertation and ProQuest's (formerly UMI/Bell & Howell) copyright guide, Copyright and Your Dissertation or Thesis: Ownership, Fair Use, and Your Rights and Responsibilities by Dr. Kenneth D. Crews. Obtain written permission from the copyright owner(s) to use any copyrighted material. Links to sample copyright letters are provided.
- Defend your thesis or dissertation to your committee. Note that this step may occur either before or after you create your ETD in PDF files depending on how your thesis/dissertation committee has agreed to view your thesis or dissertation. Get the signatures of all committee members on the first page of the ETD Approval form. Please note that electronic signatures are not acceptable.
- Make final revisions to your thesis or dissertation as requested by your committee.
- Create a list of keywords by which your thesis or dissertation will be searchable in PITTCat. See Creating Keywords for advice on how to select keywords.
- Get ready to create your PDF file(s).
a. Obtain training through the library.
b. Scan any photographs, maps, or other graphical materials into acceptable electronic file formats. Consult the ETD Format Guidelines Manual for information on using non-PDF files in your ETD.
c. Obtain access to a computer that has Adobe Acrobat and your word processing program installed. Most University of Pittsburgh computers have Adobe Acrobat.
- Create your PDF files.
a. Follow the directions on converting your thesis or dissertation to a PDF File.
b. Insert Bookmarks at least for every chapter and/or section and for all tables and figures.
c. Double-check that your PDF file is accurate: Make sure the page numbers listed in the Table of Contents match exactly the page numbers for each section or element in the text, check that all embedded graphics or other elements are situated in the proper place in the text, check for widows and orphans, and verify that all hyperlinks are working properly.
- Show your ETD to your thesis advisor or dissertation director. Have your thesis advisor or dissertation director sign the bottom of the first page of the ETD Approval form. Discuss with him or her the various access options. Complete and sign Parts A and B on the second page of the ETD Approval form. If you choose to secure your ETD for one year for patent purposes, you must fill out the Patent form and return it to your student services staff.
- Submit your ETD online. See the Online Help pages if you have any problems with electronic submission. Link here for more information on submitting your ETD.
- Take your signed ETD Approval form and all necessary payment receipts and documents to the graduation coordinator at your school.
Your school will review the ETD and your supporting documents. If there are any problems, you will receive an e-mail from your school. If there are no problems, you will receive an e-mail stating that your ETD has been approved. It will be searchable on PittCat within one week.
Congratulations! Your thesis or dissertation has been published electronically by the University of Pittsburgh!
Submitting the ETD
Submitting your ETD is a quick and simple process. After your thesis advisor or dissertation director has approved your ETD, go to the ETD Online System. Click on "Log In" and create an account using your Pitt username and password. (If you have any trouble creating an account, contact ETD Online Support. Once you have logged in to the ETD Online System, follow the instructions for submitting your ETD documents.
Take your signed ETD Approval form and all necessary payment receipts and documents to the graduation coordinator at your school. Your school will review the ETD and your supporting documents. If there are any problems, you will receive an e-mail from your school. If there are no problems, you will receive an e-mail stating that your ETD has been approved. It will be searchable on PittCat within one week.
On rare occasions, a graduate student may need to submit more than one ETD during the same term. If this situation applies to you, you will need to complete the entire submission and approval process for the first ETD (generally, your Masters thesis). Once your first ETD is approved and available, you may edit your main user record to reflect the correct information for your second degree, and submit your second ETD (your doctoral dissertation). The online system allows your main user record to be used for only one ETD at a time. If you need help, contact your student services staff.