Welcome to
Dissertation Perfection

Professional Editing of Doctoral Proposals and Dissertations

Instructional Modules for New Dissertation Chairs and New Docs 


We are very selective and only employ editors with Ed.Ds or Ph.Ds and who have extensive experience with chairing dissertations. Our editors have taught graduate research courses at Research 1 and 2 universities such as 
Virginia Tech, University of Wyoming, Lamar University, Idaho State University, Stephen F. Austin State University, Sam Houston State University, Abilene Christian UniversityUniversity of Tennessee, Valdosta State University, Texas A&M University/Kingsville, and the University of Texas, El Paso.  Editors are required to have a solid background in research training, including research design, statistical analysis, and report writing.

Our Senior Editors have published work in both manuscripts and full-length books, have extensive experience as peer-reviewers for academic journals, are Founding Editors of several professional journals, and possess extensive familiarity with the publication processes.

Who are the Senior Editors?

Dr. Theodore Creighton, Executive Director, and Senior Editor

Ted received his Ed.D. from the University of California at Davis and is Professor Emeritus from Virginia Tech, where he served as Program Director for the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies.  Previously, he taught at the University of Wyoming, Idaho State University, and Sam Houston State University where he served as the Director of the Center for Research and Doctoral Studies in Educational Leadership. Creighton has served as the Dissertation Chair of over 100 doctoral students, and though mostly quantitative methodologies, many were qualitative and mixed methods designs.  Prior to his experience in higher education, Dr. Creighton served as both a Principal and Superintendent of Schools in Fresno County, California.   

Dr. Sandra Harris, Senior Editor

Sandra received her Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin and is Professor Emeritus from Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas. Dr. Harris served as Doctoral Dissertation Coordinator and Director of the Center for Research and Doctoral Studies in Educational Leadership at Lamar University. Harris served as the Dissertation Chair of over 100 doctoral students, and though mostly qualitative methodologies, many were quantitative and mixed methods designs.  Prior to her experience in higher education, Dr. Harris served as both a Principal and Superintendent of Schools in San Antonio, Texas.   

Dr. John R. Slate, Senior Editor

John received his Ph.D. from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Dr. Slate has faculty experience at Western Carolina University, Valdosta State University, the University of Texas at El Paso, University of Missouri-Kansas City, and Texas A&M University/Kingsville.  Presently, John is a Professor in the Department of Educational Leadership at Sam Houston State University where he teaches research design, quantitative data analysis, and academic and professional writing. He has a wide experience of chairing qualitative, quantitative, and mixed-methods dissertation studies.   


Dissertation Perfection Senior Editors specialize in the APA Style Guide. The APA Style Manual is commonly applied in the social and behavioral sciences, including the fields of business, education, and psychology.

VandenBos, G. R. (Ed). (2010). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

A Comprehensive Description of Our Reviews 

Dissertation Perfection Senior Editors follow the APA Manual very closely.  For example, our reviews parallel the APA Manual's Contents at a Glance.

1.  Mechanics of Style
    Punctuation, Spelling, Italics, Abbreviations, Use of Numbers, and Statistical and

    Mathematical Language

2.  Writing Clearly and Concisely
    Manuscript Structure and Content,Organization and Writing

    Style,ReducingBias,Grammar and Usage

3.  Displaying Results

    Appropriate Formatting of Tables, Figures, or Other Visual Additions

4.  Crediting Sources

      Direct Quotation of Sources, Citing References in Text, Referencing Electronic
      Sources, and Cross-checking References in Text with ReferenceSection 

5.  Dissertation Perfection Words Not To Use  in Academic Writing

     Suggestions for Words Not To Use including Why To Avoid and Replace With

Specific Initial Areas of Review:

  • Check that your work complies with your institutional style guidelines
  • Check appropriate heading levels and accurate Table of Contents
  • Review table titles and figure captions and inclusion of accurate lists of tables and figures
  • Ensure page numbers are in the correct locations and formats
  • Inspect proper line spacing and paragraph indentation
  • Remove any extra spaces and tabs
  • Check block quotations and other text artifacts according to your style guidelines
  • Make certain figures and tables comply with style guidelines

Dissertation Perfection's Two-Tiered Review System


In Tier 1, Dissertation Perfection will conduct a full review of the Dissertation (Chapters 1,2,3,4, and 5) including Front Matter and Reference Section. Expectations are that the candidate will already have a substantive dissertation draft (one that has been through Chair and Committee member review but, lacking in specific APA issues). Tier 1 fee is based on the draft submitted for review, which we will respond with a free quotation in 12-24 hours.

Unlimited Access to Senior Editor

Clients will be provided email and phone contact with their Senior Editor anytime 'after' the contracted review, should there be follow up questions or clarifications desired. The relationship is complementary and ongoing if desired. 


In Tier 2, Dissertation Perfection will review any part of the Proposal (Chapter 1, or 2, or 3) or the entire Proposal (Chapters 1, 2, 3).  This service is to assist the doctoral candidate in the right APA path early on. We will work closely with the candidate (and the chair) if desired. Our belief (based on years of chairing dissertations) is that the sooner the candidate can become familiar with and develop expertise with the APA guidelines, the better. Our task is to help the candidate transition from a ‘conversational writer/researcher’ to a ‘scholarly writer/researcher.’  In a real sense, waiting until the doctoral dissertation stage to address the intricacies of APA, is not productive in the long run.  Many candidates have already established good APA knowledge and habits and would be ready for our Tier 1. Others may need some more time and effort early on.  Though our fees are dependent on a timely review of the work desired, we would anticipate a significant reduction in fees compared to our Tier 1.  

Unlimited Access to Senior Editor
Clients will be provided email and phone contact with their Senior Editor anytime 'after' the contracted review, should there be follow up questions or clarifications desired. The relationship is complementary and ongoing if desired.

Submission Steps Made Simple

  1. Email us a draft of your Dissertation (Tier 1) or Proposal (Tier 2) and send to: dissertationperfection@gmail.com
  2. If your institution or department has dissertation guidelines, we request either a copy or a link to a website for us to access.  This is an important step since as a general rule, the guidelines of the institution that will approve or publish your writing always takes precedence.
  3. We will review your draft and provide an estimate of time and fee within 24 hours.  Your writing style is a major factor in determining the time required and types of edits we will need to make. We are not a company giving you an estimate based on Page or Word Count - we are committed to providing you an estimate based on a thorough review of your entire dissertation.
  4. If you decide to proceed with Dissertation Perfection, confirm by sending us an email and we will then email an invoice that you can pay online using Credit Card with the (secure) Virtual Terminal here on our website.
  5. The Senior Editor will complete their edits and email you a final revised  Proposal or Dissertation within 1-3 days.  We use the Track Changes feature in Microsoft Word so you can see every change and comment.
  6. We remain available and you will always have access to our Senior Editors afterward in case you have questions or desire clarifications.


Dissertation Perfection: committed to scholarly reviews of your Dissertation and to support and encourage you to contribute to the knowledge base in education.  We believe strongly that doctoral graduates have a responsibility to move beyond the mistaken notion that a dissertation is the finish line.  Dissertation Perfection believes the dissertation is really the 'beginning.'  And, to assume sharing your research is accomplished by adding your dissertation to the library electronic database (to spend for eternity), is not the answer.

Dissertation Perfection Purposeto disseminate the results of doctoral research in educational leadership and administration. Practical interest is to publish doctoral dissertation research: (a) to provide doctoral students (and their advisors) a specific publishing outlet for the dissemination of their research, (b) to assist doctoral students in successfully publishing their work, and (c) to provide the field at large a significant and specialized database of the most recent studies, findings, and implications. In addition, such a database will continue to serve up and coming doctoral students with a literature review that is most current and dynamic.

No Additional Fee: This 'instructional module' is a complimentary offering and can be accessed by clicking on the New Doc Module from the top menu bar. Your Senior Editor who conducts your dissertation review will also assist with preparing your manuscript for submission to the Education Leadership Review of Doctoral Research (ELRDR), published by the International Council of Professors of Educational Leadership (ICPEL).  This is an optional feature of Dissertation Perfection, and if interested, there is no additional fee beyond the fee for your dissertation review. 


Feel free to contact us via email, phone, or address:
Email: dissertationperfection@gmail.com
Phone:  970-749-7384 (Mountain Standard Time)

324 Oxbow Circle
Durango, CO 81301

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Return Policy
Upon our review and analysis of your submitted document (Proposal or Dissertation), we will return two documents to you: (1) the unedited draft copy and (2) the copy with our review and suggestions for improvement.  The fee paid to Dissertation Perfection has no return policy and cannot be refunded.

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