Formatting your thesis: Appendices & supplemental material

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Appendices provide supplementary information to the main thesis and should always appear after the references/bibliography. If you are unsure about whether content should be included in the thesis or in an appendix, consult with your supervisor. The thesis and appendices must be uploaded in a single file.

For more information about appendices, please see the Thesis Template Instructions.

Note: Signatures, personal phone numbers, or personal email addresses (ones that contains part of a person’s name) must be redacted from your thesis. This means that the text is fully removed, and cannot be copied & pasted out of the document.

If including copyrighted materials as appendices, see Copyright at SFU.

Materials included in appendices

Examples of material included in appendices are as follows--also refer to Formatting Help.

  • interview questions
  • participant letters / forms  
  • surveys / questionnaires (if not your own work, these require copyright permission)
  • supplemental tables / figures / graphs / image

Supplementary material or research data files

Supplementary material or research data files associated with your thesis can also be uploaded to your library submission record. We recommend publishing such files to Summit (the SFU Research Repository) as they will be available alongside your thesis. This is preferred to hosting such files externally or on personal cloud storage.    

Temporary instructions: Contact if you wish to upload such files with your thesis submission -- please do not upload them to the Thesis Registration System at this time. Data Services will require basic descriptive information for each of your files and will also help you organize your research data appropriately pending publication. 

If you are including supplementary material or research data files in your submission, you must include an appendix within your thesis document which contains an overall description of the supplementary material or research data files, authorship credits, and file name(s). This assists in “linking” your thesis document to any additional files, as well as providing further information and context about the file(s). The maximum file size for each file is 2GB. If you have a larger file size, please contact 

Note: if your Ethics approval requires that supplementary material or research data files be destroyed after a certain period, then such files cannot be published to Summit (the SFU Research Repository). Please contact to identify other possible solutions in this case.  

Accepted supplementary material or research data file types: 

aac, cif, csv, docx, dta, epub, exe, gdb, geojson, gif, iso, jp2, jpg, jpeg, json, kml, kmz, las, mp3, mp4, mpv, odt, pdf, png, pptx, py, qgs, qgz, r, rar, rmd, rtf, shp, tex, tif, tiff, txt, wav, xlsx, zip 

It is recommended to use the best file formats to allow for data files to be openly accessible for the long term, so that they remain usable through software upgrades and changes in the computing environment. See the Research Data Management (RDM) website for more information about the handling and organization of data during your research.

Order of appendices

Appendices appear in the order in which they are introduced in the text.  

Appendix headings

You may include one appendix or a number of appendices.

If you have more than one appendix, you would letter each accordingly (i.e., Appendix A, Appendix B, etc.). Write your appendix headings in the same manner as your chapter headings.

Formatting help

If you have content from other documents that you’d like to include as appendices, you can either:
  1. Transfer the text and re-format using the template styles as necessary, or 
  2. Convert the documents into images and insert them into your document, one image per page.
Consult with the Theses Office if necessary, and determine which method would be best for your content. Keep in mind that text converted into images cannot be searched or copied and pasted, and may not be as clear to read as transferred text. However, sometimes content cannot be easily formatted for a Word document, so as long as the content is readable, converting to an image is another option.
Please see the Thesis Template Instructions for further assistance in appendix formatting, or contact the Theses Office.