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Thesis Information: Submitting

Submitting your thesis for examination

Printing and Soft-Binding

Your thesis needs to be prepared in a soft-bound print format, before submitting it for examination. This is so that you can make any required corrections before final e-thesis deposit.

There are several options for printing and soft-binding your thesis:

  • Uniprint - on campus will print and bind your thesis
  • Library Bindery  - will bind your thesis, but you will need to provide printed copies in the correct order
  • A commercial printer

For PhD & professional Doctoral theses, you must provide 4 copies for marking; for other theses, you must provide 3. You must also complete one hand-signed, looseleaf copy of the Thesis Submission Declaration Form to accompany your soft-bound theses (not bound in).


Submit the Thesis Declaration Form and thesis copies for examination:

  • Soft-bound Doctoral theses – are accepted at the St David II building by appointment only: to book, students should email After checking the candidate’s enrolment details, a member of Student Administration will either confirm the appointment or advise what needs to be completed before submission of soft-bounds can be accepted.
  • Soft-bound Masters theses are submitted to your Department (Dunedin);
  • In Christchurch submit to the Manager, Academic Programmes, Dean's Department; in Wellington to the Postgraduate Liaison Officer, Postgraduate Office.

Ring the University's bell when you hand in your PhD thesis.


Source: ODT 24 July 2019: Human Nutrition PhD candidate Claudia Leong

Printing and permanent binding of your final thesis - optional

From 15 January 2020 print copies of your final thesis are no longer required to be deposited; only a final digital copy is required. However you and/or your department may wish to keep a print copy (from 1 February 2020, at your/department's cost).

Printing services

Uniprint - following corrections to your marked thesis get your final version printed and bound, if you or your department requires a hardbound copy. If you have printed your final thesis elsewhere, you can go straight to Library Bindery.


The Library recommends that you use good quality A4 paper (80-120 gms) with grain running from head to tail, not across the page, for:

  • Theses longer than 200 pages, print your thesis double-sided on 100gms paper.
  • Special or coated papers - discuss your requirements with Uniprint and the Library Bindery first.

See also Final submission and access to the completed thesis.

Library Bindery - offers binding services to Otago students completing theses/dissertations, at competitive prices, with a maximum 10 day turnaround.

You can choose to have permanently bound printed copies of your finalised thesis made for your department, or yourself. Ensure your thesis is formatted correctly for binding.

Author Declaration Form - have this inserted before the title page in your bound thesis.

Binding details - decide on spine title, lettering, and colour, then use the:

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Depositing your electronic thesis copy

OUR Archive -  deposit an electronic copy of the final approved version of your research thesis, as the copy of record. 

The complete thesis file(s) is required. The file must be an exact replica of the corrected thesis accepted for your degree. Deposit the main part of your thesis as a PDF (or PDF/A) file, the Author Declaration Form as a separate PDF file, and any of the following:

  • Any supplementary material that you wish to make available with your thesis. Where digitisation is not practicable see 14.4 (c).
  • A report of third-party copyright protected material contained within your thesis.
  • Detailed evidence indicating the permissions given to use third-party copyright protected material in your thesis.

Be aware of potential publication contract restrictions with making your thesis fulltext openly accessible in OUR Archive. Deposit in a non-commercial repository such as OUR Archive is usually permitted. 

During e-thesis deposit set the Level of access to:

  • Abstract only (for 6 months from date of deposit) or;
  • Open access (Full text available for download).

Note that if Abstract-only is chosen, there is a notification before the thesis reverts to Open access, providing the opportunity to request an extension. If a more restricted level of access than either of the options above is required, candidates need to apply for a formal embargo and have it approved before e-thesis deposit, and any embargo extension must be approved prior to the expiry of the embargo - see 14.4 (e) and Final submission and access to the completed thesis.

For a dissertation or exegesis, gain department approval to deposit it, then:

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Surviving your viva

Oral examination - taken by PhD thesis students after submitting their thesis. For those enrolled from January 2014 this PhD thesis defence is mandatory.  The Convener of Examiners sets up this oral examination for you, also known as a viva. The examination takes place after receiving the examiners' thesis reports.  Check for procedures with your supervisor.

Resources that can support you: