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Mit thesis faq: new degree candidates.

  • New Degree Candidates
  • Thesis Checklist
  • Creating an Accessible Thesis
  • Saving Your Thesis as a PDF/A-1
  • Student Frequently Asked Questions
  • Access and Availability Questions


Reminder: students - submit your thesis electronically to your department or program.  .

Please pay close attention to the following sections of the Specifications for Thesis Preparation :

Here are some sample title and abstract pages to assist you with formatting:

What to submit to your Department/Program

Submit the following:

File naming

Files must be named according to this scheme: authorLastName-kerberos ID-degree-dept-year-type_other.ext

Temporary Holds

Please review the Holds section of the Thesis Specifications . The Office of Graduate Education oversees the policies and procedures for requesting a temporary publication hold  of your thesis. They offer this form for publication hold requests.

Note: Request for temporary holds must be submitted prior to graduation . To contact OGE and the Vice Chancellor's office, email  [email protected] To contact the Technology and Licensing Office, email  [email protected]

What to submit to the Libraries

This form  must be completed by the day of graduation: .

The information you provide must match the title page and abstract of your thesis. You will be asked to confirm or provide:

Copyright and Licensing

If you retain copyright you may also, optionally, apply a Creative Commons License to your thesis. The Creative Commons License allows you to grant permissions and provide guidance on how your work can be reused by others. For more information about CC:

Before you apply a CC license or CC0 (public domain) to your work, please note that the licenses cannot be revoked.  This means once you apply a CC license to your material, anyone who receives it may rely on that license for as long as the material is protected by copyright, even if you later stop distributing it.

Formatting Your Copyright Statement

What Copyright information to submit to the Libraries

For more information Review the Copyright section of the Thesis Specifications .

Here is an example of a title page with one of the CC license options .

ORCID: Open Researcher & Contributor ID

What is ORCID?

ORCID is an open, non-profit, community-based effort to provide a registry of unique researcher identifiers and a method of linking research-related items, such as articles as datasets, to these identifiers.

ORCID provides a persistent digital identifier that distinguishes you from every other researcher. The goal is to support the creation of a permanent, clear, and unambiguous record of scholarly communication by enabling reliable attribution of authors and contributors.

Register for an ORCID ID.

This process also associates your ORCID with your MIT profile. Once you have the ID you also have the option to build your profile through the “import works” button, associating your papers, data sets, and other research output with your ID. You can then include the ID as a link on your CV or web page. You can also create an account without linking it to your MIT profile here .

See our ORCID FAQ  for more information.

ProQuest Opt-in

What is the ProQuest Opt-in?

When submitting your title page information to MIT Libraries, you may choose to opt in to the pilot program to provide additional open access to MIT theses through  ProQuest Dissertation & Theses Global  (PQDT). The aim is to make theses more visible and discoverable. By opting in, you consent to your full thesis being available in ProQuest's database. If you are a Bachelor's candidate or do not opt in, ProQuest will only access your abstract.

There is no cost to you and your thesis will not be sent to ProQuest until it is published by MIT. See the Thesis Specificatio n and  PQDT's Author Dissertations FAQs  for more information about participating.

Quick links

Have questions?

Contact us at [email protected] .

About the Unofficial LaTeX thesis templates

While there are no official templates available, unofficial LaTeX templates have been created in Overleaf. While every effort is made to keep the Overleaf templates updated, thesis authors should always consult the MIT Libraries Thesis Specifications before submitting their thesis.

Access the unofficial thesis templates in Overleaf here . Learn more about Overleaf at MIT .

(The previous version of the templates file is available for download here: . Note that this version is no longer maintained or supported.)

Thesis Preparation

The following information is provided to assist Chemistry graduate students as they prepare their theses. If graduate students have any questions that are not answered by this guide, they should email the Chemistry Education Office (questions about department policies) or MIT Libraries (for questions about thesis formatting, etc.)

Degree candidates must fill out the Degree Application via WebSIS at the start of the term. Important dates and deadlines (including late fees) for the upcoming academic year are listed below.  It is strongly advised that degree candidates apply for the degree list even if there is uncertainty about completing the thesis defense and submission by the  deadline, as there are no penalties for being removed from the degree list.

Students must successfully complete the thesis defense before submitting their final, signed thesis.

**Please note that the Specifications for Thesis Preparation were updated in November 2022. Please make sure you use these new guidelines.**

Important Dates & Deadlines

September 2022 degree list.

February 2023 Degree List

June 2023 Degree List

Scheduling your Thesis Defense

All PhD candidates must have a Thesis Defense. As soon as your defense is finalized, please email the Chemistry Education Office with the date, time, location, and thesis title . Thesis defenses are strongly encouraged to be in-person.  If there are questions or concerns about an in-person defense, please reach out to Jennifer Weisman. When thesis defenses are on campus, we recommend reserving a room once the defense date is finalized, student can reserve department rooms through the online scheduling system or request a classroom via this form .

Degree candidates should provide their advisor with a copy of the thesis at least two weeks before the defense and provide their thesis committee chair and member with a copy at least one week before the defense. However, degree candidates should talk with their advisor, committee chair, and committee member to find out if they need the thesis further in advance or if there are preferred formats. Degree candidates should allow time in between their thesis defense and the submission deadline to make edits and submit the final copies.

Please note that most receiving a PhD degree are required to present a seminar as part of the thesis defense. This seminar is open to the department. The degree candidate is responsible for providing the Chemistry Education Office with information about their thesis defense at least two weeks ahead of time. Following the seminar, the candidate will meet privately with the thesis committee.

Thesis Formatting

The Institute has very specific requirements for thesis preparation, which were updated in November 2022. Specifications for Thesis Preparation is available on the library’s website and should be read very carefully. The MIT Thesis FAQ may answer additional questions and a helpful checklist is also provided. The specifications also include information about copyright and use of previously published material in a thesis . Do  not  rely on any templates or prior theses from your research group – they may not reflect the most current guidelines. We have highlighted some especially important points below.

Font & Spacing

Title page & committee signature page.

Table of Contents

Final thesis submission, general submission process.

Please carefully review the details below, including the file naming format . There are two steps to the final submissions process:

1. Submit the following documents to the Department of Chemistry:

Please send an email to your advisor, Jennifer Weisman, and William McCoy, which includes the 2 PDFs above and the following text:

“Dear Professor/Dr X: Attached is the final version of my thesis. Please use reply-all to this message to indicate your acceptance of my thesis document and your recommendation for certification by my department.”

2. Submit your information to MIT Libraries here . Choose to opt-in or opt-out of ProQuest license and publication.  Include the same copyright and license information that is on your thesis title page.

Details for Thesis Submission Process

Please also complete the MIT Doctoral Student Exit Survey and your Laboratory Safety Clearance Form .

Digital Signatures

Please see here for a full guide (with screenshots) to using DocuSign to obtain digital signatures

Required Signatures:

These should be everyone’s uploaded digital signatures in their own handwriting, not one of the pre-formatted signatures created by DocuSign.

Accessing DocuSign

Thesis Hold Requests

Details about requesting a thesis hold are available here and the requests are made to different offices based on the type of request. Please note that planned or pending submissions to scholarly journals related to thesis work will not be considered for thesis holds.

Written notification of patent holds and other restrictions must reach the MIT Libraries before the thesis in question is received by the MIT Libraries. Theses will not be available to the public prior to being published by the MIT Libraries. The Libraries may begin publishing theses in [email protected] one month and one week from the last day of classes.

Graduate Student Exit Interviews

In order to best serve the educational, scientific, and social needs of graduate students in the Chemistry Department, it is critically important that Departmental leadership be appropriately informed of issues of importance to graduate students, ideally on an ongoing basis. Graduate student exit interviews provide information that alert the Department to acute issues that affect graduate students and provide data for longitudinal assessments of graduate student experience within the program.Graduate exit interviews are administered to all graduate students departing the Chemistry Department. The exit interview applies equally to graduate students departing with completed degrees (Ph.D. and M.S.) and without degrees.

Postdoctoral/Research Specialist Appointments

If you plan to transition to a postdoctoral/research specialist appointment within the Department of Chemistry at MIT, please contact Jennifer Weisman and  Chemistry HR as soon as possible. Your final signed thesis must be submitted before a postdoc appointment can start. If you are an international student, it is extremely important that you start this process early to allow sufficient timing for visa processing. In addition to talking with Jennifer and HR, please consult with the International Students Office .

Your MEng thesis describes the original research that you contributed to your MEng project. Though the document itself is not due until the end of your MEng, you should be working towards your thesis each semester that you are a registered MEng student. You can read more about what comprises a thesis at the Office of Graduate Education’s website .

Getting Help with Your Thesis

Throughout your MEng, you should be in continual conversation with your thesis supervisor about your progress as well as the thesis itself. For additional support, consider some of the following resources:

If you are struggling to make progress on your thesis, you are also welcome to meet with someone in the EECS Undergraduate Office .

All graduate theses are required to be submitted to Institute Library where they are available to the public. Theses classified by the government as ‘Confidential’ or ‘Secret’ for reasons of national security, or ‘Company Confidential” by a company for proprietary reasons will not be accepted. Theses completed in classified sections of 6-A companies, Lincoln Laboratory or Draper Lab must be deemed unclassified by the government. If you are working with one of these companies, be sure to discuss thesis copyright with your supervisor early in your MEng.

Formatting and Submission

MIT Libraries maintains formatting guidelines for all MIT theses. It’s especially important to make sure your title page and abstract look exactly like the examples shown there. Many students start by using the Unofficial Thesis template , but remember to double-check against the official formatting guidelines. Check out the Thesis Checklist from the Libraries to help keep on track.

For EECS MEng theses

For the electronic submission, your title page should include no signatures ; not even your own, and no lines for signatures. When you are ready to submit your thesis, you can do so here ; the deadline for submission is set by the registrar each semester (see here ). 6-A students must also submit a thesis release letter that matches this template . These letters should be sent to [email protected] .

Thesis Holds

Under certain circumstances – most commonly for issues related to patents or security clearances – you can arrange for a brief delay of the official publication of your thesis in the MIT Libraries. Please see The Office of Graduate Education’s page for more information.

MIT Political Science

Graduate Program

Thesis preparation guidelines.

All graduate students in MIT Political Science must follow these guidelines for thesis completion and submission.

Consult the MIT Specifications for Thesis Preparation for the rules governing the format of your thesis. Remember that formatting rules are strictly enforced. Be sure to have Susan Twarog or Diana Gallagher check the pagination and format of the title and abstract pages of your thesis before you print the document on archival bond and obtain the necessary signatures.

Two copies of your thesis must be printed on archival bond and contain original signatures. If you are completing a joint degree, you must submit three copies on archival bond with original signatures.

Thesis labels should include your name, the title, course 17, PhD or SM, the year and month (September, February, or June) of the degree, and the copy number (1, 2, 3). Labels should be affixed to each cover of the thesis. Obtain a cardboard cover for the front and back of each copy from Susan Twarog or the Institute Archives (14N-118).

The thesis title page should indicate the name and official title of your thesis supervisor and the chair of the Graduate Program Committee (GPC) who will be accepting the thesis on behalf of the department. Students must obtain the signatures of the thesis supervisor and the chair of the GPC, unless they have made other arrangements with Susan Twarog or Diana Gallagher.

You must submit two copies of your thesis. If you are completing joint degrees, you are required to submit three copies. Submit all copies unbound to Diana Gallagher in E53-465A. If you are a PhD candidate, you must also complete the UMI form (see the MIT Specifications for Thesis Preparation ) with photocopies of both title and abstract pages attached.

Electronic copy

In addition to submitting paper copies of your thesis, you must email a PDF copy to [email protected], and you may also submit an electronic copy to MIT's digital library DSpace. This makes it possible for those interested in reading your thesis to do so without charge. The cost of ordering a paper copy of a thesis from MIT can approach $100 for a 400-page thesis. Read the instructions for electronic submission.


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Formatting, specifications, copyright and submission, bundled thesis documents.

→ Bundled Thesis Documents

Several important documents (list below) are bundled into one PDF:

Writing and Communications Center

The WCC at MIT ( Writing and Communication Center ) offers free one-on-one professional advice from communication experts. The WCC is staffed completely by MIT lecturers. All have advanced degrees. All are experienced college classroom teachers of communication. All are published scholars and writers. Not counting the WCC’s director’s years (he started the WCC in 1982), the WCC lecturers have a combined 133 years’ worth of teaching here at MIT (ranging from 4 to 24 years).

The WCC works with students (undergraduate and graduate), post-docs, faculty, and staff — the WCC no longer meets with alumni or spouses/partners.). The WCC helps you strategize about all types of academic and professional writing as well as about all aspects of oral presentations (including practicing classroom presentations & conference talks as well as designing slides).

No matter what department or discipline you are in , the WCC helps you think your way more deeply into your topic, helps you see new implications in your data, research, and ideas. The WCC also helps with all English as Second Language issues, from writing and grammar to pronunciation and conversation practice.

Writing and Communication Center offers a number of programs to the wide community of MIT undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral scholars, faculty, and staff, which include:

Formatting and Specifications

Notes: While submissions must be a single, continuous page, you may switch between portrait and landscape orientation.

There is no institute-wide style guideline, as different disciplines adhere to their own. MIT Architecture does not prescribe a specific documentation style but recommends you confer with your thesis advisor in addition to adhering to the institute-wide specifications for each style:

1. Thesis Checklist

Download the Department's Thesis Checklist to review your final document for archival acceptability. Take note that there is one addition to the checklist required by the Department ; page 2 (placed between the title and the abstract pages) must list your thesis/dissertation committee . It should have the academic titles of your advisors and readers as they are listed in the MIT Bulletin — see TEMPLATE .

2. Committee Chair Information for Title Page

3. MIT Libraries Specifications for Thesis Preparation

→   Note — Implementing the specifications saves a lot of time while your final thesis submission is being reviewed.

4. Pay special attention to:

Using Copyrighted Content

Scholarly publishing's copyright for thesis page.

This page covers the following:

MIT libraries' Using Images: Copyright & Fair Use page.

FINAL Thesis Submission

→ Since theses are submitted digitally, no signatures are required .

On or before department thesis deadlines:

This is for the purpose of making certain the document is in compliance with MIT archive requirements. You will be contacted quickly if adjustments are needed and when the document has been approved. Before submitting your document ensure that:

After submitting your document, ensure that you have submitted your Thesis Information to the Library. *This must match exactly what is listed on your (approved!) title page .

MIT Thesis Template

This MIT thesis template is based on the unofficial templates available at .

Those templates have been created to make it easy to prepare your thesis using LaTeX while adhering to the MIT Thesis Specifications. Every effort is made to keep these up to date, but you should always consult the MIT Libraries Thesis Specifications before submitting your thesis. If you notice something in the Thesis Specifications that does not match the Overleaf templates, please email cite-write-tools AT mit DOT edu.

The thesis templates are highly customizable, and there are many options and macros available for your use. Most of these are documented in the comments in each file, especially main.tex. You are encouraged to read through the comments.

MIT Thesis Template

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mit thesis format

MIT EECS Thesis Proposal Template


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Mit thesis proposal template.

This is a thesis proposal template for the MIT EECS Department. It is targeted at the S.M. Thesis but should work for the Ph.D. Thesis as well by substituting values.

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    The title page is always considered to be page 1, and every page must be included in the count regardless of whether a number is physically printed on a page.

  2. MIT Thesis FAQ: New Degree Candidates

    What to submit to the Libraries · Your name as it appears on your thesis (Family Name, Given Name Middle Name) · Thesis title · Department or

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    About the Unofficial LaTeX thesis templates. While there are no official templates available, unofficial LaTeX templates have been created in Overleaf.

  5. Specifications for Thesis Preparation

    The following guidelines assist the student in determining who holds ownership of the thesis.

  6. Thesis Preparation

    Each thesis must include an abstract of generally no more than 500 words single-spaced. The abstract should be thought of as a brief descriptive summary, not a

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    MIT Libraries maintains formatting guidelines for all MIT theses. It's especially important to make sure your title page and abstract look exactly like the

  8. Thesis Preparation Guidelines

    Thesis labels should include your name, the title, course 17, PhD or SM, the year and month (September, February, or June) of the degree, and the copy number (1

  9. Formatting, Specifications, Copyright and Submission

    Examples of thesis title, committee and abstract pages; Sample language for images. Writing and Communications Center. The WCC at MIT (Writing and Communication

  10. MIT Thesis Template

    Those templates have been created to make it easy to prepare your thesis using LaTeX while adhering to the MIT Thesis Specifications. Every effort is made to

  11. MIT EECS Thesis Proposal Template

    This is a thesis proposal template for the MIT EECS Department. It is targeted at the S.M. Thesis but should work for the Ph.D. Thesis as well by substituting