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Oceanographic Campus Library - Portfolio, Capstone, Thesis, and Dissertation Binding Instructions: Portfolio Binding

Instructions for binding finished work and submitting for graduation.

Portfolio Templates

Portfolio Links

Portfolio Binding Requirements and Guidelines

PORTFOLIO Binding Requirements:

  1. You must print and submit your portfolio for binding to the NSU Oceanographic Campus Library staff.  

  2. One(1) Copy is Required - for the program office.  Additional copies can be bound per the student's request. 

  3. Printed on 20-25% Cotton Bond Paper (included in binding costs - please see NSU OC Library staff for paper).

  4. Printed singled sided (double sided copies will not be accepted). 

  5. Make a title page and signature page that follow the format shown in the templates to the left.

  6. Get signature pages signed in blue ink.  Signatures must be original - scanned or photocopied signature pages will not be accepted.  Portfolios are signed by Richard Spieler, Ph.D., Associate Dean.  See template to the left.

  7. Formatting of Paper:


    • Left-hand margins = 1.5 inches

    • All other margins = 1 inch


    • Times New Roman

    • 12 Point Font


    • 1.5 spaced


    • 15-20 pages

    Citation and Writing Style

  8. Provide the library with a CD of the paper in PDF format.  The CD's file name should include: author(last name), year, and format (portfolio, capstone, thesis, dissertation).

  9. A check for $12 for each copy to be bound (postage additional if we have to mail any copies to you), made out to Nova Southeastern University.

  10. Portfolio binding usually takes less than a week.

Taken fromDirections for the MA Student 

3.3.1 Development of the Essays for the Portfolio

As part of the requirements for each core course, the MA student is required to complete an essay. The goals of the essay are to:

  • demonstrate your writing ability (e.g., grammar, vocabulary, formatting);
  • demonstrate your ability to coherently summarize one (or several) problem(s);
  • demonstrate your ability to do independent library research;
  • demonstrate that you understand the broad shape of your subject;
  • introduce you to the scientific writing process;
  • introduce you to new ideas and provide a portfolio essay for the MA student;
  • provide a sound basis for grading;

Choose a topic with your instructor’s approval. Take the writing of the essay very seriously; it is a major part of your course grade. Your essay is a literature review

It is a survey of what has been written in your chosen topic area. It should succinctly review and systematically summarize recent progress in that area. It should allow the reader to understand the topic by discussing the findings presented in (chiefly) recent research papers, and it acts as a guide and reference to further reading in the area. It should include alternate views, if appropriate, so the reader realizes that other ways of looking at your topic exist. It is not an undergraduate book report and is not merely a summary of some references you found. Instead, a review paper synthesizes the results from primary literature papers and other sources to produce a coherent argument about a topic or focused description of a field. It shows some original thought. Your essay must be written in the scientific style of writing

Scientific writing has certain characteristics that distinguish it from journalistic, personal or fictional prose. It must be clear and unambiguous, concise and precise (not repetitive, not irrelevant); it must have no errors of punctuation, grammar or syntax, be free of contractions (e.g., don’t, can’t, isn’t) and popular language (e.g., ‘hassle’ instead of ‘difficulties’) and properly referenced throughout. Keep your writing as brief as possible. Length is not the key criterion; rather, it is the content. When you edit your work, remove unnecessary words. See how many sentences you can shorten without changing the meaning. If you write more briefly and your work becomes shorter, include more information. Never ‘pad out’ your writing. Specifics of essay structure

  • A 15-20 page take-home term paper written in a professional scientific manner.
  • 20%, or more, of the final course grade will be based on the essay.
  • It must be written with 1½ line spacing in Times New Roman 12-point font.
  • It must be written following guidelines in the Chicago Manual of Style.

To avoid additional tuition, the final portfolio must be submitted for binding within four weeks of final approval by the Associate Dean. Portfolios with major revisions will be required to register for an additional term.

The Oceanographic Center Library on the 4thfloor of the CoE building has 10 computers, a scanner, and a color LaserJet printer available to OC Students. 

 OC Students receive a $75 printing credit on their SharkCard, which is allocated each year on July 1st.

You can print your portfolio copy, or your capstone, thesis, and dissertation signature pages required for binding on the OC Library printer!  No need to pay for printing at Kinkos or Staples – use your SharkCard funds already allocated to you!

 For more information on the SharkPrint system, please see:

Search for past NSU OC Portfolios by title, author, and year.

If you would like to request a digital copy of a document, please fill out the online form below, or email the Oceanography Library at

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