Thesis checklist

Table of contents

Formal structure


  • approx. 9,000 to 11,000 words unless specified differently by your First supervisor

Font and font size:

  • Arial or Times New Roman, font size 11 or 12;
  • The font must be the same throughout the thesis – this also applies for footnotes;
  • Headings are to be formatted in a uniform manner

Line spacing:

  • 1.5 lines 

Layout template:


  • Justified or left-aligned with automatic hyphenation of syllables in body text;
  • The right and left edge of tables and figures must be aligned with the text
  • Left-aligned list of references 


  • Individual paragraphs should be of an appropriate length and separated from each other by a blank line
  • If a paragraph runs over two pages, at least two lines of it must be contained on the first or subsequent page

Other formalities:

  • Distinguish between hyphen and dash
  • Consistent spacing between numbers and units
  • Use non-breaking spaces (CTRL+SHIFT+SPACE BAR) and non-breaking hyphens (CTRL+HYPHEN)


  • Harvard style (author-year referencing system) – also for Internet references
  • No Internet links in the text or footnotes
  • No plagiarism


Page numbers:

  • Table of contents and lists of abbreviations, illustrations and tables are provided before the main text, numbered with Roman numerals (I, II, III)
  • In the main text use Arabic numerals (1,2,3)
  • The list of references and appendices do not have page numbers


  • Chapter numbering: ".1" must be followed by ".2"
  • All illustrations and tables in the text must be numbered and listed in the respective lists

Table of contents:

  • Begins with the introduction (page 1)
  • Lists of abbreviations, illustrations and tables and acknowledgements (optional) are not included, the list of references and any appendices are listed without page numbers

List of references:

  • Only contains sources you have cited

Number of chapters:

  • Appropriate, text is not fragmented

Statutory declaration:

Insert this text as the last page of your thesis:

"I herewith formally declare that I have written the submitted thesis independently. I did not use any outside support except for the quoted literature and other sources mentioned in the paper.
I clearly marked and separately listed all of the literature and all of the other sources which I employed when producing this academic work, either literally or in content.
I am aware that the violation of this regulation will lead to failure of the thesis."

Name                            Signature

Student ID number:        Berlin, date



  • Academic style
  • Do not use "I", "We" or "the authors"
  • Numbers from "one" to "twelve" in words
  • Correct spelling and grammar

Preface (optional):

  • No topic-specific content

List of abbreviations

  • Only explain abbreviations if necessary; do not list abbreviations that are commonly known


  • Research questions on which the thesis is based

Main part:

  • Addresses the research question(s)


  • Answers the research question(s)
  • Summarises the different methods, processes and facts