Policies and Submission of thesis

Information for Supervisors

Handbooks & Policies for Students

Policy Register

The University Academic Board policies and procedures can be found in the Policy Register. For information relating to higher research degrees, please select "keyword" then enter Ph.D or Thesis in the search engine.

Please also visit the Graduate Studies Office for more information.


Submission of thesis

The Academic Board implemented the following which came into effect on 1 January 2015:

Writing Style Guide

The text and citations must conform to the Australian Guide to Legal Citation (3rd edition), which can be accessed as a read only PDF here.

Proof-reading and editorial assistance

Students are permitted to use editors in preparing their thesis for submission. Students proposing to use an editor must ensure that they comply with the requirements as outlined in the Thesis and Examination of Higher Degrees by Research Policy 2015 and Thesis and Examination of Higher Degrees by Research Procedures 2015.

If you have sought proof-reading/editorial advice or assistance, the name of the editor and a brief description of the service rendered should be printed as part of the list of acknowledgement in the body of the thesis.

Length of thesis

It is important to remember that the word limit for the thesis, excluding appendices, is 100,000 words (PhD), 75,000 words (SJD) and 50,000 words (Master’s). The total word count for the thesis should exclude the bibliography, footnote numbers and footnote citations, but discursive footnotes and quotations are included. The footnotes should restart for each chapter/relevant sections of the thesis.

Notice of intention to submit thesis

Students are requested to give three months’ notice of the expected date of submission of their thesis by submitting the Notice of intention to submit thesis (doc) to allow the Faculty to make arrangements for the timely appointment of examiners

Form of thesis for examination

The thesis may be submitted as an electronic document. The thesis should be saved in a PDF format using the latest version of Adobe Acrobat and labelled surname_initials_Degree_examination.pdf i.e. Ng_S_PhD_examination.pdf. No security settings restricting access should be set on file upon submission.

Students must ensure the thesis contains information as prescribed in the Thesis and Examination of Higher Degrees by Research Policy 2015 and Thesis and Examination of Higher Degrees by Research Procedures 2015.

See example of thesis format and Sydney University Library eScholarship Repository

If an examiner expresses a preference for examining a paper copy of the thesis, then this must be supplied by the student.

Submission of thesis for examination

The thesis must be accompanied by a statement from the student and supervisor on the submission of a thesis i.e. Submission of higher degree by research thesis form. This form must be countersigned by both the student and supervisor in advance of submission.

The PDF thesis file and Submission of higher degree by research thesis form must be emailed to:

Sue Ng
Postgraduate Team Leader
Sydney Law School
Email: sue.ng@sydney.edu.au


at least two working days prior to the last day of the research period for which a student is enrolled in. If you are unable to submit the final thesis by this date, please submit a formal application for extension of candidature at least 3-6 months prior to your candidature lapse. See application forms.


Electronic lodgement of final theses with the Library

After all steps of the examination process has been completed and before the official conferral of the award, students will be advised to lodge the following electronic files to Sue Ng, Law Postgraduate Team:

The final thesis file will then be uploaded to the Sydney University Library eScholarship Repository and to be made available for local or open access. See Electronic Lodgement of Final Theses with the Library

Past awarded theses are available in the Rare Books Section of Fisher Library or Sydney University Library eScholarship Repository (from March 2014).