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- Thesis & Dissertation Title Page | Free Templates & Examples
Thesis & Dissertation Title Page | Free Templates & Examples
Published on May 19, 2022 by Tegan George . Revised on November 11, 2022.
The title page (or cover page) of your thesis , dissertation , or research paper should contain all the key information about your document. It usually includes:
- Dissertation or thesis title
- The type of document (e.g., dissertation, research paper)
- The department and institution
- The degree program (e.g., Master of Arts)
- The date of submission
It sometimes also includes your dissertation topic or field of study, your student number, your supervisor’s name, and your university’s logo.
Table of contents
Title page format, title page templates, title page example, frequently asked questions.
Your department will usually tell you exactly what should be included on your title page and how it should be formatted. Be sure to check whether there are specific guidelines for margins, spacing, and font size.
Title pages for APA and MLA style
The format of your title page can also depend on the citation style you’re using. There may be guidelines in regards to alignment, page numbering, and mandatory elements.
- MLA guidelines for formatting the title page
- APA guidelines for formatting the title page
We’ve created a few templates to help you design the title page for your thesis, dissertation, or research paper. You can download them in the format of your choice by clicking on the corresponding button.
Research paper Google Doc
Dissertation Google Doc
Thesis Google Doc
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A typical example of a thesis title page looks like this:
The title page of your thesis or dissertation should include your name, department, institution, degree program, and submission date.
Usually, no title page is needed in an MLA paper . A header is generally included at the top of the first page instead. The exceptions are when:
- Your instructor requires one, or
- Your paper is a group project
In those cases, you should use a title page instead of a header, listing the same information but on a separate page.
The title page of your thesis or dissertation goes first, before all other content or lists that you may choose to include.
In most styles, the title page is used purely to provide information and doesn’t include any images. Ask your supervisor if you are allowed to include an image on the title page before doing so. If you do decide to include one, make sure to check whether you need permission from the creator of the image.
Include a note directly beneath the image acknowledging where it comes from, beginning with the word “ Note .” (italicized and followed by a period). Include a citation and copyright attribution . Don’t title, number, or label the image as a figure , since it doesn’t appear in your main text.
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The Dissertation Title Page
- By DiscoverPhDs
- August 12, 2020
The title page of your dissertation or thesis conveys all the essential details about your project, including:
- The title of your project
- Your full name (including student number if required)
- Clarification of whether this is a dissertation or thesis document
- The name of your academic department
- The name of your university
- The degree name that the dissertation or thesis has been written for (e.g. Doctor of Philosophy)
- The date (month and year) that you will submit the document
- The name of your supervisor(s)
This page can also be referred to as the dissertation cover page when your degree program is at the undergraduate or Masters level.
Format of the Title Page
Your university will provide you with the exact formatting requirements of your dissertation title page. This will include how to present the above information but also the font size to use, line spacing and the size of margins. For example, a graduate school may require the title to be in all caps, all text to be double-spaced and margins on the binding side to be 4cm. Don’t include the page number and have all text centred. You may also need to include the university logo. The APA style is commonly referred to for guidance on how to format research documents. This guide from University College London on their requirements is also an interesting read.
Example of a Dissertation Title Page
The example below is what a dissertation title page would usually look like for a Masters degree project in the UK. You can use this as a template when writing your own title page. The format presented here is also applicable for a doctoral dissertation or thesis title page.
The title page may be followed by an approval page, signed by the project chair and any other committee members. After this comes your abstract, presented on a separate page and then your table of contents. Some institutions may also require a copyright page to be included. Whilst the title page doesn’t have a page number, pages after this may use Roman numerals with the traditional page number format starting after your table of contents.
The term partial fulfillment means that this research document was one of several requirements for you to obtain your degree. For a Master’s degree, the other requirements will typically include exams and coursework.
Follow the advice in this guide to ensure your title page is in the correct format before final submission of your research project. This will be a normal part of undergraduate and graduate study.
The purpose of research is to enhance society by advancing knowledge through developing scientific theories, concepts and ideas – find out more on what this involves.
Need to write a list of abbreviations for a thesis or dissertation? Read our post to find out where they go, what to include and how to format them.
Scientific misconduct can be described as a deviation from the accepted standards of scientific research, study and publication ethics.
Join thousands of other students and stay up to date with the latest PhD programmes, funding opportunities and advice.
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The title page of your dissertation or thesis conveys all the essential details about your project. This guide helps you format it in the correct way.
Learn 10 ways to impress a PhD supervisor for increasing your chances of securing a project, developing a great working relationship and more.
Dr Williams gained her PhD in Chemical Engineering at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York in 2020. She is now a Presidential Postdoctoral Fellow at Cornell University, researching simplifying vaccine manufacturing in low-income countries.
Kamal is a second year PhD student University of Toronto in the department of Chemistry. His research is focused on making hydrogen gas more affordable and easier to generate from water to use as a clean energy source.
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Below are sample images for formatting the Title Page. Students in Romance Languages or the Graduate Group in Managerial Science and Applied Economics (Wharton Doctoral) also include their field of specialization above the graduate group name, as illustrated below.
Standard sample title page (exceptions listed below):
Sample title page for Romance Languages doctoral graduate groups:
Sample title page for wharton doctoral graduate groups:.
122 College Hall University of Pennsylvania Philadelphia, PA 19104 215-898-5000
©2023 University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104
- Penn Directory
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Center for Digital Scholarship
Sample Title Pages
A few examples.
- Division of the Biological Sciences and the Pritzker School of Medicine
- Division of the Humanities
- Division of the Physical Sciences
- Division of the Social Sciences
- The Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice
- The Divinity School
- The Irving B. Harris Graduate School of Public Policy Studies
- The Law School
- The Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering
- The University of Chicago Booth School of Business
This is a work in progress. Additional examples are available on request.
The font on your title page should be the same as the font used in the rest of your dissertation. Settings should be the same also: double line spacing, 0 pt spacing before and after paragraphs, one inch margins on all sides, and 12-point font size. Text on the title page should use upper case and should not be bold. The title page counts as page "i" but the number should not be entered on the page.
Use your diploma name on the title page.
The last line on the title page should be the month and year of the end of the quarter you graduate, with no date and no comma. If you are graduating this winter, your degree date is MARCH 2023. Your options for this academic year are:
- AUGUST 2022
- DECEMBER 2022
Sample Dissertation Cover Page + How To
Published by steve tippins on may 26, 2020 may 26, 2020.
Last Updated on: 29th August 2022, 08:29 am
If you’re wondering about making your dissertation cover page, chances are you’re nearing the final stretch of your doctoral journey. Congratulations!
Luckily, making your title page is one of the simplest tasks you’ll have to complete. Generally speaking, there’s a template your institution will use and you just have to fill in your information.
Making a Dissertation Cover Page Is Simple (Keep it That Way)
The inner artist in you might want to make your dissertation cover page beautiful: printed in color, maybe with pictures, or with an interesting font or design. However, you’re going to be limited by your university.
Pretty much every university that I’ve come across has a template and guidelines that you must follow for your dissertation cover page. You may just be filling in things like your title, name, your university’s name, maybe your committee members’ names, and not much more. You won’t have much (if any) creative license.
The advantage of this is, by the time you get to that stage, you may be tired of writing and it will be easier to follow directions than to come up with something creative. Your dissertation cover page doesn’t need to be a work of art. It just needs to convey what the dissertation is about.
Dissertation Cover Page: The Title
The aspect of your dissertation cover page that you have the most control over is the title . It’s also the most important to get right.
The main thing to remember is, keep the title simple . It should simply tell a person what they’re going to read in the document. Don’t try to intrigue people or be too clever, just tell them directly. Having a straightforward title helps your committee approve your dissertation more quickly.
Your title should include relevant information that gives the reader a complete picture of what your study was about. Generally speaking, you’ll want to cover a few specific areas.
Quantitative Title Requirements
- Type of relationship between variables.
- Key variables (independent and dependent).
Qualitative Title Requirements
- Central conceptual issue investigated.
- Qualitative tradition applied.
- Participant group.
See this article for a more in-depth discussion of choosing your dissertation’s title .
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Sample Dissertation Cover Page
Your dissertation cover page should look something like this:
While each university has slightly different requirements, generally speaking, a dissertation cover page looks something like this, above. The required sections are as follows:
Submitted to XXXXX University
Graduate Faculty of the School of XXXXXXXX
in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of
DOCTOR OF XXXXXXXXXX
City, State (of the university)
While your dissertation title page doesn’t have to be fancy, it’s important that it aligns with your university’s requirements. Take a look at their rubric and, if needed, look at completed dissertations’ title pages as well. If all else fails, ask your mentor for help.
Once you’ve finished this, pat yourself on the back. You’re almost done!
PS. Need support getting through the final stages of your dissertation, or moving into the world of your career? As a dissertation coach and career coach , I’ve helped countless students achieve their dreams. Let’s achieve yours. Book a free 30-minute consultation today.
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Steve Tippins, PhD, has thrived in academia for over thirty years. He continues to love teaching in addition to coaching recent PhD graduates as well as students writing their dissertations. Learn more about his dissertation coaching and career coaching services. Book a Free Consultation with Steve Tippins
What makes a good research question.
Creating a good research question is vital to successfully completing your dissertation. Here are some tips that will help you formulate a good research question. What Makes a Good Research Question? These are the three Read more…
When it comes to writing a dissertation, one of the most fraught questions asked by graduate students is about dissertation structure. A dissertation is the lengthiest writing project that many graduate students ever undertake, and Read more…
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Choosing your dissertation chair is one of the most important decisions that you’ll make in graduate school. Your dissertation chair will in many ways shape your experience as you undergo the most rigorous intellectual challenge Read more…
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- Title page template (DOC)
This Microsoft Word document can be saved to your computer to use as a template. It was created using Microsoft Office 2013 version of Word. Please email [email protected] if you have problems with the download.
For information needed on your title page, refer to the List of College Designees (for the name of the person to be listed after the names of the members of your committee) and List of Degree Names (for the exact wording of your degree and option or concentration that follows the degree).
MS Word Cover Page Templates
Download, personalize & print, dissertation cover page samples.
Posted By: admin 07/09/2022
Educational institutes are set up to guide youth in the right direction of getting an education and being serious about making their career. Navigating one’s direction by following a passion is the most difficult job and has the power to make or break a man. These institutions follow different plans to check the ability of their students and test them through various methods. Many times, students are pressurised to provide the best result which helps them abundantly in the future.
Assignments, presentations, quiz are different methods of teaching students and making them learn new things. A dissertation, also known as a thesis, is a piece of writing which is generally composed of nearly 20 thousand words and is divided into different chapters. It is mostly comprised of 5 or more chapters where each chapter describes a state or reason of writing and continues towards the other chapters.
Process of research and methods…
A dissertation is a process of describing research and methods employed for finding results at the end of experiments. These results may have a positive or negative impact on the whole experiment which is then narrated in the form of a dissertation. It provides a detailed view of the experiments conducted, the material used, and the results obtained.
A cover page is the topmost page of a document and provides details about the title and other related information. It is also termed a title page because of the presentation of the title and is considered the most important component of a document. The document can be any assignment, project, or dissertation which requires a title and author information on top. Dissertation cover pages are like general cover pages and cover essential topics.
Designs if dissertation cover page is kept simple because it is a formal document and is submitted in an official manner. Because of all these reasons, it is crucial to design an attractive cover page to impress the supervisor.
Templates for cover pages are available on this website. There are free templates on this page to choose from and every other template is based on a new theme or design thus, making it easier to choose a template that complements the dissertation.
Designing a cover page manually with the help of tools provided in various applications is appreciated because of the efforts and the ability to use applications for different purposes. It requires a few steps to design a cover page once a theme has been selected. It puts a long-lasting effect on mentors and adds value to the dissertation.
The cover page requires the selection of a design which may be an abstract design or can also include pictures and images depending on the topic of the dissertation. It also requires the selection of font size and style along with a color scheme that complements the design and makes it easier to read text.
Lastly, the following information is added to the cover pages,
- Title of dissertation
- Name of authors
- Year of Research
- Name of supervisor
- Name of institute
10 best dissertation cover page template
Page size: 2 MB
Page size: 1 MB
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A title page (also sometimes referred to as a cover page) is the first thing that your evaluator or any reader will see when they encounter your dissertation . It must contain important information that gives the reader an idea of what they are about to look at. Let’s spend some time deconstructing this.
The format of the title page will differ to an extent, based on the journal of publication, university, and citation style used. But there are some common elements you’ll have to include, regardless of the style you’re using. These guidelines will remain the same regardless of what level you’re at — whether it’s a Master’s thesis or a PhD dissertation.
What goes on a dissertation title page?
Title of the dissertation .
Academic writing is objective and direct, so your title too should be such. Focus on l etting the reader know what exactly they’re dealing with. Use keywords that highlight the scope, purpose, and methods used in your research. Here are some examples:
A New Determination of Molecular Dimensions
The Difference Between the Democritean and Epicurean Philosophy of Nature
An Alternate Historiography of the Boer Wars
That said, there’s also scope for some creativity here. Your evaluators may appreciate a title that’s more creative as long as you accompany it with an explanatory subtitle. From some examples, check out this Reddit thread where people are sharing some of the funniest titles they’ve ever seen.
Pro-tip: If you decide to go for a catchy title, just make sure your university approves it!
Author information and affiliation
Your title page should also shed light upon you as the researcher, your qualifications, and affiliations. You will be expected to specify the following details:
- Your name
- ID number
- Department and university you are affiliated with
- Date and year of submission
- Programme under which you undertook the dissertation (MA, MSc, PhD, etc.)
Additional information on your dissertation title page
While these are the primary elements of a dissertation title page, there are additional details you may have to include, based on what style guide your university has told you to follow. Expect to include details such as these:
- Your primary advisor’s name
- Type of article (Is this a dissertation or a thesis?)
- Word count or total number of pages
- University logo
Formatting your dissertation title page
Refer to the prescribed style guide or the guidelines followed by your university when you format a title page. While there will be minor variations depending on the style, a title page typically looks like this:
Your university will give you specific guidelines about where each element should be placed on the title page. They will also give you details about indentation, spacing, and margins. They may even give you guidelines about font, font sizes, and capitalization.
Tips for a well-formatted title page
- The title page should not be too wordy. An evaluator should be able to glean the essential information about your paper at a single glance.
- Make sure you space the title page well, or else it might look too cluttered or too empty.
- Formatting a title page often means dwelling on incredibly specific and tedious things like spacing and sentence casing, so ensure that you double-check with your supervisor about whether you have followed these guidelines thoroughly.
- Proofread the title page to ensure that you have spelled each word correctly and that each element is where it should be.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Do i need to add a page number to the title page , can i put a picture on the title page, how can i create a title page in ms word, do i need to list committee members on the title page, do i need to add a copyright page.
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Formatting Your Dissertation
On this page:
Language of the Dissertation
Page and text requirements, body of text, tables, figures, and captions, dissertation acceptance certificate, copyright statement.
- Table of Contents
Front and Back Matter
Supplemental material, dissertations comprising previously published works, top ten formatting errors, further questions.
Related Contacts and Forms
When preparing the dissertation for submission, students must follow strict formatting requirements. Any deviation from these requirements may lead to rejection of the dissertation and delay in the conferral of the degree.
The language of the dissertation is ordinarily English, although some departments whose subject matter involves foreign languages may accept a dissertation written in a language other than English.
Most dissertations are 100 to 300 pages in length. All dissertations should be divided into appropriate sections, and long dissertations may need chapters, main divisions, and subdivisions.
- 8½ x 11 inches, unless a musical score is included
At least 1 inch for all margins
Body of text: double spacing
Block quotations, footnotes, and bibliographies: single spacing within each entry but double spacing between each entry
Table of contents, list of tables, list of figures or illustrations, and lengthy tables: single spacing may be used
FONTS AND POINT SIZE
Use 10-12 point size. Fonts must be embedded in the PDF file to ensure all characters display correctly.
If you are unsure whether your chosen font will display correctly, use one of the following fonts:
If fonts are not embedded, non-English characters may not appear as intended. Fonts embedded improperly will be published to DASH as-is. It is the student’s responsibility to make sure that fonts are embedded properly prior to submission.
Instructions for Embedding Fonts
To embed your fonts in recent versions of word, follow these instructions from microsoft:.
Click the File tab and then click Options .
In the left column, select the Save tab.
At the bottom, under Preserve fidelity when sharing this document , select the Embed fonts in the file check box.
Clear the Do not embed common system fonts check box.
For reference, below are some instructions from ProQuest UMI for embedding fonts in older file formats:
To embed your fonts in Microsoft Word 2010:
In the File pull-down menu click on Options .
Choose Save on the left sidebar.
- Check the box next to Embed fonts in the file.
- Click the OK button.
- Save the document.
Note that when saving as a PDF, make sure to go to “more options” and save as “PDF/A compliant”
To embed your fonts in Microsoft Word 2007:
- Click the circular Office button in the upper left corner of Microsoft Word.
- A new window will display. In the bottom right corner select Word Options .
- Choose Save from the left sidebar.
Using Microsoft Word on a Mac:
Microsoft Word 2008 on a Mac OS X computer will automatically embed your fonts while converting your document to a PDF file.
If you are converting to PDF using Acrobat Professional (instructions courtesy of the Graduate Thesis Office at Iowa State University):
- Open your document in Microsoft Word.
- Click on the Adobe PDF tab at the top. Select "Change Conversion Settings."
- Click on Advanced Settings.
- Click on the Fonts folder on the left side of the new window. In the lower box on the right, delete any fonts that appear in the "Never Embed" box. Then click "OK."
- If prompted to save these new settings, save them as "Embed all fonts."
- Now the Change Conversion Settings window should show "embed all fonts" in the Conversion Settings drop-down list and it should be selected. Click "OK" again.
- Click on the Adobe PDF link at the top again. This time select Convert to Adobe PDF. Depending on the size of your document and the speed of your computer, this process can take 1-15 minutes.
- After your document is converted, select the "File" tab at the top of the page. Then select "Document Properties."
- Click on the "Fonts" tab. Carefully check all of your fonts. They should all show "(Embedded Subset)" after the font name.
- If you see "(Embedded Subset)" after all fonts, you have succeeded.
The font used in the body of the text must also be used in headers, page numbers, and footnotes. Exceptions are made only for tables and figures created with different software and inserted into the document.
Tables and figures must be placed as close as possible to their first mention in the text. They may be placed on a page with no text above or below, or they may be placed directly into the text. If a table or a figure is alone on a page (with no narrative), it should be centered within the margins on the page. Tables may take up more than one page as long as they obey all rules about margins. Tables and figures referred to in the text may not be placed at the end of the chapter or at the end of the dissertation.
Given the standards of the discipline, dissertations in the Department of History of Art and Architecture and the Department of Architecture, Landscape Architecture, and Urban Planning often place illustrations at the end of the dissertation.
Figure and table numbering must be continuous throughout the dissertation or by chapter (e.g., 1.1, 1.2, 2.1, 2.2, etc.). Two figures or tables cannot be designated with the same number. If you have repeating images that you need to cite more than once, label them with their number and A, B, etc.
Headings should be placed at the top of tables. While no specific rules for the format of table headings and figure captions are required, a consistent format must be used throughout the dissertation (contact your department for style manuals appropriate to the field).
Captions should appear at the bottom of any figures. If the figure takes up the entire page, the caption should be placed alone on the preceding page, centered vertically and horizontally within the margins.
Each page receives a separate page number. When a figure or table title is on a preceding page, the second and subsequent pages of the figure or table should say, for example, “Figure 5 (Continued).” In such an instance, the list of figures or tables will list the page number containing the title. The word “figure” should be written in full (not abbreviated), and the “F” should be capitalized (e.g., Figure 5). In instances where the caption continues on a second page, the “(Continued)” notation should appear on the second and any subsequent page. The figure/table and the caption are viewed as one entity and the numbering should show correlation between all pages. Each page must include a header.
Landscape orientation figures and tables must be positioned correctly and bound at the top so that the top of the figure or table will be at the left margin. Figure and table headings/captions are placed with the same orientation as the figure or table when on the same page. When on a separate page, headings/captions are always placed in portrait orientation, regardless of the orientation of the figure or table. Page numbers are always placed as if the figure were vertical on the page.
If a graphic artist does the figures, GSAS will accept lettering done by the artist only within the figure. Figures done with software are acceptable if the figures are clear and legible. Legends and titles done by the same process as the figures will be accepted if they too are clear, legible, and run at least 10 or 12 characters per inch. Otherwise, legends and captions should be printed with the same font used in the text.
Original illustrations, photographs, and fine arts prints may be scanned and included, centered between the margins on a page with no text above or below.
Use of Third-Party Content
In addition to the student's own writing, dissertations often contain third-party content or in-copyright content owned by parties other than you, the student who authored the dissertation. The Office for Scholarly Communication recommends consulting the information below about fair use, which allows individuals to use in-copyright content, on a limited basis and for specific purposes, without seeking permission from copyright holders.
Because your dissertation will be made available for online distribution through DASH , Harvard's open-access repository, it is important that any third-party content in it may be made available in this way.
Fair Use and Copyright
What is fair use?
Fair use is a provision in copyright law that allows the use of a certain amount of copyrighted material without seeking permission. Fair use is format- and media-agnostic. This means fair use may apply to images (including photographs, illustrations, and paintings), quoting at length from literature, videos, and music regardless of the format.
How do I determine whether my use of an image or other third-party content in my dissertation is fair use?
There are four factors you will need to consider when making a fair use claim.
1) For what purpose is your work going to be used?
Nonprofit, educational, scholarly, or research use favors fair use. Commercial, non-educational uses, often do not favor fair use.
A transformative use (repurposing or recontextualizing the in-copyright material) favors fair use. Examining, analyzing, and explicating the material in a meaningful way, so as to enhance a reader's understanding, strengthens your fair use argument. In other words, can you make the point in the thesis without using, for instance, an in-copyright image? Is that image necessary to your dissertation? If not, perhaps, for copyright reasons, you should not include the image.
2) What is the nature of the work to be used?
Published, fact-based content favors fair use and includes scholarly analysis in published academic venues.
Creative works, including artistic images, are afforded more protection under copyright, and depending on your use in light of the other factors, may be less likely to favor fair use; however, this does not preclude considerations of fair use for creative content altogether.
3) How much of the work is going to be used?
Small, or less significant, amounts favor fair use. A good rule of thumb is to use only as much of the in-copyright content as necessary to serve your purpose. Can you use a thumbnail rather than a full-resolution image? Can you use a black-and-white photo instead of color? Can you quote select passages instead of including several pages of the content? These simple changes bolster your fair use of the material.
4) What potential effect on the market for that work may your use have?
If there is a market for licensing this exact use or type of educational material, then this weighs against fair use. If however, there would likely be no effect on the potential commercial market, or if it is not possible to obtain permission to use the work, then this favors fair use.
For further assistance with fair use, consult the Office for Scholarly Communication's guide, Fair Use: Made for the Harvard Community and the Office of the General Counsel's Copyright and Fair Use: A Guide for the Harvard Community .
What are my options if I don’t have a strong fair use claim?
Consider the following options if you find you cannot reasonably make a fair use claim for the content you wish to incorporate:
Seek permission from the copyright holder.
Use openly licensed content as an alternative to the original third-party content you intended to use. Openly-licensed content grants permission up-front for reuse of in-copyright content, provided your use meets the terms of the open license.
Use content in the public domain, as this content is not in-copyright and is therefore free of all copyright restrictions. Whereas third-party content is owned by parties other than you, no one owns content in the public domain; everyone, therefore, has the right to use it.
For use of images in your dissertation, please consult this guide to Finding Public Domain & Creative Commons Media , which is a great resource for finding images without copyright restrictions.
Who can help me with questions about copyright and fair use?
Contact your Copyright First Responder . Please note, Copyright First Responders assist with questions concerning copyright and fair use, but do not assist with the process of obtaining permission from copyright holders.
Pages should be assigned a number except for the Dissertation Acceptance Certificate . Preliminary pages (abstract, table of contents, list of tables, graphs, illustrations, and preface) should use small Roman numerals (i, ii, iii, iv, v, etc.). All pages must contain text or images.
Count the title page as page i and the copyright page as page ii, but do not print page numbers on either page .
For the body of text, use Arabic numbers (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, etc.) starting with page 1 on the first page of text. Page numbers must be centered throughout the manuscript at the top or bottom. Every numbered page must be consecutively ordered, including tables, graphs, illustrations, and bibliography/index (if included); letter suffixes (such as 10a, 10b, etc.) are not allowed. It is customary not to have a page number on the page containing a chapter heading.
Check pagination carefully. Account for all pages.
A copy of the Dissertation Acceptance Certificate (DAC) should appear as the first page. This page should not be counted or numbered. The DAC will appear in the online version of the published dissertation.
The dissertation begins with the title page; the title should be as concise as possible and should provide an accurate description of the dissertation.
- Do not print a page number on the title page: It is understood to be page i for counting purposes only.
A copyright notice should appear on a separate page immediately following the title page and include the copyright symbol ©, the year of first publication of the work, and the name of the author:
© [ year ] [ Author’s Name ] All rights reserved.
Alternatively, students may choose to license their work openly under a Creative Commons license. The author remains the copyright holder while at the same time granting up-front permission to others to read, share, and (depending on the license) adapt the work, so long as proper attribution is given. (By default, under copyright law, the author reserves all rights; under a Creative Commons license, the author reserves some rights.)
- Do not print a page number on the copyright page. It is understood to be page ii for counting purposes only.
An abstract, numbered as page iii , should immediately follow the copyright page and should state the problem, describe the methods and procedures used, and give the main results or conclusions of the research. The abstract will appear in the online and bound versions of the dissertation and will be published by ProQuest. There is no maximum word count for the abstract.
- indented on the first line of each paragraph
- The author’s name, right justified
- The words “Dissertation Advisor:” followed by the advisor’s name, left-justified (a maximum of two advisors is allowed)
- Title of the dissertation, centered, several lines below author and advisor
Dissertations divided into sections must contain a table of contents that lists, at minimum, the major headings in the following order:
- Front Matter
- Body of Text
- Back Matter
Front matter includes (if applicable):
acknowledgements of help or encouragement from individuals or institutions
a list of illustrations or tables
a glossary of terms
one or more epigraphs.
Back matter includes (if applicable):
supplemental materials, including figures and tables
an index (in rare instances).
Supplemental figures and tables must be placed at the end of the dissertation in an appendix, not within or at the end of a chapter. If additional digital information (including audio, video, image, or datasets) will accompany the main body of the dissertation, it should be uploaded as a supplemental file through ProQuest ETD . Supplemental material will be available in DASH and ProQuest and preserved digitally in the Harvard University Archives.
As a matter of copyright, dissertations comprising the student's previously published works must be authorized for distribution from DASH. The guidelines in this section pertain to any previously published material that requires permission from publishers or other rightsholders before it may be distributed from DASH. Please note:
Authors whose publishing agreements grant the publisher exclusive rights to display, distribute, and create derivative works will need to seek the publisher's permission for nonexclusive use of the underlying works before the dissertation may be distributed from DASH.
Authors whose publishing agreements indicate the authors have retained the relevant nonexclusive rights to the original materials for display, distribution, and the creation of derivative works may distribute the dissertation as a whole from DASH without need for further permissions.
It is recommended that authors consult their publishing agreements directly to determine whether and to what extent they may have transferred exclusive rights under copyright. The Office for Scholarly Communication (OSC) is available to help the author determine whether she has retained the necessary rights or requires permission. Please note, however, the Office of Scholarly Communication is not able to assist with the permissions process itself.
Missing Dissertation Acceptance Certificate. The first page of the PDF dissertation file should be a scanned copy of the Dissertation Acceptance Certificate (DAC). This page should not be counted or numbered as a part of the dissertation pagination.
Conflicts Between the DAC and the Title Page. The DAC and the dissertation title page must match exactly, meaning that the author name and the title on the title page must match that on the DAC. If you use your full middle name or just an initial on one document, it must be the same on the other document.
Abstract Formatting Errors. The advisor name should be left-justified, and the author's name should be right-justified. Up to two advisor names are allowed. The Abstract should be double spaced and include the page title “Abstract,” as well as the page number “iii.” There is no maximum word count for the abstract.
The front matter should be numbered using Roman numerals (iii, iv, v, …). The title page and the copyright page should be counted but not numbered. The first printed page number should appear on the Abstract page (iii).
The body of the dissertation should be numbered using Arabic numbers (1, 2, 3, …). The first page of the body of the text should begin with page 1. Pagination may not continue from the front matter.
All page numbers should be centered either at the top or the bottom of the page.
Figures and tables Figures and tables must be placed within the text, as close to their first mention as possible. Figures and tables that span more than one page must be labeled on each page. Any second and subsequent page of the figure/table must include the “(Continued)” notation. This applies to figure captions as well as images. Each page of a figure/table must be accounted for and appropriately labeled. All figures/tables must have a unique number. They may not repeat within the dissertation.
Horizontal Figures and Tables
Any figures/tables placed in a horizontal orientation must be placed with the top of the figure/ table on the left-hand side. The top of the figure/table should be aligned with the spine of the dissertation when it is bound.
Page numbers must be placed in the same location on all pages of the dissertation, centered, at the bottom or top of the page. Page numbers may not appear under the table/ figure.
Supplemental Figures and Tables. Supplemental figures and tables must be placed at the back of the dissertation in an appendix. They should not be placed at the back of the chapter.
Permission Letters Copyright. permission letters must be uploaded as a supplemental file, titled ‘do_not_publish_permission_letters,” within the dissertation submission tool.
DAC Attachment. The signed Dissertation Acceptance Certificate must additionally be uploaded as a document in the "Administrative Documents" section when submitting in Proquest ETD . Dissertation submission is not complete until all documents have been received and accepted.
Overall Formatting. The entire document should be checked after all revisions, and before submitting online, to spot any inconsistencies or PDF conversion glitches.
You can view dissertations successfully published from your department in DASH . This is a great place to check for specific formatting and area-specific conventions.
Contact the Office of Student Affairs with further questions.
Office of Student Affairs
Thesis and Dissertation Guide
- « Thesis & Dissertation Resources
- The Graduate School Home
Dedication, acknowledgements, preface (optional), table of contents.
- List of Tables, Figures, and Illustrations
List of Abbreviations
List of symbols.
- Non-Traditional Formats
- Font Type and Size
- Spacing and Indentation
- Tables, Figures, and Illustrations
- Formatting Previously Published Work
- Internet Distribution
- Open Access
- Registering Copyright
- Using Copyrighted Materials
- Use of Your Own Previously Published Materials
- Submission Steps
- Submission Checklist
- Sample Pages
I. Order and Components
Please see the sample thesis or dissertation pages throughout and at the end of this document for illustrations. The following order is required for components of your thesis or dissertation:
- Dedication, Acknowledgements, and Preface (each optional)
- Table of Contents, with page numbers
- List of Tables, List of Figures, or List of Illustrations, with titles and page numbers (if applicable)
- List of Abbreviations (if applicable)
- List of Symbols (if applicable)
- Introduction, if any
- Main body, with consistent subheadings as appropriate
- Appendices (if applicable)
- Endnotes (if applicable)
- References (see section on References for options)
Many of the components following the title and copyright pages have required headings and formatting guidelines, which are described in the following sections.
Please consult the Sample Pages to compare your document to the requirements. A Checklist is provided to assist you in ensuring your thesis or dissertation meets all formatting guidelines.
The title page of a thesis or dissertation must include the following information:
- The title of the thesis or dissertation in all capital letters and centered 2″ below the top of the page.
- Your name, centered 1″ below the title. Do not include titles, degrees, or identifiers. The name you use here does not need to exactly match the name on your university records, but we recommend considering how you will want your name to appear in professional publications in the future.
Notes on this statement:
- When indicating your degree in the second bracketed space, use the full degree name (i.e., Doctor of Philosophy, not Ph.D. or PHD; Master of Public Health, not M.P.H. or MPH; Master of Social Work, not M.S.W. or MSW).
- List your department, school, or curriculum rather than your subject area or specialty discipline in the third bracketed space. You may include your subject area or specialty discipline in parentheses (i.e., Department of Romance Languages (French); School of Pharmacy (Molecular Pharmaceutics); School of Education (School Psychology); or similar official area).
- If you wish to include both your department and school names, list the school at the end of the statement (i.e., Department of Pharmacology in the School of Medicine).
- A dissertation submitted to the faculty at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the Department of Public Policy.
- A thesis submitted to the faculty at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in the School of Dentistry (Endodontics).
- A thesis submitted to the faculty at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in the Department of Nutrition in the Gillings School of Global Public Health.
- A dissertation submitted to the faculty at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the School of Education (Cultural Studies and Literacies).
- The words “Chapel Hill” must be centered 1″ below the statement.
- One single-spaced line below that, center the year in which your committee approves the completed thesis or dissertation. This need not be the year you graduate.
- Approximately 2/3 of the way across the page on the right-hand side of the page, 1″ below the year, include the phrase “Approved by:” (with colon) followed by each faculty member's name on subsequent double-spaced lines. Do not include titles such as Professor, Doctor, Dr., PhD, or any identifiers such as “chair” or “advisor” before or after any names. Line up the first letter of each name on the left under the “A” in the “Approved by:” line. If a name is too long to fit on one line, move this entire section of text slightly to the left so that formatting can be maintained.
- No signatures, signature lines, or page numbers should be included on the title page.
Include a copyright page with the following information single-spaced and centered 2″ above the bottom of the page:
© Year Author's Full Name (as it appears on the title page) ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
This page immediately follows the title page. It should be numbered with the lower case Roman numeral ii centered with a 1/2″ margin from the bottom edge.
Inclusion of this page offers you, as the author, additional protection against copyright infringement as it eliminates any question of authorship and copyright ownership. You do not need to file for copyright in order to include this statement in your thesis or dissertation. However, filing for copyright can offer other protections.
See Section IV for more information on copyrighting your thesis or dissertation.
Include an abstract page following these guidelines:
- Include the heading “ABSTRACT” in all capital letters, and center it 2″ below the top of the page.
- One double-spaced line below “ABSTRACT”, center your name, followed by a colon and the title of the thesis or dissertation. Use as many lines as necessary. Be sure that your name and the title exactly match the name and title used on the Title page.
- One single-spaced line below the title, center the phrase “(Under the direction of [advisor's name])”. Include the phrase in parentheses. Include the first and last name(s) of your advisor or formal co-advisors. Do not include the name of other committee members. Use the advisor's name only; do not include any professional titles such as PhD, Professor, or Dr. or any identifiers such as “chair” or “advisor”.
- Skip one double-spaced line and begin the abstract. The text of your abstract must be double-spaced and aligned with the document's left margin with the exception of indenting new paragraphs. Do not center or right-justify the abstract.
- Abstracts cannot exceed 150 words for a thesis or 350 words for a dissertation.
- Number the abstract page with the lower case Roman numeral iii (and iv, if more than one page) centered with a 1/2″ margin from the bottom edge.
Please write and proofread your abstract carefully. When possible, avoid including symbols or foreign words in your abstract, as they cannot be indexed or searched. Avoid mathematical formulas, diagrams, and other illustrative materials in the abstract. Offer a brief description of your thesis or dissertation and a concise summary of its conclusions. Be sure to describe the subject and focus of your work with clear details and avoid including lengthy explanations or opinions.
Your title and abstract will be used by search engines to help potential audiences locate your work, so clarity will help to draw the attention of your targeted readers.
You have an option to include a dedication, acknowledgements, or preface. If you choose to include any or all of these elements, give each its own page(s).
A dedication is a message from the author prefixed to a work in tribute to a person, group, or cause. Most dedications are short statements of tribute beginning with “To…” such as “To my family”.
Acknowledgements are the author's statement of gratitude to and recognition of the people and institutions that helped the author's research and writing.
A preface is a statement of the author's reasons for undertaking the work and other personal comments that are not directly germane to the materials presented in other sections of the thesis or dissertation. These reasons tend to be of a personal nature.
Any of the pages must be prepared following these guidelines:
- Do not place a heading on the dedication page.
- The text of short dedications must be centered and begin 2″ from the top of the page.
- Headings are required for the “ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS” and “PREFACE” pages. Headings must be in all capital letters and centered 2″ below the top of the page.
- The text of the acknowledgements and preface pages must begin one double-spaced line below the heading, be double-spaced, and be aligned with the document's left margin with the exception of indenting new paragraphs.
- Subsequent pages of text return to the 1″ top margin.
- The page(s) must be numbered with consecutive lower case Roman numerals (starting with the page number after the abstract) centered with a 1/2″ margin from the bottom edge.
Include a table of contents following these guidelines:
- Include the heading “TABLE OF CONTENTS” in all capital letters, and center it 2″ below the top of the page.
- Include one double-spaced line between the heading and the first entry.
- The table of contents should not contain listings for the pages that precede it, but it must list all parts of the thesis or dissertation that follow it.
- If relevant, be sure to list all appendices and a references section in your table of contents. Include page numbers for these items but do not assign separate chapter numbers.
- Entries must align with the document's left margin or be indented to the right of the left page margin using consistent tabs.
- Major subheadings within chapters must be included in the table of contents. The subheading(s) should be indented to the right of the left page margin using consistent tabs.
- If an entry takes up more than one line, break up the entry about three-fourths of the way across the page and place the rest of the text on a second line, single-spacing the two lines.
- Include one double-spaced line between each entry.
- Page numbers listed in the table of contents must be located just inside the right page margin with leaders (lines of periods) filling out the space between the end of the entry and the page number. The last digit of each number must line up on the right margin.
- Information included in the table of contents must match the headings, major subheadings, and numbering used in the body of the thesis or dissertation.
- The Table of Contents page(s) must be numbered with consecutive lower case Roman numerals centered with a 1/2″ margin from the bottom edge.
Lists of Tables, Figures, and Illustrations
If applicable, include a list of tables, list of figures, and/or list of illustrations following these guidelines:
- Include the heading(s) in all capital letters, centered 1″ below the top of the page.
- Each entry must include a number, title, and page number.
- Assign each table, figure, or illustration in your thesis or dissertation an Arabic numeral. You may number consecutively throughout the entire work (e.g., Figure 1, Figure 2, etc.), or you may assign a two-part Arabic numeral with the first number designating the chapter in which it appears, separated by a period, followed by a second number to indicate its consecutive placement in the chapter (e.g., Table 3.2 is the second table in Chapter Three).
- Numerals and titles must align with the document's left margin or be indented to the right of the left page margin using consistent tabs.
- Page numbers must be located just inside the right page margin with leaders (lines of periods) filling out the space between the end of the entry and the page number. The last digit of each number must line up on the right margin.
- Numbers, titles, and page numbers must each match the corresponding numbers, titles, and page numbers appearing in the thesis or dissertation.
- All Lists of Tables, Figures, and Illustrations page(s) must be numbered with consecutive lower case Roman numerals centered with a 1/2″ margin from the bottom edge.
If you use abbreviations extensively in your thesis or dissertation, you must include a list of abbreviations and their corresponding definitions following these guidelines:
- Include the heading “LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS” in all capital letters, and center it 1″ below the top of the page.
- Arrange your abbreviations alphabetically.
- Abbreviations must align with the document's left margin or be indented to the right of the left page margin using consistent tabs.
- If an entry takes up more than one line, single-space between the two lines.
- The List of Abbreviations page(s) must be numbered with consecutive lower case Roman numerals centered with a 1/2″ margin from the bottom edge.
If you use symbols in your thesis or dissertation, you may combine them with your abbreviations, titling the section “LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS AND SYMBOLS”, or you may set up a separate list of symbols and their definitions by following the formatting instructions above for abbreviations. The heading you choose must be in all capital letters and centered 1″ below the top of the page.
Your dissertation or thesis title page should include your name, department, institution, degree program, and submission date.
The title of your project · Your full name (including student number if required) · Clarification of whether this is a dissertation or thesis document · The name
Standard sample title page (exceptions listed below): Sample title page for Romance Languages doctoral graduate groups: Sample title page for Wharton
The font on your title page should be the same as the font used in the rest of your dissertation. Settings should be the same also: double line spacing
The aspect of your dissertation cover page that you have the most control over is the title. It's also the most important to get right. The main
Title page template (DOC) This Microsoft Word document can be saved to your ... Please email [email protected] if you have problems with the download.
The cover page requires the selection of a design which may be an abstract design or can also include pictures and images depending on the topic
A title page (also sometimes referred to as a cover page) is the first thing that your evaluator or any reader will see when they encounter
The front matter should be numbered using Roman numerals (iii, iv, v, …). The title page and the copyright page should be counted but not numbered. The first
Title Page · Copyright Page · Abstract · Dedication, Acknowledgements, and Preface (each optional) · Table of Contents, with page numbers · List of Tables, List of