Dissertator Status

Dissertator is a unique fee status for students who have completed all requirements for a doctoral degree except for the dissertation. To be eligible for dissertator fee status, a student must:

  • Pass the preliminary examination(s);
  • Satisfy the doctoral minimum graduate residence credit requirement;
  • Complete all minor requirements, if the major program requires a minor;
  • Complete all program requirements except the dissertation;
  • Clear all Incomplete grades or Progress grades in non-research courses (progress grades in 990 research may remain);
  • Earn at least a 3.0 cumulative graduate GPA;
  • Return the signed and dated preliminary exam warrant to the Graduate School.

Dissertator status is effective at the start of the semester following completion of all dissertator requirements for the doctoral degree except for the dissertation. In order to initiate the change to dissertator status, the prelim warrant must be sent to the Graduate School in a timely fashion. Students can check on dissertator status by contacting their graduate program coordinator. All dissertator requirements must be met before the first day of classes to be a dissertator for any given semester. If all dissertator requirements are completed before the first day of classes but the signed prelim warrant does not reach the Graduate School by that deadline, the student can still become a dissertator that semester. Submit the warrant to the Graduate School as soon as possible and enroll for at least 3 credits (usually 990 research) for that semester. Removal of Dissertator Status: A dissertator who enrolls for more (or fewer) than 3 credits will be removed from dissertator status for the fall or spring term in which the enrollment is not exactly 3 credits. During the summer, however, an enrolled dissertator may ask their advisor to request an overload of 1-2 additional credits in a short session and still retain dissertator fee status, if the course is related to dissertation research or professional training that is not offered in regular semesters. The removal of dissertator status may have the following consequences:

  • Graduate assistant (TA/PA/RA) stipend rates may have to be adjusted to the non-dissertator rate, or percent limitations
  • Fees are assessed at the non-dissertator rate
  • Full-time status may change to part-time, possibly affecting loan deferral, visa status, etc.

If a dissertator wants to pursue a graduate degree or certificate in another area, the dissertator fee status will be discontinued and regular graduate fees will be assessed, with possible consequences listed above. Find more information about the tuition and fees for a dissertator and non-dissertator on the Bursar’s Office Tuition and Fees webpage.

See Addition/Change of Program, Plan, or Named OptionEnrollment RequirementsMaximum Levels of AppointmentsMinimum Graduate Residence Credit Requirement