Stack of red theses

Thesis as Series of Papers

The PhD and MPhil course rules allow you to format your thesis as a series of papers.

GRS Guide: Thesis as a Series of Papers

A comprehensive guide to formatting a thesis as a series of papers at UWA is available to download here. Students and supervisors are strongly encouraged to read this guide before submitting a thesis in this format.

Thesis Format

While some universities have a separate set or rules and guidelines for theses formatted as a series of papers (also known as a thesis by publication), this is not the case at UWA. The GRS course rules and examination criteria at UWA are the same for all theses.

You can format your thesis as a monograph, a series of papers, or a combination of chapters and papers. Any number of papers can be included in the thesis, and they can be at any stage of publication - from manuscript to published. As you can include manuscripts in your thesis, you should not delay thesis submission for peer review and publication.

If you format your thesis as a series of papers, you will need to write a general introduction and a general conclusion for your thesis.

Care should be taken to ensure the thesis is coherent, and that any papers included in the thesis fit with the remainder of the thesis. To improve coherence, students often include linking text or chapters.

You can include published papers in your thesis as they appear in the journal or the text version formatted for consistency with the remainder of your thesis.

Co-authored Papers

You must be the major contributor to any papers that you include within your thesis, and this commonly means you will be the first author.

If you include co-authored papers in your thesis, it is critical that your contribution to the paper is made clear to the examiner.

An authorship declaration for the front pages of your thesis is provided for you to declare your contribution to papers (or other form of work) in your thesis that have been published, submitted for publication, or presented as a manuscript formatted for future publication. All co-authors must sign this declaration, for two reasons: (1) to endorse your declaration of contribution and (2) to authorise inclusion of the work in your thesis. If signatures from all the co-authors cannot be obtained for the work, your Coordinating Supervisor must provide the reasons for this in the Thesis Submission form.

If you have co-authored a paper with one or more students, it is strongly recommended that the paper should only be included in its entirety in the thesis of one student.