Thesis Format – A Guide For A Good Thesis Format

27.04.20 Thesis Time to read: 6min

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Definition: Thesis Format

Half of the task lies in understanding what a thesis format is. Once you do, the rest will be more straightforward. An argument can be termed as an essay that puts together personal research. A thesis format holds a statement that awaits being maintained or proven.

College and university level, however, is different from other levels. You write papers more. The papers are a chance to impress your teacher and convince them that indeed, you qualify for the next level. Each article requires you to come up with a thesis format upon which you base the rest of your writing. It summarizes the contents of the paper, making it easier for both you and the teacher.


The term thesis format might be ambiguous to many college and university students, especially first-year students. To start your academic writing journey, it is essential to understand what a thesis format entails in depth.

Generally, a thesis format comprises of three parts. The first part has the title page, description page and the table of contents etc. The body begins with the introduction and then delves deeper into the research topic. The last part contains sections like references and appendices.

The length of your thesis depends on the field of study or your study department. Your bibliography and references are not included in the page count. A bachelor´s thesis is 40-60 pages, whereas a master´s thesis or a diploma thesis is usually 60-100 pages.

Before you begin writing your thesis, you need to have already completed the research phase. This means that you’ve already decided on a thesis topic and you’ve developed and refined your research questions and thesis statement. If you’ve done all of this, then you can create a thesis outline and finally begin writing.

You can start with reviewing other theses by previous researchers in your institution´s library. By doing this it might help you to get an overview of the style, format and structure used in your field of study. The next step is to develop an outline of your thesis. You will need to have already refined your research question and thesis statement. Only after that you should start writing your thesis. It is recommended to write down everything that has been published without worrying too much about the detail.

Tip: If you’re struggling with formulating your thesis statement, cheque out some thesis statement examples for a dose of inspiration.

The thesis statement should appear in the beginning of your paper. It’s normally towards the end of the introduction. The beginning of the introduction gives the reader any background information they’ll need to understand your thesis and the sentences following the thesis statement will explain and support it.

Parts Of A Thesis

The first part of a thesis format aims at creating a mental image in the reader’s head. It acts as a caravan to your work. In the first part, you compile the cover page, description page, table of contents, a list of figures as well as a list of tables. Sometimes, you might be required to provide a description page in a foreign language. In that case, the description page in the given foreign language should come immediately after the other description page. At the end of the fore part, the reader should have an idea of what to expect ahead.

The body, on the other hand, delves deeper. However, the contents of the body depend on the purpose of the paper. The contents of a research thesis format vary from those of a development project report. The body of a research report introduces the thesis format to the reader comprehensively. A theoretical basis of the thesis format then follows the introduction. It then explains in details how the thesis format can be implemented. The writer then goes ahead to record results and documents a discussion. On the other hand, the body of a development project has details about the background of the thesis format. The background comes immediately after the introduction of objectives.

The last part of thesis format is usually brief. It only contains references and appendices.

  • Cover Page
  • Description page
  • Table of contents
  • List of figures
  • List of tables
  • Introduction/objectives
  • Project background
  • Theoretical basis
  • Project Implementation
  • References
  • Appendices
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Thesis Format: Tips

Every student’s ultimate goal is to graduate and graduate in good time. Working on your thesis format early enough gives you ample time to rectify any possible mistake; hence nil chances to miss on the graduation list. Although it might sound simple, you must put effort to prepare an elabourate thesis format. Below are some tips.

  • Be conversant with the requirements. Different institutions have different needs. If you don’t familiarise with them early enough, you might end up toiling for nothing. You might have to start afresh, which is very uneconomical on both time and resources.
  • Uphold clarity. Before embarking on any plans to write a thesis, identify the specifics. As a student, you should know clearly what is contained in each section of the argument in a thesis format. Ambiguity can be costly when it comes to your degree or diploma.
  • Good communication. The main idea of your project is to relay ideas in your mind to the reader’s mind. Ensure that your thesis can portray the originality of your thoughts.
  • Set realistic goals. Challenges increase our zeal. For your dissertation writing to be better, set completion dates for each section. That way, you will avoid the last minute rush. You can, therefore, assign each section time depending on its complexity or requirements.
  • Seek approval. Before moving on with your thesis format, it is vital to get honest feedback. The feedback will point out omissions as well as criticism. Once you put the opinions into consideration, your thesis will be better.

Thesis Format: Guidelines

A thesis format will be your mantle in your entyre writing process. Deliberation is, therefore required. Before coming up with the actual procedure, set clear objectives of your thesis format project. With the goals at the center of the thesis, you can come up with a thesis format that works. The thesis format is supposed to guide you through to meet the said objectives.

Everything has measurable standards. The same case applies to your thesis format. It has its do’s and don’ts. When it comes to a thesis format, rules are rules, and they can’t be broken. The most basic rule is language. Unless the Dean has made apparent approval of using another language, it should be written in English. However, short quotations are an exception. If any other language is used, a translation has to be provided.

A thesis format must be printed on a single side of an A4 sized paper. The standard line spacing is 1.5 and font size of 12. A margin of 3.5cm to the left is required. The margin comes in handy when it comes to binding.

Usually, there is a set word limit that your thesis should not exceed. The word limit depends on the course you are pursuing. For instance, the word limit for the College of Social Sciences, Arts, and Humanities are higher compared to the word limit for the College of Medicine, Biological Sciences, and Psychology. The word limit is inclusive of footnotes as well as appendices (mandatory appendices are an exception).

In a Nutshell

We can summarize a thesis format in a few crucial points.

  • Follow the right order: the first part, middle part, and last part.
  • Adhere to the proper thesis format structure. For instance, background information should come after the introduction.
  • Be keen on the relevant word limit. If you are in doubt, always confirm the word limit for your school.
  • Abide by the formatting rules. Do not be tempted to change or ignore any law even as minor as margin.
  • Be conscious about the submission date. For better performance, come up with a working thesis format.
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