ETD Manuscript Format - Formatting Guidelines

Thesis/ Dissertation Content

Formatting Guidelines

Front Matter

Title page

  • Use the template provided on the ETD website and substitute your information.
  • Use base 14 fonts like Times, Courier or Helvetica. Use consistent fonts
  • When including committee information, don’t add titles and educational qualifications of the committee members. For example, Dr. Jane Doe, PhD. is not acceptable.
  • Do not insert page number on this page (page i).

Abstract (academic)

  • Refer to the template provided on the ETD website.
  • The abstract can be a maximum of 250 words for a Masters thesis and 350 words for dissertations.
  • Do not insert page number on this page (page ii).

Abstract (public)

  • Written in a non-specialist language with the aim of sharing the value, importance and broad impact of the research with the general public.
  • This abstract will be made available electronically to the general public.
  • Do not insert page number on this page (page iii).

Dedication (optional)
Acknowledgements (optional)

Table of contents
List of figures (optional)
List of tables (optional)
List of abbreviations (optional)
Nomenclature (optional)
Preface/ Attribution (required only if the manuscripts are co-authored)

  • Start displaying numbering from the page right after the abstract page.
  • Use small case roman numerals for numbering pages in the front matter section of your thesis/ dissertation.
  • The page numbers start from (iv) in the front matter section.


  • Preface/ Attribution can be included as a part of the front matter or the Introduction chapter.
Body of your thesis/ dissertation

Divide your thesis/ dissertation into chapters. Usually, the chapters are organized in a logical manner which may include the following titles:

  1. Introduction
  2. Literature Review (optional)
  3. Title for Manuscript 1
    1. Title
    2. Abstract
    3. Introduction
    4. Materials and methods
    5. Results
    6. Discussion
    7. References
  4. Title for Manuscript 2 (see chapter 3 above)
  5. Conclusions
    1. Summary
    2. Overall model if appropriate (text or illustration if appropriate)
  • Use Arabic numerals for the body and back matter of your thesis/ dissertation.
  • The first page of Chapter 1 of your thesis/ dissertation will be numbered (1).
  • Use consistent fonts (true type) and styles.
  • Follow your department guidelines if any regarding the styles to be used.
  • Consistently identify the sources of images, figures and tables i.e. provide captions and attributions
  • Place captions and attributions consistently above or below the figures, images and tables.
  • Numbering should be sequential and consistent.
  • Margin settings: 1 inch on all sides and on all pages
Back matter

References (for those not already included in the chapters)


  • Follow your department guidelines for citations.
  • When formatting the appendix, place the word "Appendix", the appendix letter or letters, and the appendix title in large type at the beginning of each appendix.
  • Appendices are enumerated alphabetically from A to Z, then AA, AB, and so on to ZZ, then AAA, AAB, etc.
  • You may include the source code or output of computer programs as an enumerated appendix. Place figure references with PDF links to multimedia objects here also.
  • Vita/Resume — Do not include.


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