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Dissertation and Thesis Format Review: Format Review Process


Adler provides students completing dissertations or theses with the services of professional format reviewers to assess your work for adherence to APA format and departmental style guidelines.


The Process, Step-by-Step


1. Your advisor will tell you when you are ready to submit your dissertation or thesis for format review. 

2. Submit your dissertation or thesis to the Writing Center at to begin the process.

  • Email your dissertation or thesis in its final format (including your reference section) as an attachment in Word or as a PDF.
  • You will also email a a separate document containing only your references as a Word document or a PDF, attached to the same email.

3. The Writing Center will assign a format reviewer and send them your files. Assignments are made during business hours, CT, and are not made on Chicago-campus holidays. 

4. The Writing Center will send you an email confirming receipt and providing the name and email address of your reviewer.

5.  Allow 10 business days for the first round of format review.

6. Your reviewer will let you know of issues that need to be addressed.  

  • Reviewers will note and correct minor errors in track changes so that students can quickly make these small corrections.  These will not be added to the feedback documents that reviewers provide to students.

7. When you have made the corrections, resubmit the document to your format reviewer.

8.  Allow 10 business days for each round of format review required. 

9. When the format review is complete, the reviewer will notify you via  email and will send you a signed clearance form.


Important Notes Before You Submit


IRB letter:

  • You must include your IRB/REB letter.  If it's missing, your work will automatically need to be reviewed again before it's approved.

Turnaround time:

  • Each round of comments from your format reviewer takes 10 days. Allow enough time for multiple rounds of comments especially as we near the August 31 deadline for degree conferral.


  • Format reviewers do not review your work for grammar, spelling, word choice or other writing issues or copy editing issues.  
  • You can get help with your writing through the Writing Center, and it's recommended that you do so throughout the process of writing your dissertation or thesis, and that you start early.
  • If you want your work copy edited before you submit it for APA review, Adler provides referrals to editors in Chicago and Vancouver that you can hire to do this for you.