Library Services


Here we explain how to access copies of research theses that UCL Library Services holds. There is also an increasing number of open access thesis repositories available online.

Theses held in UCL Library

Open access repositories containing the full text of selected research theses.

Obtaining copies of research theses

Thesis binders.

University of London theses

The Library holds a copy of most research degree theses completed by students registered at UCL and awarded by the UoL, including many from students at Schools and Institutes prior to merger with UCL. Theses are listed by author on the Library catalogue, Explore : they are shelved in our off-campus Store and may be retrieved for consultation (24-hour notice required) by completing the store request form or via the request link on Explore. Theses are not available for loan, either to individuals or via interlibrary loan.

Some UoL research degree theses submitted by UCL students in the areas of classical, Germanic, Latin American studies; history and law are not held: check the UoL School of Advanced Study catalogue for availability.

UCL started to award its own degrees to students registering from 2007/2008. Print copies of research theses are catalogued by author in Explore and shelved in Store; electronic versions are in many cases available on open access in UCL Discovery .

If you wish to access a thesis recorded in UCL Discovery for which the full text is subject to an access restriction or not present, it is best to contact the author directly to request a copy privately.  If this is not possible, please contact the UCL Open Access Team .

If a thesis is not available via UCL Discovery or EThOS (see below) then it might be possible to obtain a copy from our interlibrary loan service via your home university interlibrary loan department. Please contact your university library and ask them to enquire about this service with UCL's Interlibrary Loan service; e-mail [email protected] for more information.

The Library does not normally hold print copies of any theses in the following categories:

A growing number of open access thesis repositories is becoming available including:

Video - Using PhD theses in research: EThOS 

YouTube Widget Placeholder http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F8X8ai6xN-4

Indexes of completed theses (access available to members of UCL only)

Proquest dissertations & theses global (pqdt global).

PQDT Global contains over a million full-text dissertations and theses from 1861 onwards that are available for download in PDF format. The collection includes PQDT UK and Ireland content.

Many UK universities now decline to lend research theses. You may visit the awarding university or, increasingly, obtain an electronic version either from the university itself or from EThOS (see above).

Theses awarded by universities worldwide may be requested via UCL Library Services Interlending and Document Supply service . The normal charge for this service applies. Please note that theses are never available for loan: they must be consulted on Library premises only.

UCL Registry maintains a list of thesis binders .

Open access for theses: how to deposit

Candidates for UCL research degrees are required to deposit an electronic copy of their final thesis in UCL's Research Publications Service (RPS), to be made open access in UCL's institutional repository, UCL Discovery . Theses are amongst the most highly-downloaded items in UCL Discovery . Making your thesis open access will mean that it is accessible worldwide, to anyone who wants to read it.

It is also possible, but not mandatory, to submit a print copy of your thesis to the Library for storage and preservation if you wish. We recommend submitting the print copy in cases where the electronic copy cannot be made openly available online in UCL Discovery, but you wish the print copy to be accessible to members of the Library.

Please refer to our guidance on how to deposit  for further information on the submission procedures.


Library Services


Support for dissertations and research projects

UCL dissertations and theses

The Library holds a copy of most research degree theses completed by students registered at UCL. Print copies of research theses are catalogued by author in  Explore ; electronic versions are in many cases available on open access in  UCL Discovery .

The Library does not normally have copies of UCL:

However the following libraries have small local theses collections covering their own subject areas, please contact the relevant library directly for more information:

Some departments may also maintain their own collections. For further details, please contact your departmental administrators. 

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Approved by publishing and review experts on SciSpace, this template is built as per for UCL Thesis formatting guidelines as mentioned in University College London author instructions. The current version was created on and has been used by 563 authors to write and format their manuscripts to this journal.

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Three Minute Thesis - The Winners

An 80,000-word thesis would take 9 hours to present. their time limit… 3 minutes.

The 3MT competition asks Doctoral candidates to present their research in just three minutes, in language appropriate to non-specialists, and with only one single presentation slide to support them. Can it be done? You’ll have to watch to find out!

Faculty heats took place from February to May 2020. The winner and runner-up from each participating Faculty progressed to the UCL 3MT® Institutional Final, which took place on Wednesday 17 June and you can watch the whole final with all 10 presentations here.  

The 2020 Winner, Runner-up and People's Choice

Huge congratulations to  Nekisa, Alice and Menta  this year's winner and runner up.

From Medical Sciences,  Nekisa Zakeri  with The New Cells on the Block: removing the brakes for liver cancer therapy

From Life Sciences,  Alice Morrell  with Navigation of zebra to water sources in Botswana, Africa. 

People's Choice Winner

From Population Health Sciences, Memta Jagtiani with #StateOfMind: Protecting the well-being of social media users through family meals.

Nekisa will go forward to the national semi-final. 

Have a look at our previous winners

On 25 June 2018, 9 students competed. The winner of the event was  Elizabeth Forsyth,  the runner-up was  Ione Woollacott  with  Sarah Slack  taking home the People’s Choice award.

View Elizabeth’s video here

On 26 June 2017, 13 students competed. The winner of the event was  Alexandra Bridarolli  with  Carlos Ledezma  taking home the People’s Choice award.

View Alexandra’s video here

On Final on 26 June 2016, 16 students competed. The winner of the event was  Jonathan Lambert , with  Fatumina Abukar  taking home the People’s Choice award.

Jonathan was entered into the national UK Three Minute Thesis semi-final, and progressed to the national final.

View Jonathan’s video here

On 30 June 2015, 11 students competed. The winner of the event was  Jonathan Hannabuss , with  Sabina Andron  coming second.

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UCL - MA Dissertation in Digital Humanities: The Challenge of Library Exhibitions

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The main barrier for library exhibitions is that the communication system used in literature is completely different from the one of the visual arts. Consequently, major challenges arise when books and manuscripts become items displayed inside cases. Therefore, it is necessary to find alternative ways (to reading) in which the public can experience such material. But how can this be done? For conservation reasons, visitors cannot be allowed to freely handle valuable objects. So, what can be built around them to provide an immersive experience, while both preserving their natural function of literary material and protecting them from deterioration? This study identifies three main areas to improve visitor experience, each one connected to the other: a sense of Narrative, illustrated through different levels of Interpretation, facilitated by Interaction (physical, digital, social) both with objects and other people (i.e. other visitors, or staff members). Acknowledging the fact that exhibitions are complex systems and therefore it is not possible to define one model for all, this work focuses on a specific case study, the Treasures of the British Library permanent exhibition. The aim is to contribute to a better understanding of the needs of the visitors of library exhibitions. Data on visitors’ profiles, behaviour, and experience, were collected through tracking and post-visit interviews, and then analysed in order to address visitors’ needs and expectations. The main needs identified involve: a sense of narrative, which should address different levels of knowledge and perspectives; characterisation of the space, to be manifestly relevant to the material exhibited; sensorial experiences and information about the stories of the objects, to preserve the ‘hands-on’ nature of literary materials.

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This essay brings together questions from aesthetic theory and museum management. In particular, I relate a contextualist account of the value of copies to a pluralistic understanding of the purpose of museums. I begin by offering a new defence of the no longer fashionable view that the aesthetic (as opposed to the ethical, personal, monetary, historical, or other) value of artworks may be detached from questions regarding their provenance. My argument is partly based on a distinction between the process of creating a work of art and the artwork in question. Next, I defend a pluralism about the purpose of museums an their exhibitions. I combine this with a pluralist account of the value of replicas which falls out of the above argument, exposing our preference for originality as being frequently fetishistic. I maintain that the importance of the provenance of artworks is relative to the specific purposes of any given exhibition or museum. Those that are primarily educational (such as encyclopaedic ones) are in many cases best served with high-quality replicas. This view may be extended to artifacts that are not artworks, such as fossils and dinosaur skeletons. Finally, I relate the variety of roles that replicas may play in museums and relate these to notions of authenticity.

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UCL Press

From thesis to monograph

We don’t publish PhD theses, but we do consider monograph proposals based on PhD research. If you’d like to publish a monograph based on PhD research, it’s important to understand the differences between a thesis and a monograph.

How is a thesis different to a monograph?

The purpose of your thesis was to learn and demonstrate what you had learnt. It was, and still is, evidence of your ability to define a topic, develop and apply methodologies, and undertake research. Your monograph, however, will be evidence of your ability to explore and connect a range of ideas in a fresh way, creating a new perspective that will aim to inform and influence a field of knowledge or discipline.

Readership The audience of your thesis reflected its purpose. It was a predetermined audience and likely comprised of your supervisor and examination panel. The readership of your monograph will be international and considerably broader, potentially consisting of undergraduate and postgraduate students, professional researchers, policymakers and other groups of readers outside the academy.

Rethinking your project Due to their different purpose and audience, your thesis cannot easily become a monograph. A revised thesis is often still a thesis. This is because the underlying foundations – your presence as the author, your tone and argument – have remained untouched. There may be remnants of the referencing and signposting that made your authorial presence in the thesis difficult to identify, and it may still feel overly formal.

During the rewriting process, you should embed the purpose and intended audience of your monograph into the foundations of the work. Your presence as the author will be stronger, you’ll quote sparingly, and your structure will help you to explore and connect ideas in a logical and comprehensible way.

Seeking advice There’s a wealth of advice available to you on the thesis-to-monograph process, from books written by editors and researchers to your supervisor, examiners and peers. We encourage you to use these resources to help you grasp a clear understanding of how to approach the task. It may be necessary to put your thesis to one side and revisit your research data to decide how you can make the most important contribution to your discipline: What do people need to know? What knowledge can you offer that is most in demand? What future trends can you detect and begin shaping?

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Guidelines for Writing a Final Year Dissertation - the UCL School of ...

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Department <strong>of</strong> Social Sciences, <strong>School</strong> <strong>of</strong> Slavonic and East European Studies, <strong>UCL</strong> GUIDELINES FOR WRITING A FINAL YEAR DISSERTATION General issues The final year dissertation provides an opportunity to apply some <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> principles and <strong>the</strong>ories <strong>of</strong> social science that you have spent three years studying. In so doing it provides an initial exposure to <strong>the</strong> balance between creativity and discipline that is important <strong>for</strong> effective research. It develops <strong>the</strong> skills required <strong>for</strong> writing an extensive, coherent, logically structured and precise piece <strong>of</strong> material, skills that will most likely be essential in your future employment. Students should bear some general points in mind when approaching <strong>the</strong> dissertation. 1. A dissertation is not meant to be a cutting-edge and original piece <strong>of</strong> research. Equally, a dissertation is not just a list or a descriptive collation <strong>of</strong> summaries <strong>of</strong> some books or articles you have read. <strong>Dissertation</strong>s should try to answer a research question, so <strong>the</strong>y must analyse, scrutinize, criticize or corroborate. In o<strong>the</strong>r words, <strong>the</strong>y must have an argument. 2. Organisation and structure will always be rewarded. Examiners do not want to spend a great deal <strong>of</strong> time trying to find out what your dissertation is about. Be clear on what you do, why you did it and why it is interesting. Be quick to tell <strong>the</strong> examiner this: don’t leave such in<strong>for</strong>mation <strong>for</strong> <strong>the</strong> conclusion! 3. Examiners can only mark what is <strong>the</strong>re: don’t expect <strong>the</strong>m to read your mind. Show-<strong>of</strong>f <strong>the</strong> skills and knowledge you have acquired and show how and why what you are writing is relevant. 4. Write and re-write your work to improve clarity and conciseness. 5. The word limit is 10000 words, including footnotes or endnotes, but not including <strong>the</strong> bibliography. The limit is intended to encourage you to sharpen your analytic and syn<strong>the</strong>tic skills; it is more difficult to say something in 500 ra<strong>the</strong>r than 10000 words. Do not use footnotes or appendices to evade <strong>the</strong> word limit. Equally, if it takes less than 10000 words <strong>the</strong>n so be it; 10000 is <strong>the</strong> upper limit, so do not fill pages with irrelevant in<strong>for</strong>mation just to beef <strong>the</strong> page numbers up. Reading and preparation <strong>Writing</strong> a dissertation involves reading and thinking: a lot <strong>of</strong> reading, and precise and meticulous thinking. You are expected to go beyond course textbooks: you must find and consult independently articles, books, reports and analyses relevant to your topic. Remember that it is your responsibility to find adequate sources <strong>for</strong> your subject. First, read some <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> articles/books suggested by your supervisor. In <strong>the</strong>se you will find references to new sources, which you should follow according to your empirical interest and conceptual standpoint. This is how you build up a specialized bibliography, adequate to your topic. Structure and Argument <strong>Writing</strong> a relatively large piece <strong>of</strong> work requires careful planning, which will allow you to a) produce your dissertation by <strong>the</strong> required deadline; and b) produce a logically coherent, structured and convincing argument. When we talk about structure, we talk about <strong>the</strong> structure <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> dissertation itself (chapters), and <strong>the</strong> structure <strong>of</strong> your argument. An external examiner once commented on third year dissertations: ‘Structure is not quite all but it is a lot!’ If your paper is well organised you stand a much better chance <strong>of</strong> getting <strong>the</strong> examiner on your side, and papers receive a just reward. Poorly structured papers are usually penalised by <strong>the</strong> examiners. <strong>Dissertation</strong> Structure A dissertation typically contains <strong>the</strong>se key parts: Abstract; Introduction; Review <strong>of</strong> relevant literature; Main body (with sub-sections <strong>for</strong> clarity); Conclusion; Bibliography. Each section should <strong>for</strong>m a coherent element <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> whole dissertation. Define and refine <strong>the</strong> best structure <strong>for</strong> your dissertation with your supervisor. 1. The abstract should say in about 100 words what your topic and your results are. 2. The introduction in<strong>for</strong>ms <strong>the</strong> reader about (a) <strong>the</strong> issues you will discuss, (b) <strong>the</strong> questions you will address, and (c) how <strong>the</strong> arguments will unfold in <strong>the</strong> following sections (i.e. ‘in Section 1 I will…’). In o<strong>the</strong>r words, explain what you do, how you’re going to do it, and why it is interesting. This should be <strong>the</strong> last thing you write in your dissertation. Don’t underestimate <strong>the</strong> importance <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> introduction. 3. You should start with <strong>the</strong> literature review. There is no standard length <strong>for</strong> a literature review: much depends on <strong>the</strong> nature <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> dissertation. Often it is fine not to worry too much with <strong>the</strong> technicalities <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> arguments – at first, just grab <strong>the</strong> essentials. Try to understand <strong>the</strong> main concepts and <strong>the</strong> main lines <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>the</strong>oretical/empirical debates. Summarise what you have read. Describe <strong>the</strong> arguments put <strong>for</strong>ward in critique/defence <strong>of</strong> a policy or <strong>the</strong>oretical position. Spell out your opinions on <strong>the</strong>m. 4. What goes in <strong>the</strong> main body will also depend on <strong>the</strong> nature <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> dissertation. Here is where you construct <strong>the</strong> argument <strong>of</strong> your dissertation, and where you answer <strong>the</strong> research question. See more on this below. Dr. Felix Ciută and Dr. Christopher Gerry

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Ucl latex thesis templates.

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This is a skeletal thesis template with a class and .sty file that you can use separately if you'd prefer.

To change the thesis type from PhD to MRes or MPhil, look for the setting in Main.tex .

The class needs some updating and could use a lot of commenting, and these are being worked on, but the files are perfectly usable right now with pdfLaTeX or lualatex. The repo is tested after each push with lualatex on Travis.

If you have suggestions for improvements, please do submit an issue, drop me a line ( [email protected] ), or throw me a pull request.

This work was previously available to be distributed and/or modified under the conditions of the LaTeX Project Public License (>=1.3), however, I realised that that doesn't make a lot of sense for a template.

Therefore, all files except ucl_thesis.cls are released into the public domain under CC-0-1.0, as described in the COPYING file.

The classfile ucl_thesis.cls may be distributed and/or modified under the conditions of the LaTeX Project Public License, either version 1.3 of this license or (at your option) any later version. The latest version of this license is in http://www.latex-project.org/lppl.txt and version 1.3 or later is part of all distributions of LaTeX version 2005/12/01 or later.

This work has the LPPL maintenance status `maintained'.

The Current Maintainer of this work is I. Kirker.

This work consists of all files listed in MANIFEST.md .

Known Issues

Citation links.

If you see this error while compiling:

and then get links that don't work in the PDF, try un-commenting the line below in MainPackages.tex even if you don't use that style of citation.

What should I use for editing .tex files?

If you're already comfortable with programming on the command-line, you can use whatever plain text editor you'd like.

If you're new to LaTeX, though, or want something to help you keep your files together, you may want TeXMaker or LyX (both available for Windows, Linux, or OS X), or TeXShop (for OS X).

TeXShop and TeXMaker are both oriented around helping you write plaintext .tex files, while LyX is more aimed at presenting a structured document with some of the formatting rendered, to make it a little less abstract to work with.

If you want something quick that runs entirely through a browser, so you don't even have to set up your own LaTeX installation, UCL also has a subscription for Overleaf , a service that does that. You'll have to register using your UCL email address to use the subscription. It's also good for working with someone else on a document, with live shared editing.

What is the Makefile for?

If you're using this from the Linux command-line, the Makefile defines a few things to make it easier to build the LaTeX document. If not, you can happily ignore it.

What graphics formats are good to include with this?

PNG and JPEG images work perfectly well, as do PDF files (including vector graphics). Vector graphics in PDFs will remain as vectors. Remember to produce higher-resolution images than you'd use online -- 300 or 600 dpi are typical print qualities, rather than the 72 dpi standard for websites. If you don't have control over this setting directly from whatever you're using to produce your images, a good rule of thumb is that you should aim to generate them 3 and a bit times larger on screen than you want them to be on paper.

Can I just make it produce one section in the PDF?

In the Main.tex file there are a list of \include statements. If you add an \includeonly statement to match those with one or more of the same labels, it'll just produce the content for those sections. (Labels, references, figures, and table numbers will be consistent as if you'd generated the whole document.)

Didn't there used to be different files for PhD, MRes, and MPhil dissertations?

Yes, but they only differed by 4 characters each, so it seemed silly to maintain them each separately. Change the setting in the Main.tex file to get the one you need.

Contributors 6


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