How To Create A Proper Dissertation Cover Page

A cover page is a face of your dissertation. It is a single page but it creates your image and leaves the reader with a certain impression about you. You should be very attentive because you can’t let an overlooked mistake ruin your whole work.

As to the general rules of formatting your first page, there are no particular requirements which would apply to every dissertation. By default, your first page is the cover page. The departments normally have their own requirements and provide the students with the templates. Also, they specify the format of your paper, so make sure that every part of your paper falls within a given style.

According to the Modern Language Association (MLA) manual, no cover page is needed, unless it is a requirement of your instructor. In the latter case he or she should give you all the necessary information about the formatting. If you didn’t receive any instructions, consider the following general rules:

  • Do not include the title page into the page count.
  • Start numerating your paper from where the text begins.
  • Write your title using standard capitalization (short words, such as articles and prepositions, should not be capitalized).
  • No underlining, italicizing, or quotation marks are required.
  • If your title contains a quotation or the title of other book it should be written in italics and properly punctuated.
  • Make sure you paper is written in 12 point font.

Another way of formatting is the APA style. An APA cover page should contain:

  • The title.
  • Your title should be concise and reflect the essence of your topic. It is generally suggested that your title should be no longer than 12 words and have a center alignment. Avoid abbreviations, symbols, and formulas; substitute words for them.

  • Personal information.
  • Type your name, your institutional affiliation (university where you wrote your dissertation), and the date. If your research was conducted with the support of two or more institutions, then mention only two that contributed the most. If you were not attached to any institution, take a local approach and indicate your city and country. You may also be asked to include the name of your advisor or supervisor as well as the type of paper (in your case a dissertation).

  • The running head.
  • It should be placed in the upper left corner and not exceed 50 characters. Its text is a brief version of the title. All pages should contain this header.

For more detailed instructions on the formatting concerning spaces and alignment, consult your supervisor or a particular manual.