Document Preparation

Student Responsibility

PhD and master’s students are responsible for meeting all requirements for preparing theses and dissertations. They are expected to confer with their advisors about disciplinary and program expectations and to follow Graduate School procedure requirements.

Graduate School Role

The Graduate School certifies that theses and dissertations have been prepared as required. Graduate School staff members are available to provide information and to review documents at any stage of the planning or writing process. The Graduate School will not accept documents if required items are missing. The Graduate School cannot provide hands on training or editing of a document to meet formatting and digital accessibility standards. The Graduate School will not extend deadlines because of miscommunication between the student and the advisor. 

Required Format Features

Ohio State dissertations and theses must contain the following format features, which must be identified with a major heading that is centered below at least a one-inch top margin. The Graduate School highly recommends you use one of the templates in the following section as many of these features are already setup to help simplify the process. Visit our format review page for more information on format review and submission.

Specific Required Format Features

  • Title page 
  • Copyright 
  • Abstract 
  • Vita 
  • Table of Contents 
  • List of Figures 
  • Bibliography 
  • List of Tables (if applicable) 
  • List of Illustrations (if applicable) 
  • Appendices (if applicable)

Digital Accessibility Features (Features implemented beginning Spring 2023)

*(see links below for information about applying these features)

Graduate School Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Accessibility Plan

  • PDF file includes full text
  • PDF accessibility permission flag is checked
  • Text language of the PDF is specified
  • PDF includes a title
  • Images, figures, and tables have descriptive captions and/or alt tags explaining content

Electronic Dissertation and Thesis Adobe Acrobat Download and Accessibility Support Video

OSU Login is required for access.

Optional Features 

  • Frontispiece (if used, no heading is included on this page) 
  • Dedication 
  • Acknowledgments

Additional Resources

Additional Online Training Support for Microsoft Office Suite

Sample Pages and Templates

The following templates are available for use in formatting dissertations, theses, and DMA documents. Please read all instructions before beginning. 

Still Have Questions?

Dissertations & Theses

Doctoral Exams, Master's Examination, Graduation Requirements