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Contents of the final thesis

The final thesis (bachelor and master) layout and content guidelines are in line with the APA (American Psychological Association) guidelines (Publication Manual of the APA, most recent version). A short summary of these guidelines is available on afstudeerweb/Formulieren en Links.

Succinctly put, these guidelines are the following. As concerns its layout and contents, the final thesis is equivalent to a research article in a journal, and therefore is to have the following structure:

Introduction (containing the statement of the problem and the hypotheses)

Method

Results

Discussion

You are free to add any subheadings. However, each report is to start with an abstract of no more than one A4 page in length, submitted both in English and in Dutch. You are to determine the length of your report in consultation with your supervisors. The length should be roughly the same as that of a research article, i.e., 15 to 25 pages excluding appendices. This applies to both the bachelor's and the master's thesis.

Though the APA style is to be fully adhered to, a number of exceptions exist and the following format settings apply. These settings serve as recommended settings:

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tables and figures are included in the main text.

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line spacing: 1.5.

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font: Times New Roman; font size: 12.

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margins: head, foot, left, right 2.5 cm; page headers and footers 1 cm from the edge.

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default tab stop of 1.25 cm.

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justify text (right margin is aligned).

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always consult the APA manual

Agree with your supervisor on when to start writing the thesis. It is usually a good idea to quickly start writing the Introduction and Method sections. You will likely have to submit, adapt and re-submit your report multiple times before it meets the thesis requirements. Make agreements with your supervisor on when to submit which section of your report, ensuring you will have enough time to make any adjustments. Of course, the same applies to the final version of your report, as you might still require some time to implement the suggestions from your final meeting just prior to submitting the final version.

The following sites are helpful should you be looking for more information and tips on how to write your thesis:

Summary of APA rules

Thesis in accordance with APA This English-language site details how to write research reports in accordance with the rules of the American Psychological Association (APA).

Writing Guide This English-language thesis writing guide is useful should you be writing your thesis in English.