Order of pages in a thesis

For traditional theses/dissertations, a suggested format for the order of appearance of pages would be:

Prefatory Pages

  • Title page
  • Approval page
  • Dedication (optional)
  • Acknowledgements (optional)
  • Abstract
  • Preface (optional)
  • Table of Contents
  • List of Tables
  • List of Figures and Illustrations
  • List of Symbols or Abbreviations (if any)

Body of Text

  • Chapter 1. Significance of the Problem
  • Chapter 2. Literature Review
  • Chapter 3. Theoretical Framework
  • Chapter 4. Methods (includes design, sample recruitment, sample characteristics, data collection method (tools, their reliability and validity), details on analytical methods, ethical/access considerations)
  • Chapter 5. Results (or Findings)
  • Chapter 6. Discussion (can also include implications for further research, education, practice,...)
  • Chapter 7. Conclusion

Final Sections

  • References
  • Appendices (may include ethics approval; permissions from publishers; details of methodology, tabulated data and other information not provided in detail in the previous chapters)
  • Index (optional)

Athabasca University: Formats for theses and dissertations

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