Dissertation Overview

The George Mason University Library is in charge of collecting and publishing theses and dissertations written by George Mason University graduate students. All students writing a thesis or dissertation must refer to the guidelines on the Dissertation and Thesis website.


Research involving human subjects must be reviewed and approved by Mason's Institutional Review Board (IRB) before the research can begin. If your research will involve human subjects, you must work with the Director of your Dissertation Committee to submit an application via IRBNet to have your project reviewed by the IRB. For assistance, contact Mason's IRB staff at irb@gmu.edu. Further information on research compliance and related federal regulations is available at the Office of Research Integrity and Assurance (ORIA) website.


The number of dissertation credits a doctoral student must complete depends on how many coursework credits have been completed. All doctoral students are required to take at least 12 credit hours of dissertation credit, including at least 3 credits of ECON 999 the first semester of enrollment, and successfully defend and submit a complete doctoral dissertation in order to be eligible for degree conferral.

Students may take any combination of ECON 998 (proposal) and ECON 999 (research) credits to satisfy the minimum dissertation credit requirement. Although students may take as many credit hours of dissertation as they need to complete the dissertation, no more than 24 credit hours of dissertation credit may be applied to the doctoral degree. Students who have entered the dissertation stage of the program must maintain continuous enrollment until graduation.

University Catalog AP.6.2 Full-time and Half-time Status Classification.

For more information about the doctoral dissertation, see CHSS's graduate student section regarding college forms, procedures, and policies.


Defense checklist with deadlines each semester can be downloaded from MyMason/Organizations/Economics Graduate Students/Content