Find Your Degree

You can earn your professional, master’s or doctoral degree at Utah State University. Explore graduate degrees offered at USU.

Professional/Plan C

Some programs offer a professional degree option that does not require a thesis or paper to graduate.

Master’s Plan B

As a master’s plan B student, you’ll be required to write a final paper or create a work of art. Your program of study must include 2-3 thesis credits.

The plan B paper is usually a literature review based on inquiry, systematic research and analytic critique of your findings. Your conclusions should enhance knowledge in your discipline. Although perhaps less intensive or original than a master’s thesis, a plan B paper must follow the standard USU thesis/dissertation format and reflect equivalent scholarship standards. You will defend your plan B paper, but it will not be reviewed by your assistant dean or signed by the dean of graduate studies. Like a thesis, your plan B paper will be submitted to the Merrill-Cazier Library for internal publication.

Master’s Plan A

Master’s plan A degrees require a thesis and 6-15 thesis credits.

Your plan A thesis should contribute to your field by presenting your original research or a new perspective of existing knowledge. You’ll choose the problem or subject to focus on with your major professor by the end of your second semester of graduate study. You should perform thesis research during the semester(s) you are registered for thesis credit and when faculty support is available. Theses must follow USU publication formatting standards.


Doctoral degrees requirements vary by degree program. If a dissertation is required, it will represent a culmination of original research in your discipline. At least 12 research credits are required for Ph.D. and Ed.D. degrees. Dissertations must follow USU publication formatting standards.