Is it possible that thesis committee first signs off on a thesis and later discovers some weakness (not plagiarism or academic dishonesty, but weak sections or incomplete tables) and rejects it. I am talking about US and time gap may be a couple of years. The defects found in the thesis do not invalidate the main idea, but are more related to incomplete references and data tables.

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    Are you asking whether a committee can reject a thesis after the degree has been conferred? If so, presumably not: at that point the university itself must take some action to revoke the degree. Weak sections and incomplete tables would not be enough for this to happen in practice. Commented Aug 30, 2016 at 16:05
  • When you asked about this before, you said "some sections, references, and data tables were missing". That's rather different from "weak sections".
    – ff524
    Commented Aug 30, 2016 at 16:08
  • Well "missing" in the sense that I did have part of the data, but not complete. Commented Aug 30, 2016 at 16:11

1 Answer 1


There's no way to give a definitive answer without knowing your specific university's policies, but here's how it works in general:

If the degree has not yet been awarded, then the approval can presumably be reversed fairly easily.

If the degree has already been awarded, it can still be revoked if the university decides it should never have been awarded in the first place, but this would be rather dramatic. It's not going to happen unless something is terribly wrong with the thesis. In particular, you don't need to worry about this unless the problems are much worse than you have portrayed them as being.

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