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Guidelines on Thesis Formatting

Guidelines on Formatting for Doctoral Theses

In order to comply with the legal requirements for granting doctoral degrees, the Institute requires all doctoral theses to be original and of substantial academic level. All doctoral theses must meet the requirements stated in these Guidelines and/or additional requirements as stipulated by the programme.

  1. Overall Formatting Specifications

    1. The format of the theses must be in accordance with the provisions of these guidelines. Any thesis that does not meet the requirements will be returned to the author, and will only be accepted and processed by the Institute after having been modified to meet the requirements.
    2. The word count should follow the requirements as stipulated by the corresponding programme.
    3. If there is no other specification, the thesis should follow the style and grammar guidelines of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (APA), http://apastyle.apa.org/.
  2. Paper and Layout

    1. Paper

      (1) Print on international A4 size (297 mm x 210 mm) white paper weighing 80 gsm.
    2. Layout

      (1) Margins must be uniform. The binding margin is 40 mm, the right margin is 25 mm, and the top and bottom margins are 25 mm.
      (2) The cover of the thesis, title page and copyright statement should be single-sided, and the other parts of the thesis should be double-sided.
      (3) All text should be fully justified.
  3. Text and Line Spacing

    1. Theses should be written horizontally from left to right. When terms from a language other than the language that the thesis is written in are used, those terms should be quoted in parentheses.
    2. Typeface of Thesis
      • Chinese: DFKai-SB
      • English, Portuguese and other foreign languages: Times New Roman
    3. Font Specification
      (1) For main body of thesis, table of contents, and references, use DFKAi-SB 14 / Times New Roman 12.
      (2) For the titles of chapters, sections and subsections, use DFKAi-SB 22 / Times New Roman 18, DFKAi-SB 18 / Times New Roman 16 and DFKAi-SB 16 / Times New Roman 14 respectively, and in bold.
      (3) For header and page numbers, use DFKAi-SB 10 / Times New Roman 10.
    4. Paragraph spacing is 1.5 for Chinese and 2.0 (double) for English and Portuguese. There is no need to skip a line between paragraphs. However, skip a line between a heading and the paragraph under it.
    5. Indent the first line of all paragraphs by 1.2cm.
  4. Pagination

    1. Page numbers should be centred at the bottom of the page.
    2. The cover of the thesis should not be numbered.
    3. For acknowledgments (if any), abstracts, table of contents, list of illustrations, list of tables, list of symbols and so on, the pages should be numbered in consecutive lowercase Roman numerals (i.e. i, ii, iii).
    4. From the main body of thesis through to the appendices, the pages should be numbered in consecutive Arabic numerals (i.e. 1, 2, 3).
  5. Headings and Numbering of Chapters and Sections

    1. For theses in Chinese, chapters should be numbered with Chinese numerals (i.e. 一, 二); for theses in English or Portuguese, chapters should be numbered with Arabic numerals (i.e. 1, 2, 3).
    2. Headings and numbering of Chapters should be centred at the top of the page.
    3. Headings of sections and subsection are numbered with Arabic numerals (i.e. 1, 1.1, 1.1.1), and they should be left-aligned on the page.
  6. Components and Structure

    1. A thesis consists of the following sections, which should be placed in the order listed:

      • Cover
      • Title page
      • Declaration for thesis
      • Abstracts and keywords in the language of the thesis
      • Abstracts and keywords in Chinese and/or English translation
      • Table of contents
      • List of symbols and abbreviations
      • Main body of the thesis
      • References
      • Appendices
      • Acknowledgements (if applicable)
      • Biographical note of the author
      1. Cover

        1. Content should be centred across the page and printed single-sided in color.
        2. Content and font:

          Content Font
          Emblem of Institute ---
          Institute
          Chinese: DFKAi-SB 24
          Portuguese/English: Times New Roman 22
          Academic Unit
          Chinese: DFKAi-SB 20
          Portuguese/English: Times New Roman 18
          Title of Thesis
          Chinese: DFKAi-SB 18
          Portuguese/English: Times New Roman 16
          Name of Student Chinese: DFKAi-SB 14
          Portuguese/English: Times New Roman 12
          Student Number
          Title of Doctoral Degree
          Year of the Conferral of the Degree
        3. The cover is not numbered. Refer to the sample in Appendix 1.
      2. Title Page

        1. Content should be centred across the page and printed single-sided in color.
        2. Content and font:

          Content Font
          Emblem of Institute ---
          Title of Thesis Chinese: DFKAi-SB 14
          Portuguese/English: Times New Roman 12
          Name of Student
          Student Number
          Academic Unit
          Programme
          Specialization
          Name of Supervisor
          Date of Submission of Thesis
        3. The title page is not numbered. Refer to the sample in Appendix 2.
      3. Declaration for Thesis

        1. The declaration must be written in the language of the thesis.
        2. For heading and content, use DFKAi-SB 22 (bold) / Times New Roman 18 (bold), and DFKAi-SB 14 / Times New Roman 12 respectively.
        3. The heading should be centred at the top of the page, with a line spacing of 2.0 (double).
        4. Content should be written horizontally from left to right with a line spacing of 2.0 (double). Indent the first line of all paragraphs by 1.2cm.
        5. Refer to the sample in Appendix 3.
      4. Abstracts and Keywords

        1. Abstracts and keywords should be written in the language of the thesis, and accompanied by a Chinese and/or English translation.
        2. For heading and content, use DFKAi-SB 22 (bold) / Times New Roman 18 (bold), and DFKAi-SB 14 / Times New Roman 12 respectively.
        3. The heading should be centred at the top of the page, with a line spacing of 2.0 (double).
        4. For the length of abstracts and keywords, refer to the thesis specifications of each doctoral degree programme.
      5. Table of Contents

        1. List the various items, such as chapters, sections, subsections and so on, in the required order.
        2. Chapters, sections, and subsections should be indented as follows:

          Chapter 1. XXXX
          1.1 XXXX
          1.1.1 XXXX
          1.1.2 XXXX
        3. For heading and content, use DFKAi-SB 22 (bold) / Times New Roman 18 (bold), and DFKAi-SB 14 / Times New Roman 12 respectively.
        4. The heading should be centred at the top of the page, with a line spacing of 2.0 (double).
        5. Content should be written horizontally from left to right with a line spacing of 1.5.
      6. Lists of Illustrations and Tables

        1. Lists of Illustrations and Tables should be placed after the table of contents. Each entry of the list must include a sequential number, caption and page number.
        2. For heading and content, use DFKAi-SB 16 / Times New Roman 14, and DFKAi-SB 14 / Times New Roman 12 respectively.
        3. The heading should be centred at the top of the page, with a line spacing of 2.0 (double).
        4. Content should be written horizontally from left to right with a line spacing of 1.5.
      7. Lists of Symbols and Abbreviations

        1. The “Table of Symbols and Abbreviations” which lists the symbols, abbreviations and their definitions has to be arranged in alphabetical order. This table should be placed before the main body of the thesis.
        2. For heading and content, use DFKAi-SB 16 / Times New Roman 14, and DFKAi-SB 14 / Times New Roman 12 respectively.
        3. The heading should be centred at the top of the page, with a line spacing of 2.0 (double).
        4. Content should be written horizontally from left to right with a line spacing of 1.5.
      8. Main Body of the Thesis

        1. Theses should be written in chapters and divided into sections and subsections as needed.
        2. Footnotes should be numbered with Arabic numerals (i.e. (1), (2), (3)) in sequence within the chapter, and placed in the upper right corner of the corresponding word(s) in the text. Start a new numbering sequence in new chapters.
        3. Footnotes should be placed at the bottom of the corresponding page separated from the main body of the text by a horizontal line. The footnote can carry on into the footnote area of the following page if there is insufficient space.
      9. References

        1. The citation style should follow the format of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (APA), unless otherwise specified by the academic unit.
        2. For heading and content, use DFKAi-SB 22 / Times New Roman 18, and DFKAi-SB 14 / Times New Roman 12 respectively.
        3. The heading should be centred at the top of the page, with a line spacing of 2.0 (double).
        4. Content should be written horizontally from left to right with a line spacing of 1.5.
      10. Appendices

        1. For heading and content, use DFKAi-SB 22 / Times New Roman 18, and DFKAi-SB 14 / Times New Roman 12 respectively.
        2. The heading should be centred at the top of the page, with a line spacing of 2.0 (double).
        3. Content should be written horizontally from left to right with a line spacing of 1.5.
      11. Acknowledgements

        1. For heading and content, use DFKAi-SB 22 (bold) / Times New Roman 18 (bold), and DFKAi-SB 14 / Times New Roman 12 respectively.
        2. The heading should be centred at the top of the page, with a line spacing of 2.0 (double).
        3. Content should be written horizontally from left to right with a line spacing of 2 (double). Indent the first line of all paragraphs by 1.2cm.
      12. Biographical Note of the Author

        1. For heading and content, use DFKAi-SB 22 / Times New Roman 18, and DFKAi-SB 14 / Times New Roman 12 respectively.
        2. The heading should be centred at the top of the page, with a line spacing of 2.0 (double).
        3. Content should be written horizontally from left to right with a line spacing of 1.5.
  7. Thesis Submission and Binding

    1. For the need of the Thesis Defence Examination, students need to submit a paperback copy of the thesis that has been approved by the Thesis Examination Panel. The academic unit concerned should notify the students on the number of copies to be submitted.
    2. After passing the Thesis Defence Examination, students are required to submit an electronic version of the final thesis and five hardcover copies. The title of the thesis, name of the author and the year of the conferral of the degree must be printed on the spine of the hardcover copies. The color of the cover and back is navy blue. All required information has to be printed on the cover and spine in gold colour.
    3. Students who fail to submit the thesis copies as mentioned in the preceding paragraphs to the academic unit concerned within the specified time limit will not be issued any graduation certificate nor any other certification.
  8. Electronic Version of the Thesis

    1. Students should submit the electronic version of the thesis in PDF format and in MS Word format. Files should not be password-protected nor be compressed.
    2. Students have to send the above-mentioned files to the academic unit concerned within the specific time period.
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