PhD thesis binding: learning the latest standards

When that moment comes for a student who has just completed their PhD, they have to decide what is next.  Student will have to have their thesis bound, so that they can present them to their thesis committee. Normally the library of the school will also require at least two copies of the finished thesis. The student will need to know how to have it done properly.  There are standards and rules for how it should be done.   Here are the latest standard when it comes to having a finished PhD thesis bound.

Binding Standards

The first thing that the student has to know is the schools requirements,  No matter what the current trend in the nation is, when the student is present to their university they must follow those set of rules first and then the national guidelines second.  

When submitting a bounded thesis to the University College London (UCL) they require a submission to have a medium blue cloth.  The material must be water resistant.  

  • The spine of the book, in 16 or 18 point, gold font color must have the following;
    1. The Degree the student has earned/earning.  
    2. The Year of publication.
    3. The name of the student.  The name needs to match exactly how it is in the schools records with the last name first, then first name or initials of the first name.   
  • There can be no image or typeface on the front of the binding it must be plain.
  • If the student choose to have the thesis hard bound, then the pages need to be sown in.  The soft bounded books will have to have the pages glued in.

The student is responsible for all cost associated with binding.  They must take into account the number of copies they will need and plan accordingly.


These are the current standards for binding a PhD thesis at the UCL.  Remember that it is the student responsibility, not the printers to have the correct standards followed.  Many schools have their own printing options, so make sure that the student knows who to contact to schedule the binding process.  The binding process of a PhD dissertation might be the last step in the daunting process that the student has traveled down, but it is one of the most important steps in the process.  Having a well looking thesis is just as important as having a well-written and defended thesis.