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- Dissertation Table of Contents in Word | Instructions & Examples
Dissertation Table of Contents in Word | Instructions & Examples
Published on May 15, 2022 by Tegan George . Revised on January 4, 2023.
The table of contents is where you list the chapters and major sections of your thesis, dissertation , or research paper, alongside their page numbers. A clear and well-formatted table of contents is essential, as it demonstrates to your reader that a quality paper will follow.
The table of contents (TOC) should be placed between the abstract and the introduction . The maximum length should be two pages. Depending on the nature of your thesis , paper, or dissertation topic , there are a few formatting options you can choose from.
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Table of contents
What to include in your table of contents, what not to include in your table of contents, creating a table of contents in microsoft word, table of contents examples, updating a table of contents in microsoft word, other lists in your thesis, dissertation, or research paper, frequently asked questions about the table of contents.
Depending on the length of your document, you can choose between a single-level, subdivided, or multi-level table of contents.
- A single-level table of contents only includes “level 1” headings , or chapters. This is the simplest option, but it may be too broad for a long document like a dissertation.
- A subdivided table of contents includes chapters as well as “level 2” headings, or sections. These show your reader what each chapter contains.
- A multi-level table of contents also further divides sections into “level 3” headings. This option can get messy quickly, so proceed with caution. Remember your table of contents should not be longer than 2 pages. A multi-level table is often a good choice for a shorter document like a research paper .
Examples of level 1 headings are Introduction, Literature Review , Methodology , and Bibliography. Subsections of each of these would be level 2 headings, further describing the contents of each chapter or large section. Any further subsections would be level 3.
In these introductory sections, less is often more. As you decide which sections to include, narrow it down to only the most essential.
Including appendices and tables
You should include all appendices in your table of contents. Whether or not you include tables and figures depends largely on how many there are in your document.
If there are more than three figures and tables, you might consider listing them on a separate page. Otherwise, you can include each one in the table of contents.
- Theses and dissertations often have a separate list of figures and tables.
- Research papers generally don’t have a separate list of figures and tables.
All level 1 and level 2 headings should be included in your table of contents, with level 3 headings used very sparingly.
The following things should never be included in a table of contents:
- Your acknowledgements page
- Your abstract
- The table of contents itself
The acknowledgements and abstract always precede the table of contents, so there’s no need to include them. This goes for any sections that precede the table of contents.
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To automatically insert a table of contents in Microsoft Word, be sure to first apply the correct heading styles throughout the document, as shown below.
- Choose which headings are heading 1 and which are heading 2 (or 3)!
- For example, if all level 1 headings should be Times New Roman, 12-point font, and bold, add this formatting to the first level 1 heading.
- Highlight the level 1 heading.
- Right-click the style that says “Heading 1.”
- Select “Update Heading 1 to Match Selection.”
- Allocate the formatting for each heading throughout your document by highlighting the heading in question and clicking the style you wish to apply.
Once that’s all set, follow these steps:
- Add a title to your table of contents. Be sure to check if your citation style or university has guidelines for this.
- Place your cursor where you would like your table of contents to go.
- In the “References” section at the top, locate the Table of Contents group.
- Here, you can select which levels of headings you would like to include. You can also make manual adjustments to each level by clicking the Modify button.
- When you are ready to insert the table of contents, click “OK” and it will be automatically generated, as shown below.
The key features of a table of contents are:
- Clear headings and subheadings
- Corresponding page numbers
Check with your educational institution to see if they have any specific formatting or design requirements.
Write yourself a reminder to update your table of contents as one of your final tasks before submitting your dissertation or paper. It’s normal for your text to shift a bit as you input your final edits, and it’s crucial that your page numbers correspond correctly.
It’s easy to update your page numbers automatically in Microsoft Word. Simply right-click the table of contents and select “Update Field.” You can choose either to update page numbers only or to update all information in your table of contents.
In addition to a table of contents, you might also want to include a list of figures and tables, a list of abbreviations, and a glossary in your thesis or dissertation. You can use the following guides to do so:
- List of figures and tables
- List of abbreviations
All level 1 and 2 headings should be included in your table of contents . That means the titles of your chapters and the main sections within them.
The contents should also include all appendices and the lists of tables and figures, if applicable, as well as your reference list .
Do not include the acknowledgements or abstract in the table of contents.
To automatically insert a table of contents in Microsoft Word, follow these steps:
- Apply heading styles throughout the document.
- In the references section in the ribbon, locate the Table of Contents group.
- Click the arrow next to the Table of Contents icon and select Custom Table of Contents.
- Select which levels of headings you would like to include in the table of contents.
Make sure to update your table of contents if you move text or change headings. To update, simply right click and select Update Field.
The table of contents in a thesis or dissertation always goes between your abstract and your introduction .
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- Introduction & Help
- General Formatting
- Table of Contents
- List of Figures
- List of Tables
All sections listed at the left beginning with Approval are listed in the table of contents. The table of contents is double-spaced.
Recommendation : create the table of contents AFTER creating content and labeling headings. See Content/Chapters for more information on headings. Use the page break function to insert a blank page if needed; do not use the Enter key multiple times. Then put your cursor at the top of the page to start the table of contents.
Setting up the table of contents for your thesis/dissertation in Microsoft Word takes some time initially, but it has many automated benefits after it is configured. Follow these instructions .
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Table of Contents/Lists Pages Templates
- Table of contents template (DOC)
This Microsoft Word document can be saved to your computer to use as a template. It was created using Microsoft Office 2013 version of Word. Please email [email protected] if you have problems with the download.
Thesis and Dissertation Guide
- « Thesis & Dissertation Resources
- The Graduate School Home
Dedication, acknowledgements, preface (optional), table of contents.
- List of Tables, Figures, and Illustrations
List of Abbreviations
List of symbols.
- Non-Traditional Formats
- Font Type and Size
- Spacing and Indentation
- Tables, Figures, and Illustrations
- Formatting Previously Published Work
- Internet Distribution
- Open Access
- Registering Copyright
- Using Copyrighted Materials
- Use of Your Own Previously Published Materials
- Submission Steps
- Submission Checklist
- Sample Pages
I. Order and Components
Please see the sample thesis or dissertation pages throughout and at the end of this document for illustrations. The following order is required for components of your thesis or dissertation:
- Dedication, Acknowledgements, and Preface (each optional)
- Table of Contents, with page numbers
- List of Tables, List of Figures, or List of Illustrations, with titles and page numbers (if applicable)
- List of Abbreviations (if applicable)
- List of Symbols (if applicable)
- Introduction, if any
- Main body, with consistent subheadings as appropriate
- Appendices (if applicable)
- Endnotes (if applicable)
- References (see section on References for options)
Many of the components following the title and copyright pages have required headings and formatting guidelines, which are described in the following sections.
Please consult the Sample Pages to compare your document to the requirements. A Checklist is provided to assist you in ensuring your thesis or dissertation meets all formatting guidelines.
The title page of a thesis or dissertation must include the following information:
- The title of the thesis or dissertation in all capital letters and centered 2″ below the top of the page.
- Your name, centered 1″ below the title. Do not include titles, degrees, or identifiers. The name you use here does not need to exactly match the name on your university records, but we recommend considering how you will want your name to appear in professional publications in the future.
Notes on this statement:
- When indicating your degree in the second bracketed space, use the full degree name (i.e., Doctor of Philosophy, not Ph.D. or PHD; Master of Public Health, not M.P.H. or MPH; Master of Social Work, not M.S.W. or MSW).
- List your department, school, or curriculum rather than your subject area or specialty discipline in the third bracketed space. You may include your subject area or specialty discipline in parentheses (i.e., Department of Romance Languages (French); School of Pharmacy (Molecular Pharmaceutics); School of Education (School Psychology); or similar official area).
- If you wish to include both your department and school names, list the school at the end of the statement (i.e., Department of Pharmacology in the School of Medicine).
- A dissertation submitted to the faculty at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the Department of Public Policy.
- A thesis submitted to the faculty at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in the School of Dentistry (Endodontics).
- A thesis submitted to the faculty at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in the Department of Nutrition in the Gillings School of Global Public Health.
- A dissertation submitted to the faculty at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the School of Education (Cultural Studies and Literacies).
- The words “Chapel Hill” must be centered 1″ below the statement.
- One single-spaced line below that, center the year in which your committee approves the completed thesis or dissertation. This need not be the year you graduate.
- Approximately 2/3 of the way across the page on the right-hand side of the page, 1″ below the year, include the phrase “Approved by:” (with colon) followed by each faculty member's name on subsequent double-spaced lines. Do not include titles such as Professor, Doctor, Dr., PhD, or any identifiers such as “chair” or “advisor” before or after any names. Line up the first letter of each name on the left under the “A” in the “Approved by:” line. If a name is too long to fit on one line, move this entire section of text slightly to the left so that formatting can be maintained.
- No signatures, signature lines, or page numbers should be included on the title page.
Include a copyright page with the following information single-spaced and centered 2″ above the bottom of the page:
© Year Author's Full Name (as it appears on the title page) ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
This page immediately follows the title page. It should be numbered with the lower case Roman numeral ii centered with a 1/2″ margin from the bottom edge.
Inclusion of this page offers you, as the author, additional protection against copyright infringement as it eliminates any question of authorship and copyright ownership. You do not need to file for copyright in order to include this statement in your thesis or dissertation. However, filing for copyright can offer other protections.
See Section IV for more information on copyrighting your thesis or dissertation.
Include an abstract page following these guidelines:
- Include the heading “ABSTRACT” in all capital letters, and center it 2″ below the top of the page.
- One double-spaced line below “ABSTRACT”, center your name, followed by a colon and the title of the thesis or dissertation. Use as many lines as necessary. Be sure that your name and the title exactly match the name and title used on the Title page.
- One single-spaced line below the title, center the phrase “(Under the direction of [advisor's name])”. Include the phrase in parentheses. Include the first and last name(s) of your advisor or formal co-advisors. Do not include the name of other committee members. Use the advisor's name only; do not include any professional titles such as PhD, Professor, or Dr. or any identifiers such as “chair” or “advisor”.
- Skip one double-spaced line and begin the abstract. The text of your abstract must be double-spaced and aligned with the document's left margin with the exception of indenting new paragraphs. Do not center or right-justify the abstract.
- Abstracts cannot exceed 150 words for a thesis or 350 words for a dissertation.
- Number the abstract page with the lower case Roman numeral iii (and iv, if more than one page) centered with a 1/2″ margin from the bottom edge.
Please write and proofread your abstract carefully. When possible, avoid including symbols or foreign words in your abstract, as they cannot be indexed or searched. Avoid mathematical formulas, diagrams, and other illustrative materials in the abstract. Offer a brief description of your thesis or dissertation and a concise summary of its conclusions. Be sure to describe the subject and focus of your work with clear details and avoid including lengthy explanations or opinions.
Your title and abstract will be used by search engines to help potential audiences locate your work, so clarity will help to draw the attention of your targeted readers.
You have an option to include a dedication, acknowledgements, or preface. If you choose to include any or all of these elements, give each its own page(s).
A dedication is a message from the author prefixed to a work in tribute to a person, group, or cause. Most dedications are short statements of tribute beginning with “To…” such as “To my family”.
Acknowledgements are the author's statement of gratitude to and recognition of the people and institutions that helped the author's research and writing.
A preface is a statement of the author's reasons for undertaking the work and other personal comments that are not directly germane to the materials presented in other sections of the thesis or dissertation. These reasons tend to be of a personal nature.
Any of the pages must be prepared following these guidelines:
- Do not place a heading on the dedication page.
- The text of short dedications must be centered and begin 2″ from the top of the page.
- Headings are required for the “ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS” and “PREFACE” pages. Headings must be in all capital letters and centered 2″ below the top of the page.
- The text of the acknowledgements and preface pages must begin one double-spaced line below the heading, be double-spaced, and be aligned with the document's left margin with the exception of indenting new paragraphs.
- Subsequent pages of text return to the 1″ top margin.
- The page(s) must be numbered with consecutive lower case Roman numerals (starting with the page number after the abstract) centered with a 1/2″ margin from the bottom edge.
Include a table of contents following these guidelines:
- Include the heading “TABLE OF CONTENTS” in all capital letters, and center it 2″ below the top of the page.
- Include one double-spaced line between the heading and the first entry.
- The table of contents should not contain listings for the pages that precede it, but it must list all parts of the thesis or dissertation that follow it.
- If relevant, be sure to list all appendices and a references section in your table of contents. Include page numbers for these items but do not assign separate chapter numbers.
- Entries must align with the document's left margin or be indented to the right of the left page margin using consistent tabs.
- Major subheadings within chapters must be included in the table of contents. The subheading(s) should be indented to the right of the left page margin using consistent tabs.
- If an entry takes up more than one line, break up the entry about three-fourths of the way across the page and place the rest of the text on a second line, single-spacing the two lines.
- Include one double-spaced line between each entry.
- Page numbers listed in the table of contents must be located just inside the right page margin with leaders (lines of periods) filling out the space between the end of the entry and the page number. The last digit of each number must line up on the right margin.
- Information included in the table of contents must match the headings, major subheadings, and numbering used in the body of the thesis or dissertation.
- The Table of Contents page(s) must be numbered with consecutive lower case Roman numerals centered with a 1/2″ margin from the bottom edge.
Lists of Tables, Figures, and Illustrations
If applicable, include a list of tables, list of figures, and/or list of illustrations following these guidelines:
- Include the heading(s) in all capital letters, centered 1″ below the top of the page.
- Each entry must include a number, title, and page number.
- Assign each table, figure, or illustration in your thesis or dissertation an Arabic numeral. You may number consecutively throughout the entire work (e.g., Figure 1, Figure 2, etc.), or you may assign a two-part Arabic numeral with the first number designating the chapter in which it appears, separated by a period, followed by a second number to indicate its consecutive placement in the chapter (e.g., Table 3.2 is the second table in Chapter Three).
- Numerals and titles must align with the document's left margin or be indented to the right of the left page margin using consistent tabs.
- Page numbers must be located just inside the right page margin with leaders (lines of periods) filling out the space between the end of the entry and the page number. The last digit of each number must line up on the right margin.
- Numbers, titles, and page numbers must each match the corresponding numbers, titles, and page numbers appearing in the thesis or dissertation.
- All Lists of Tables, Figures, and Illustrations page(s) must be numbered with consecutive lower case Roman numerals centered with a 1/2″ margin from the bottom edge.
If you use abbreviations extensively in your thesis or dissertation, you must include a list of abbreviations and their corresponding definitions following these guidelines:
- Include the heading “LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS” in all capital letters, and center it 1″ below the top of the page.
- Arrange your abbreviations alphabetically.
- Abbreviations must align with the document's left margin or be indented to the right of the left page margin using consistent tabs.
- If an entry takes up more than one line, single-space between the two lines.
- The List of Abbreviations page(s) must be numbered with consecutive lower case Roman numerals centered with a 1/2″ margin from the bottom edge.
If you use symbols in your thesis or dissertation, you may combine them with your abbreviations, titling the section “LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS AND SYMBOLS”, or you may set up a separate list of symbols and their definitions by following the formatting instructions above for abbreviations. The heading you choose must be in all capital letters and centered 1″ below the top of the page.
How to Create a Table of Contents for a Dissertation (APA)
Published by steve tippins on june 20, 2022 june 20, 2022.
Last Updated on: 20th June 2022, 11:22 am
APA Dissertation Table of Contents Format Guidelines
- The table of contents should be double spaced with one-inch margins on all sides.
- It should be written in the same font and size as the rest of your dissertation.
- At the top of the page, write Table of Contents , centered and in bold.
- Although in the body of the paper you can use up to five levels of headings, up to three levels are usually provided in the Table of Contents. Including lower-level headings is optional.
- Indent each subheading five spaces.
- Write all text in title case. In title case, the first letter of major words is capitalized.
- Provide the page number where the main headings and subheadings begin, and provide dotted lines between the heading and the page number.
- Page numbers for the Dedication, Acknowledgements, and Preface should be in lower case Roman Numbers (i, v, x, l, c, d and m.). The page numbers for the rest of the text should be in Arabic numerals (1,2, 3, 4, etc.).
How to Create an APA Table of Contents Using Microsoft Word
Step 1. Instead of manually trying to write and format the table of contents, you can create a generated one using Microsoft Word. To do this, first go to the Home tab. This is where you will choose the styles for the table of contents.
Step 2. The top-level headings will be your chapter titles, so on the right side of the tab, apply the Heading 1 style.
Step 3. The second-level headings will be your subheadings, so apply the Heading 2 style. This will place your subheadings underneath your main headings.
Step 4. You will now produce page links to your document. In the top ribbon, click on the References tab and select Table of Contents .
Step 5. If the style does not indicate APA, such as the one below, use the drop down arrow to select APA.
Step 6. Next, choose the number of levels that you want. In this case, you want to be able to have up to three levels, so choose Automatic Table 2 , which has the appropriate heading for a dissertation.
Step 7. Click ok , and you are all set. Microsoft word will automatically generate your dissertation’s table of contents as you write it.
List of Tables and Figures
Your list of tables and figures will be written at the end of the list of information in the body of your paper. You will create these lists the same way that you created the main table of contents.
However, the headings will be different.
Instead of the heading “Table of Contents,” the headings will be “List of Tables” and “List of Figures.” (An example is provided in the table of contents example below.)
Example of Table of Contents
In the example below, there are three level headings. The list of tables and figures are provided at the bottom of the other contents. The sections in your table of contents may be different depending on your college’s requirements.
Updating the Table of Contents
As you continue working on your dissertation, you will need to update the page numbers because they may change.
To update the page numbers, right-click on the table of contents in your document and select the Update field . Then, the Update Table of Contents box will appear.
You can choose to Update page numbers only or all the information in the table of contents by clicking on Update entire table .
Note: For more information, refer to the APA Manual 7 th edition , sections 2.2-2.27.
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Example for Table of Contents
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- 1 Definition
- 3 Examples for Your Thesis
- 4 Master’s Thesis Examples
- 5 Microsoft Word Tutorial
- 6 In a Nutshell
A table of contents example will help structure a long academic manuscript and a table of contents page is necessary for academic submission. The table of contents contains an organised listing of your manuscript’s chapters and sections with clearly marked (and accurate) page numbers. The aim of the table of contents is to allow the reader to flip easily to the section they require and to get a feel of your argument’s structure.
What comes first, table of contents or abstract?
If you are writing an academic paper, you have to take the order of your paper into account. Usually, the first sections of your thesis are the title page, cover page, acknowledgements and the abstract . After these pages, you place the table of contents. Be sure to check that all of the page numbers in your table of contents are correct.
What variations of table of content examples exist?
The table of contents can be displayed in the following formats:
- Single level table of contents
- Subdivided table of contents
- Multi-level table of contents
- Academic table of contents
You will find further details about what needs to be included inside of the table of contents on our blog.
Are references included in table of contents?
Yes. The references are included in the table of contents. You add them in as you would any other section of your thesis. Simply write the section in the table of contents with the corresponding page number. However, the acknowledgement for thesis and the abstract are usually not included in the table of contents. However, check with your institution as this could be dependent upon the formatting that you’re required to follow.
How can I make a table of contents in Microsoft Word?
On Microsoft Word, you will find the function to create a table of contents under the ‘references’ tab. Click on the tab and select ‘table of contents’. You can use one that has been designed by Microsoft Word, or you can create a custom one by yourself. Scroll down for a full tutorial on Microsoft Word and creating a table of contents.
Examples for Your Thesis
Below, you will find different examples for table of contents, including a
- Single level table of contents example
- Subdivided table of contents example
- Multi-level table of contents example
We will also show you with an example how the table of contents for a bachelor’s thesis could look like, as well as for a master’s thesis.
Advice for creating a good table of contents: A good table of contents must be easy to read and formatted accurately, containing quick reference pages for all figures and illustrations. A table of contents example will help you structure your own thesis, but remember to make it relevant to your discipline. Table of contents example structures can be created for different disciplines, such as social sciences, humanities and engineering.
The type and length of a table of contents example will depend on the manuscript. Some thesis’ are short, containing just several chapters, whilst others (like a PhD thesis) are as lengthy as a book. This length will dictate the amount of detail that goes into forming a table of contents example page and the amount of “levels” (or subdivisions) in each chapter.
Single Level Table of Contents Example
For shorter documents, a single level table of contents example can be used. This is a short and succinct table of contents example which utilises only single-level entries on sections or chapters. Remember, you’ll need to include properly formatted dots to lead the reader’s eye to the page number on the far right. The following table of contents example explores this basic structure:
Subdivided Table of Contents E xample
A subdivided table of contents example is required for more lengthy papers, offering a subdivision of chapters and sections within chapters. These are more detailed and are recommended for higher-level dissertations like masters or PhD thesis’ (as well as some more detailed bachelor’s dissertations).
When formating subdivided table of contents example, ensure that chapters are listed in bold font and that subsections are not. It’s common (though not necessary) to denote each subsection by a number (1.1, etc.). You’ll also want to indent the subsections so that they can be read easily. The following table of contents example explores this structure:
Multi-level Table of Contents E xample
Adding additional levels to your table of contents is known as a multi-level table of contents example. These would be numbered onwards at 1.1.1, etc. Be aware that although you want to guide your reader through your manuscript, you should only highlight important areas of your manuscript, like sections and sub-sections, rather than random areas or thoughts in your manuscript. Creating too many levels will make your table of contents unnecessarily busy and too complex.
Academic Table of Contents
All of the above can be used as an academic table of contents example. Often, each separate heading in an academic work needs to be both numbered and labelled in accordance with your preferred reference style (consult your department). The following table of contents example sections will illustrate a table of contents example for a bachelor thesis and a table of contents example for a master thesis.
Table of Contents Example: Bachelor’s Thesis
A bachelor’s degree thesis has no set word or page limit nationwide and will depend entirely on your university or department’s guidelines. However, you can expect a thesis under 60 pages of length at between 10,000 – 15,000 words. As such, you won’t be expected to produce a long and detailed table of contents example with multiple levels and subsections. This is because your main body is more limited in terms of word count. At most, you may find yourself using a subdivided table of contents similar to the table of contents example above.
A bachelor’s thesis table of contents example may be structured like so:
This table of contents example may change depending on your discipline and thesis structure, but note that a single-level structure will often suffice. Subdivided structures like the table of contents example listed earlier will only be necessary when writing several chapters, like in a Master’s thesis.
Master’s Thesis Examples
A master’s table of contents example is more complex than a bachelor’s thesis. This is because they average at about 80 pages with up to 40,000 words. Because this work is produced at a higher academic level, it normally includes a subdivision of chapters and subheadings, with a separate introduction and conclusion, as well as an abstract.
A table of contents example for a master’s thesis may then look something like this:
Microsoft Word Tutorial
Creating a table of contents page with Microsoft Word is simple.
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In a Nutshell
- All theses are different. Various departments and disciplines follow different structures and rules. The table of contents example pages here will help you in general to format your document, but remember to consult your university guidelines
- Consistency and accuracy are the most important things to remember. You need the correct page number and the same layout for each chapter. It’s no good combining single-level table of contents with a multi-level table of contents
- Simply put, bachelor’s thesis’ generally follow a single-level table of contents example unless otherwise specified
- Postgraduate thesis’ like master and PhD-level work generally require a more detailed subdivision table of contents example. This is because they deal with both more complex arguments and more words
- Remember to include all aspects of your thesis within the table of contents. Pre-thesis material needs to be listed in Roman numerals and you need to include all back-matter as well, such as References and Bibliography
Discover more useful articles:
This article includes information about the title page with examples:
What is apa citation? We will give you some information:
In this article we show you referencing & citation styles:
How to find a research topic for your bachelor's thesis:
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KU Thesis and Dissertation Formatting: Table of Contents
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Office of Graduate Studies Thesis and Dissertation Formatting Guidelines
These rules are taken from the KU Office of Graduate Studies Thesis or Dissertation Formatting Guidelines. To see the full thesis or dissertation formatting requirements, visit https://graduate.ku.edu/submitting
Creating an Automated Table of Contents
Located in the Home tab, Word’s Style Gallery makes it easy to set consistent, one-click formatting for headings throughout your document. It is these style settings that Word uses to create an automatic table of contents. Using an automatic table of contents will save you the huge headache of dealing with dot leaders, spacing, and having to completely re-type your table of contents if the order of your pages changes even a little. Plus, styles are easy to use! Step-by-step how-to instructions are included below for setting heading styles and then inserting a table of contents in Word 2010, Word 2013 or Word 2011 for Mac.
- Printed Instructions (TOC Word 2010)
- Printed Instructions (TOC Word 2013)
- Printed Instructions (TOC Word 2011 for Mac)
- Printed Instructions (TOC Word 2016 Mac)
- Printed Instructions (TOC Word 2016 PC)
- Creating a Manual-Entry Table of Contents
Working with Outline Style (Numbered) Headings
Numbered headings can be very tricky and many citation styles do not require their use. If you are working with a style the does require it, however, Shauna Kelly's blog has some great help .
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Table of Contents Examples
- DESCRIPTION A table of contents
- SOURCE Photo taken by Michael Kwan (michaelkwan.com)
- PERMISSION Used with permission
The table of contents (TOC) is the roadmap to each portion of your writing. Whether you're writing a large essay or a potential bestseller , the table of contents will allow readers to locate specific information or revisit their favorite parts within the text. Depending on the nature of your writing, there are a few different formatting options for you to explore. Let's examine various table of contents examples.
When might you be required to formulate a table of contents? The first is a formal essay for school, depending on the length of the work. For example, if you're writing an in-depth, multi-page essay or a master's thesis, a table of contents will add an air of professionalism to your writing. On the other hand, if this is a short, five-paragraph essay on the history of the Galapagos Islands, a table of contents will not be necessary.
Perhaps, when you graduate, you'll move on to write textbooks or novels. There, too, you'll want to include a table of contents at the start of your work. Think about it. How many times have we flipped open our textbooks and searched the table of contents for pertinent material? Likewise, when reading a fiction or non-fiction work, a table of contents allows readers to jump around to the sections that interest them the most.
Single Level TOC
If you're wondering how to write a table of contents, the first decision you have to make is a matter of depth. How detailed do you want (or need) to be? Will a broad chapter summation work? Or, will you want to offer various subsections, too?
Let's begin in the broadest sense. Here, we have a single level table of contents for individual sections of the work, or individual chapters. You'll want to include a series of dots to make it easier for the reader's eye to note the corresponding page number.
Table contents 1
Given that the contents above covers an expansive array of information, you might want to break some of those sections into subsections. The formatting for that would be as follows:
Table contents 2
Of course, you can continue to include as many subheadings as you need. If you go in-depth into the various types of nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs, then you can include each type as its own subheading.
Just note that, while the table of contents is meant to direct the readers, you only want to highlight the most important sections. Too many levels can make things unnecessarily complex, voiding the purpose of the table of contents. A multi-level table of contents would look something like:
Let's look at a table of contents specific to academic writing . The above contents can work for academic writing or novel writing. Often, in academic writing, each heading is numbered and labeled. Of course, you'll want to check for samples based upon your instructor's preferred style of writing, like AP Style , MLA , or Chicago Manual of Style .
If you're submitting your paper electronically, you can even link each section to the appropriate page number, allowing readers to jump right to that section with a click of the mouse. As a rough estimation, a table of contents for an essay might look something like this:
Table contents 4
A great table of contents comes in many shapes and sizes. While it depends on the length of the work (and the style guide you're bound to), there are a few common denominators to keep in mind. Here's a little checklist for you to run through when all is said and done.
- Use title case for each heading. That is, capitalize every word, excluding articles, preposition, or conjunctions.
- Include dots to allow the readers eye to scan from the section to the page number with ease.
- If this is an academic paper, number each section and subsection.
- Indent each subsection under its parent section.
- If this is an electronic submission, link the title of each section to the corresponding page within the work.
- Note that each section and subsection should align with the body of the essay. For example, in the body of the paper, if section 6.0 on "paragraphs" uses "Heading 2" in Microsoft Word and section 6.1 on "descriptive paragraphs" uses "Heading 3," you'll know to include subheadings in your table of contents.
- If this is a book or novel, you'll have to decide on clever titles for each of your chapters (or simply go by Chapter One, Chapter Two, and so forth). However, if this is an academic paper, your table of contents should only include actual sections and subsections from the work itself.
The table of contents is the roadmap to each portion of your writing. Whether you're writing a large essay or a potential bestseller , the table of contents will allow readers to locate specific information or revisit their favorite parts within the text. Depending on the nature of your writing, there are a few different formatting options for you to explore. Let's examine various table of contents examples.
Total Table Dominance
Creating a table of contents is a matter of organization and precision. Remember, you worked hard to create an in-depth study on a certain topic. Allow readers to pinpoint certain components of your information with a flip of the page or a click of the mouse. For more on the mastery of academic writing, enjoy this in-depth study on the topic. If you're writing a book, move on and explore the other parts of a book .
The table of contents is where you list the chapters and major sections of your thesis, dissertation, or research paper, alongside their page
All sections listed at the left beginning with Approval are listed in the table of contents. The table of contents is double-spaced.
THE TITLE PAGE IS NOT NUMBERED AND IS NOT INCLUDED IN THE TABLE OF CONTENTS! Matters of style should be based on disciplinary standards such as those
Table of contents template (DOC) This Microsoft Word document can be saved to your computer to use as a template. It was created using Microsoft Office 2013
Include the heading “TABLE OF CONTENTS” in all capital letters, and center it 2″ below the top of the page. · Include one double-spaced line between the heading
APA Dissertation Table of Contents Format Guidelines · The table of contents should be double spaced with one-inch margins on all sides. · It
This table of contents example may change depending on your discipline and thesis structure, but note that a single-level structure will often
KU Thesis and Dissertation Formatting: Table of Contents · Home · Formatting Specifics · Templates · Title and Acceptance Pages · Fonts and Spacing
For example, if you're writing an in-depth, multi-page essay or a master's thesis, a table of contents will add an air of professionalism to your writing.
This video demonstrates how to use word's TOC generator to insert a table of contents for your thesis.