How to write dissertation
How to write dissertation? An Expert Advice
Our expert teams of writers understand the struggles that come with the tedious tasks of writing a dissertation. No matter what degree you may be pursuing, all have a dissertation format that needs to be followed, so that you may earn your degree.
We have tabulated some information regarding the chapters that must be included, along with their weight, to render you free of confusion when your proposal and synopsis finally get validated by your instructor or professor. A clear understanding of the chapters will help you understand where exactly you need to add the most valued information, depending on the weightage it possesses.
|Introduction||Includes the research aims and objectives, as well as the research questions. Here, expand all the material summarized in the abstract and mention its overall zest.||10%|
|Critical Literature review||This is the chapter which allows you to critically analyze and evaluate many sources on a specific topic. The purpose is to provide the reader with an overview of the research has been conducted on your topic, in order to evaluate the sources you are reviewing.||30%|
|Methodology||Mention the methods you used to gather the pieces of information for you research. These can be either primary or secondary sources, depending entirely on the best-fit approaches for your research paper.||10%|
|Data Analysis/ findings||Decide if you want to begin with an initial overview of the results and mention the order of word spacing you wish to achieve with the results||30%|
|Conclusion||Include the zest of all the findings that you’ve previously mentioned. You may highlight key aspects of the literature, simply recommend or justify the research finding here mentioned previously.||10%|
|Recommendation||It forms the basis for further research in and allows the filling of any research gap that you believe could not be met. Moreover, you can also apply the same methods on the same problem statement, but, with a set of independent variables.||10%|
Getting into the basics- What is the best dissertation format?
The abstract is also called the soul of your dissertation. Presented at the beginning of the research paper, this is the first and for-most substantive description of your work read by an external supervisor or professor. Considering its extremely important, you ought to view it as an opportunity to set accurate expectations from the reader.
The abstract is a summary of your entire dissertation and also is the most concise section of the paper; essentially a succinct summary of your conducted research and requires. The most important point to remember when writing an abstract would be to stick to a certain word limit, yet, clearly stating all that the reader needs to know.
Some of the key features
- It generally functions, together with the dissertation title, as a stand-alone text
- An abstract is not merely an introduction in the sense of a preface, preamble, or advance organizer that prepares the reader for the thesis
- It should make you capable of getting help with dissertation when there are insufficient time and space for the full text to be written, while abiding to word count
The dissertation acknowledgments section is where you get the chance to thank all those who have provided you with assistance and supported you throughout the research and writing process. This section is not restricted to acknowledging the professionals with offered their support, but, may also include personal acknowledgments and appreciation.
The dissertation acknowledgments appear after the title page and right before the abstract, and are generally expected to be no longer than one page.
Who to thank in this section
As mentioned before, there are two categories of acknowledgments: professional and personal. Some universities only allow students to acknowledge those who are members of academia and other professionals who have made contributions to your research papers. However, some universities may allow you to add personal acknowledgments as well. Therefore, it’s crucial for you to look into your university requirements before moving forward.
Usually, it’s best for you to only mention those who were directly involved in your research paper; either in the research or writing process, but if you feel that there’s any other inspiration that greatly motivated you by providing emotional support; you may even mention those individuals.
Table of contents
The Table of Contents is just an organized listing of all the chapters and major sections included in your research document. This serves to give readers an immediate look at how your manuscript is organized and then skip down to sections that are most relevant to them. A clear, concise, and well-formatted Table of contents page is the first indicator of a good research paper and so, must be constructed properly. Also, experts suggest that to save yourself some time in making this chapter, you should ensure the correct use of font-styles.
What should your checklist for the table of content include?
While writing the table of contents page, you may easily deviate from the format because of all the information that goes into it. In such circumstances, it’s best to make a checklist of all the key points that need your undivided attention when doing this. It should be understood that these key-points may vary according to separate university requirements and so, it’s important to re-check that before moving any further. Some useful key-points have been listed below for ease of understanding:
- Appropriately formatted table of contents
- Listing of all main sections of the document, starting with the dedication page or abstract page.
- Making sure that all titles and headings match what exactly appears in the text
- All page numbers are correct
- The titles of each chapter, plus all Heading Level 2’s, are all listed correctly
1 – Introduction
The introduction targets the research aims and objectives, as well as the research questions that you’ve included. The student is supposed to expand all the material summarized in the abstract and mention its entire zest in this chapter and this shows its importance in engaging the reader in your dissertation. A good introduction meets all the aims and objectives in clear and concise wording, so your supervisor may know what exactly to expect from your dissertation.
How to start the introduction procedure?
It’s always a good approach to first write a rough draft of your introduction near the beginning of the research to help guide you through the writing process. When you write a research proposal beforehand, you can use it as a template or a mind map to help lead you to the actual dissertation paper, as it contains many of the same elements. Ensuring the correct revision of your introduction throughout the writing process allows you to minimize potential errors in your work and also makes sure it matches the content of your chapters.
Although the introduction is supposed to come at the beginning of your dissertation, it doesn’t have to be the first thing you write, in fact, students usually leave it at the end of the entire dissertation writing procedure, alongside the abstract.
Specifying Your Research Questions
- As in the dissertation itself, your research questions are critical in ensuring that the introduction is coherent and logical in structure. They develop the skeleton to which other elements adhere.
- These questions should be presented near the beginning of the introduction and explained further.
- If there are more than three major research questions in your dissertation, you should consider restructuring them by reducing some to subsidiary status.
The elements of a good introduction
An effective introduction includes various features that add value to the significance of this chapter. Some of these elements include adding the aim and objectives that your dissertation aims to meet and also answering the research questions that have been raised further in the research paper. Moreover, you may also include other relevant information regarding these, so that you can add all the information that the reader would expect to read in this chapter, while also making sure that it’s not dragged in any way. Remember that a dragged introduction will cause the reader to feel bored when reading your research paper and thus, it won’t add value to your research paper.
2 – Critical Literature Review
As a graduate or undergraduate student, you are expected to provide an analytical overview of the significant literature published on your topic. This aims to show that prior research has already been conducted on your topic.
In your review of literature you are expected to do the following:
- Put one’s original work with that of existing literature
- Identify the major issues surrounding your topic
- See the relationship of each work to that of others under consideration
- Find new ways to interpret and fill any gaps in the previously conducted research
- Resolve the contradictories among previously conducted studies
- Identify which literature makes a significant contribution to your topic
- Point towards the direction to further research on your topic
What content to add in the literation review?
It must be understood that your literature review chapter must be well-structured and easily understood by the reader. Here, it’s important that your ideas must flow swift and logically from one point to the next.
For this purpose, it’s essential that:
- The sources and references are current and relevant, cited appropriately according to your topic of study
- Present viewpoints on the topic are unbiased and are presented in a comprehensive manner
How to structure the critical review chapter?
To ensure that this chapter is well formatted, it’s important that it includes the following:
- Provides an overview of the subject under consideration
- Clear divisions of categories and concepts
- Connect the works to what has come before your work and ideas.
- Provide conclusions about those works that make the greatest contribution to the understanding and development of your subject
Consider the following when assessing whether to include each work in your review of literature:
Your attitude towards works that you present, either in support or against your topic, through the use of reporting verbs which allow the writer to convey clearly whether the claims in the outside work are to be taken as accepted or not. Use reporting verbs to indicate
Presenting the evidence in the Literature Review section
Here are a few ways of presenting the evidence in the literature review section:
- Selection and quoting only the most relevant material for your subject and argument.
- Creating connections of the quotation within the context of your argument, while complying to your dissertation format.
- Introducing and integrating only relevant quotations into your literature review.
- Bringing the language of quotations in the interpretations
3 – Research methodology
Right after the literature review chapter, comes the methodology section in your dissertation. The reason for this flow is to allow you to redefine your research questions and conduct detailed review of what other scholars have to say about your topic of research. By then, you’ll know what conclusion other scholars had about your topic. This includes the assumptions of the aspects with which their work is based, the theoretical frameworks they’ve used, and the methods they’ve used to gather and then present their data.
The next step you’ll have to take is to use these observations and discuss how to pan on tackling your research questions with your supervisor. Following this, your dissertation methodology should provide a detailed account of both how you’ll approach your dissertation and why you’ve taken the decision to approach it in the way you have.
What is the importance of this chapter?
Every research paper must include this chapter to establish and affirm a clear understanding and relationship between the research questions that you’ve mentioned in your research paper and the means by which you’ll come to your final conclusions.
Not only does this chapter add value to you your research paper, but provides evidence for al the research that you’ve conducted on the research topic. Moreover, it also helps to expand your knowledge regarding the subject and provides greater insights into the topic that’s been highlighted.
What must you include in this section?
No matter what subject area you’re working in, your methodology section will include the following:
- A recap of your research questions
The most important task when justifying your methodology is remembering to demonstrate how the methods that you’ve undertaken are fit to the research questions you’ve posed at the very start, in the introduction. Therefore, recapping the key questions you want to answer when introducing your methodology would be a great idea. Also, this doesn’t have to be the exact replica of the words used previously; rather, you might want to reword the problem in a way that connects your literature review and methodology.
- Detailed description of your methods
This is the segment of your methodology where you clearly explain the processes for gathering and analyzing data the data that you’ve involved in your research, or those that you’ve used for approaching your research question. Therefore, it should be clear and detailed enough that another scholar reading your work is able to understand and apply it in one way or another. If you’re providing a new and theoretical take on a literary work or a philosophical problem mentioned earlier, the reader or professor should be able to understand your theory to such an extent that they can apply it to another text or problem
- Mention the rationale for your design choice
It’s best to remember what the methodology chapter aims to signify. It doesn’t just describe your method of research, rather, discusses the reasons why you’ve chosen it, and why you believe it will yield the best results , the most insightful set of analyses and conclusions, or the most innovative perspective. You may utilize the research material gathered in part from your literature review and them, present your choices as informed and rooted in sound scholarship. It should be ensured that you relate the background for your method clearly to your research problem; it should be very explicitly explained to your reader that the methodology you’ve chosen is a thoughtful and insightful response to the questions you’re trying to answer.
- Evaluation of your choice of method and adding limitation statement
None of the chosen research methods can ever be perfect, and it’s likely that the one you’ve chosen comes with certain back-drops. The issue could arise in various things; such as the sample size chosen, the population that you used for research, the sources of data you compiled or even the type of research you conducted.
4 – Analysis and Findings
In this chapter, you are expected to mention all the findings that you’ve gathered with your research paper. After this, the next step would be to analyze those findings using the right methods, so that the reader can clearly understand all that being said.
Your dissertation needs to make points that are:
- contextually grounded and based on your data
- theoretical and closely related to relevant theory
Presenting your findings
In a traditional dissertation, this consists of a number of chapters where you present the data that forms the basis of your investigation, shaped by the way you have thought about it. In a dissertation that includes publication, it will be an integral section of an article.
It is important for you to investigate the conventions of your own discipline or get help with dissertation if you must, by looking at journal articles and other dissertations, because the researcher’s argument determines the structure for most.
Despite using the same research methodologies, the analysis of each subject may vary accordingly. This is because it may be possible that the questions that they’re trying to answer are completely different, even though the same methodologies were used.
What should this reflect?
In all cases, though, the presentation should have a logical organization that reflects:
- The objectives or research questions of the paper, including any hypotheses that have been tested
- Clear presentation of the research methods and theoretical framework that have been outlined earlier in the dissertation
- You need to make relevant connections while also stating your reasons for saying that data should be interpreted in one way rather than another.
5 – Conclusion
The conclusion, as the name is suggestive, is the last paragraph of your dissertation. It should include a summary of the main context of your research paper and made deductions according to the basis of the main body. Also, you also have the feasibility to discuss your personal opinions here and make statements about the limitations of the work that have been included.
This chapter of your research paper will also include comments about the future of the work that has been discussed; in terms of research gaps or significance, as well as the implications that future research will have on your chosen topic. For this, discussion of the important facts and figures of the main body may be extremely useful.
What to include?
- Concluding statements
6 – References
The Bibliography comes after the body of your research paper. It is a complete listing of all cited resources used to create your document. Even though Journal Model authors have separate Reference sections for each article, a complete Reference list of all citations must appear at the end of the entire manuscript. Most students find it a troublesome task and so, may prefer dissertation help from various trustworthy websites
- Reference lists are formatted according to the instructions given as per the dissertation structure and by the most recent edition of your chosen style manual. In some cases, the style manuals may not contain updated instructions on documentation of electronic publications, such as emails, software, electronic journals, etc.
- If your department’s style manual fails to provide sufficient information regarding bibliographic documentation requirement, it is suggested that the student consult the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (APA) or a style manual associated with their discipline. Specialized style manuals for citing legal material and electronic information are available in the Newton Gresham Library.
Checklist For Body Of Dissertation
Having a checklist for your dissertation body can help you keep track of your content and make sure that you don’t deviate from the actual requirements set by your university. This can be an extremely hectic task and may cause students to buy dissertation from reliable sources. Therefore, to ensure this, you may include some points in your checklist, such as these:
- Include a complete listing of all resources cited in the document.
- Appropriately formatted according to the chosen style guide. Content should be double-spaced throughout with no extra spacing unless chosen style guide dictates otherwise.
7 – Appendices
The Appendices chapter provides supplementary information to the main dissertation topic being discussed. It should always appear after the reference and in case you’re confused about the formatting, you may consult your university guidelines or seek help from your supervisor.
Materials included in appendices
- Interview questions
- Participant letters / forms
- Surveys / questionnaires (if not your own work, these require copyright permission)
- Supplemental tables / figures / graphs / image
The Dos and Don’ts of Dissertation writing
Before I let you know what are do’s and Don’ts for the dissertation writing and how long is a dissertation will be- you should refer to the university guidelines.
|Abide by your university requirements||Write the dissertation on your own terms|
|Follow the right dissertation format||
Follow an unstructured format
|Plan prior to moving towards the writing phase||Jump right into the writing phase and ignore possible errors|
|Discuss ways to improvise your paper with your professor/Instructor||Ignore the recommendations put forward by your professor/Instructor|
|Conduct primary data collection procedures where and when necessary||Rely entirely on secondary data despite being an inefficient source|
|Pick your dissertation topic after critical analysis||Randomly and impulsively pick a topic with no significance whatsoever|
|Construct a dissertation synopsis to show your research position to your supervisor||Move onto the next steps before getting your supervisor’s approval on the content and methodologies you wish to involve in your research paper|
The Differences in Ph.D., MBA and Bachelor level Dissertations
The purpose of a dissertation is to check the knowledge of a graduate and undergraduate student. Considering the difficulty level, a Ph.D. dissertation format is quite extensive and requires a greater depth of information in the paper. Not only this, but the topic selection for this research paper is done after a critical analysis; keeping various things such as its significance in the scientific community into consideration.
|Degree Level||Dissertation length (In words)||Research methods||Procedure for topic selection|
|Doctor of Philosophy||50-100K||Primary & secondary sources||Should fulfill research gaps and also add value to the scientific community|
|Master’s in Business Administration||10-15K||Primary and secondary sources||Should fulfill research gaps and also have significance|
|Bachelors||5-8K||Primary source||Should only fill previous research gaps|
The purpose of a dissertation is to check the knowledge of a graduate and undergraduate student. Considering the difficulty level, a Ph.D. dissertation format is quite extensive and requires a greater depth of information in the paper. Not only this, but the topic selection for this research paper is done after a critical analysis; keeping various things such as its significance in the scientific community, into consideration. It also requires in-depth information analysis along each step and so, you must seek validation from your supervisor at all stages.
Students completing their Master’s level dissertation, on the other hand, are required to follow different guidelines and adhere to different requirements; referencing style usage, content length, methodologies used, etc. For this reason, A Master’s Dissertation format greatly differs from that of a Ph.D. level dissertation.