Mathematical Sciences Senior Honors Thesis - Forms and Timelines

  • If you plan to graduate with honors in Mathematical Sciences, you must: (1) complete at least 9 hours of honors coursework in the Mathematical Sciences [three of these hours must be for your Senior Honors Thesis] and (2) have a GPA of 3.45 or greater in your Mathematical Sciences coursework.
  • If you plan to graduate with honors in Mathematical Sciences AND with university honors, additional requirements apply. Please consult the Honors College Website for information concerning university honors.


  • Prior to registering for MAT 4510: Fill out the appropriate thesis application form.
  • At least one month before the last day of formal class meetings in the semester in which you are receiving credit for MAT 4510: Give a strong rough draft to your thesis director, second reader (if appropriate), and Dr. Cook. 

  • At least one week before the last day of formal class meetings in the semester in which you are receiving credit for MAT 4510: Give a public  defense/presentation of your thesis. Your thesis advisor and Dr. Cook will help you schedule your presentation. 

  • Before the last day of formal class meetings in the semester in which you are receiving credit for MAT 4510: Submit the final version of your thesis, your index form, your thesis release form, your thesis binding payment form, and your student accounts receipt (if applicable) to Dr. Cook (via email). Also, submit any printed copies of your thesis directly to Dr Cook. Dr. Cook can give you watermarked paper for printing your thesis, so please visit him before printing. Printed copies must have signed cover pages. 
    • If you are completing departmental honors ONLY, you will submit electronic files via email (to Dr. Cook) and deliver any printed copies of your thesis directly to Dr. Cook's office (WA 347). 
    • If you are completing BOTH departmental honors and university honors you will need to make an appointment  to deliver the files and any printed copies of your thesis directly to the Honors College. In addition, please submit a copy of your thesis payment form via email (to Dr. Cook) so that he has a copy and can mail your printed theses to you when they arrive.
  • Additional requirements may apply to students completing BOTH university and departmental honors.  Such students should follow the university honors guidelines found here.
  • Tips from the ASU Writing Center and more information from the University Honors Thesis webpage

 Important Note: Don't forget that your final, approved thesis must be submitted before  the last day of formal class meetings during the semester in which you are receiving  credit for MAT 4510. Also, you must give a public presentation of your thesis before your committee can approve your final written product.


[Source: University Honors forms webpage]

Thesis Guidelines

  • Cover page: Check out the sample thesis title page section below and choose the appropriate template. 
  • Content: A senior honors thesis in the mathematical sciences should have significant mathematical content.  Although many theses will not contain proofs of new theorems, a thesis should contain a proof that is in some way original, or a detailed exposition of an application of known results.

  • Writing Style: The thesis should be well written. In particular, mathematical definitions and statements should be clear. Notations must be consistent throughout the paper. Spelling and grammar must be perfect. Students should typeset their work in a professional manner consistent with their discipline. For students other than mathematics education and actuarial science students this implies using the typesetting program LaTeX. Mathematics does not have a single reference style that is consistent across all journals. Thus, you have some flexibility in choosing a reference style. Most importantly, once you choose a reference style, you should be consistent in your application of that style. You can find advice concerning formatting references for mathematical writing here.

  • Formatting Guidelines: Your thesis should be formatted according to the honors college guidelines, which can be found at the following link: Prepare Your Thesis: Components and Formatting Requirements.

Sample Thesis Templates

Presenting the Thesis

 All honors students must give a public presentation of their thesis. Students completing ONLY departmental honors  can choose to present as part of our departmental research day (preferred), as part of our departmental colloquium series (see Dr. Quinn Morris to schedule), or as a separately scheduled presentation. While we encourage students completing university honors to participate in our departmental research day, they must also present their research as a separately scheduled 

presentation -- the thesis defense. The defense is not as scary as it sounds; it is just a 20 to 30 minute presentation followed by time for questions. University honors students should schedule this defense in consultation with the thesis director, second reader, and Dr. Cook (all of whom should be present at the defense). You should complete the public presentation of your thesis at least one week before the last day of formal class meetings in the semester for which you will receive credit for MAT 4510.

Printing and Binding the Thesis

  • Our department would like to purchase a bound copy of your thesis for you as a gift. While any type of paper is now acceptable for binding, ASU watermarked paper is preferred and our department will supply this paper for you. Your advisor should contact Dr. Cook or Sandy Hicks to obtain the paper for the printing of your thesis. 

  • Please complete the Thesis Binding Payment Form and submit your completed form to Dr. Cook. The form explains how to purchase additional bound copies of your thesis and asks how you would like these copies mailed to you. Please indicate that you would like all copies delivered to the mathematical sciences department and we will then mail your personal copies to you at no charge. If you are a university honors student please bring a completed copy of your binding payment form and student accounts receipt (if applicable) to your final thesis submission appointment.

Thesis Submission

  • Everyone should submit Thesis Binding Payment Form and student accounts receipts to Dr. Cook (via email).

    If you would like any bound copies of your thesis you will need to post your completed Thesis Binding Payment Form to Dr. Cook. Recall that the mathematical sciences department will pay for one bound copy of your thesis as a gift to you and that you can get watermarked ASU paper from Dr. Cook any time at no charge. If you want to purchase additional copies of your thesis they cost $9 each and you would pay for these at Student Accounts in the John E. Thomas building. If you do so, please include your payment receipt with your Thesis Binding Payment Form when emailing/submitting documents to Dr. Cook.

  • If completing University honors, skip the following steps and instead consult the Honors College webpage on how to submit your thesis.

    For those ONLY completing departmental honors...
    • Submit Completed Thesis to Dr. Cook (via email). You need to submit a digital copy of your approved, completed thesis. You should be certain that the copy of the thesis you submit is the final, complete copy, with all errors corrected. Although the thesis file you submit should be approved by your advisor, second reader (if applicable) and Dr. Cook,  you do not need their physical signatures on the copy you submit electronically. You will need signed cover pages for each of the bound copies of your thesis. Please just drop these signed copies (minimum 1) by Dr. Cook's office/mailbox before the last day of the semester. 

    • Submit Completed Index Forms to Dr. Cook (via email). In order to include your thesis in NC Docks we must have a completed thesis index form. Please complete and email the form to Dr. Cook.