Thesis Preparation Guidelines - 3 Format of the Thesis
Division of Graduate Studies and Research
The minimum thesis format requirements of the Division of Graduate Studies and Research are presented in the following sections, along with formatting suggestions. Individual Graduate Studies Programmes may have been granted permission by the Division of Graduate Studies and Research to specify different, or additional, requirements. It is the student’s responsibility to be aware of and respect all requirements of the programme in which he or she is registered.
Theses must be printed on 21.5 cm × 28 cm (8½ inch × 11 inch) white paper, sufficiently thick to be opaque. Paper with a weight of 75 g m-2 (20 lb equivalent weight) or more is normally sufficient. One type and quality of paper must be used throughout the thesis, except for photographs and colour figures (see section 3.4.2). A good quality acid free paper with 25% cotton content or more (“high-rag”) should be used.
This section provides guidelines for thesis style. Following a standard manual of style appropriate to the programme of study ensures consistency; some manuals of style appropriate to variou s disciplines are listed in section 4. Where instructions in a style manual differ from requirements stated in these guidelines, these guidelines shall be the authority. Candidates must not use theses written in former years as models since these might not conform to the current guidelines.
The title must spell out acronyms, abbreviations, and symbols, such as United Nations for U.N. An exception to this rule is when an acronym is a trademark, e.g., CANDU.
For all levels of titles and headings, consistent format in font size and style, numbering or lettering, and placement must be maintained throughout the thesis.
The thesis must use one of Canadian, British, or American spelling and punctuation (if in English) or Canadian French or French spelling and punctuation (if in French). One form only must be used consistently throughout the thesis.
SI units must be used as the primary system of units throughout the thesis. Equivalent measurements in other systems of units may be included, in parentheses after the measurement in SI units, when this makes the measurement easier to understand. A single line format must be used for the units, with units in the denominator written as a negative exponent, e.g. m·s-1, J·m-2·K-1. The slash notation (e.g., “m/s”) must not be used within units.
Where columns of numbers with units appear in tables, the heading on each column must show the appropriate symbol or label divided by the unit (e.g. Budget/$ or Snow depth/cm) so that only pure numbers appear in tables. The labels along the axes of graphs must be written in the same way so that only pure numbers are plotted in graphs.
Throughout the text, references must be cited in a scholarly style consistent with the discipline. Similarly, bibliographic information must be presented in the List of References or Bibliography in a scholarly style consistent with the discipline. All references cited in the text or in the appendices must appear in the List of References or Bibliography. For the integrated article format, all of the bibliographies must be in an approved thesis format consistent with the style adopted for the thesis, and not in the format for the journals for which particular articles have appeared or will appear.
Footnotes must conform to a scholarly style consistent with discipline practice. Footnotes should be placed at the bottom of the page, rather than at the end of each chapter (Notes) or at the end of the thesis, before the bibliography (End Notes).
The text layout of the thesis must present a clean, professional appearance appropriate to the discipline and must be appropriate for reproduction and microfilming.
The type size of the main body of text and for figure captions must be between 10 and 12 points, with type sizes no smaller than 9 points permitted for footnotes, graphs, and figures. Condensed type must not be used. When using small type sizes, care must be taken to ensure that subscripts and superscripts will be legible on the microfilmed copy of the thesis.
A serif, proportionally spaced typeface, such as Times, Palatino, or Garamond, should be used for the main text. Mono-spaced typefaces that emulate typewriters, such as Courier, must not be used for the main text; however, they may be used to set computer programmes or computer printout as part of a thesis.
Major division and chapter titles, section and subsection headings, and figure and table captions may be in a different type style and size and should stand out clearly from the text. The style of font used for the text and for the titles and headings must be consistent throughout the thesis.
The thesis must be printed in solid black characters that are consistently clear, dense and without shadows. The print and duplication must be of the highest quality. A laser printer will normally provide acceptable print quality.
One copy of the thesis, which will be sent to Library and Archives Canada (LAC) for microfilming, must be printed on one side of the paper only. Copies of the thesis other than the one that will be sent to LAC may be printed double-sided. See section 3.3.4 and 3.3.5 for further information regarding margin requirements and page numbering for double-sided printing.
A margin of at least 25 mm (1 inch) must be left at the top, bottom, and outer edge of each page. A margin of at least 38 mm (1.5 inch) must be left at the inner edge of each page. For single-sided theses this is the left margin. For double-sided theses, this is the left margin for recto (right-hand) pages and the right margin for verso (left-hand) pages. The margin requirement for double-sided printing may be met by leaving a 38 mm margin on both the inner and outer edges of each page.
These margins must be followed for all figures, tables and other illustrative materials. Running heads may be placed outside the margins, but not closer than 15 mm (0.6 inch) from the edges of a page.
With the exception of the title page, each page in the thesis must be numbered consecutively. The title page is assigned number “i”, although the number is not printed on that page. The pages of preliminary material (from the Signature Page through the Preface, if present) must be numbered with small Roman numerals (ii, iii, etc.). The remainder of the thesis, starting with the first page of the first chapter as page 1, must be numbered with Arabic numerals (1, 2, 3).
The preliminary material should be numbered in the centre of the page at the bottom, not less than 15 mm (0.6 inch) from the bottom edge. The remaining pages should be numbered in the upper right or outside corner, not less than 15 mm from each edge. However, the page number on the first page of every chapter, including the first page of the List of References or Bibliography and Appendices, may be placed in the centre, 15 mm from the bottom edge of the page.
Within double-sided theses, recto (right-hand) pages must bear odd numbers while verso (left-hand) pages must bear even numbers. Blank pages, such as a verso page immediately preceding a new chapter, are also considered to have a page number. Blank pages are always counted but they need not be numbered. There must be no blank recto pages in the thesis.
The text of the Statement of Ethics Approval, Dedication, Acknowledgements, Abstract, Résumé, Co-Authorship Statement, Preface, thesis body, Appendices and Curriculum Vitae must have a consistent line spacing of between one-and-one-half spacing and double-spaced. Table and figure captions must be single-spaced.
The Table of Contents, List of Tables, List of Figures, List of Symbols, Nomenclature, Acronyms or Abbreviations, List of Equations, and List of References or Bibliography, may be single or double-spaced. If the List of References or Bibliography is single-spaced there must be a blank line between individual entries.
All text lines in the thesis must be either left aligned or fully justified, with a consistent alignment used throughout, with the following exceptions. The Signature Page and Dedication must be centred. Figure and table captions and division, section and subsection headings may be centred.
Illustrative material includes figures and tables. A table normally contains a list of numerical data, equations, chemical reactions, events or experiments, etc. A figure contains nonverbal material such as graphs and illustrations, flowcharts, photographs, etc.
Each figure must have a caption that begins with the word “Figure” (“F” capitalized) and the figure number, followed by a brief description of the figure. This must be placed below the figure, with one blank line separating the bottom of the figure and the top of the caption. See the figures in this document for examples.
Each table must have a caption that begins with the word “Table” (“T” capitalized) and the table number, followed by a brief description of the table. This must be placed above the table, with one blank line separating the bottom of the caption and the top of the table.
When a figure or table is continued to the following page, a continuation note (e.g., “Figure 5, continued” or “Table 5, continued”) must appear in place of the caption on the continuations. The original caption must not be repeated in either case.
Photographs and colour figures may be mounted on thick paper of appropriate size using dry mount tissue, or they may be reproduced directly on photographic paper meeting the page size requirement.
Figures and tables should be inserted as close as possible to the relevant text, but not before the first reference to the reference to the figure or table, rather than being grouped at the end of a chapter or at the end of the thesis. Figures and tables should be presented in the same orientation as the text wherever possible. Figures and tables wider than the width left between specified margins may be presented in landscape (broadside) orientation. The bottom of the figure or table should face the outside edge of a recto (right hand side) page.
Two or more figures or tables may appear on the same page, size allowing. Figures or tables and text may appear on the same page.
Each figure, including those in appendices, must have a unique number. Each table, including those in appendices, must also have a separate and unique number, in a series different from those used for the figures. The numbers for both figures and tables must appear in consecutive order in the thesis and must be presented in Arabic numerals.
Consecutive unique numbers (e.g., Table 14, Figure 42) should be used. Composite numbers in which the first numeral refers to the chapter (e.g., Table 4.3, Figure 5.17) may be used as an alternative.
Figures and tables that are oversized may be reduced to fit within the margins. If figure or table is reduced, the caption and page number must not be reduced. When reducing a figure or table, important detail must not disappear and lettering must remain clearly legible. Flow charts and most tables, if too long to fit within prescribed margins, should be divided and continued on the following page(s).
Maps must be redrawn if acceptable quality is not obtained from reproducing. Overlays must be carefully aligned with underlying maps or charts.
Figure 3 . An example of an oversized page, folded for insertion into a thesis.
Oversized pages should be avoided unless absolutely necessary. Wherever possible, charts, graphs, maps, and tables that are larger than the standard page size should be photo-reduced in such a way that the material fits the standard page size while remaining clearly legible. If material larger than the standard size must be used, it must be carefully folded into the manuscript or placed in a pocket attached to the inside back cover of the thesis. Folds must be at least 15 mm (0.6 inch) from the left and right edge of the standard paper size to allow for trimming by the binder. The material must be folded using as few folds as possible. Figure 3 shows an example.
Oversized material that is not inserted into the manuscript and supplementary material that is not printed, such as computer diskettes, transparencies, slides, compact disks, etc., must be inserted into pockets attached to the inside back cover of the thesis. Since this material may become separated from the thesis, all materials must be sealed in an envelope marked with the candidate’s full name and the title of the thesis, and must be submitted with the thesis. There must be one envelope with full contents for each copy of the thesis.
Supplementary material in electronic form such as CD and DVD-ROM must include both electronic and physical labels that list the thesis title, author, institution, and date. A description of any electronic supplementary material, including file names, formats, and a brief description of the contents, should be included as an appendix in the paper copy of the thesis and as a “read-me” file on the electronic material itself.
Appendices made uniquely of computer printouts presented in columnar form may be listed with appendix letters and headings, rather than being reported as tables.
A thesis longer than 400 pages must be bound in two or more volumes, each of not more than 400 pages. Each volume must have its own title page and table of contents. Other preliminary pages are found in volume I only. Page numbering must follow consecutively from one volume to the next. The separation between volumes must be at the end of a major division. The title page for each volume is identical, except for the mention “Volume I”, “Volume II”, etc,. just below the title. Title pages of volume II and subsequent volumes are neither numbered nor counted.