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Formatting Your Thesis/Dissertation: Body Formatting

Learn about Graduate College formatting requirements.

Formatting the Body of the Thesis

Theses and dissertations will have the same formatting for their headings in the body of the work. For Music abstracts, note that the word ABSTRACT replaces the CHAPTER TITLE formatting and the rest of the levels of headings will remain the same after that.

Note that you should place a SECTION BREAK at the end of your front matter before you begin the body of the thesis/dissertation. This will allow you to change the page numbers from Roman numerals to Arabic numerals. Page numbering should start at page 1. Review setting up page numbers on the Formatting Requirements page.

If you use styles in Word, you can link your headings and auto-populate your Table of Contents. Note that you still need to check to ensure all headings are included in the Table of Contents and that you are linking correctly for this to work. The other option is to manually format all of your headings and manually populate a Table of Contents.

Chapter titles are heading level 1, Major Headings are level 2, Minor Headings are level 3, and Minor divisions are level 4. Use sections below for formatting of levels.

Setting Headings

*Note: For Music Abstracts, you will not have chapters but the word ABSTRACT should follow this heading level's formatting.

1. Type CHAPTER in all capital letters followed by the chapter number

2. Hold down shift and press enter to break to the next line

3. Type the CHAPTER TITLE IN ALL CAPITAL LETTERS

Type: CHAPTER and the number of the chapter in all capital letters. Hold shift and press enter. TYPE CHAPTER TITLE IN ALL CAPITAL LETTERS.

4. Select the text and center it

Select the text and center it on the page

5. While the text is selected: under the STYLES menu, right click on Heading 1 and select: Update Heading 1 to Match Selection

With chapter heading selected, right click on the heading 1 option in the styles pane. Select update heading 1 to match selection to set the heading 1 style to match the chapter style.

6. For all subsequent chapter titles: Type CHAPTER #, hold shift and press enter, type the CHAPTER TITLE in all capital letters -- select the text and click on Heading 1 under styles.

for subsequent chapter headings, type the text of the heading in all capital letters. highlight the chapter heading and click heading 1 in the styles pane to update it to the heading 1

1. Type your first Major Heading. Capitalize the first letter of all major words in the heading. Select the text and center it and underline it.

Type your first Major Heading. Capitalize the first letter of all major words in the heading. Select the text and center it and underline it.

2. While the text is selected: under the STYLES menu, right click on Heading 2 and select Update Heading 2 to Match Selection

 While the text is selected: under the STYLES menu, right click on Heading 2 and select Update Heading 2 to Match Selection

3. For all subsequent Major Headings: type the Major Heading with all major words capitalized, select the heading, click on Heading 2 on the STYLES menu.

For all subsequent Major Headings: type the Major Heading with all major words capitalized, select the heading, click on Heading 2 on the STYLES menu.

Major Headings have the first letter of all important words capitalized. They are centered and underlined.

1. Capitalize the major words in your Minor Heading. Select the heading and underline it. It should be left aligned.

Capitalize the major words in your Minor Heading. Select the heading and underline it. It should be left aligned.

2. While the text is selected: under the STYLES pane, right click on Heading 3 and select Update Heading 3 to Match Selection

While the text is selected: under the STYLES pane, right click on Heading 3 and select Update Heading 3 to Match Selection

3. For all subsequent Minor Headings: type the Minor Heading with all major words capitalized, select the heading, click on Heading 3 on the STYLES pane.

For all subsequent Minor Headings: type the Minor Heading with all major words capitalized, select the heading, click on Heading 3 on the STYLES pane.

minor headings are left aligned, underlined, first letter of major words capitalized

1. Indent your text, type your first minor division in sentence case (first word and all proper nouns capitalized) and end with a period. Select the division, careful not to select the indented space before your division and underline it.

Indent your text, type your first minor division in sentence case and end with a period. Type place holder text after. Select the division only.

2. It is recommended that you type at least the first word (or a placeholder) after the minor division and ensure that it is not underlined and then re-select the division to ensure you use styles correctly for this heading level. While the text is selected: under the STYLES menu, right click on Heading 4 and select Update Heading 4 to Match Selection

While the text of the division is selected: under the STYLES menu, right click on Heading 4 and select Update Heading 4 to Match Selection

3. For all subsequent minor divisions, type the division (ensure that it is indented), type at least part of the following sentence. Then select only the division (not the indented space prior or the text that will follow) and select Heading 4.

For subsequent minor divisions, indent and type division followed by placeholder text. Select only the division (not the indented space prior or the text that will follow) and select Heading 4.

minor divisions are indented, sentence cased, underlined, and end with a period. the first line of text follows immediately on the same line

 

If you need any further heading levels beyond a minor division, you may format these headings in any way you wish so long as every heading that is that level is consistently formatted in an identical manner. To link these, format and follow the same steps as the previous headings to use STYLES and link it to the next level of heading (Heading 5, 6, 7, and so on). Below is a commonly used example:

additional headings should be consistently formatted in any style you choose and be level 5

often additional headings are formatted like minor divisions but are italicized instead of underlined

 

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