Dissertation Template


The graduate school changed their guidelines for the Ph.D dissertation format. This is the new format, which has been approved by the graduate school. The example here was approved and uploaded on May 6, 2016.

LaTeX fileBibDesk fileFigure, Figure 2

Hello All,

In spite of many people receiving degrees at UWM, a LaTeX dissertation template has never been made widely available for use among graduate students. This sad collective action problem NEEDED TO BE RESOLVED. Therefore, I have created a LaTeX dissertation template that meets all of the university mandated specifications.  Since the task of constructing such a non-sensical, tediously constrained document is time consuming, I ask that you share the file with as many people as possible.

Included below are links to a .tex file, a .pdf figure, and a BibDesk file. If you put all of these files in the same folder on your computer. You should be able to successfully typeset the document, which includes having references and figures automatically populate in the document.


LaTeX file, BibDesk file, Figure,

MPSA Conference Deadlines

Midwest Political Science Association (MPSA) 2015 Conference Call for Proposals

Paper and Roundtable Deadline – October 3, 2014.

Note: If you do not want to present a poster, make sure to indicate that this is not your first year of graduate school when submitting a proposal for the conference.  A failure to do so will lock you into submitting to a poster presentation only.

PSGSA Events – Fall 2014

September 26th, Friday (12-1pm – Grad Lounge)

Conference Presentations Discussion

– We will distribute information about the 2015 Midwest Political Science Association (MPSA) Conference deadline.

-If time permits, we will read and workshop abstracts for anyone that brings one.

October 3rd, Friday (1pm – Bolton 657)

John Reuter “Why Authoritarian Elections? An Elite-Based Theory with Evidence from Russian Mayoral Elections.”

-Department “Brown Bag” lunch.

October 9th, Thursday (7-9pm – Gasthaus)

-Research open table discussion. Bring research ideas or questions about your ongoing projects and get feedback from other grad students.

October 16th, Thursday (7-9pm – Gasthaus)

– 2nd research open table discussion.

October 24th, Friday (12-2pm – Bolton 637)

R Work Shop

-There will be a short presentation on some useful R tricks, and then we will workshop specific questions or problems.

-Bring your computer with R installed if you have specific questions.

October 30th, Friday (7-9pm – Von Trier, 2235 N. Farewell)

-3rd research open table discussion.

November 7th, Friday (1pm – Bolton 657)

Jennifer Clemens presenting research.

-Department “Brown Bag” lunch.

November 11th, Tuesday (7-9pm – Bolton 637)

-4th Research open table discussion.

-Bring specific methodology or research you are working on for you seminar classes if you have any.

November 21st, Friday (1-3pm – Bolton 637)

Basics of LaTex Workshop

-There will be an hour introductory presentation on the typesetting program, electronic bibliographic programs, and rendering R tables in LaTex.

-There will be time for questions and help setting up LaTex on personal computers.

November 25th, Tuesday (7-9pm – Paddy’s Pub 2339 N. Murray)

-Final research open table discussion for fall semester (just in time for seminar papers due dates).

December 5th, Friday (1pm – Bolton 657)

Sara Benesh presenting research

-Department “Brown Bag” lunch.

December 20th, Saturday (TBD)

-End of semester gathering.

Social Gathering

All PSGSA members are invited to come to an informal social gathering at Two Bucks on Friday, August 29th at 7pm. 

For the grad students already in the program, this will be an opportunity to welcome the incoming grad students (Ahmed, Bernardo, Benjamin, Christopher, Amanda, Kali). Welcome! 
For the incoming grad students, I hope you will join us and take the opportunity to meet your future colleagues. 
Two Bucks is located at 2321 N. Murray Ave. (right off of North Ave). Coincidentally, this fine establishment has a special on Fridays, and most beer is only Two Bucks! I know! Crazy!
Feel free to bring significant others or friends. The meet-up is meant to be informal and provide a calm environment before the hectic semester is underway. 

A Few Good Posts

Some good blog posts on the Cambridge Journals site regarding publishing your first article in a journal (part 1) and (part 2) as well as the process after acceptance at a journal.

Additionally, the following suggestions are reproduced from an older post on the Cambridge blog, focusing on two aspects (selecting topic and target journal; writing in line with that journal’s requirements) which increase your chances of getting published.

Do your journal research as assiduously as your academic research. It is not good practice to blanket submit your carefully prepared, executed, and written-up study to all of the  journals out there in your subject area. First, set aside some time to think about where your paper might achieve the greatest impact as regards readers, both academically (in terms of the typical reader profile of that journal)  and geographically (the countries and academic institutions where the journal has subscriptions). If this information is not readily available on the web site, contact the Editor and ask. Secondly, a journal usually expects you to be submitting the work to them alone and will assume they have the first option for rejection or acceptance. Some journal editors have a community forum where they regularly interact and are able to check on possible multiple submissions. Editors expect you to have targeted their journal for a reason. Therefore….

Do read typical content in that journal as well as the section in the submission guidelines indicating the kind of paper they are looking for. Failure to direct your research to a journal which might reasonably be interested in it will usually mean a rejection as a result. It will also involve you in needless delay during which time you could have found better outlets for your work.

Do learn about which topics are of interest to the readership. Reading a number of recent issues of the journal will soon reveal the hot topics as well as the questions being asked in the field. Ask yourself if your proposed research or completed study is likely to fit in with that agenda. Unlike many years ago, there are more and more “niche” or special interest journals in our field and if your interest or research corresponds to one of these, you would be better advised to submit to these first, rather than to those with a more general purview.

Don’t expect to receive instant recognition and acceptance of your work in terms of an offer to publish. Unconditional acceptance of a paper is statistically rare, and most journals will require your paper to go through an arduous refereeing process of several months and revisions in which a number of experts will feed back a number of times on your work. Most referees do this in their own time and voluntarily. As a consequence, the process of submission through to revision and on to final acceptance of a paper can take many months, with a resultant accumulation of papers to be reviewed and published. Most journals in our field would then also need to assume a period of around a year to a year and a half from the date of submission to publication in print. If you are interested in getting your paper out there as fast as possible, you might want to consider whether the target journal provides an advanced publication online before the printed copy comes out.


PSGSA at UWM is an organization of graduate students within the political science department at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. PSGSA at UWM is a student-run organization whose members seek to provide assistance to fellow graduate students through academic and social events. Any current or prospective UWM political science graduate students interested in learning more about PSGSA at UWM should contact President (pro tem) Nick Davis.