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Formatting

UPDATED POLICIES AND PROCEDURES EFFECTIVE APRIL 1, 2015

See our template for samples and formatting assistance.

  • 1. Your name, committee members and degree title must match University records.

  • 2. See your department guidelines for information about your approved reference style guide and other department-specific requirements.

  • 3. Recommended margins: Set your margins at 1.25 inches for the left margin, and 1 inch on the right, top, and bottom margins. Margins may be reduced to .875 inches all around to accommodate oversized tables or figures.

  • 4. Use a professional font in 12pt size. Do not use an ornamental font based on script, cursive, or calligraphic styles. For tables, footnotes, or other material outside of the main text, a font size as low as 8pts may be used. Use black for all text apart from figures, tables, and computer code, which may include color.

  • 5. Line spacing: 1.5 is preferred but 2.0 (double-spacing) is acceptable, with the exception of tables, lists, block quotations, footnotes/endnotes, figure captions, table titles, and bibliographic entries, which are to be single-line spaced and followed by normal text spacing.

  • 6. Start the first page of each section (Acknowledgements, Table of Contents, Lists, etc.), chapter, and appendix on a new page and increase the top margin on that page to 2 inches.

  • 7. Place your Bibliography or Reference section(s) at the end of each chapter or at the end of the main document text (but before the Appendices), depending on your department’s style guidelines. Use single-line spacing.

  • 8. If including more than one figure, table, or illustration, create a separate list for each type of item, which includes the figure/table number, figure caption/table title and the page number on which it begins.

  • 9. Label tables, figures, illustrations, etc. uniquely and number each consecutively throughout your document.

  • 10. Recommend image resolution: 300 dpi. Supplementary materials such as audio, video, and oversized tables/figures must be submitted to Montezuma Publishing at the same time the thesis is submitted.

  • 11. The Table of Contents lists each chapter number, chapter title, and the page on which each chapter begins. Type the word “Chapter” as a heading before listing the numbers and titles of each chapter below. See example

  • 12. Preliminary page numbers are lowercase Roman numerals, starting with page iii.

  • 13. Preliminary pages appear in the following order (first numbered page must be page iii):

  • Title page: Mandatory; no page number (see following page for format)

    Signature page: Mandatory; no page number

    Copyright page: Mandatory; numbered iii

    Dedication: Optional; must have page number

    Epigraph: Optional; must have page number

    Abstract: Mandatory; up to 350 words, single-spaced; must have page number.

    Table of Contents: Mandatory; must have page number

    List of Tables, List of Figures, etc.: Mandatory when the document includes more than one table, figure, etc. (e.g., if you have 2 tables, include a List of Tables; 2 figures, include a List of Figures); must have page number.

    List of Abbreviations, List of Acronyms, List of Symbols: Optional; must have page number

    Preface: Optional; must have page number

    Acknowledgements: Optional; must have page number (Department of Biology guidelines differ)

Word Templates & Associated Files

SDSU Thesis Template
This is the main template. It contains most of the formatting necessary to prepare your thesis. Additional templates are provided below.

SDSU Thesis Template for Landscape Pages
The landscape pages are separate from the main template but can be copied and pasted into the main template as needed. Follow instructions in this file and the Using the Template file.

SDSU Thesis Signature Page Template with 3 Committee Members
If you have a 3-member committee, use this signature page template to fill in your committee information. Print it out to get your committee signatures.

SDSU Thesis Signature Page Template with 4 Committee Members
If you have a 4-member committee, replace the main template's signature page with this one. You may use the copy and paste function to do this.

SDSU Thesis Signature Page Template with 5 Committee Members
If you have a 5-member committee, replace the main template's signature page with this one. You may use the copy and paste function to do this.

SDSU LaTeX Template
The LaTeX template complies with the format requirements contained in the DTM. The template can be found on the Math Department Resources web page, follow the link below. A good third-party resource on using LaTeX is the LaTeX Wikibook. Students using MS Word to produce their thesis, should use the sample thesis-long version as their department style guide.

Additional Help

Subdocument Import
If you have already begun writing your thesis outside of the SDSU template, follow these instructions for importing your document into the template. This will ensure that the template is not corrupted.

Generating a Table of Contents in the Template
The template is set up to create a table of contents for you once you've applied the correct styles. Click on the link below for detailed instructions.

Review Checklist
Use this Checklist to check your work before your thesis submission. This Checklist will also be used during your review.

Professional Support
Use this list to contact a Freelance Formatter.

SDSU Formatting Guidelines
Download the SDSU Formatting Guidelines.


Note: documents in Portable Document Format (PDF) require Adobe Acrobat Reader 5.0 or higher to view, download Adobe Acrobat Reader.

Documents in Word format (DOC) require Microsoft Viewer, download word.