ABD: All But Dissertation You may already have an ABD degree without realizing it! All but dissertation are ABD when you have completed All But the Dissertation. What is all but the dissertation?
All but the dissertation means you have taken all the courses you need to take to earn a Ph. It means you have taken your Ph. It means you have defended your dissertation proposal. At this point, you might feel you almost deserve a degree already, so someone invented the term All But Dissertation degree.
When you are ABD, all that is left for you to do is your original research and then write your dissertation with the assistance of your advisors and dissertation committee members. However, many doctoral students become stuck at this ABD point. This is when the quest for a degree can become very lonely and unstructured at the very moment it becomes most difficult. One reason many ABD students do not finish their dissertation is that they lack the support and guidance needed to navigate the dissertation process.