Table of Contents
The table of contents is an important map for your reader. It shows the reader:
- the main sections and subsections of the whole text
- the organisation of the text
- the most relevant sections for them
A program like Word will generate the Table of Contents automatically.
Your table of contents should include:
- both headings and subheadings and related page numbers
- informative titles
- logical numbering system e.g.
1. Level heading one
1.1 level heading two
1.1.1 level heading three
- Note: 3 levels is often the limit
- References/Bibliography and appendices are usually neither numbered nor considered to be chapters.
- The format for the different level headings and notation used should remain consistent throughout the report. Irrespective of where in the text, the reader must recognize the level heading formats.
- Lowercase roman numerals are used for front matter e.g. abstract, acknowledgements, lists mentioned below
- Try to avoid having "empty" headings in the text i.e. headings without text
Other possible lists at the beginning of the thesis:
- Figures and tables in the text
- List of illustrations including page numbers
- List of abbreviations
- Could be helpful if many abbreviations or acronyms are used in the report which might be new to the reader
- Glossary / terminology
- List of key words / terms used in the thesis which might be new to the reader
- List of symbols / notation
- Could be helpful if many symbols / notation are used in the report which might be new to the reader