Thesis Support Up and Running

The Writing Workshop is now running a thesis writing support slack for students working on MA theses, honors theses, and senior essays. This will be a student space (no thesis advisors/faculty please) as our commitment at the Workshop is to provide peer-to-peer support specifically. I will be running the slack with our trained thesis writing mentors and Ford Fellow.

  • We will continue as planned to hold our Spring Break Bootcamp on Sunday, 3/22 from 9:30am-4:30pm EST virtually using this slack.
  • We will continue weekly write-ins virtually every Sunday, 10am-12pm EST and Wednesday, 8pm-10pm EST on slack.
  • We will use share resources via the slack and support students through the final weeks of thesis writing.

If you need more information, please contact Lauren Silber at the Shapiro Writing Center at

Spring Thesis Boot Camp 3/22

The Writing Workshop will be hosting one final Writing Retreat on Sunday, March 22nd from 9-4:30pm at the Shapiro Writing Center. Register for the event through this link. The Writing Workshop will provide breakfast, lunch, snacks, caffeine, individual consultations, and timed writing and break sessions.

For more information, go to or write to

Thesis Writers Spring Writing Support

This Saturday, January 25th from 9:30 – 4:30 we will be hosting a Winter Bootcamp for Thesis Writers. The day will include timed writing sessions, a workshop on writing and mindfulness, free breakfast and lunch, a thesis journal making workshop, snacks and caffeine, camaraderie, and the option to have individual consultations with Writing Center staff on time management and goal setting. We ask students to register so we can purchase the right amount of food.

Additionally, we are working with the library this semester to provide thesis writers with biweekly write-ins, Sundays from 10am-12pm at the Shapiro Center for Writing and Wednesdays from 8 – 10pm in the Devlin Room in the Olin Library. These write-ins will be staffed by Writing Workshop tutors, and, in addition to caffeine and snacks, will provide thesis writers with consistency and accountability as they work on their projects. As we all know, dedicating two or four hours every week to the thesis writing process is exactly what gets the project done!

Lastly, we will offer a spring break bootcamp on March 22nd from 9:30 – 4:30 at the Shapiro Center for Writing following a similar schedule as the Winter boot camp. Registration can be found here.

Library Workshops for Senior Thesis/Essay Writers

The library is offering workshops on research sources and interlibrary loan and other services for seniors writing a thesis or an essay. Sessions will be offered on Monday 9/23, Tuesday 9/24, Wednesday 9/25, and Thursday 9/26 at 11:00, 1:00, and 3:00 each day (with one exception: no session 3:00 Wednesday). No need to sign up ahead of time. Choose a date and time convenient for you and join a group for a 45 minute info session in Olin Library in the Develin Room (room 204, beside the Art Library space on the second floor by the big stairs in the front of the building). Attendees will be granted expanded interlibrary loan privileges.

Departmental Honors

If you plan to be a candidate for Honors in your senior year, it is important to know the following:

1. Know your department’s policy regarding thesis tutorials; most require two consecutive semesters of thesis tutorial. Be sure that you register for the tutorial that your department requires of Honors candidates; for most students this will be DEPT409 in Fall 2019 and DEPT410 in Spring 2020.You must add the tutorial online during the Drop/Add period each semester. If you intend to submit your thesis for honors consideration in more than one department, indicate that on your tutorial enrollment request form.

2. Once confirmed by your department(s), each candidate registered for the appropriate tutorial is considered an Honors candidate by the Honors Committee. Students who are confirmed will be notified in early October.

Special Cases: Those who will complete course work in December 2019, candidates for Honors in General Scholarship, and University majors must contact Susan Krajewski. Students who complete their studies in December are now required to submit their honors thesis on the first day of classes in the following spring semester. So December completions who are members of the Class of 2020 must register their thesis by 4pm on January 23, 2020. For students interested in pursuing Honors in General Scholarship, a comprehensive application process must be followed. Complete information about this process is available at Spring applications for General Scholarship were due Friday, April 26, 2019. The late submission application deadline to pursue Honors in General Scholarship is 4pm on Friday, September 13, 2019.

Departmental Honors: To receive Honors upon graduation, all candidates must fulfill the Honors requirements of the major department. Be sure that you know what your department requires. Criteria for supervising and evaluating candidates rests solely with the academic department. Follow your department’s procedure to obtain a tutor. If you are pursuing honors in more than one department, the honors decisions are made independently so you may receive honors from one department and credit only from the other.

The Jellybean Papers: Further considerations on writing the senior thesis and answers to many questions are available in the Jellybean Papers (known as such because they were once printed on brightly-colored paper). Copies of the 2019/2020 version may be found online at:

New this year: All honors theses will now be bound double-sided. Please make sure to pay special attention to the new margin requirements and other formatting instructions in the Jellybean Papers to ensure your final thesis PDF adheres to all standards and expectations for double-sided manuscripts.

Also beginning this fall there is a new thesis carrel application process in place on a trial basis. In an effort to ensure that all students receive an appropriate thesis study space, the Library is initiating shared carrels. If you would like more information about this new trial process, see the following article that was published in the Argus in April 2019.

Important deadlines for 2020 Honors candidates:

September 2, 2019 Thesis Carrel Applications open in WesPortal. The application link is in the Library bucket.

September 13, 2019: Final day of Drop/Add registration for the Fall tutorial. Register online in Fall 2019 during Drop/Add for the first half of your thesis (DEPT409).

September 13, 2019: Study carrel applications due by 4pm. Contact Jessie Steele in Olin Library for more information.

September 24, 2019: Students can check their WesPortal to see what carrel assignment they received if they applied.

September 30, 2019: Students must pick up their thesis carrel keys by 4pm at the Olin Reserve Desk.

January 23, 2020: Early thesis registration deadline for December Completions.

February 5, 2020: Final day of Drop/Add registration for the Spring tutorial. Register online in Spring 2020 during Drop/Add for the second half of your thesis (DEPT410).

April 14, 2020: Theses due by 4pm (no extensions possible)

April 28, 2020: Department recommendations due. All performances and exhibitions completed.

If you have any questions, please contact Susan Krajewski, Senior Associate Registrar, at or x2738.

Thinking about Writing a Senior Thesis?

Thinking about writing a senior thesis? Not sure where to start? This panel discussion will provide you with an opportunity to gain insight from professors about how to prepare for writing a thesis, how to choose a topic, and what factors you should take into account when making the decision to undertake a thesis.

Whether you already know your topic, or are just beginning to explore the possibility of a thesis, now is a great time to start get your bearings.

Please join us in a conversation with Dean Phillips and Professors Sean McCann (English), Joe Rouse (Philosophy and Science in Society) and Martha Gilmore (Earth & Environmental Science) for insights into the whys and wherefores of undertaking a thesis.

Tuesday, December 4, 4:30 – 5:30 p.m.
PAC 002

Please RSVP through this link.

Light refreshments will be provided.