Directed Research Thesis Guidelines

Submit a hard copy to all committee members at least 3 working days prior to your presentation. While there is no page limit, you are encouraged to be thorough yet concise. Thesis should be double-spaced or 1½ spaced.


Cover Page

  • title
  • name
  • student number
  • senior supervisor, committee members
  • date, time and location of Directed Research defense


In a single paragraph summarize the research problem, how you approached this problem and what you found.


Provide background information, state the problem you are trying to address and how you will address it.

Materials and Methods

Provide enough detail that the work can be reproduced by another person assuming basic knowledge of molecular and biochemical techniques.


  • report results and data that led to the completion of your project
  • include negative results only if they contributed to your progress and/or to your understanding of the project (eg. failed or redundant/repetitive data)
  • report negative results if they are relevant to the project and caused you to change your approach
  • additional data that might be useful to other lab members can be included in the Appendix


  • summarize your findings and put them into the context of the field
  • avoid restating info already present in the Introduction
  • include a discussion of any problems you may have encountered with your research plan or execution
  • include “future work” if appropriate


Who helped you with this project?


No specific format is required, but one consistent with a common journal should be used – include full title and all authors.

Appendix (optional)

Might include primers used, sequences, sequence alignments, etc.