Master's Thesis and Doctoral Dissertation Guidelines

     All instructions for composing, formatting, and submitting your Master's Thesis or Doctoral Dissertation are contained within the San Jose State University Master's Thesis and Doctoral Dissertation Guidelines, posted below.

     For a pdf copy of the guidelines, please click here SJSU Master's Thesis and Doctoral Dissertation Guidelines (pdf).

     Please note, the formatting of the examples provided in the Appendices are more accurate in the pdf copy of the guidelines than those displayed below. Be sure to read and follow the instructions for each Appendix.

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San Jose State University Master's Thesis and Doctoral Dissertation Guidelines

 

SAN JOSÉ STATE UNIVERSITY

MASTER'S THESIS AND DOCTORAL DISSERTATION GUIDELINES 

Hat and Diploma   

Prepared by David K. Bruck, Associate Dean of Graduate Studies 

www.sjsu.edu/gradstudies 

Revised March 2017 

 

 

Table of Contents 

Introduction

Timeline

    Specific Information for Master's Theses

    Specific Information for Doctoral Dissertations

Manuscript Preparation - Format and Style

Authorship

Choice of Style Guide

    For Doctoral Dissertations

    For Master's Theses

Journal Format

Fonts

Spacing

Margins

Headers and Footers

Consistency of Formatting

Manuscript Organization - Front Pages

Pagination

    Title Page

Copyright Page

    Thesis or Dissertation Committee Page

          Committee Requirements

          SJSU Faculty Members

          Non-SJSU Faculty Members

Abstract Page

    Acknowledgements (or Dedication) Page

    Table of Contents, List of Figures

    List of Abbreviations

    Requirement for a Preface - Creative Works

    Theses in Foreign Languages

Body (Materials Following the Front Pages)

    Formality of Language

    Table and Figures

          Readability

Captions

    Table and Figure Citations

    Gaps or Blank Spaces in the Text

    Use of Color

    Supplementary Material

Checking the Manuscript before Submission to Graduate Studies

    Proofreading and Editing

    Editing Help

    Common Errors in Master's Theses and Doctoral Dissertations

    Grammatical and Writing Errors

    Punctuation Errors

    Inconsistencies and Formatting Errors

    A Note about Reviewer Errors - We Make Mistakes Too!

Instructions for Submission to GS for Initial Review

    Deadlines and Forms Required

    Technical Requirements for the PDF

    Required Documents and Instruction for Naming Files

Emailing the Thesis or Dissertation to GS

    Where to Send the Email

    How to Label the Email

Deadlines

    GS Process

    Questions and Contact Information

Policies

    Copyright Permission

    Human Subjects Research and Animal Care Approval

Instructions for Final Submission to GS

Corrections

    GS Process

    ETD Administrator

Agreements

    ProQuest Publishing Agreement

    SJSU License Agreement

Uploading the Thesis or Dissertation to the ETD Administrator

Size and File Capacity

Sending Copyright Permissions to ProQuest

Appendices

    Appendix A: Sample Title Page for Master's Theses

    Appendix B: Sample Title Page for Doctoral Dissertation

    Appendix C: Sample Copyright Page

    Appendix D: Sample Thesis Committee Page for Master's Theses

    Appendix E: Sample Thesis Committee Page for Doctoral Dissertations

    Appendix F: Sample Abstract Page

    Appendix G: Sample Acknowledgments Page

    Appendix H: Sample Table of Contents

    Appendix I: Sample List of Tables

    Appendix J: Sample List of Figures

    Appendix K: Sample List of Abbreviations 

 

Introduction

     The SJSU Master’s Thesis and Doctoral Dissertation Guidelines (hereafter referred to as the Guidelines) provide general guidance for authors of master's theses, doctoral dissertations, and creative project reports prepared under the Plan A or Plan C culminating experience requirement at San José State University (SJSU).  The Guidelines were developed for use for graduate students and their advisors to ensure that their thesis/dissertation meets 1) SJSU requirements, 2) UMI/ProQuest Information and Learning Company (UMI/PQIL) publishing requirements, and 3) SJSU library requirements.  Note that when the Guidelines refer to "thesis,” they also pertain to creative project reports completed under Plan C. 

     The Guidelines should be read before and during thesis or dissertation preparation, as they provide all the information needed by students to successfully meet the requirements set forth by Graduate Studies (GS) (now part of the Office of Graduate & Undergraduate Programs).  Graduate students are responsible for carefully reading and following the Guidelines and for consulting with their advisor if they have any questions.

     The thesis or dissertation will be emailed to GS in portable document format (PDF, which is the .pdf file extension) for initial review and for all subsequent reviews.  Paper copies will not be accepted at any time.  Electronic submissions allow GS to communicate more efficiently with students and to use a web-based system (called an ETD administrator) that allows students to submit a pdf of the final approved document to ProQuest and the MLK Library.  The ETD administrator also allows students to select a publishing option, order personal copies from ProQuest, and make appropriate payments.

 

Timeline

     Time is critical during "thesis/dissertation season."  Everything seems to take longer than planned. Students should pay close attention to two important deadlines, which can be found on the GS website, http://www.sjsu.edu/gape/current_students:

  • the date for submitting a thesis/dissertation for initial review by GS;
  • the date for submitting a revised thesis/dissertation to GS for review.

     Dates change each semester and summer term.  Submission must be in the semester in which the student plans to graduate (and has filed the appropriate graduation form with GAPE).  Extensions will not be granted.  In order to meet deadlines, graduate students must allow enough time to

  • prepare their draft, using the appropriate style and format;
  • meet deadlines imposed by their thesis or dissertation committee members;
  • have all committee member revisions completed in time to meet the posted deadline for initial review by GS (as the thesis or dissertation can be submitted to GS only after all graduate committee members have approved the document); and
  • make all revisions required by GS before resubmitting the thesis or dissertation to GS for final review.

 

Specific Information for Master’s Theses.  Master’s students must email their thesis and the required documents by the initial submission deadline, described more thoroughly in the section, Instructions for Initial Submission to GS.  Within 6 weeks of the posted deadline, GS will review to determine whether minor or major revision is needed.  If minor revision is required, the student will receive (a) notification that the thesis has been provisionally approved, and (b) a partially edited copy of the thesis indicating needed changes.  After making all required changes by the posted deadline, the thesis will be uploaded to the ETD administrator, as explained in the section, Instructions for Final Submission to GS.  If the thesis requires major revision, notification will be sent that the thesis cannot be accepted the semester it was submitted.  The student will be instructed to change his or her graduation date to the following semester, obtain a new Thesis Committee Approval Form from the thesis committee members, work with his or her committee or a professional editor on the revision, and re-submit the thesis by the posted date for initial review the following semester.    

 

Specific Information for Doctoral Dissertations.  The doctoral student, in conjunction with his or her dissertation committee, is responsible for making sure that the dissertation meets all GS requirements.  Once the dissertation and required documents have been emailed to GS by the posted date for initial review (see Instructions for Initial Submission to GS), GS will need about one week for the review.  The information regarding final deadlines and for rejection if errors are too numerous for publication are the same as described above for theses.  Once the dissertation is revised as instructed by GS and by the dissertation committee following the doctoral defense, the student uploads it to the ETD administrator according to the Instructions for Final Submission to GS.

 

Manuscript Preparation - Format and Style

     All theses and dissertations must follow GS formatting requirements regardless of style guide instructions.  The instructions below thus take precedence over style guide information.  The following items must be formatted according to GS specifications:

  • the front pages preceding the introductory section of the body of the text;
  • figures and tables, which must be in the body shortly after the figure or table citation;
  • justification, which must be left (not block or right) throughout;
  • indentations, which must be approximately 0.25 inch;
  • division of words at the end of lines with hyphens, which is prohibited;
  • double columns, which cannot be used except in a table;
  • spacing, which should be double throughout except in offset quotations, footnotes, figure and table captions, and within entries in the Table of Contents, the figure and table lists, and the reference section (see examples in the appendices);
  • offset quotations, which should be indented from both margins inward;
  • fonts, for which there can be only one in the entire thesis or dissertation, except for appendices;
  • margins, which are specified in a later section;
  • headers and footers, which are prohibited except to accommodate page numbers.

 

Authorship

     All theses and dissertations must be single authored.  The writing must be entirely by that author.  Group projects are not allowed, as it would be impossible for GS to determine the role of the student in the research.  Thus if the project reported on was part of a multi-project research activity, the work performed by the individual author must be extracted as the thesis or dissertation report.  The work performed by others can be reported but only as one would report research published by others, such as by formal literature citation or as a “personal communication.”  For any group work included, which must be a minor portion of the overall work done, the role of the author must be delineated.  All other workers must be acknowledged by citation in the body of the text, not simply on the Acknowledgments page. 

     The requirements above are not always discernible in a straightforward way.  A published report of the work can be used for the thesis or dissertation in part or whole.  There are, however, limitations.  The student must be the first (lead) author of that publication. A supervising professor or other university-sanctioned authority (e.g., the head of an off-campus laboratory in which the student has conducted his or her research) can be included in the author list of the publication, although not in the thesis or dissertation.  Other authors cannot be included unless the contributions to the writing and research are relatively minor.  An explanation of their roles must be included with thesis submission.

 

Choice of Style Guide

For Doctoral Dissertations.  All Ed.D. dissertations must be formatted by APA style according to the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association: http://www.apastyle.org/.

 

For Master’s Theses.  Unless an alternate format, such as a journal format (see below), has been approved by one’s department and GS, the latest edition of one the following standard references (that most appropriate to the field) should be used:

American Psychological Association, Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association: http://www.apastyle.org/

Chicago, Chicago Manual of Style: http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/home.html

Modern Language Association, TheMLA Style Manual and Guide to Scholarly Publishing: https://www.mla.org/MLA-Style

Turabian, A Manual for Writers:  http://www.press.uchicago.edu/books/turabian/manual/index.html

     It is the student's responsibility to determine the style guide that the major department requires or accepts and to present a manuscript to GS that is consistent with the selected guide.  Students should not use a previously approved thesis or dissertation in lieu of selecting an appropriate style guide.  Significant delays in the thesis or dissertation approval process or outright rejection may occur if format specifications are not followed.  If a department follows a style guide other than the commonly accepted guides or uses the format specific to a journal from a discipline for the master’s thesis, it is the student’s responsibility to submit examples of the format to GS (i.e., journal instructions to authors and a sample article).  Examples of professional associations that specify discipline-specific styles include the American Sociological Association (ASA), the Council of Science Editors (CSE), and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).  Students using a specific format for their journal article must still follow GS guidelines for front-page materials.

     Information about commonly used styles is available on the SJSU Writing Center website (http://www.sjsu.edu/writingcenter/).  The SJSU Writing Center periodically offers workshops on these documentation styles.  Other general references on form and style that are used as aids in writing and preparing a scholarly paper can be consulted as well; however, the thesis or dissertation should never combine formatting recommendations from multiple styles.  One style guide should be used consistently throughout, and it should be followed meticulously.

 

Journal Format

     If a journal format is selected for an article incorporated into the thesis, the journal article incorporated into the thesis should be formatted as journal-ready, that is, exactly as required by the journal, with the following exceptions:

  • The front pages, e., those pages that precede the introduction of the thesis or dissertation;
  • Double column layouts are not usually permitted even if they are allowed by a journal. If there appears to be a need for a column format, please contact GS for permission.  In the absence of permission, the content of the thesis or dissertation should appear in a single column; 
  • All margins must follow GS rules, regardless of journal specifications;
  • Figures and tables must be inserted in the text shortly after their citation even though journals usually specify that they be placed at the end of the text.

     It is important to note that a journal article is not a thesis or dissertation.  If a thesis follows a journal format and consists of one or more journal articles, it is still necessary to include the front material outlined in these guidelines and mimic the formats in the GS templates provided in the appendices.  The abstract, even if its requirements differ in the journal article, must still conform to the GS-formatting guidelines so that consistency is maintained among all SJSU theses and dissertations.  Whereas previously GS required separate introduction and conclusion sections, these sections are no longer required.  However, many advisors require their students who use a journal format to add a more extensive literature review section beyond that in the journal article; therefore, an additional Introduction can be added in advance of the reproduction of the journal article.  After the front pages, the journal submission can be inserted without the title page and abstract of the manuscript to be submitted; thus the starting point for the thesis after the front pages should be the introduction of the manuscript.  Each section of the thesis or dissertation should be unique.  It is not permissible to copy the same content from one section to another and claim that it represents journal articles submitted to separate journals.  Please also note journal article submission limitations described above under Authorship.

 

Fonts

     One font and font size should be used throughout the entire manuscript, including front pages, figure and table captions, page numbers, and reference lists.  Exceptions can occur in appendices.  Because SJSU theses and dissertations are sent to University Microfilms Incorporated (UMI), the choice of font is important.  When a text is reduced to microfilm, the smaller fonts are almost impossible to read.  The manuscript should be created using a TrueType font, not a scalable font.  The font should be clear and business-like; unusual or difficult-to-read fonts such as "script" fonts or those that produce irregular spacing between words must be avoided.  GS recommends using standard fonts such as Times New Roman or Arial.  Keep in mind that the choice of font may vary depending on whether an Apple or PC is used and that the font type affects the size of the text.  In general, most standard fonts are readable at a 12-point size.  However, the text may need to be re-sized for readability if an unusual font is selected.  The size and clarity of text contained in figures and tables should not be neglected.  Readers should not have to struggle to understand the data presented.

 

Spacing

     Manuscripts should be double spaced (including between paragraphs) except within entries of extended (offset) quotations, bibliographies (Bibliography, References, or Literature Cited sections), footnotes, the Table of Contents, the List of Tables, the List of Figures, figure and table captions, and other material for which single spacing is required.  Although some style guides specify double spacing for some of this special material, single spacing is expected for the thesis and dissertation in those specific instances.  To reiterate, each item in the bibliography or references, the lists of tables and figures, and the Table of Contents should be single spaced with double spacing between entries.  

     Although GS formerly required two spaces to follow a period at the end of sentences, one space will be accepted as long it is consistently applied throughout the thesis.  Note that many journals require two spaces after a period, so the instructions for authors should be checked if preparing a manuscript for publication; the same spacing must be used throughout.

     Spacing of words on a line should be such that the line can be easily read.  Crowding words together or leaving excessive spaces is not permitted.  Right margin justification is prohibited because it can produce large gaps between words and it breaks words at the ends of sentences.  Such gaps and breaks are not permitted and, if left, would require revision of the entire document.

 

Margins

     The following margins must always be used, regardless of the instructions given by other style manuals or journals:

Left: 1½ inches

Top and bottom: 1¼ inches (each)

Right: 1 inch

     Materials in appendices, tables, or figures may need to be photographically reduced to conform to margin requirements.  All material, except for the page numbers of the body of text, must fit within the required margins.  When in doubt, use the margin template provided on the GS website to check the margins prior to submission of the thesis or dissertation.

 

Headers and Footers

     Headers and footers are prohibited in the text, except for page numbers, unless they are part of a department-approved format accepted by GS.  Footnotes are acceptable, as they are not placed in the footer section of the page.

 

Consistency of Formatting

     Above all, it is important to be consistent in matters of style, usage, and punctuation.  Consistency with the format of heading levels, the use of capitalization, and the placement of tables and figures and their corresponding captions should be observed.  The presentation of data should be clear and clutter-free, utilizing a legible font and size.  If the print in figures is too small to read, it will have to be enlarged to have the thesis or dissertation approved. 

 

 

Manuscript Organization – Front Pages

     All front-page material preceding the body of the text (before the introduction) is counted with lowercase Roman numerals (i.e., i, ii, iii, iv…).  These numbers are placed at the bottom center of the page except where the page is counted, but the number is suppressed (which means it does not appear on the page).  For the introductory pages, the required order is as follows:

 

Page  No.

Page Name

Instructions for Numbering

i

Title Page

Page is counted, but number is suppressed

ii

Copyright Page

Page is counted, but the number is suppressed

iii

Thesis/Dissertation Committee Page

Page is counted, but the number is suppressed

iv

Abstract

Page is counted, but the number is suppressed

v

Acknowledgments or Dedication Page

This page is optional; if used, numbering is begun here as page v

 

Table of Contents

Numbering is begun here as page v if the Acknowledgments Page is omitted or numbered sequentially as page vi if it appears

 

List of Tables

Numbering is continued sequentially

 

List of Figures

Numbering is continued sequentially

 

List of Abbreviations

This page is optional; if used, numbering is continued sequentially

 

Title Page

     The Thesis or Dissertation Title Page appears as the first page.  The page number is counted but suppressed and should be formatted according to the example provided in Appendix A: Sample Title Page for Master’s Theses or Appendix B: Sample Title Page for Doctoral Dissertations.  The title should be in full capital letters, not boldfaced, in the same font and font size as the rest of the document, single-spaced, properly centered (with a wider margin on the left than on the right), and placed 11/2 inches down from the top of the page.  ProQuest, our ETD administrator, limits the title length to 300 characters.  The correct department name should be inserted.  The thesis or dissertation should bear the date (month and year) the degree is to be awarded, not the date of submission.  Thus the date will read May [year], August [year], or December [year], depending on when the thesis or dissertation is expected to be approved by GS.  The Title Page for a Plan C creative project report is identical to that for a master’s thesis, except that "Creative Project Report" is substituted for "Thesis" in the appropriate place.

 

Copyright Page

     The student automatically owns the copyright to the work, which means that it is illegal for anyone else to copy the material without the student’s permission.  To indicate such ownership, the student should place a Copyright Page in the thesis or dissertation as the second page following the Title Page.  See Appendix C: Sample Copyright Page for required formatting.

                                               

Thesis or Dissertation Committee Page

     The Thesis or Dissertation Committee Page immediately follows the Copyright Page as the third page of the document.  The page number is counted but suppressed.  A sample of the Master’s Thesis Committee Page that illustrates the required formatting is included in Appendix D.  A sample of the Doctoral Dissertation Committee Page is included in Appendix E.  Note that the Thesis or Dissertation Committee Page is a typed list of committee members and should not contain committee signatures.  Evidence of the approval of the thesis or dissertation is provided separately to GS by means of the Thesis Committee Approval Form or Dissertation Committee Approval Form described in the Instructions for Initial Submission to GS section of these guidelines and available on the GS website.  The Thesis or Dissertation Committee Approval Forms may contain either hand-written signatures or electronic signatures, but this form should not be incorporated into the document itself.

 

Committee Requirements.  University policy S14-10 requires that a minimum of three individuals serve on the student’s committee.  S14-10 also specifies the rights of students and faculty with respect to service requirements of committee members, removal of committee members, and ownership of the research program.  Dismissal of a committee chair supervising the thesis or dissertation research might lead to a prohibition of the student from continuing to report on that research.

 

SJSU Faculty Members.  A majority of the committee members must be tenured or tenure-track SJSU faculty.  The chair of the committee must be a full time, tenured or tenure-track SJSU faculty member.  Faculty participating in the Faculty Early Retirement Program (FERP) are considered active faculty members and, as such, can function as committee chair.  Emeritus professors can also serve with permission of the college dean.  Lecturers may serve as committee members, but they can neither serve as chairs nor can they represent a majority of the committee.  The number of committee members can exceed three, but rarely are more than four included.

 

Non-SJSU Faculty Members. Non-faculty members must be recognized experts in the subject matter of the thesis or dissertation.  If the committee includes an off-campus member, specify the affiliation (e.g., Mr. Al Kaline, M.S. in Baseball Technology, Tiger Corporation) on the Thesis or Doctoral Committee Page.  Thus each non-SJSU committee member should be identified by his or her title (e.g., Dr.) or highest degree (e.g., Ph.D., Ed.D., M.S., M.A.) as well as his or her work affiliation that makes him or her qualified to serve on a graduate committee.  If the information given does not by itself indicate that the individual bears the professional qualifications as an expert in the field covered in the thesis or dissertation, then the student or committee chair must obtain permission for this person’s service from the associate dean of the college in which the student’s department or school resides.  In general, the off-campus members must bear a doctoral degree in the field or a related field of the subject of the thesis or dissertation, although exceptions are frequently made.  If a question might arise concerning the adequacy of the qualifications of an outside committee member, it is advisable to acquire permission early in the thesis or dissertation preparation process.

 

Abstract Page

     An abstract, no more than one page in length must accompany each thesis or dissertation.  The entire abstract must be a single paragraph.  The Abstract Page follows the Thesis or Dissertation Committee Page as the fourth page of the document.  The page number is counted but suppressed.  The abstract should be written to report concisely on the purpose, design, and results of the research, as it will be used for indexing purposes in the UMI archive.  A sample of an abstract that illustrates the formatting required for the page is included in Appendix F: Sample Abstract (applying to both theses and dissertations). 

     As the abstract is the most visible and read portion of the document, GS is particularly insistent that it reflect well on the university.  GS therefore expects it to be completely free of writing errors and contain all necessary components.  Each section of the body of the thesis or dissertation must be represented in the abstract.  A summary must be provided of the background and purpose of the research, the methodology used, important results, and conclusions.  Vague statements, such as “Implications of the research will be considered” or “Conclusions are discussed,” will not be accepted.  Note also that literature and figure citations are not permitted in abstracts nor are statements that require a reference.  Moreover, it is forbidden to lift sentences or parts of sentences from the body of the thesis or dissertation and insert them in the abstract; in fact, it is misguided to repeat any sentence anywhere in a published paper.

 

Acknowledgments (or Dedication) Page

     The Acknowledgments Page or Dedication Page is optional.  The word, Acknowledgments, should appear at the top center of the page in capital letters.  If it is included, the Acknowledgments Page immediately follows the abstract as the fifth page of the document.  This is the first page in the document where the page number appears at the bottom center as lowercase Roman numeral five (v).  All subsequent front material, described below, is numbered sequentially with the appropriate lowercase Roman numeral.  If the Acknowledgments Page is not included, numbering – lowercase Roman numeral five – is begun on the Table of Contents.  A sample of an Acknowledgments Page that illustrates the required formatting is included in Appendix G (applying to both theses and dissertations).

                                                               

Table of Contents, List of Figures, and List of Tables

     The thesis or dissertation must include a Table of Contents (TOC) and, when applicable (i.e., if the document contains figures and/or tables), a List of Figures and a List of Tables, each on a separate page with the appropriate lowercase Roman numeral at the bottom center (see Pagination).  These pages should follow the templates found in the appendices even if they contradict the style guide chosen; that is, no matter the style guide, the front pages prior to the Introduction must uniformly simulate the GS templates (see Appendices H, I, and J).  

     Headings, subheadings, or titles listed in these front sections must match exactly with those that appear in the body of the thesis or dissertation.  The TOC must include all headings and subheadings in the body of the text, including appendices.  Thus, for the TOC, the headings or subheadings must be identical in wording to that in the text.  First order headings (or titles) should be left justified in the TOC.  Second order subheadings should be indented 0.25 inch, third order .50 inch, and so forth.  If numbers and letters are used in the text (e.g., 1, 1a, 1b, 2… or 1.0, 1.1, 1.2, 1.21, 1.22, 2.0…), they should be included in the TOC.  The capitalization pattern used in the headings should be mimicked in the TOC.  None of the front pages (i.e., the Title Page, Copyright Page, Thesis or Dissertation Committee Page, Abstract, or Acknowledgments or Dedication Page) should be listed in the TOC.  See Appendix H for an illustration of the required format.

     For the List of Figures and the List of Tables, the wording should be identical to that used in the caption of the figure or table.  Specifically, the first line of the figure or table caption should be reproduced exactly as it appears in the text (beneath the figure or above the table), even if it is a sentence fragment.  Entries that exceed one line should be single spaced with blank lines surrounding the entries (double spaced).  The amount to include in the lists is either the entire first sentence or sentence fragment (up to the period at the end of the first line of the figure or table caption).  See Appendix I for the appearance of the List of Figures and Appendix J for that of the List of Tables.  For disciplines in which the use of illustrations or plates is the convention, the List of Figures may be modified accordingly.

     Prior to submitting the thesis or dissertation, the page numbers listed in the TOC, List of Tables, and List of Figures should be double checked to confirm that they correspond to the material presented in the body.  Students asked to revise their document must be particularly careful to check that the page numbers listed in the front material are still correct.  There are often inconsistencies and errors in the formatting of these sections, especially with regard to capitalization.  Inconsistent presentation must be avoided

 

List of Abbreviations

     A List of Abbreviations is optional but may be appropriate for certain disciplines and can be included after the introductory pages already described.  It would constitute the final front page before the introductory section of the body of text.  The page number, in a lowercase Roman numeral and centered at the bottom of the page, would follow sequentially from that of the previous page.  It should be formatted as in the example in Appendix K.

 

Requirement for a Preface - Creative Works

     Some Plan A theses and all Plan C creative projects are considered non-traditional theses and may include poetry collections, short story collections, screenplays, musical creations, and other creative work.  These theses or projects will not have introductions that convey the purpose of the work, comparisons with related literature, results of an investigation, or discussions of the place of the research in the field.  GS requires in these instances that, besides an abstract that summarizes the work, a preface be included.  The preface, which must be a minimum of five pages, should put the work in context for the reader, whether it be historical, cultural, societal, or other contexts.  The work could be explained and/or compared to other works in the field.  It should include what or who influenced the thesis author in initiating and bringing the work to fruition.  Traditional reference citations must be made and a References Cited section must be included.  A style guide for formatting the references must, therefore, be chosen. 

 

Theses in Foreign Languages

     Theses written in foreign languages must include an abstract in English.

 

Body (Materials Following the Front Pages)

     The style guide of choice dictates the organization of the body of the thesis or dissertation and its division into chapters or sections.  It bears repeating that this stipulation should not be confused with formatting requirements imposed by GS, such as front material formatting, page numbering, margin requirements, prohibition of right justification, use of 0.25 inch for paragraph indents, consistent spacing following a period, single font use throughout the document, and indentation of offset materials from both margins.

     The body of the thesis or dissertation, generally beginning with an Introduction section or Chapter One, is numbered with Arabic numerals (1, 2, 3…) that are placed either at the bottom center or the top right hand corner of the page.  It is important for the alignment to be consistent throughout the document.  Appendices must also include page numbers and be listed in the Table of Contents with their title included.

 

Formality of Language

     The thesis or dissertation should be written in a formal scholarly manner appropriate to academic publications.  The use of the first person is discouraged, except in disciplines where the form demands it or in the kinds of research where the use of the "I" is normal or necessary.  Formal language is expected; colloquial expressions, informal speech jargon, and contractions will not be permitted, unless in a part of the document where such language is appropriate (e.g., interview quotations). 

 

Tables and Figures

     Tables and figures (graphs, photographs, maps, drawings, and so forth) cited within the thesis or dissertation must appear within the document (not as part of the appendix or after the body text) directly after the initial reference to them.  The same data cannot be reported in multiple illustration forms; that is, authors must choose either a table or figure to represent information; they cannot choose both. 

 

Readability.  The print within a figure must be large enough to be read comfortably by the reader.  In some cases, illustrations requiring additional space to be read can be rotated 90° or split into sections.  Style guides and journals provide instructions on the proper formatting for table/figure captions; every detail of those formatting instructions must be followed. 

 

Captions.  Typically, table captions appear above the table, and figure captions appear below the figure.  Titles on figures (graphs or other illustrations) beyond the necessary caption beneath should not be included.  Whenever possible, succinct captions are recommended for tables and figures, as the first line of the caption must appear in the List of Tables and List of Figures exactly as it does in the body of the document.  The wording of the caption cannot be identical to wording used in the body of the text.  Abbreviations used in the illustration must be defined in the caption.

 

Table and Figure Citations.  All tables and figures must be cited, and cited in order, in the body of the document.  When a table or figure has been taken from another source, a proper citation must be provided (e.g., reprinted with permission from…, modified from…, adapted from…).  The formatting of the citation depends on the preferences of the copyright owner.  If a source is indicated and thus a copyrighted work is reproduced in the thesis or dissertation, then permission from the original copyright owner is needed.  If a reference is cited in the caption, it should be recognized that GS will assume, unless clearly indicated, that the reference is the source of the illustration so that a figure permission will be expected.  It is extremely rare that captions should contain a literature reference.  More detailed information about copyright, including requirements for obtaining permission to use copyrighted material, is presented in the Policies section.

 

Gaps or Blank Spaces in the Text.  Noticeable gaps or blank spaces between words must be avoided.  In addition, a mid-sentence break to place a figure or table within the text is not allowed.  Whereas images should be embedded within the document, the sentence or idea should be completed first.  New sections can begin only with text and not with a figure or table.

 

Use of Color.  While the use of color may be essential for certain disciplines, it does not copy well and hence is not recommended when presenting statistical or graphical data.  The thesis or dissertation may also be presented in media that do not reproduce color.  Use of cross-hatching, shading, and other techniques in place of color is recommended for depicting data.  For example, the use of differing geometric shapes to plot line graphs results in a more discernable presentation of the data than the use of color.  If color is used for presenting data, sharply contrasting colors are preferred.        

 

Supplementary Material

     Relevant supplementary materials should be attached as a separate file when the document is emailed to GS for initial review.  Supplementary materials may be audio and/or video recordings or oversized figures such as maps.  Submission instructions and rules are covered in the Instructions for Submission to GS section. Students also have the opportunity to upload supplementary multimedia files when uploading the final, GS-approved version of their thesis or dissertation via the ETD administrator (see Instructions for Final Submission to GS).  Supplementary material will eventually be provided as an “in-pocket” CD if paper copies of the thesis or dissertation are ordered through ProQuest, and it will also be available electronically in the library catalog according to the access options selected.  Supplementary multimedia files should be saved with a file type that can be accommodated by most computers because inclusion of such material implies that the author would like it to be available to his or her readers.

 

Checking the Manuscript before Submission to Graduate Studies 

Proofreading and Editing

     Graduate Studies does not serve as an editor.  It is always a good idea to run a spell check and grammar check using MS Word while writing but especially after completing the thesis or dissertation.  In addition, graduate students and thesis or dissertation committee members are expected to carefully proofread and edit the entire document to make sure there are no errors in writing and formatting before it is submitted to GS.  The final documents should reflect the highest caliber of writing possible.

     GS will be compelled to reject a thesis or dissertation with extensive errors.  When this situation occurs, a new Thesis Committee Approval Form or Dissertation Committee Approval Form will need to be included with a revised manuscript the following semester.  Besides delaying graduation, rejection of a thesis or dissertation by GS will result in additional fees paid by the graduate student to the university.  Graduate students who have completed all degree requirements except the culminating experience must maintain continuous enrollment and, therefore, may not stop out for even a single semester.  Either thesis units must be taken each semester or a 1290R course can be taken.  See your advisor, the university catalog, or the Graduate Studies website at http://www.sjsu.edu/gup/gradstudies/policy/rpguidelines/ if you need to learn more about this policy.

     Writing errors commonly made by students are described in the section Common Errors in Master’s Theses and Dissertations (see below).  Besides these errors, theses and dissertations often contain other errors in grammar, spelling, punctuation, word use, syntax, verb tense, and parallel construction as well as redundant, wordy, unclear, overly qualified, and contradictory sentences.  Many students will benefit from hiring a professional editor prior to submission of their thesis or dissertation to their committee for review (see section below on Editing Help).

     Students must take care to correct errors and inconsistencies in style and format.  For example, there should never be a word split (e.g., a hyphenated word) at the end of a line, pages that are not numbered, headings that are not included in the Table of Contents, incorrect spacing or centering, inappropriate margins, and incorrect footnotes.  Widows and orphans (single lines of a paragraph at the top or bottom, respectively, of a printed page) and headers or titles at the very bottom of a page must not occur.  All formatting instructions in this guide and in the style guide chosen by the student must be followed exactly and completely, except where GS has stipulated otherwise in this guide.  A careful review prior to GS submission will help prevent the need for extensive corrections (or rejection) following GS review.

     GS considers that proper citation of sources is within the realm of its review process.  Therefore, the manuscript is subject to rejection if it lacks adequate and accurate literature citations.  All work of others, except for that in the public domain, must be accompanied by an acknowledgment of the original author by citation.  It follows that accurate, complete, and properly and consistently formatted entries in the bibliography or references section are essential.

     All theses that are returned to students for editing provide recommendations for improvement on some, but not all, pages.  Students should not assume that pages without comments are free of error.  Rather, it is critical that students recognize that errors specified by GS often appear in multiple locations and thus must be corrected throughout the document, not only on pages reviewed by GS. 

     GS believes that graduate students should desire and strive for the highest quality product possible and should welcome the corrections and make them willingly.  A quality thesis or dissertation will be a source of satisfaction to students, their advisors, their department, and the university.  With this belief in mind, GS hopes that suggested changes lead to students realizing that improvements can and should be made, and that making these changes universally throughout their thesis or dissertation will result in a higher quality work product.

 

Editing Help

     For those needing help with writing beyond that offered by their graduate committee members, the SJSU Writing Center (http://www.sjsu.edu/writingcenter/) can help.  In addition to providing on-line resources, the Writing Center has specialists who will review a few (but not all) pages of a graduate student’s thesis.  Appointments can be made online or in person.  SJSU also makes available an online editor, Criterion (http://www.sjsu.edu/at/ec/criterion/), which is quite effective albeit not flawless.  Professional editors, who set their own prices, can be hired.  GS may also be able to match students with other graduate students, for example in the English Department, who may be willing to edit for more affordable prices.

     Neither San José State University nor any of its separate offices or departments is responsible for matters concerning a student's relationships or agreements with any outside agency or individual.  This means that neither the university nor any of its offices will take part in disagreements between students and typists, editors, or copy shops concerning services offered or expected or costs billed or paid.  Therefore, it is wise for the student and an editor or copy company to agree about such matters, preferably in writing, before beginning the work.  Such agreements should include, for example, the service provider’s estimate of cost, an estimate of the time needed to prepare or proofread the thesis or dissertation, and an understanding of responsibility for any additional review that may be required.  GS will not provide assistance or clarification about the guidelines to any hired editor; it is the responsibility of the student/author to communicate with any editor selected.

 

Common Errors in Master’s Theses and Dissertations

     This section is intended to provide students, not only with a set of tips for checking their writing mechanics, but a set of priorities that GS finds critical for writing quality.

Grammatical and Writing Errors

  • Subject-verb agreement. Non-agreement in number (plural vs. singular) is a common error, g., it is incorrect to write, “A pencil and paper is needed to write the essay,” because when the word AND joins two subjects, the plural form are should be used.  Similarly, there must be agreement between the subject and pronouns in a sentence, e.g., it is incorrect to write, “The company decided that they should outlaw bad grammar.”  Rather, the correct word to use is it.
  • Shifts in tense. Conventions may vary among disciplines, but typically past tense is used when describing one’s own work, which would include everything done, discovered, or concluded in a research project, and present tense is used when describing facts that continue to be true, such as “the vegetation in this location is chaparral.”  In scholarly work, there may be appropriate shifts in tense throughout, but tense needs to be used consistently within the specific context.
  • Parallel structure. An example of this problem is “The team originated, was modified, and was disbanded within a few days.”  The correct sentence is “The team originated and was modified and disbanded within a few days.”  Another example is “The philosophy was based on cooperation, communication, and making compromises.”  The correction is “The philosophy was based on cooperation, communication, and compromise.”
  • Unlike comparisons. In the sentence, “The nutritive value of junk food is less than green vegetables,” a comparison is being made between nutritive value and green vegetables.  They cannot be compared, as nutritive value can be compared only with nutritive value.  Thus the correct sentence is “The nutritive value of junk food is less than that of green vegetables.” 
  • Multiple qualifiers. Statements such as “It is possible that it may have occurred” or “He suggested that it might have occurred” are overly qualified and make little sense.  Those sentences should be “It is possible that it occurred,” “It may have occurred,” “He suggested that it occurred,” or “He indicated that it may have occurred.”  As can be seen, the intended meaning is unchanged with the correction.  A related problem is embodied in statements such as “about 3-5,” “up to 3-5,” or “estimated to be 3-5.”
  • Agreement between nouns and verbs and between nouns and pronouns. It is incorrect to write, “The man was distraught when losing their”  It is a similar error in “The group could not retain their charter,” as group is singular.  Noun-verb agreement is often violated when using a compound subject, as in “The regulatory authority over state parks and the recognition of that authority lacks constitutional agreement;” the verb should be lack
  • Nouns vs. verbs. In some compound noun constructions, such as logon, markup, shutdown, popup, and pushup, the construction is split to make a verb and preposition.  Thus they accomplish a logon when they log on
  • Plural nouns as modifiers. Generally, this cannot be done, as in members list, which is better referred to as member list.
  • Using adjectives as adverbs. “It is an easier (adjective) battle, and it is more easily (adverb only) won than lost.”
  • Confusing sentence structure. Use complete sentences, and review lengthy, complex sentences to ensure that they make sense (or break them up into several smaller sentences).  Shorter sentences are often better.
  • Missing articles (a, an, the).
  • Confusion between who and that, which and that, its and it’s, fewer and less (less cannot be used with a plural noun, such as in the erroneous less calories), ande. and e.g.
  • Colloquial speech, such as contractions, is improper in a formal document.
  • Wordiness and redundancy. Rather than “The results of the experiment were that 10 individuals died,” it is preferable simply to write, “Ten individuals died.”  Similarly, “In a study on rhetorical devices by Burnstock (2012), he found that…” should be “Burnstock (2012) found that rhetorical devices…”.  In the sentence, “In terms of gender, there were more males than females in the study,” the initial clause is unnecessary and repetitive.  In the sentence, “In his study, the researcher found…” again the first clause is redundant and wordy. 
  • Study, research, and thesis are not humans and hence should not be attributed human characteristics, such as the ability to find, discover, or conclude.  For example, “the study on plant embryogenesis by Shapiro (1995) found…” is easily rearranged to a correct form in “In his study on plant embryogenesis, Shapiro (1995) found…”
  • Overuse of possessives and lack of apostrophes. Most possessive words require apostrophes, as in the professor’s class, the students’ assignments, and Jack Peters’  The most common exception is, of course, its (the possessive form) rather than it’s (the contraction of it is).  Whereas it is not erroneous to use participants’ responses, the meaning is unchanged and the awkwardness removed by changing the phrase to participant responses. 
  • Numbers and units. A numeral, such as 40 cannot start a sentence.  A number, such as Forty  If a numeral is followed by units, such as milliliters, the units must be abbreviated, as in 40 ml.  But the abbreviated units cannot be preceded by anything other than a numeral, so at the start of a sentence, Forty ml, would be erroneous.  Rather, one must rewrite the sentence so that the forty is not at the beginning, as in “A volume of 40 ml…”  Usually, the abbreviation for hours is h and for seconds is s, but one shall use the abbreviation style mandated by his or her style guide, e.g., APA uses hr and sec.
  • Using a bracketed citation in place of a name and date of publication is a way to save space for articles published in journals, but there are limitations to its use. For example, “The experiment was first proposed in [1]” should be “The experiment was first proposed by Dawson [1].”

 

Punctuation Errors

  • Incorrect use of commas. A comma cannot be used to separate the subject from the predicate.  A comma must precede a conjunction if followed by an independent clause (a full sentence with subject and verb), g., “The dog is passive, and the cat is aggressive.”  A comma cannot be used before a conjunction that is followed by a dependent clause, e.g., “The dog is passive and the cat aggressive.”
  • Semicolons vs. commas before conjunctions. With some conjunctions (and, but, yet, because, whereas, while), one may join two complete sentences with a comma between them (before the conjunction); however, with others (however, thus, hence, moreover, therefore), there must be a semicolon to indicate the separation.  Use of a comma with the latter set, along with transitional adverbs (most adverbs end in –ly), would cause the sentence to be a run-on.  Therefore, “The collection ranks among the finest in the nation, nevertheless it compares poorly with collections from other countries” is a run-on sentence and requires a semicolon before “nevertheless” and a comma following it.
  • Semicolons in lists. An independent clause (complete sentence) is to be used after a semicolon, except when using semicolons to separate items in a complex series (“complex” meaning that there are commas within items in the series).
  • Quotation marks. In American English, single quotation marks are used only when within double quotation marks, and all punctuation (with the occasional exception of question marks) is placed within the quotation marks. 
  • Colons should never be used at the end of a header or title nor preceding a list after a preposition or verb, such as in “The play was approved by: the producer, the director, and the author,” or “The device was: designed, constructed, tested, modified, and retested.” This latter rule is true even if the items in the series are preceded by numbers, such as (1), (2), (3)…, or letters, such as a), b), c)…  Therefore, “the planets in the solar system from smallest to largest orbits are: (a) Mercury, (b) Venus, (c) Earth, (d) Mars, …” is incorrect.  To use a semicolon as part of a sentence, it must be preceded by a complete sentence, even if the portion of the sentence that follows is an offset entry.

 

Inconsistencies and Formatting Errors

  • Use of capitalization. If the style guide chosen provides specific capitalization rules for different heading levels (g., APA), they must be followed.  If the style guide does not, a pattern should be chosen and adhered to throughout the thesis.
  • Format of headings subheadings. For example, APA utilizes a system of cascading headings, and the format changes depending on the heading level.
  • Formatting of the references cited section. This section requires great attention to detail to meet the formatting requirements within any style.  It is necessary to identify the type of document referenced, whether it be a book, webpage, paper, entry in an edited collection, symposium item, and so forth, and to apply the formatting specific to the type.  Precision and consistency are essential.

 

A Note about Reviewer Errors – We Make Mistakes Too!

     Errors will be pointed out by reviewers.  If a student followed a style guide, there is no conflict with the thesis guidelines, and the student’s thesis chair agrees that the student can keep the item as is, then provide GS with a list of objections to the review comments.  In these cases as well those in which suggestions for improvement or style comments are made by the reviewer, the student may keep the item in question as is.  While GS tries not to comment on content and never uses content criticisms as criteria for accepting or rejecting a thesis, occasionally it is a fine line between writing quality and content and GS may, upon occasion, step over the line.  In these cases, with the permission of your committee, you may again ignore these comments if you choose, but a formal written objection and explanation is still necessary.  However, they are generally correct and might be considered as a means for improving the thesis.

 

Instructions for Submission to GS for Initial Review

Deadlines and Forms Required

     Submission of the thesis or dissertation to GS can occur only in the semester in which the student is graduating.  The graduating semester is indicated to the university on the Application for Award of Graduate Degree form or via a change in graduation date through the Graduation Date Change Request for Award of Graduate Degree form on the GAPE website (www.sjsu.edu/gape/forms).  Note the specific deadlines to submit forms to GAPE each semester do not necessarily correspond to those required by GS (www.sjsu.edu/gup/gradstudies).  Close attention should be paid to these dates, as deadlines are firm and exceptions rarely made.

     Submission also requires that the student has received final departmental approval to submit the thesis or dissertation, as evidenced by committee signatures on the Thesis or Dissertation Committee Approval Form.  At that point, students should email a copy of the completed thesis or dissertation (as a PDF) and all accompanying documents to thesis@sjsu.edu.

     To clarify, doctoral students will submit their dissertation, forms, and any supplemental material to the thesis email address after successfully completing the dissertation and obtaining signatures of approval from their doctoral committee.  Graduate Studies will then conduct a formal review and contact the student with the results.  Once format revisions are made, the doctoral student will then prepare the same process as for master’s theses, that is, submission directly to the ETD administrator.

     Remember, GS is not the same department as GAPE.  If you send materials to the wrong office, there is a chance your paperwork will be lost.

 

Technical Requirements for the PDF

     Students are expected to use a word processing program that allows for conversion of the thesis or dissertation manuscript into a single PDF file.  Tables or figures must be included in the same file.  The file format must be PDF; Microsoft Word or other types of documents will not be allowed, as software compatibility would not be guaranteed, and the appearance of the manuscript might be altered when opened by GS reviewers. 

     The fonts used should be embedded before converting the manuscript to a PDF.  This means that all of the font information used to create the document appearance is stored in the PDF file.  No matter what type of fonts others have on their computers, they will be able to see the file as it was intended.  For instructions on how to embed fonts, http://www.etdadmin.com/cgi-bin/main/faq?siteId=0#pdf4 should be visited and the following steps taken:

  • Password protection on the PDF must be disabled.
  • The PDF security settings should allow printing and document changes.
  • The resulting PDF should be reviewed to make sure there were no formatting issues or other problems that occurred in the conversion process before sending it to GS for review.

 

Required Documents and Instructions for Naming Files

     All documents should be emailed to GS at the same time.  They must not be sent piecemeal, and professors should not send parts of the submission packet on a student’s behalf.  It is the student’s responsibility to gather and organize the required documents prior to submitting them to GS.  The file size of the completed document must not be so large that it will be impossible to open the document.  Gmail sets a 25 mb limit to attachments.

     The following documents, saved and labeled exactly as indicated below, must be included in the email submission to GS:

  • One PDF of the thesis or dissertation labeled as

last name_first name_thesis.pdf (for master's theses)

last name_first name_dissertation.pdf (for doctoral dissertations)

last name_first name_packet.pdf

  • If applicable (see the Policies section for details on IRB and IACUC requirements), one PDF of the IRB or IACUC approval letter (if the thesis or dissertation uses data collected from human subjects or is based on research involving animals, respectively). Label the document

last name_first name_irb or iacuc.pdf

  • If applicable, (see the Policies section for details on copyright permission), one PDF of all permissions to reproduce any copyrighted material in the thesis or dissertation, labeled

last name_first name_permissions.pdf

     Multiple permission letters should be scanned into one PDF document.  Each permission letter must be clearly labeled at the top with the title of the corresponding item in the thesis or dissertation (e.g., Figure 1 in thesis or dissertation).  This information can either be written by hand or typed for each permission letter, and multiple PDF attachments of the permission letters must not be sent. 

     Include any additional supplementary files as “in pocket” material.  Supplementary files are usually multimedia files such as audio or videos files.  The file types may vary.  If supplementary files are provided, a description of them should be included in the body of the email.

 

Emailing the Thesis or Dissertation to GS

Where to Send the Email

     After carefully preparing and labeling all of the materials as described above, all submissions should be emailed at the same time to thesis@sjsu.eduDo not email submissions to the Graduate Studies Associate or any other GS staff member.  Do not send multiple emails when submitting materials.  GS is not obligated to sort through multiple iterations to determine which version is the latest or which version students would like GS to review.  Shortly after submission, you will receive an email notification.

     Once the email is sent to GS, students cannot make any additional changes to the manuscript until after GS completes its review.  If a thesis is “provisionally approved,” students will have the opportunity to make corrections.  If the number of errors is so large or the errors so egregious that the thesis or dissertation is rejected for the semester, then a new submission with all of the required documents and an updated Thesis or Dissertation Information Packet must be emailed to thesis@sjsu.edu the following semester by the posted deadline.

 

How to Label the Email

     Include the student’s name in the subject line of the email.  There is no need to provide a special message in the body of the email, except in the following two cases.  (1) If departmental guidelines were used as the style guide, include a link to those guidelines in the body of the email.  (2) If a journal format was used, include a link to the Instructions for Authors and a sample article from the journal, including the Literature Cited section of the article.  If one of the commonly used style guides listed on the Thesis or Dissertation Information Packet was used, no further submissions are needed.

 

Deadlines

     Submission deadlines for master's theses are posted on the GS website at 
http://www.sjsu.edu/gup/gradstudies/thesis/thesis_info/index.html.  Submission deadlines for doctoral dissertations are posted on the GS website at http://www.sjsu.edu/gup/gradstudies/thesis/dissertation_info/index.html.  Any submission received after 11:59 pm PST on either of the posted dates will not be accepted and will not be reviewed in the given semester.  As mentioned previously, students can submit their thesis for review only if they have also filed the appropriate paperwork for notification of the intention to graduate with GAPE (www.sjsu.edu/gape/).  The paperwork would include submission to GAPE of the Application for Award of Graduate Degree and, if the date on that form is not met, a Graduation Date Change Request for Award of Graduate Degree. 

     Questions must not be directed to the thesis submission address (see Questions and Contact Information below), as that email is used only to receive submissions.  Once submitted, the student will receive an automated response confirming that the thesis or dissertation has been received.  Further follow-up or confirmation with our office is not needed.  The Graduate Studies Associate will contact the student if there is anything else that is needed or if GS has any questions.

 

GS Process

     For master's theses, students will be notified of the review outcome via email approximately 6 weeks after the posted deadline – once GS has received and reviewed all student theses for a given semester – even if a student submitted his/her thesis early.  This time frame may vary slightly depending on how many theses are received by GS each semester.  Students should allow at least 6 weeks from the deadline date before contacting the Graduate Studies Associate about the status of their thesis.  Corrections and comments will be noted on the thesis itself, which will be sent back the student and thesis committee chair in PDF format.

     For doctoral dissertations, the review will take approximately one week from the deadline date.  In light of this expedited review, it is the expectation of GS that formatting instructions, figure and literature citation policies, and writing quality standards will have been scrupulously followed.

     Neither the Graduate Studies Associate nor any other GS staff member has time to preview a student’s manuscript and accompanying documents to check that they are “okay” for submission or provide them with technical support beyond that provided on the GS website and in these guidelines.  A careful reading of these guidelines, familiarity with the style guide and software programs of choice, attention to detail, and consultation with graduate committee members should be sufficient preparation.

     Please do not contact GS if your thesis or dissertation is rejected; instead contact your thesis or dissertation supervisor who may decide to contact us.  You may contact GS yourself if you have questions about notations made by the reviewers.

 

Questions and Contact Information

     All questions about the thesis or dissertation review process and Guidelines should be directed to

Cheryl Cowan
Graduate Studies Associate
408-924-2485
Cheryl.Cowan@sjsu.edu

     Students should not submit their thesis or dissertation to the Graduate Studies Associate but instead to thesis@sjsu.edu.  They may contact the Graduate Studies Associate in advance of the deadline if they have specific questions about their submission or about the Guidelines.

 

Policies

Copyright Permission

     If the thesis or dissertation contains material or reproductions that are copyright protected, a statement from the copyright owner granting permission to use the material must be emailed with the thesis or dissertation.  Examples of copyrighted material include images that the student did not create, such as tables, figures, graphs, photographs, and maps as well as extensive portions of text, such as reproductions of parts of journal articles and screenshots from downloaded apps according to their Terms of Use.  GS accepts scanned permission letters that were received by a student via email; however, the Sample Permission Letter for Use of Previously Copyrighted Material provided by ProQuest, the publisher of our theses and dissertations, is recommended.  Access to the sample letter and additional information about copyright law and graduate research can be gained from the SJSU Office of Research website and the ProQuest website at http://www.sjsu.edu/research/.

     Permission may need to be sought from the author, publisher, or repository (i.e., museum or archive) depending on the owner of the copyright.  The permission letter must state that the copyright owner is aware that ProQuest may supply single copies upon request and may proceed under the contract of the publishing agreement that you select for your thesis or dissertation.  One must plan well so that permission letters will be received on time.  Theses and dissertations submitted for review and containing multiple copied images will be rejected by GS unless the student indicates awareness of copyright requirements and confirms that procedures for obtaining the appropriate permissions are underway.  All copyrighted material must include the correct citation within the thesis or dissertation (i.e., Reprinted with permission from…, Adapted from…, Modified from…) regardless of that which other style guides require.  The formatting of the citation depends on the preferences of the copyright owner.

     If a thesis or dissertation utilizes a number of copyrighted materials or contains a mixture of a student’s own images and copyrighted images, it is recommended that a list be created, separate from the thesis or dissertation, which outlines the source of each image and whether or not permission is needed/included/pending.  Such a list will help GS expedite thesis or dissertation processing.  This list can be included as part of the permission attachment or in the body of the email when sending the manuscript to GS.  If multiple permission letters are submitted, they must be scanned and sent as one attachment and labeled to make clear the figure/image within the manuscript to which the permission corresponds.  If permission by the thesis or dissertation publication deadline is lacking, the copyrighted material must be omitted from the document. 

 

Human Subjects Research and Animal Care Approval

     If the thesis or dissertation includes data obtained from human subjects (experiments, surveys, interviews, etc.), prior approval from the SJSU Human Subjects Institutional Review Board must be garnered.  Information concerning the use of human subjects is available on the SJSU IRB webpage at http://www.sjsu.edu/research/irb/.

     If the thesis or dissertation includes any experiments or other uses of animals, prior approval is needed from the SJSU Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC).  Information concerning animal care is available on the SJSU IACUC webpage http://www.sjsu.edu/research/iacuc/index.html.

     Human subject research and/or animal care approval must be obtained from SJSU prior to the initiation of the research (i.e., before recruitment of subjects into the research and before any data are collected), regardless of whether the research is being conducted in conjunction with another institution and human subjects research or animal care approval has been sought there.  Failure to obtain the necessary approval and submit the appropriate documentation will result in the rejection of the thesis or dissertation.  Once the approval has been obtained, a copy of the permission letter should be included with the submission of the thesis or dissertation.  While it is acceptable to include the IRB or IACUC approval letter as an appendix in the thesis or dissertation if this is a format required by the student’s  department, GS recommends omitting any personal contact information (e.g., address, phone number), as the thesis will be available to the public.  Otherwise a copy of the IRB or IACUC letter must be submitted as a separate PDF attachment when the thesis/dissertation is initially emailed to GS for review.  When uploading the final digital copy of the thesis/dissertation to the ETD administrator, it is not necessary to attach the IRB or IACUC approval letter as a supplementary file, unless the letter has been incorporated into an appendix in the thesis/dissertation.

 

Instructions for Final Submission to GS

     GS will notify a student when his/her manuscript may be uploaded to the online ETD administrator.  The following final steps are to be completed only after this notification.  In other words, students should not use the ETD administrator to submit their manuscripts at any time prior to receiving the go-ahead from GS to do so.

 

Corrections

     All corrections to the thesis or dissertation that were specified by GS should be made along with any additional corrections that GS may not have caught.  Kinds of errors similar to those specified must be corrected throughout the document.  Disagreement with individual corrections can be conveyed in writing to GS either by the student or committee member.  We occasionally makes mistakes or inadvertently changes the meaning of a sentence with suggested corrections, as we are not always familiar with the norms and nuances of each individual discipline.  Therefore, we expect that some corrections will meet with disagreement. 

 

GS Process

     GS will verify that the corrections indicated on the reviewed text have been made by checking the final PDF against the original version submitted for review.  The original draft should not be uploaded to the ETD administrator, nor should GS be emailed to let us know uploading has been done.  Instead, the system will notify us when it has been uploaded.  In addition to emailing the student about the completion of the thesis/dissertation requirement, GS will notify GAPE that it has been completed once the final version and all supporting documents and payments have been posted and the requested corrections have been confirmed.  Approximately 6 weeks is needed for this process to be complete.

 

ETD Administrator

     Students should visit the UMI/ProQuest ETD administrator site (www.etdadmin.com/sjsu/), and review the available information under the Resources and Guidelines tab to learn about the available publishing options.

 

Agreements

     Students are required to complete two agreements:

 

ProQuest Publishing Agreement

     This agreement is embedded into the online ETD submission process.  The ProQuest publishing agreement grants ProQuest the non-exclusive right to reproduce and disseminate a student’s work according to the publishing options he or she selects.  ProQuest acts as a publisher but does not own the copyright to a thesis or dissertation.  The author retains control of the work’s intellectual content.  The terms of each publishing agreement should be read and understood before selecting a publishing option, as the author will not be able to alter this decision until SJSU has delivered the thesis or dissertation to ProQuest.  ProQuest can assist students with refunds and amendments to their publishing agreement once it receives a digital copy of the thesis or dissertation from the institution.  Author options include selecting the type of publishing as well as imposing publishing restrictions.  For questions or clarification about the ProQuest Publishing Agreement, reference can be made to the Resources & Guidelines tab on the ETD administrator site (www.etdadmin.com/sjsu), or ProQuest itself can be contacted at (800) 521-0600.  Renewals or extensions of the ProQuest publishing option must be made by the author in the future directly with ProQuest when the current period expires.

 

SJSU License Agreement

     The SJSU License Agreement is part of the Thesis or Dissertation Information Packet that students are required to submit along with their thesis or dissertation for initial review to GS.  GS will forward this agreement to the University MLK Library once the final document is uploaded to the ETD administrator.  This agreement allows students to communicate the level of access they want others to have to their thesis or dissertation in the University Library catalog.  Students can choose between SJSU access only (only SJSU faculty, staff, and students would have access to view a full text version of the document) or worldwide access (anyone searching the library catalog would have access to view a full-text version).  An embargo option is also available allowing the student to delay publication of all parts of the thesis or dissertation, including its title, author, and abstract, in 6-month increments for up to 5 years (University Policy S14-10).  At the end of the embargo period, the student can contact the Graduate Studies Associate to renew the embargo.  There is no limit to the number of renewals allowed.  While it does not appear on the License Agreement, S14-10 also allows the chair of the student's graduate committee to embargo a student thesis or dissertation for a maximum nonrenewable period of 6 months.  This is permitted in case a preparatory period is needed to publish or otherwise disseminate related research that the faculty member is overseeing, such that publication of the thesis or dissertation would prematurely release sensitive or proprietary materials to the public.  For questions about the SJSU License Agreement, contact GS.

     In some unusual circumstances, students may not have sole ownership of their thesis or dissertation.  Such circumstances may include support from a foundation or grant that may specify terms of ownership for the resulting work, previous publication of parts of the thesis or dissertation in a journal or book in which the author has assigned the copyright to those parts of the thesis or dissertation to the publisher, or the inclusion of copyrighted material with restrictions on commercial distribution.  In addition to informing GS of these unusual circumstances, students should be certain to review past agreements and secure permission if necessary.

 

Uploading the Thesis or Dissertation to the ETD Administrator

     The ETD administrator is accessed via www.etdadmin.com/sjsu/.  Once the Submitting Your Dissertation/Thesis tab is clicked, students will be directed to create an account as a new user, after which they will be able to log in and convert their thesis or dissertation to PDF.  To ensure the integrity of the document, it is preferred that students use the PDF conversion tool that is provided by the ETD administrator for this final stage.  The previous section, Technical Requirements for the PDF, might need to be consulted.  The same requirements apply for the final thesis or dissertation copy.

     Once students have checked the resulting PDF version of their document for accuracy, they can proceed with the submission process.  The ETD administrator will guide the student through the submission, which will include selecting a publishing option, ordering personal copies and selecting additional optional services (e.g., registering the copyright), attaching any supplementary media files, and making credit card payments.  Students should enter their thesis or dissertation title and any other information into the online form fields using standard title case lettering (only the first letter of major words is capitalized).  All caps should not be used, as the library safeguards that all metadata in its system have a consistent format.  When naming supplementary media files, students should use their name along with a description of the file (e.g., johnson_kevin_audio.pdf).  Publishing fees apply and vary depending on the publishing option selected and additional optional services. 

 

Size and File Capacity

     ProQuest limits the allowable file size of the total submission – the PDF manuscript and supplementary files – to 100 megabytes.  Each individual supplementary file must be less than 10 megabytes, although there is no limit to the number and format of the supplementary files that can be attached.  When the size of the total submission exceeds 100 megabytes, one must create an account using the ETD administrator and contact GS to receive alternate submission instructions for the thesis/dissertation and supplementary documents.

 

Sending Copyright Permissions to ProQuest

     If required to secure written permission from a publisher or author for reproducing copyrighted material, one must photocopy the letter(s) and mail the copy to ProQuest.  Students should include with correspondence their name, the title of their thesis or dissertation, the name of their university (San José State University), and the ETD submission ID, the latter of which will be sent to them in an email after submitting the manuscript via the ETD administrator.  It is highly recommended that students keep the original permission letters for their records.

                                                         ProQuest
                                                         Customer Service
                                                         789 E. Eisenhower Parkway
                                                         P.O. Box 1346
                                                         Ann Arbor, MI 48106-13

 

 

Appendices

     Please note, the formatting of the examples provided in the appendices are more accurate in the pdf copy of the guidelines than those displayed below. Be sure to read and follow the instructions for each appendix.

  

Appendix A: Sample Title Page for Master’s Theses

     Note that, for the title page (shown below), the actual page number is not visible, but the title page is considered the first page of the thesis.  Check the pdf version for accurate margins and layout.

 

 

 

FULL TITLE OF MASTER’S THESIS GOES HERE WITH 300-CHARACTER LIMIT. CENTERED, IN ALL CAPS, NOT BOLDED, IN A 12-POINT FONT, AND SINGLE SPACED IF MORE THAN ONE LINE

 

 

A Thesis

Presented to 

The Faculty of the Department of Kinesiology

San José State University

 

 

In Partial Fulfillment 

of the Requirements for the Degree 

Master of Arts

 

 

by 

Peter Maravitch 

December 2017

 

 

 

Appendix B: Sample Title Page for Doctoral Dissertations

     Note that, for the title page (shown below), the actual page number is not visible, but the title page is considered the first page of the dissertation. Check the pdf versionfor accurate margins and layout.

 

 

 

FULL TITLE OF DOCTORAL DISSERTATION GOES HERE WITH 300-CHARACTER LIMIT. CENTERED, IN ALL CAPS, NOT BOLDED, IN A 12-POINT FONT, AND SINGLE SPACED IF MORE THAN ONE LINE

 

 

A Dissertation 

Presented to 

The Faculty of the Educational Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership 

San José State University

 

  

In Partial Fulfillment 

of the Requirements for the Degree 

Doctor of Education

 

 

by

Gustav Nyquist 

May 2017

 

 

 

Appendix C: Sample Copyright Page

     The following page should be emulated in both theses and dissertations.

Location in document

Immediately follows title page.

Page number

Page is counted but no number appears.

Layout and spacing

The lines are double space.

The last three lines are centered at the bottom of the page.

The capitalization shown must be scrupulously followed.

Tips and tricks

Do not use the space bar to center the last three lines; rather use the centering function on the word processing software.

 

 

                                  (top of page)                                        

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© 2017

Nicklas Lidström 

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

 

  

 

 

Appendix D: Sample Thesis Committee Page for Master's Theses

     See the example below for the sample Thesis Committee Page.  This page is a typed list of committee members with their department name; it does not include signatures.  Add organizational affiliation if a committee member is not from SJSU.

Location in document

Immediately follows the Copyright Page

Page number

Page is counted but no number appears

Layout and spacing

Start first line 4 lines from the top.

Skip 2 lines after “Designated Thesis. . .”

Skip 2 lines after THESIS TITLE.

Skip 1 line after “by” which is NOT capitalized.

Skip 2 lines after your name (which does not have your degree next to it, unless you already have a degree other than the one associated with this thesis).

Skip 2 lines between the next three lines of text.

Skip 6 lines after the date.

Tips and tricks

Do not use the space bar to center the last three lines; rather, use the centering function on the word processing software.

For the committee members, create a table to easily line up names and affiliations.  Single space affiliations that do not fit on one line.  Try to have the first initial of the names line up with the letter “A” in “APPROVED” above.  To do this, go to the Format Paragraph tab, and indent to the appropriate distance.  When finished “suppress” the lines of the table so that they do not show up.

     Evidence of the approval of the thesis is provided separately to GS by means of the Thesis Committee Approval Form that the committee members must sign and that is included in the Thesis Information Packet to be emailed with your initial submission to GS.  The Thesis Information Packet can be found on the GS website.

 

 

 

The Designated Thesis Committee Approves the Thesis Titled

 

 

FULL TITLE OF MASTER’S THESIS CENTERED, IN ALL CAPS, NOT BOLDED, IN A 12-POINT FONT, AND SINGLE SPACED IF MORE THAN ONE LINE

 

by 

Richard Shermer 

 

APPROVED FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF PHILOSOPHY 

 

SAN JOSÉ STATE UNIVERSITY

 

August 2017

 

 

 

 

 

                         James Dawkins, Ph.D.              Department of Philosophy

                         Michael Hitchens, Ph.D.            Department of Philoshopy

                         Mark T. Clemens, MFA              Director of Marketing, Steamboat Express

 

 

Appendix E: Sample Dissertation Committee Page for Doctoral Dissertations

     See the example below for the sample Dissertation Committee Page which is a typed list of committee members and their departments; it does not include signatures.  Add organizational affiliation if a committee member is not from SJSU.  Make sure to follow these directions when creating your Dissertation Committee Page.

Location in document

Immediately follows the Copyright Page

Page number

Page is counted but no number appears

Layout and spacing

Start first line 4 lines from the top.

Skip 2 lines after “Designated Thesis. . .”

Skip 2 lines after THESIS TITLE which must be in all caps; if the title is more than one line, single space.

Skip 1 line after “by” which is NOT capitalized.

Skip 2 lines after your name (which does not have your degree next to it unless you already have a degree other than the one associated with this thesis).

Skip 2 lines between the next three lines of text.

Skip 6 lines after the date.

Tips and tricks

Do not use the space bar to center the last three lines; rather, use the centering function on the word processing software.

For the committee members, create a table to easily line up names and affiliations.  Single space affiliations that do not fit on one line.  Try to have the first initial of the names line up with the letter “A” in “APPROVED” above.  To do this, go to the Format Paragraph tab and indent to the appropriate distance.  When finished “suppress” the lines of the table so that they do not show up.

     Evidence of the approval of the thesis is provided separately to GS by means of the Dissertation Committee Approval Form that the committee members must sign and that is included in the Dissertation Information Packet to be emailed with your initial submission to GS.  The Dissertation Information Packet can be found on the GS website.

 

 

The Designated Dissertation Committee Approves the Dissertation Titled

  

 

FULL TITLE OF DOCTORAL DISSERTATION CENTERED, IN ALL CAPS, NOT BOLDED, IN A 12-POINT FONT, AND SINGLE SPACED IF MORE THAN ONE LINE

 

by

Christopher Randi

 

APPROVED FOR THE EDUCATIONAL DOCTORAL PROGRAM IN EDUCATIONAL LEADERSHIP 

 

SAN JOSÉ STATE UNIVERSITY

 

May 2017

 

 

 

                             Rocky Colavito, Eh.D.             Department of Elementary Education

                             Max Bruck, Ph.D.                   School of Social Work

                             Ozzie Smith, M.A.                  Superintendent, Willow School District 

 

 

Appendix F: Sample Abstract Page

     See the example below for the sample Abstract Page.  Make sure to follow these directions when creating your abstract page.

Location in document

Immediately follows Committee Page.

Page number

Page is counted but no number appears on the page

Layout and spacing

The abstract should be double spaced.  Start at the top of the page.  Intent the paragraph to 0.25 inch. The word “ABSTRACT” and the title should be in all caps.  If the title is more than one line it should be single spaced.  Make sure the word “ABSTRACT,” the title and your name are all centered.  Do not include any other names besides your own on this page. 

 

 

ABSTRACT 

 

REQUIREMENTS FOR A SAN JOSE STATE UNIVERSITY ABSTRACT WHOSE TITLE IS LONGER THAN ONE LINE, WHICH MEANS THAT IT IS SINGLE SPACED

 

by Pavel Datsyuk 

     The abstract should look like this one.  It must be indented 0.25 inch and consist of a

single paragraph.  The maximum length is one page.  It can contain no literature citations

or figure citations, nor can it contain any statements that would require a citation.  Thus one

cannot simply leave off the author name and/or date from a statement that would normally

require them.  The abstract should summarize every aspect of the body of text of the thesis

or dissertation.  It is common for students to summarize only the introduction, but that is

insufficient.  Therefore, include the scope and purpose of the investigation, as it appears in

the Introduction.  The methods should then be summarized, usually in a sentence or two. 

Important results come next followed by the most substantial conclusions.

 

 

 

 

 

Appendix G: Sample Acknowledgments Page

     See the example below for the sample Acknowledgments Page or Dedication Page. You may choose either ACKNOWLEDGMENTS or DEDICATION as the title of this page.  The page is optional but a good idea so you can thank your professors, family members, and any others who have helped you while a graduate student.  If yours extends beyond a single page, the page numbering is continued sequentially; that is, the two pages would be numbered v and vi.  No title or header should appear on page vi.

Location in document

Immediately follows Abstract Page

Page number

Pagination starts here with lowercase Roman numeral v centered at bottom of the page.  Make sure the Roman numeral is the same sized font and same font as in the rest of the document.

Layout and spacing

Start at the top of the page.  This section should be double spaced.

The word “ACKNOWLEDGMENTS” should be in all caps.

Tips and Tricks

Make sure to spell the word “ACKNOWLEDGMENTS” correctly.  There is no “e” after the “g.”

 

 

 

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

     The SJSU Master’s Thesis Guidelines are the result of the efforts of many individuals. 

First, thanks are due to the numerous students of SJSU who have provided input on

the information of value to them.  Second, great appreciation is due to Drs. Pamela Stacks

and David Bruck, whose dedication to SJSU students and commitment to establishing

an electronic thesis submission system resulted in our current system of submission and

review.

     More recently, the efforts of Cheryl Cowan, the Graduate Studies Associate who takes on

all functions of a Thesis and Dissertation Coordinator, and former Thesis Coordinator

Alena Filip, in the Office of Graduate Studies, are commended.  Cheryl’s involvement and

efforts at helping students to be informed and prepared are noteworthy.  Lastly,

additional thanks are due to the thesis reviewers, who remain anonymous, and to all faculty

who have found ways to help students succeed.

 

 

 

Appendix H: Sample Table of Contents

     See the example below for the sample Table of Contents.  Make sure to follow these directions when creating your Table of Contents.  If using an “automatic” Table of Contents feature available with your word processing program, be sure to double check that the correct format, as described below, is used before submitting to GS. 

Location in document

Immediately follows Acknowledgments Page

Page number

Pagination continues here with lowercase Roman numeral vi (assuming one page of acknowledgments) centered at bottom of the page.  Make sure the Roman numeral is the same sized font and same font as in the rest of the document.

Layout and spacing

Start at the top of the page.  The words “TABLE OF CONTENTS” must be in all caps.

For spacing, skip 2 lines between main headings and skip only one line between entries in the same heading.

Tips and Tricks

It is easy to line everything up if you create a table, and then type the entries inside the table.  To indent, do not use the space bar, but rather choose Format, Paragraph, and 0.25 inch from the left for the first indent with increments of 0.25 inch for each indent thereafter.

Use Right Justify (on the right hand column) to make sure all of the page numbers are aligned. 

 

 

 

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

List of Tables................................................................  vii

List of Figures............................................................... viii

Introduction.................................................................   1

Literature Review..........................................................   5

Title of Your Manuscript Here.........................................  10

     Materials and Methods..............................................  11

     Participants.............................................................  12

          Recruitment.......................................................  12

               Domestic students.........................................  14

               International students....................................  14

                    English speaking.......................................  15

                    Non-English speaking.................................  15

     Evaluations..............................................................  16

     Data analysis...........................................................  19

     Results.................................................................... 24

          Individual data....................................................  25

          Group data.........................................................  27

     Discussion...............................................................  30

     Limitations..............................................................  35

     References............................................................... 40

Implications for Practice................................................  45

Literature Cited...........................................................  50

 

 

 

Appendix I: Sample List of Tables

     See the example below for the sample List of Tables Page.   Make sure to follow these directions when creating your List of Tables.

Location in document

Immediately follows Table of Contents

Page number

Pagination uses a lowercase Roman numeral centered at bottom of the page.  Make sure the Roman numeral is the same sized font and same font as in the rest of the document.  Continue counting from the Table of Contents.

Layout and spacing

Start at the top of the page.  This section should be double spaced between sections but single spaced within sections.

The words “LIST OF TABLES” should be in all caps in the center of the page.

Make sure that the page numbers line up with the dots leading up to them.  If there is more than one line of text, make sure the page number is lined up with the second line of text.

Tips and Tricks

It is again easy to line everything up if you create a table and then type the entries inside the table. 

Use Right Justify (on the right hand column) to make sure all of the page numbers are aligned. 

 

 

LIST OF TABLES

Table 1.     First sentence of the first table in body of text............................................ 50

Table 2.     First sentence or sentence fragment of the second table in body of text,                               shown precisely as it appears in the text in every detail (note that this                                 entry is single spaced).............................................................................. 60

Table 3.     Include every table in order, and use another page if needed........................ 72

Table 4.     Make sure to skip lines between table entries, but single space within                                  each entry................................................................................................ 74

Table 5.     Notice how the page numbers line up with the dots leading to them.............. 78

 

 

Appendix J: Sample List of Figures

     See the example below for the sample List of Figures Page.  Make sure to follow these directions when creating your List of Figures.

Location in document

Immediately follows List of Tables

Page number

Pagination uses a lowercase Roman numeral centered at bottom of the page.  Make sure the Roman numeral is the same sized font and same font as in the rest of the document.  Continue counting from the List of Tables, if included.

Layout and spacing

Start at the top of the page.  This section should be double spaced between sections but single spaced within sections.

The words “LIST OF FIGURES” should be in all caps in the center of the page.

Make sure that the page numbers line up with the dots leading up to them.  If there is more than one line of text, make sure the page number is lined up with the second line of text.

Tips and Tricks

Line everything up by creating a table, and then type the entries inside the table. 

Use Right Justify (on the right hand column) to make sure all of the page numbers are aligned. 

 

 

LIST OF FIGURES

Figure 1.     First sentence of the first figure in body of text.......................................... 52

Figure 2.     First sentence or sentence fragment of the second figure in body                                         of text, shown precisely as it appears in the text in every detail                                           (note that this entry is single spaced)....................................................... 62

Figure 3.     Include every figure in order, and use another page if needed...................... 74

Figure 4.     Make sure to skip lines between figure entries, but single space                                           within each entry.................................................................................... 75

Figure 5.     Notice how the page numbers line up with dots leading to them................... 80

 

 

 

Appendix K: Sample List of Abbreviations

     See the example below for the sample List of Abbreviations Page.  This page is optional but often included in theses and dissertations in which technical jargon is used.  Make sure to follow these directions when creating your List of Abbreviations.

Location in document

Immediately follows List of Figures

Page number

Pagination uses a lowercase Roman numeral centered at bottom of the page.  Make sure the Roman numeral is the same sized font and same font as in the rest of the document.  Continue counting from the List of Figures.

Layout and spacing

Start at the top of the page. Be consistent in capitalization and other formatting concerns.

The words “LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS” should be in all caps in the center of the page.

Alphabetize the list.

Tips and Tricks

It is a common error to capitalize molecular compounds, such as deoxyribonucleic acid or sodium dodecyl sulfate.

It does not follow that a capitalized acronym, such as TOD, must correspond to a capitalized expansion, as in tour of duty.

 

 

LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS

 

CUCA – Cornell University’s College of Agriculture

DOD – US Department of Defense

ELHS – East Lansing High School

RNA - ribonucleic acid          

snRNA – small nuclear ribonucleic acid

SI units – System of International Units (Système international d'unités)

 

     Please note, the formatting of the examples provided in the Appendices are more accurate in the pdf copy of the guidelines than those displayed above. Be sure to read and follow the instructions for each Appendix.