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University of Vaasa writing guidelines: Cover and abstract pages, the table of contents and appendices

The guidelines contain instructions about the layout and contents of theses and other written assignments as well as instructions on how to refer to source literature and other material used in the work.
All pages in theses are mandatory. Seminar work and exercises do not have abstracts, and there may be separate instructions for cover pages and tables of contents.


The cover must have the following information:

  1. University of Vaasa logo
  2. Name of author (Firstname Surname)
  3. Title
  4. Subtitle (if needed)
  5. Academic School
  6. Study subject/Major and degree
  7. Programme
  8. Vaasa 20XX

Kansi kuvana.

The thesis title must be concise and descriptive of the content. The title can be divided into two parts, in which case it is divided into a title and subtitle. For example, the title may be a quote from the material used in the research. The subtitle is often necessary to illustrate the scope of the subject.

The easiest alternative is to use the prepared template for covers. Layouts below.

  • Margins are the same as elsewhere in the thesis
  • The line spacing is 1
  • Font Calibri
  • The University of Vaasa logo is at the top of the page
  • Place your name in the centre of the page and use font size 16
  • Title in bold with font size 20
  • Possible subtitle font size 14
On the right side
  • What the work is (for example, Master's thesis in public administration)
  • Font size 12
  • The text Vaasa 20xx is at the bottom of the page, centered on the last line. The year to be used here is the year the thesis was approved.

For works other than theses, guidelines on covers vary depending on the course.


  • font Calibri
  • font size 11
  • line spacing 1
  • length one page
  • no citations

The following information must be at the beginning of the abstract

  1. University of Vaasa
  2. School of...
  3. Name of author
  4. Author’s student number*
  5. Thesis title
  6. Degree
  7. Subject
  8. Supervisor
  9. Completion year
  10. Number of pages

The abstract text itself comes after this basic information. Add keywords describing the work to the bottom edge of the abstract page.

Tiivistelmä kuvana.


Abstract serves as a maturity test in Master's thesis. In the abstract text, include information about the background or starting point of the research, the research problem or research purpose, theory, key concepts, methods used, materials, key findings and research results, and conclusions and interpretations.

If the thesis author’s language of schooling is Finnish or Swedish, they have to write the abstract in either Finnish or Swedish also in case the thesis is written in English. If the thesis author's language of schooling is not Finnish, the abstract may be written in English.

Abstract length should be one page (approx 400-450 words). The abstract text is added to the thesis information when the thesis is saved. The abstract is publicly available and can be found by search engines.


Keywords describe key concepts of the thesis. The thesis keywords (5–8) are included at the end of the abstract. Keywords are written in the same language as the thesis and can be discussed with the supervisor. Keywords are an important tool for potential readers, making the work easier to find.

Only words found in YSO are accepted in Osuva. The point of the keyword is not to be individual, but to tell what subject the work is related to.

Table of contents

  • The title of the table of contents is “Contents”.
  • It is recommended to compile the table of contents with the automatic feature of your text processing software.
  • The line spacing in the table of contents is 1.5. Indent section headings so that second level headings are 0.5 cm and third level headings are 1 cm from the left margin.
  • The table of contents specifies the study contents by title and page number in order.
  • Do not put numbers in front of the Sources and Appendices in the table of contents. If there is only one appendix, add it in the table of contents as follows: Appendix. Appendix title. If there are several appendices, number them sequentially.
  • Do not use dotted lines between headings and page numbers in the table of contents.

Sisällysluettelo kuvana.



List images, figures, and tables by title and page number below the table of contents. Do not include citations in the table of contents. If there are no more than three images, figures, and tables, they do not necessarily need their own lists.

When applicable, theses must also include a list of symbols and abbreviations. List characters, abbreviations, symbols, and terms and their explanations/definitions when they are not self-evident to the reader in alphabetical order by group: for example, first the Greek letters, then the Roman letters, and finally the abbreviations.

The list of abbreviations is titled “Abbreviations” and includes standard abbreviations, legal and other abbreviations (such as standard abbreviations of papers) used in the thesis. For statutes, include both the full name and the number. The list of abbreviations only contains the abbreviations used. For example, a statute is not included in the list of abbreviations if no abbreviation for the statute is used. When the thesis includes a list of abbreviations, abbreviations do not need to be explained in the text. If the thesis has only a few abbreviations, consider explaining the abbreviations in the text the first time they occur instead of including a list of abbreviations.


Add possible appendices to the thesis after the bibliography. Add headings to the appendices, number them sequentially, add page numbers and also list them in the table of contents. For example, the questions or interview forms used, other records related to data collection, and possible examples of materials can be added as an appendix. Never add all the material to the thesis as an appendix. Illustrative figures and tables about the content of the thesis can also be included as appendices if they are too large to be placed in the text.

Saavutettavuusseloste Tillgänglighetsutlåtande