Preparing your master's thesis using LaTeX

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Preparing Your Master's Thesis Using LaTeX

This page describes the process for preparing a master's thesis using LaTeX. Note that, unlike Ph.D. dissertations, master's theses must be submitted on paper. In the Math Department, the recommended way of preparing this manuscript is with LaTeX, using the ucthesisnew document class.

Take careful note of the following:

  • You should not use the ucthesis document class included in most TeX distributions. It has not been updated for the current requirements.
  • Refer to this page only if you are writing a master's thesis. For a doctoral dissertation, go to the page Preparing your Ph.D. dissertation using LaTeX.

Graduate Division policies can be found on the web by going to the web page and following the link "Thesis Filing Guide".

In case the wiki is down, this page is also available at .

Preparing the LaTeX File

To prepare the LaTeX file, copy the files from the sample thesis located at , and adapt them to your situation. You should also use the masters class option by changing the first line of the file thesis.tex to read


The document class ucthesisnew is already installed on our computer network. However, if you are using a thin client, then you will need to type the following command, just once, in each terminal window in which you plan to use TeX:

set path = (/local/depot/texlive-2007/bin $path)

If you have already started your thesis using the ucthesisnew document class, the only change you need to know about for Spring 2010 is that you are required to use 12-point type (or larger) for your main font. Therefore, do not use the 10pt or 11pt class options for the final version of your thesis.

If you have been using the old ucthesis document class, then you should update your thesis to use ucthesisnew instead, as follows:

  • Use \documentclass[masters]{ucthesisnew} instead of \documentclass{ucthesis}
  • The \prevdegrees macro will be ignored

Downloading the Macros to Your Computer

The ucthesisnew package consists of the files ucthesisnew.cls, uctn10.clo, uctn11.clo, and uctn12.clo. These files can be found in the directory indicated below:

Linux machines: /local/depot/4/texlive-2007/tex/latex/local
Solaris machines: /local/sol/9/depot/texlive-2007/tex/latex/local

To install them as a document class on your home computer, download them and either put them in the same directory as your thesis files, or follow the instructions for your TeX installation on installing new LaTeX document classes.

Steps for Final Submission

To create the final version of your thesis, do the following:

  • Make sure that you are not using the twoside option (page numbers are not allowed in the upper left-hand corner of a page).
  • For actual submission, see the instructions provided by the Graduate Division: go to the web page and follow the link "Thesis Filing Guide".

You will also need to file the Dissertation Release Form; that form is not covered by this web page.

If you have any LaTeX-related questions about this process, email Paul Vojta at