Graduate Writing Resources
Dissertation Writers' Retreat
The Dissertation Writers' Retreat is a joint initiative of SGPS, SOGS, and the Writing Support Centre, designed to provide Western PhD candidates in year 4 or above with dedicated time and space for intensive writing. Participating in the retreat can help you make significant progress in writing your dissertation, and help establish good writing habits that will enable you to meet future objectives. By providing you with a comfortable, encouraging, and distraction-free space, as well as support from expert writing advisors, we will give you the opportunity to remove yourself from daily distractions and time demands to focus exclusively on dissertation writing. The Dissertation Writers' Retreat is specifically for writing your dissertation; it is NOT for conference presentations, course essays, book reviews, etc. The next Dissertation Writers' Retreat is taking place April 18 – 20. Registration is required as space is limited. Registration begins in March. Contact Doug Campbell email@example.com if you have questions or need additional information.
Click here to REGISTER
Weekly Thesis Writing Time
Graduate Student Space in Weldon Library
Weldon Library Fourth floor, 439H
Thursdays 9:00am - 12:00pm
YOU ARE INVITED!
Weekly Thesis Writing Time is dedicated to providing a comfortable, distraction-free space conducive for graduate student thesis writing. This weekly program offers Western Doctoral and Master’s students, who are currently writing their thesis/dissertation, an Internet-free three-hour block of time in a beautiful setting to focus exclusively on writing.
March 2018, sessions are scheduled to be held in Weldon Library, Room 439H.
Please also indicate if you are willing to be the Leadership Coordinator during one or more of the sessions below. There is no fee for participating, but you must be there for the full three hours, agree not to use the Internet, and focus only on thesis/dissertation writing.
Please ensure you bring your own beverages and snacks.
Space is limited in each session. Guaranteed spots will be given to the first 30 students who respond.
This is joint initiative between SOGS and SGPS
Graduate Writing Lab
Our Graduate Writing Lab (WSS4130a) is a dedicated space for graduate students and postdoctoral scholars. Located just inside the Writing Support Centre, the Grad Lab offers computer stations, a resource centre, and a comfortable seating area. Graduate students are welcome to use this area Monday to Thursday from 10am until 4pm. In addition, you may reserve this space for academic uses such as seminars or study groups on Fridays. We ask that when you use this space you:
- Check in at Student Development Centre reception in the Western Student Services Building (WSS 4100)
- Sign in when you arrive in the Graduate Writing Lab
- Respect the area as a quiet study space by entering and exiting quietly and keeping the door closed
- Use the resource materials on site
If you have questions or would like to reserve the Graduate Writing Lab on a Friday, please contact Doug Campbell at 519-661-2111 extension 85950 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
GradWRITE: Writing Handouts
Our general Writing Support Handouts contain explanations and examples of university appropriate English language grammar and style.
Directory of University Writing Centres
Other university writing centres have their own sets of resources. If you have been through our site and are looking for further information or help, check out the following selected list:
- Athabasca University, Write Site
- Dalhousie University, Writing Centre resource Guide
- Emily Carr University of Art and Design, "The Writing Centre Handouts"
- Purdue University OWL
- Queens University, Writing Centre Tip Sheets
- University of Alberta, Centre for Writers Resources
- University of Calgary, "Online Writing Resources"
- University of Ottawa, The Writing Centre Resources
- University of Toronto, Writing in the Health Sciences
- University of Toronto, Engineering Communication Program Online Handbook
- University of Victoria, Centre for Academic Communication
- University of Wisconsin, "The Writer's Handbook"
Western Libraries has created up-to-date Online Style Guides for academic citations and referencing. Several citation management systems are also available for all Western students, staff, and faculty; this web-based software can help you organize and format your citations.
Resources to get you started:
If you are looking for sources, Weldon Library's subject-specific Research Guides are a good place to begin your search.
Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository
The School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies' Electronic Theses & Dissertation Repository site has resources to help you find all the information you might require in order to format and successfully submit your graduate thesis for examination and publication electronically.
Help for Writing Research Grants and Awards:
Research Grants and Awards
Schulich Medicine and Dentistry Research Office :
Western Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies: SGPS
Western Society of Graduate Students: SOGS
Submission Guidelines for Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository
Producing Your Thesis
- Read the information under Formatting and review the ETD template to familiarize yourself with the formatting requirements. SGPS Guidelines are the minimum technical requirements. Differing disciplines may have their own conventions, so please check with your supervisor for discipline-specific formatting.
- Use the SGPS thesis template as early on as possible (available in the Formatting section of the SGPS Thesis site). This will simplify formatting and enhance the eventual PDF conversion of your thesis. Otherwise, use the style, indexing and table of contents tools of your word processing program.
- Multiple file formats are an option with an ETD submission. The primary thesis file must be in .pdf, .rtf or .doc format upon submission but an ETD can contain non-text elements such as multimedia, sound, video, as well as text and hypertext links. Details will be found under Submission. Use the required file naming convention early on. It will simplify uploading your ETD submission.
- Securing copyright permission can take time. Start early. See the Copyright section for information on how to determine whether copyright permission is needed for your thesis and how to obtain it.
Submitting Your Thesis for Examination - Preliminary Steps
- Before you can submit an ETD for preliminary examination, you must submit the following to SGPS:
- Read the Submission section of the SGPS Thesis site to walk you step-by-step through the process. Familiarize yourself with the procedure.
- Scan any photographs, maps, or other supplementary content into acceptable electronic file formats. Consult the Submission information page if using non-PDF supplementary files in your ETD.
- Double-check that:
- your submission file is accurate
- page numbers listed in the Table of Contents match exactly the page numbers for each section or element in the text
- all embedded graphics or other elements are properly situated in the text
- all hyperlinks are working properly
Submitting Your Thesis for Examination - Final Steps
- If not done previously, register with Scholarship@Western. See the Submission information page for further directions.
- Once registered and your Thesis Examination Board form is forwarded to SGPS, you may submit your thesis. You are able to interrupt your submission at any step, save your work, and return to it at a later time.
- The School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies will review your ETD and supporting documents. You will receive an e-mail stating that your ETD submission has been received. One business day later, your submission is locked from editing and distributed to your examiners for evaluation. If there are any problems, you will receive an e-mail notifying you of what action is required. Once a preliminary decision is made concerning your work, a communication will be directed to you via e-mail.
Final Submission of Your Thesis
- Upon successful examination of your thesis, you are directed to submit a final copy of the work through Scholarship@Western.
- If any revisions were required as a result of your examination, your submission will be reviewed by your supervisor to ensure those changes are made.
- Once this copy has the necessary approvals, your work will be published to the public section of Scholarship@Western.
Publication and Distribution of Your Thesis
Your thesis will be available online at Scholarship@Western and on the web up to two weeks following your final submission. Scholarship@Western theses will have priority in many search engines. Theses will be uploaded to the University of Western Ontario Library catalogue at regular intervals.
Proquest/UMI will create an archival quality microfilm copy of the thesis for Library & Archives Canada, and will also catalogue your thesis and publish the abstract in the ProQuest Dissertations & Theses (PQDT) database Proquest is considered an academic and not a commercial publisher. Proquest makes theses available in digital or paper format for a fee.
After a period of two years, Library & Archives Canada may also make downloadable copies of theses available at no charge (or paper copies for a fee that covers the cost of production).
Before electronic submission, this was the only way to obtain copies of theses apart from borrowing them from university libraries or contacting authors directly. You retain copyright to your thesis and may make it available on a personal website and pursue other sources of publication as well.
Your graduate unit may require one or more bound paper copies of your thesis. Please consult your department administrator about departmental requirements such as the colour of the cover, and single- or double-sided printing, Apart from these considerations, the general guidelines for thesis production should be followed.
If you require a binding service, this is available through Western Graphic Services. This is only an option; you may use any binding service that you prefer.
Delaly of Publication on Thesis
Publication of your thesis by the university is a requirement of your degree, but sometimes it is necessary to delay publication. Typical reasons for embargo include:
- Anticipated publication of part of your thesis in a journal, or publication of the thesis as a book
- Content of a sensitive nature in the thesis, the publication of which might endanger the wellbeing of the author or of persons associated with the work
- A patent in process
Please discuss restriction with your supervisor and the chair of your graduate unit if you think it may be appropriate. Requesting a delay on publication is part of the submission process.