Preparing and Submitting a Thesis

A thesis is required for candidates for honors. Candidates in creative arts sometimes submit other works in place of a thesis. In such cases a formal exhibition is required.

Your honors thesis must follow these instructions.  For a thesis being written as a submission for publication in a scholarly work (such as a scientific journal), a prelude chapter should be provided by the student to provide the general audience some background for the scholarly work. This should allow the thesis document to follow the instructions provided on this page, as well as following the publishing requirements.

One electronic copy of your thesis must be delivered to the director of the Honors Program.


Please follow Kate Turabian's A Manual for Writers of Term Papers, Theses, Dissertations, 6th ed., University of Chicago Press, 1996 for style unless your department stipulates otherwise. Also used are the MLA Style Sheet and APA Publication Manual. Writers of scientific papers should follow styles set down by scholarly societies in their fields.

Layout and Formatting:

  • Margins: Left or inside and bottom margins: 1 1/2 inches. Others: 1 inch. These measurements must be respected for graphs, charts, illustrations, etc., without exception.

  • Spacing of text: Double-spaced for the body of text. Triple-spaced for all headings. Single-spaced for footnotes.

  • Type: 10 or 12 point fonts.

Illustrations, tables, charts, graphs, etc.:

  • Photographs or illustrations should be scanned and added to your original document file. Contact the Technology Desk in the library if you require assistance.


  • A blank page should precede the title page. It is not numbered.

  • Prefatory material: Use lowercase Roman numerals. The title page should be counted as iii but not numbered. Subsequent prefatory pages will have Roman numerals in the upper right-hand corner 1/2 inch from the top and 1 inch from the right edge of the paper.

  • Text: Use Arabic numerals.

Use of LaTex:

  • For students wishing to use LaTex for their thesis LaTeX, templates and class files are available here.

Order of the Thesis

  1. Title Page (see example): The names of the adviser and the department chair must be typed below the signature.
  2. Acknowledgments (if any)
  3. Table of Contents
  4. List of Tables (if any)
  5. List of Figures (if any)
  6. Abstract: A 1-2 page description of the thesis project and major findings. Do not omit the abstract, as it is crucial for librarians to catalog the thesis.
  7. Body of thesis
  8. Bibliography
  9. Appendix (if any)

Submitting a Thesis

Once you have defended your thesis, your work will proudly appear in the Bucknell Commons. Bertrand Library's copy of the thesis is submitted electronically via Bucknell Commons. Instructions for submitting your thesis are below and also available on the library's website.

Students or departments who wish to have a bound copy of a thesis should see the L&IT Graduate and Honors Thesis Guidelines for assistance.

The final copy of your work must be approved by your adviser, co-adviser or second reader and department or program chair. In order to show that they have approved your honor thesis, you will need to attain their signatures on your title page. You should scan this signed title page and then use Adobe Acrobat (not Adobe Reader) to merge your signed title page and the honors thesis document into a final submission-ready PDF. This complete digital copy of your thesis is due by the last day of exams in the semester in which you had your thesis defense. Honors will not be awarded at graduation if your thesis has not been submitted.

You have the option of making your work available to the general public or requiring a Bucknell log-in for access; please discuss these options with your adviser. (For example, if your thesis contains proprietary information or you plan to publish your work, you may wish to restrict access). A copy of your honors thesis must reside on Bucknell Digital Commons and with your adviser(s). The student is responsible for uploading their thesis to the Digital Commons.

You will need to create an account on Digital Commons and then upload your Honor Thesis to Digital Commons.

Enter data in the following fields:

  • Title: Use headline capitalization. The title field supports the Unicode standard and HTML. The title should be entered exactly as it appears in the manuscript of your honors thesis.
  • Author: Author information is pre-populated with email, name and affiliated institution. Select the green button to add additional authors.
  • Date of submission: Select the semester of your defense, fall or spring semester, and the calendar year associated with your defense.
  • Thesis type: Select either open access (honors thesis) or restricted access (honors thesis Bucknell access only).
  • Degree Type
  • Department: This should be your major where this thesis was approved for honors. Do not select a second major.
  • Adviser Names: Check with your adviser(s) for their preferred appearance of their name (typically full first name, then initials, then full last name and suffix preferred).
  • Keywords or phrases: Enter up to six, separated by commas. Check with your adviser(s) for their thoughts on these keywords.
  • Subject categories: Select up to three.
  • Abstract: Copy and paste your abstract into the rich text editor.
  • Comments: This field may be used to link to an external related resource (related video, website, digital collection, etc.)
  • Full text: Upload the digital file and any supplemental files (datasets, video files, audio files, image files, etc.)

Once your submission is complete, your honors thesis adviser will receive and email and will need to complete the submission by approving your submission as the final thesis.


Thesis Submission Process

Research guide

Contact Details

Honors Council


Professor Robert Jacob, Honors Council Chair: 570-577-1791