In addition to the Standard ETD Formatting Guide, The Graduate School offers a Manuscript Format Option for students who have published or will publish at least one chapter from their ETD. The Manuscript Format Option is meant to limit the work students have to do when formatting their articles for publication.

The Manuscript Option is a combination of formatting requirements from The Graduate School’s Standard Formatting Option and formatting requirements for chapters that have been or will be published. Any student following the Manuscript Option will still need to include ETD front matter following the Standard Formatting guidelines, chapter formatting for all non-publication-related chapters following the Standard Formatting guidelines, and a cumulative references section and appendix material (if applicable) following the Standard Formatting guidelines.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Manuscript Format Option: 

How is the Manuscript Formatting Option different? 

What the Manuscript Formatting Option allows that the Standard Formatting Option does not is that chapters qualifying for the Manuscript Option can be left in the formatting style used by the journal(s) where the chapter(s) have been or will be published, with two exceptions: page numbers must continue consecutively throughout the ETD and the page margin requirements for the Standard Formatting Option must be followed. Font size and style should remain the same throughout the document.

Does My Thesis/Dissertation Qualify for the Manuscript Formatting Option?

All ETDs employing the Manuscript Formatting Option must:
  • Have been either prepared, submitted, accepted or published in a peer-reviewed journal. It is not required that each article have been published by the time you graduate to qualify for the manuscript option. Each department will determine how many manuscripts will be included, with a separate chapter for each manuscript.
  • Represent research conducted while the student was enrolled in an MSU graduate program, be a product of the ETD study, and not have been used to obtain another degree.
Please check with your department to see if this option is available for your ETD and whether they have more stringent requirements.
For chapters that do not meet the above criteria, formatting must be consistent with the Standard Formatting Option Guidelines.

How do I format a PDF version of the manuscript into my main document?

For formatting instructions on how to include a PDF version of a manuscript, visit the Formatting the Manuscript Option page, also found through the Formatting FAQ. This includes both written and video instructions.

When should I communicate with journals about the inclusion of my articles in a manuscript based thesis or dissertation?

It is good practice to communicate clearly with journals about your manuscripts. If your ETD is already published, you should treat the chapter like a preprint. Prior to completing your thesis or dissertation you should notify journals when the manuscript is accepted. For published articles, journals often have a license form, this should not incur additional costs. For questions, specifics, and help please contact [email protected].

Do I need to include any copyright information for the articles I have published? 

For each publication-related chapter the student must include a Contribution of Authors and Co-Authors Page and a Manuscript Information Page, both preceding the chapter text.  Both of these informational pages must be included in your Table of Contents. Please use the templates and samples below:

Contribution of Authors and Co-Authors Page

Each department will determine whether the student is the primary author or co-author of each manuscript. All authors must be mentioned in a Contribution of Authors and Co-authors Page, which includes a brief paragraph of contributions for each author.

Sample of Contribution of Authors Page
Contribution of Authors Template

Manuscript Information Page

Within the Manuscript Format Option a Manuscript Information Page will follow the Contribution of Authors Page and precede each individual manuscript that has been prepared, accepted, submitted or published in a peer-reviewed journal. 

Sample of Manuscript Information Page
Manuscript Information Page Template

Sample of Manuscript Formatting Option Layout:

If work from a previously published manuscript or from a manuscript accepted for publication is to be used in the ETD, it is standard for the copyright of this material to be held by the journal. Consequently, you may need to request permission from the journal to reproduce this copyrighted material and may want to include this information in the relevant sections of the thesis/dissertation.