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Theses and Dissertations Guide: Preparing Your Manuscript

Everything you need to know about submitting a thesis or dissertation at the University of Dayton.

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etdreview@udayton.edu

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Attention Authors!

Remember to proofread your manuscript! Doublecheck spelling, page numbers, table of contents, etc.

Other Useful Resources

Preparing Your Manuscript

The following guidelines should be used to prepare all UD theses and dissertations.

 

A primary purpose of these guidelines is to ensure that all UD theses and dissertations present a consistent appearance.  Do not rely on previously accepted theses and dissertations.  While they may have met the guidelines at the time of their submission, they may not meet current guidelines.

Some departments have additional guidelines for preparing manuscripts. It is your responsibility to follow department-specific guidelines together with those found in this guide when preparing your manuscript.  When a discrepancy is found, defer to the department guidelines.  The final responsibility for the format of your thesis or dissertation rests with you as the author.  Correct spelling, punctuation, and grammar should be used.  The Graduate School reserves the right to reject any manuscript that does not observe these fundamentals and that does not follow accepted format guidelines.

*An optional LaTeX template for the School of Engineering is located under the For Engineering Students  tab.

Keywords for ETDs

One benefit of the OhioLINK ETD Center is the inclusion of author-supplied keywords. Please be prepared to supply several subject keywords to describe your thesis or dissertation during the online submittal process. Adding your name as a keyword is not useful.

Style Manuals

The Graduate School will accept theses and dissertations prepared in the format recommended by the style manual published by your discipline’s professional society as long as it falls within the general format and content guidelines described in this document. The most recent style manuals should be used. Recommended style manuals include the following:

A Manual for Writers of Research Papers, Theses, and Dissertations by Kate Turabian (7th Edition, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2007)

The Chicago Manual of Style (16th Edition, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2010)

Roesch Library also has online access to the Chicago Manual of Style.

Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th Edition, Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association, 2010)

MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers by Joseph Gibaldi (7th Edition, New York: Modern Language Association of America, 2009)

Roll over the Preparing Your Manuscript tab above then click on "Citation Styles" and "Citing Images" pages for more information.

Guidelines

This section discusses requirements for the general layout of your manuscript, the order of front and back matter, and page numbering.  See the Sample Pages located below for additional information.  Guidelines are similar for both theses and dissertations; instructions specific to theses or dissertations will be marked accordingly.  

General Layout  

The Graduate School recommends that you use your word processor’s global page settings or create a template adhering to the following guidelines:  

Margins:  1 inch on top, bottom and right sides and 1 ½ inches on the left, except on the title page, first page of each chapter, and other pages indicated below which should have a 2 inch margin at the top.  

Line spacing:  Double-spaced; long quotations and footnotes may be single-spaced. Spacing on preliminary pages should follow the examples in the Sample Pages below.

Fonts:  Text font and text size should be chosen for ease in reading. Font sizes 10 through 12 are recommended. Use consistent font styles for section headings.  

Footnotes or Endnotes:  Follow the accepted practice of your discipline or the chosen style manual. The format selected should be consistent throughout the manuscript.  

Spell check: Change the word processor spelling setting to include words in ALL CAPS.  

Pagination:  

Preliminary pages:  Small Roman numerals (ii, iii, iv, etc.) are placed at the bottom center of the page, starting with the Approval Page as ii.  The Title Page is counted, but is not numbered.  

Manuscript proper: Arabic numbers (1, 2, 3, etc.) are placed at the bottom center of the page on all remaining pages, beginning with the number 1. 

Order of Preliminary Pages

The preliminary pages consist of the following pages in this order:

Title page (Required)

Approval page (Required)

Copyright page (Optional)

Abstract (Required)

Dedication (Optional)

Acknowledgements (Optional)

Preface (Optional)

Table of Contents (Required)

List of Illustrations (As needed)

List of Tables (As needed)

List of Symbols (As needed)

Title Page (Required) 

The title of the thesis or dissertation begins two inches from the top of the page and should be a meaningful description of the substance of the document.  It is recommended that word substitutes be used for formulas, symbols, superscripts, subscripts, Greek letters, and other similar material. The title page should also contain the following:  

Title of the thesis/dissertation IN ALL CAPS  

The word “Thesis” or “Dissertation” 

Statement of submission 

School or College 

 Degree being sought 

Full legal name of degree candidate or name according to university records

Name of university granting the degree or the small UD logo located at http://logo.udayton.edu/basic.asp    

City and state in which the university is located 

Month and year degree is to be conferred 

Approval Page (Required) 

The approval page for the electronic submission will contain the names, but not the signatures of all committee members. However, the signed, original signature page must be submitted to the Graduate School before final approval is granted. If you are submitting paper copies to be bound, please make sure a copy of the Graduate School-approved signature page is included.

 The Title of the thesis/dissertation IN ALL CAPS is centered and placed two inches from the top of the page. The name of the student is left-justified and added two lines below the title: Last, First Middle. Format the rest of the page according to the Sample pages below. 

Copyright Page (Optional) 

Your manuscript is automatically protected by copyright even if you do not include a copyright page. You may choose the additional protection of registering your copyright for a fee at www.copyright.gov/ecoFor further copyright information, please see the U.S. Copyright Office Frequently Asked Questions at (http://www.copyright.gov/help/faq/).

Format this page according to the Sample Pages below.

 Abstract (Required) 

The abstract should briefly state the problem, describe the procedure or methods used, and summarize the conclusions reached in the thesis or dissertation. The length of the abstract should not exceed 500 words. 

The heading ABSTRACT is centered and placed two inches from the top of the page followed by the title of the thesis/dissertation in ALL CAPS, centered four lines below the heading. Author’s name, name of university, and advisor’s name are left-justified and can be single- or double-spaced two lines below the title.  The text of the abstract begins two lines below the advisor’s name. 

Dedication (Optional) 

The dedication is an optional page that gives the author the opportunity to dedicate the manuscript to an individual or group. The Sample Pages below show one option for formatting. 

Acknowledgements (Optional) 

The acknowledgements (or acknowledgments) page is an optional page that gives the author the opportunity to thank those who have provided help during the research and writing of a thesis or dissertation. 

The heading ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS is centered and placed two inches from the top of the page. The text begins four lines below the heading. 

 Preface (Optional) 

A preface is included in instances where the genesis of the research is important for the understanding of it, or when the method or procedure of investigation is so unusual as to require prefatory explanation. 

The heading PREFACE is centered and placed two inches from the top of the page.  The text begins four lines below the heading. 

Table of Contents (Required) 

The table of contents includes chapter headings, subdivisions of chapters, and all other parts of the thesis or dissertation listed exactly as they appear in the text along with the starting page number. 

The heading TABLE OF CONTENTS is centered and placed two inches from the top of the page.  The text begins four lines below the heading. 

Note: When using the automatic option in preparing a table of contents, remember to click "update" before submitting for review.

List of Illustrations or Figures (As needed) 

The illustrations page includes illustration or figure titles and page numbers. 

The heading LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS or LIST OF FIGURES is centered and placed two inches from the top of the page. The list begins four lines below the heading. 

Note: When using the automatic option in preparing a list of illustrations or figures, remember to click "update" before submitting for review.

List of Tables (As needed) 

The tables page includes table titles and page numbers. 

The heading LIST OF TABLES is centered and placed two inches from the top of the page. The list begins four lines below the heading. 

Note: When using the automatic option in preparing a list of tables, remember to click "update" before submitting for review.

List of Symbols, Abbreviations or Special Nomenclature (As needed) 

The list of symbols, abbreviations or special nomenclature is provided to acquaint the reader with symbols, abbreviations or special nomenclature that are essential to the work. When used, these lists can take any form acceptable to the discipline. 

The heading LIST OF SYMBOLS or LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS is centered and placed two inches from the top of the page. The list begins four lines below the heading. 

The Text (Required) 

The nature of the thesis or dissertation determines the organization of the body or main text into chapters, groups of chapters, or other pertinent schemes of exposition.  These divisions are dictated by the nature of the discipline.  Punctuation, spelling, and general form should be consistent throughout the text. The text begins four lines below the heading. 

Quotation of Copyrighted Material (Required) 

The author of a thesis or dissertation is fully responsible for the use of any copyrighted material in the manuscript.  Generally, permission to use copyrighted material should be sought when a direct quotation of more than 150 words or an illustration is used.  Permission is sought from the author or publisher holding the copyright.  Generally, permission is granted on condition that proper acknowledgement is made.  In some cases, copyright holders require payment.  Necessary clearance for copyrighted material must be obtained before final submission of the thesis or dissertation.

FYI--The Beck Depression Inventory (BDI, BDI-II) and the Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI) are examples of copyrighted materials that may not be included in an electronic thesis or dissertation. 

For more information: 

UMI Copyright Guide 

Copyright Law and Graduate Research 

Bibliography (As needed) 

The bibliography or reference list of sources used is required if applicable.  Pages should be formatted according to the style manual or discipline-specific guidelines used. 

The heading BIBLIOGRAPHY is centered and placed two inches from the top of the page.  The text begins four lines below the heading. 

Appendices (As needed) 

The appendix or appendices include reference materials such as tables, figures, charts, illustrations, abbreviations, and other addenda not placed in the text. 

When there are multiple appendices, the heading APPENDIX is followed by a capital letter or Arabic number.  The heading is centered and placed two inches from the top of the page. The text begins four lines below the heading. 

Sample Pages

These sample pages are designed to assist you in preparing your thesis or dissertation by giving you a visual representation of a variety of common pages along with guidelines for margins and appropriate information to include on the page. Some departments may have slightly different requirements and you should follow those as directed.

The closer your paper follows these guidelines, the fewer corrections you will

have during format checking.