Above is from my university master thesis template, I checked other schools templates, they all use a4paper, is a4=a4paper? And I do not find geometry in my template, does it mean my template uses default a4 size? Is there a standard(or widely accepted) size for thesis?

  • You should get a warning about an unused option a4? a4paper is the option
    – user31729
    Jan 24, 2015 at 13:38
  • No, it isn't the same. The option a4 is not defined for the book class (so it does nothing, except issuing a warning), whereas a4paper is.
    – egreg
    Jan 24, 2015 at 13:39
  • By the way, you are asking more than question. Are you sure that a4 is in the documentclass option list, not \usepackage{a4}?
    – user31729
    Jan 24, 2015 at 13:41
  • @ChristianHupfer I am sure, I just exactly copy the first line in my template.So you think my template has problem? From my basic knowledge about latex I feel my template is a kind of unnormal...
    – postit
    Jan 24, 2015 at 13:47
  • Are there other university specific packages being loaded later in the preamble? If so the a4 option might be processed there. Jan 24, 2015 at 13:55

1 Answer 1


The "short" options a4, letter, a5, ... are not defined, neither in standard classes like article, book etc., nor in the package geometry. The proper options are a4paper, letterpaper, a5paper, ...

If this is the template your university proposed, then your university have obviously quite small knowledge of LaTeX.

For the standard paper size, this is something your university has to set up, I've seen theses on A4, Letter, B5 and maybe other paper sizes as well.


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