Policy and Procedures: Projects in Digitized Library Collection

Policy

It is the policy of the Division of Research and Graduate Studies (DRGS) that only those graduate projects (298) reviewed and recommended by the faculty and the university graduate office may be made available in the Henry Madden Library's digitized collection.

Introduction

It shall be understood that not every graduate project (298) will be reviewed at the university level for placement in the digitized collection. The review is voluntary, with faculty discretion determining which projects are advanced for review.

Benefits for participation include improved visibility for high-quality projects. Such exposure may be helpful to student resumes and provide recognition for faculty members guiding students through the research process. Participation also ensures uniformity in the professional presentation of projects.

Procedure

Only projects recommended by the faculty advisor/chair and the graduate program coordinator or dean of the college or school may be considered for review and approval.

The university’s dissertation/thesis consultant in the Division of Research and Graduate Studies will review selected projects. Such projects must meet the format requirements of the thesis (299) detailed in the university’s Guidelines for Thesis Preparation. Templates and tutorials to assist in formatting are also available from the DRGS Website. A normal review will cover the objective areas of form and style, mechanics, and documentation, in addition to ensuring adherence to Title V in the California Code of Regulations for the project (298) as a culminating experience. This is defined in part in the CSU, Fresno 2012-2013 General Catalog (p. 509) as follows:

It must evidence originality and independent thinking, appropriate form and organization, and a rationale. It must be described and summarized in a written abstract that includes the project’s significance, objectives, methodology, and a conclusion or recommendation.

Projects that do not meet these criteria will be returned to the student with a letter (copied to the nominating faculty member) detailing the reasons for the project’s return. This return procedure is consistent with that used for the return of theses.

Faculty and students who wish to have a project eligible for digitized collection must process through electronic submission and review as detailed on the DTO web site. Students must first complete Step 1 of the electronic submission and review process.  Faculty must then attest that the nominated project meets required standards of scholarship, format, and style of the university and the student’s program. This is achieved through completing Step 2 of the electronic submission and review process.

Students may submit an endorsed project up to one week prior to the final day of instruction of their graduation term (e.g, first week of May for Spring graduation, first week of December for Fall graduation).

Sample Project Layout

The outline below is offered as a general guideline only. Students should always consult their graduate program coordinator for additional regulations and policies.

Abstract: The abstract includes project title, as it appears on the title page, followed by a short statement (150 words or fewer) concerning the purpose, methodology, and findings of the research.

Introduction: The introduction clearly states the purpose of the project; scope (description) of the project in terms of content and format; significance of the project; limitations of the project; definition of terms; and organization of the remainder of the project.

Review of the Literature: The literature review presents source materials for the project; other studies related to the project; and synthesis of the literature that identifies the various approaches and themes.

Methodology: The "blueprint" of the project, the methodology describes how the project was conducted (e.g., questionnaires), compiled, or created (e.g., visual aids).

Summary, Conclusion: This section summarizes the entire study effort and provides the reader with a direction for future research on the topic.

Bibliography/References: The bibliography includes all sources used in the project and must prescribe to the documentation requirements of a discipline-specific, peer-reviewed journal or style manual.

Appendices: Material too detailed or lengthy for inclusion in the body of the study (e.g., questionnaires, maps, photos, letters of permission, or, when appropriate, the actual project documents, e.g., a business plan, a curriculum, a programming manual, a report to a public/private agency), may be included in an appendix section.

Approved 03/15/05
University Graduate Committee