Scope, structure and formatting

Scope and structure

The purpose and scope of your thesis or dissertation is determined by you and your supervisory committee. The thesis completion plan outlines the activities required to complete a thesis and the proposed sequence of activities. The guide to completing a thesis or project proposal may help you plan and organize your thoughts and ideas, as well as understand the purpose of a proposal.

Formatting requirements

The Faculty of Graduate Studies formatting requirements for theses and dissertations are described in the thesis format checklist and sample pages.  You are responsible for ensuring that the final document conforms to these formatting standards and you should consult your supervisor regarding additional departmental requirements.

Optional templates are available. Use of these templates is voluntary and does not ensure approval of the format of your thesis/dissertation by the Faculty of Graduate Studies.  We are not able to offer technical assistance with the templates, and these are not maintained by the Faculty of Graduate Studies or the Graduate Admissions and Records Office.  MSWord template and a LaTex template

The Faculty of Graduate Studies does not have formatting requirements for Master's projects (non-thesis programs), so departmental formatting standards apply.

Preliminary pages

Title page

Each copy of the thesis/dissertation must have a title page. The format must match that of the thesis format checklist and sample pages.

A record of your thesis or dissertation will be included in the UVic Library archives and catalogue. These are Unicode compliant and will display formulae, symbols, Greek letters or other non-alphabetical characters. You may choose to write the title using words instead of symbols.

For example:

Chromosomal localization of the α- and β-globulin of the chicken, Gallus domesticus  

Chromosomal localization of the alpha- and beta-globulin of the chicken, Gallus domesticus

Supervisory committee

List your supervisory committee, including each person's title, first and last name, and the department (in paretheses) indicated in the University of Victoria Faculty of Graduate Studies Calendar.
Example: Dr. Robert N. Tracey (Department of English)

Do not include the name of your external examiner: this person is on your examining committee, not your supervisory committee.

Abstract

The abstract is a summary of the thesis/dissertation; it states the problem, the method of investigation employed, and the general conclusions. Be concise.

Table of contents

The table of contents must include the principal topics and headings, including the chapter headings, bibliography, appendices, all preliminary pages, and the table of contents itself. Consult your academic style guide to determine whether or not to include sub-headings.

List of tables

For each table in your thesis or dissertation, list the number of the table, its exact caption or title, and the page number.

List of figures or illustrations, glossary, abbreviations, and similar

Every list must be on its own page, with an appropriate heading. The format must be consistent between similar lists.

Acknowledgements (optional)

This section provides you with an opportunity to acknowledge assistance that you received in the preparation of the thesis/dissertation. Some students acknowledge organizations or individuals that provided them with financial support or extraordinary research opportunities.

Dedication and/or frontispiece (option)

There is very little formatting to this page, other than consistent heading and page numbering, and inclusion in the table of contents. The student is free to include a dedication, quotation, frontispiece, or similar.

Resources and style guides

Resources to assist you in meeting scope, structure and formatting requirements:

External resources:

Style guide

Some academic units have recommended the use of a specific style guide appropriate to their discipline. Where a style guide has not been recommended, check with your supervisor.

Education American Psychological Association Style Guide
English Modern Language Association Style Manual
Germanic Studies Modern Language Association Style Manual
History Turabian Guide
Child and Youth Care American Psychological Association Style Guide
Dispute Resolution American Psychologyical Association Style Guide
Psychology American Psychological Association Style Guide

Professional development
Three Minute Thesis (3MT)
Graduate Students' Society

Program information