Doctoral students often come into the writing center with questions about formatting their dissertations. Most of them know how to navigate their discipline’s formatting and style guide, but they do not always know that they are required to follow APU’s dissertation formatting guide as well. Even when students know to use both, they might not know how to resolve potential conflicts between them.
This blog both explains how a discipline’s style guide works with APU’s guide and outlines some of the advice I’ve given in appointments for using these two guides together. While I refer only to APU’s dissertation formatting guide in this text, these principles can also apply to formatting master’s theses.
Why a dissertation formatting guide?
You’re probably wondering why you’re required to use APU’s guide in addition to your discipline’s standard style guide. Why not just use one all-inclusive guide and call it a day?
So, now that you understand why dissertation formatting guides exist, here are some steps that you can take to ease combining APU’s guide and your discipline’s style guide.
Tori Dalzell, PhD
Tori Dalzell holds a PhD in ethnomusicology (UC Riverside) and a BA in Music and English (Hollins University). She has worked with both undergraduate and graduate students in writing centers since 2012, and views writing as an integral part of professional development for any chosen field. Tori conducted her dissertation research in Nepal on a Fulbright IIE grant (2012-2013), and remains involved as an alumna in UC Riverside’s Latin American Music ensemble, which performs folk and popular music from the Andean region of South America.