Thesis Guidelines

Requirements for Format and Deposit of Theses for Honors

The following requirements are intended to ensure access by interested readers to all theses, portfolios and projects presented in partial fulfillment of requirements for a degree with honors at Amherst College. Please note that, at this time, theses cannot be accepted in a digital format.

I. Format

A. In general, all questions of format concerning footnotes, bibliographies, tables, appendices, etc., can be answered by consulting a standard authority such as Kate L. Turabian's A Manual for Writers of Term Papers, Theses, and Dissertations (Chicago: University of Chicago Press - Phoenix Books). If a department prefers the style-sheet issued by the principal journal in its field, it may have placed a copy of that style-sheet on reserve in the library.

B. The following information should appear on the title page:

  1. Title.
  2. Author.
  3. Statement to read:  "Submitted to the Department of __________ of Amherst College in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Bachelor of Arts with honors."For Interdisciplinary majors, the statement should read "Submitted to the Department of Special Programs of Amherst College...." For those students submitting a thesis in either Greek or Latin, please print the statement in the following manner: "Submitted to the Department of Classics of Amherst College in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Bachelor of Arts with honors in Greek/Latin."
  4. Name of faculty advisor(s).
  5. Names of readers (optional).
  6. Date.

C. To ensure archival preservation, the thesis copy to be deposited in the College Archives and Special Collections should be printed by a laser printer on alkaline-buffered bond paper of 20-pound weight. This paper is supplied to all departments on campus including the computer center in Seeley Mudd and the printers found in Robert Frost Library.

D. The thesis should be bound in black spring binders, with the spine left blank for labeling by the library. The inside margin (the margin touching the binder) should be 1.5 inches and the other margins should be one inch. The document should be double-spaced.

E. The document may be either single-sided or double-sided, but the mirror or book margin option must be used on a double-sided document to insure that the inside margin is the larger margin.

II. Deposit

A. The laser printer-produced document is to be submitted to the Registrar no later than the next-to-last day of classes of the semester. The paper used must meet the standards described in I. C. above. Labels are not necessary. After Commencement, the Registrar will deposit the thesis in the College Archives and Special Collections.

B. Projects involving the plastic arts, film, performing arts, and other similar activities should be represented by photographs of the work, prints of the film, production books, etc. accompanied by a statement of purpose. Any written material should be prepared in the prescribed format, preceded by a title page and enclosed in a binder as described in Section I. Wherever possible, non-written materials should be enclosed within the binder. The Registrar's office can help with securing non-written material.

C. If it is economically unfeasible or physically impossible to deposit a non-written project, a statement of purpose and description of the project, prepared in the prescribed format, preceded by a title page and enclosed in a binder, should be submitted to the Registrar.

III. Restrictions

As a condition of candidacy for honors, a student must submit a copy of a printer-produced thesis or comparable work to the Registrar. For non-written theses, see II. B and C above. Theses are available to members of the Faculty for examination prior to the meeting at which the degree is voted on by the Faculty.

As part of the requirements for a bachelor's degree with honors, the copy of the submitted thesis becomes an official record of the Registrar and thereby the physical property of Amherst College. Once the Registrar's Office has deposited the theses in the College Archives and Special Collections, public access to them will be permitted in the library. In exceptional circumstances, access to a thesis may be restricted for a specific period of time.

Students should be aware that this thesis policy applies to the official record copy, which is submitted to the Registrar and deposited in the College Archives and Special Collections; it is the responsibility of the student to become familiar with the policies of academic departments that require separate copies of the thesis.

Copyright in the thesis belongs to the author, including all rights of publication, copying or other reproduction including digital, and paraphrase. In an effort to protect the author's rights over his/her academic work, no photocopy, audio duplicate, or other reproduction of the thesis deposited in the College Archives and Special Collections will be made without the consent of the author, with the following exception: copies of bibliographic citations will be provided upon request, without consent. (The restriction on photocopying or other duplication does not apply to replacement of material in copies of theses which were originally made with the author's permission and which have been damaged or found to be defective.) The author may dispose of other copies of his/her thesis as desired and may publish the thesis and register the copyright at any time.

Catherine A. Epstein
Dean of the Faculty
         Kathleen D. Kilventon
      Michael Kelly
      Head of Archives and Special Collections