A multi-part thesis is a thesis which includes a number of different electronic files and formats, beyond just a single PDF.
The concept of a multi-part thesis is applied currently to practice PhDs only. However, from 2023/24 a pilot for ‘multi-part’ thesis submissions will be running, which will explore and support applications for the submission of a multi-part thesis from any school.
What is a Multi-part thesis?
A multi-part thesis is a thesis which includes a number of different electronic files and formats, beyond just a single PDF. A multi-part thesis presents opportunities for more flexible and creative presentation and examination of work, providing there is a robust academic rationale for submitting the content in this way. Examples could include (this list is not exhaustive):
• Content that is not easily accommodated in a single PDF due to its size, for example data or other material that would typically form part of your appendix
• Content that is better presented in its original source format for ease of use
• Computer code
• A video (rather than static images) of an experimental set-up or cell movement
• A visualisation of a weather front
• A visualisation of a 3-D model.
• A portfolio of videos, audio files or other file types illustrating creative practice
Multi-part thesis pilot guidance for PGRs and Supervisors
Please read the guidance document (pdf) for more information on the multi-part thesis pilot. This summarises the arrangements for the pilot, and the process to be followed if you would like to make an application for the submission of a multi-part thesis.
Multi-part thesis pilot forms to be completed
The arrangements and forms will differ whether you are registered for a practice-led research degree or not.
Who should complete this form: PGRs who are not registered for a practice-led research degree but who wish to apply for submission of a multi-part thesis as part of the pilot.
When to complete this form: Email the completed form to the Doctoral College Operations Progression and Examinations team at least six months before the planned thesis submission date.
If you are a practice-led researcher, you are also included in this pilot to help us better understand the range and nature of material/content being submitted, and to support you with the management, sharing and preservation of these materials. Please see the guidance for further details.
Who should complete this form: PGRs who are registered for a practice-led research degree and will be submitting a multi-part thesis for examination.
When to complete this form: Upload this form to GRAD with the examination entry workflow (at least three months before either the planned thesis submission date or before the first assessed live practice).
Who should complete this form: PGRs who are registered for a practice-led research degree and will be submitting a multi-part thesis for examination; or any PGRs who have had an application approved for a multi-part thesis, as part of the multi-part thesis pilot.
When to complete this form: Upload this to GRAD alongside your thesis submission. A copy of this form must also be uploaded to White Rose Etheses Online alongside the final eThesis.
Questions and further information
The Multi-part thesis guidance document includes further advice and information, as well as a glossary and FAQs.
If you wish to explore the submission of a multi-part thesis please consult the guidance document above, and discuss this with your supervisory team at an early point.
Advice on the thesis examination is available from the Progression and examination team in Doctoral College Operations.
The Library team will be happy to provide advice and support to help you in your planning. Please contact the Library as early as possible in advance of making your submission.
Information on research data management, including good practice when handling sensitive data, is available on the Research Data Leeds website. Advice and support on research data management are available from the Library's Research Data team. Contact them well before you submit your thesis. Please also see the Research ethics page of the For Students website.
Information on thesis embargo arrangements can be found in the Guide to the thesis examination process.