How to format your thesis – don’t revinent the wheel

Are you setting up to write your thesis in Microsoft Word? There’s no need to struggle alone. There are plenty of resources available online – try Googling for Word templates, stylesheets etc. It is worth spending some time now on getting your file right. Your department or university might have a fixed style or perhaps you can establish your own. Whichever it is, please get it sorted now as it is better to start with a proper template than converting your text (late at night probably!) a year or two down the road.
The University of Edinburgh has some useful workbooks and manuals at their digital training site, whether you want training in Word, bibliographies, reference management, spreadsheets or presentations. For example, ‘Producing a thesis using Word‘  [PDF].
The University of Massachusetts at Amherst has a similarly lengthy but usefully detailed PDF about setting up your thesis template: Formatting dissertations or theses at UMass Amherst (in Word 2016); there are also files for other versions of Word. This might seem like a lot of time to spend on formatting, but it will be worth it as you are going to spend a lot of time on this file! This tutorial is really detailed and you should consider printing it as it will become a manual on how to use Word. The UMass Amherst page ‘Format a Thesis or Dissertation in Microsoft Word’ also has some sample files to download; these are in simple (no numbering on sub-headings) or numeric (sub-headings are numbered) formats.

The SUNY Broome Library page has a Chicago Manual style guide template.

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UNC-Chapel Hill has a PDF ‘Formatting your thesis or dissertation using Microsoft Word‘ that includes links to Microsoft tutorial pages, such as formatting bibliographies using Word, stylesheets, etc.

There is a downloadable Word file (.docx) and template (.dotx) at the Neural Discharge website. While these files seem to be fine, please investigate these carefully yourself before committing to anything.