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Follow these guidelines from the beginning of your first draft. Please understand that you are responsible for the accuracy of your title page and margin formatting and should be confirming that you are adhering to these guidelines throughout the writing process.

Title page:

You may download a copy


All type (page#, footnotes, photos) must be within these margins.*Do not use your word program's default settings.

  • Left: 1.5 inch
  • Right: 1.5 inch
  • Top: 1 inch
  • Bottom: 1 inch
  • Page #s: At least 1/2 inch from the bottom of the page (centered)

Standard policy is to double space throughout (except poetry, quotations, footnotes). See MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, Seventh Edition for information on specific spacing issues concerning Endnotes versus Footnotes; extracted and indented quotations, including poetry and poetry quotations.

Note:  The PDF version of your thesis/essay should be submitted as a double-sided manuscript.   

12 pt or larger (except footnotes, use your judgment). You choose style.

These standards are set by the bindery to insure a good appearance of the final bound thesis. The manuscript will be trimmed in the binding process and each bound page will be slightly smaller than the original 8 1/2 x 11 size.


Word processing programs handle the commands to embed page numbers differently. Print a sample sheet early on to check margin and page number placement. Please refer to GUIDELINES FOR CREATING A PDF FILE for information about converting a file to a PDF and printing from it.  When you convert your file, be sure to preserve margins and embed fonts. Remember that computer problems are not an acceptable excuse for late submission of a thesis. Create your PDF version early! 


Be sure to save your thesis/essay frequently. It is a good idea to save your work on both disk and hard drive.