Organization of the Text

2.1    Sections and Headings

The work should be divided into sections and, if necessary, subsections. All sections and subsections should have a clear and concise heading. The headings serve as guidelines for the overall organization of the thesis. Therefore, headings that reflect the topic and content of the work are better than very general ones (e.g. Analysis). Chapter headings should be typed in upper case, using bold print. Section headings are also typed with bold print, but not capitalized. 

The level of the section is indicated with numbers. The number of levels depends on the length of the work and the complexity of the subject matter. However, too much complexity should be avoided: the number of levels should not be more than three or four.


2.1  Theories of politeness

2.1.1  Brown and Levinson’s theory

2.2    Organization of Sections

The main sections of a pro gradu thesis should be arranged as follows:

Title page 
Abstract (‘tiivistelmä’)
Table of contents
Lists of figures, tables, and abbreviations 
Body of the text   (see Organization of Pro Gradu Theses)

2.3    Tables and Figures

All tables and figures in the text must be numbered and should always have a heading. The number and heading of a table are placed above the table and those of a figure under the figure. For example:

Table 1. Test scores of control and experimental groups


Mean score

Standard deviation

Low score

High score


Group A






Group B






Group C






All students







When you refer to the table in the text, use the number of the table: e.g. Table 1 shows the test scores of the three groups.

2.4   Examples

Examples from your data (e.g. samples of text or discourse) should be numbered. The numbering of the examples should be continuous and marked in a systematic manner throughout the text.

If you use examples from published sources or a corpus, make sure you provide a clear reference to the source. If your examples are from a data set collected for the purposes of your study, use a system of reference that helps you locate the original text or event that the example is drawn from.

If your examples come from interviews or discourse data in Finnish, they should be translated into English. For short examples, the translation is given in the text. If the examples are long, the original samples of data and their translations into English can be given in the appendices.

Examples can be separated from the body of the text with a blank line before and after. They should also be clearly indented from the left hand margin (about 5-10 spaces).  

Font size and line spacing in examples can be smaller than in the body of the text (font 10, single-spaced).

(1)  This is an example of how to present examples in the paper or thesis.

Short linguistic examples (e.g. words, phrases, short sentences) can be part of the body of the text. These should be clearly indicated by using italics.  Here is an example:

The speaker’s use of the interrogative how can you justify implies that …

Words or expressions which need to be glossed or translated should be italicized and the gloss itself marked with single inverted commas (single quotation marks), e.g.:

The word friissata 'freeze' occurs repeatedly in game vocabulary.

2.5    Appendices

Appendices can be used to include material that is not directly relevant to the main content but needs to be referred to in the text. For instance, if your study is based on a questionnaire or (semi)structured interviews, the questionnaire or interview plan must be included in the appendices. Appendices must have a heading and they must be numbered.