How to write and structure a dissertation? (Part 1)

A dissertation is a research document written by scholars, usually mandatory to complete their post-graduate program. Your dissertation is assessed in order to check your skills to perform independent research. Create a chapter outline that reflects the significant details of your research. In the Introduction section, talk about the innovative ideas and possible outcomes of your research.

Basic elements of a dissertation

Title: Use explanatory and descriptive words that focus on the purpose of your study. Research design and context should be self-explanatory in the title. The main components of a title are the area of interest and outcome. Explain the methodology and variables used for research. Remember to include your full name, name of the department, and the concerned faculty.

Introduction: Explain the reason behind choosing a topic to your target audience. Give a brief on how you wish to proceed further by specifying the objectives and goals. Write a research statement that gives prior information about the scientific argumentation and research findings to the readers. Divide the background information into smaller sections with separate headings and sub-headings.

Literature review: Write a brief description of the literary source/thesis/paper written on the same subject area. The purpose of including literature review is to justify the significance of your dissertation and how your research can benefit the community.

Your literature review should include the following:

  • Research question/problem
  • Research source
  • Relevant content
  • Thematic analysis
  • Findings
  • Verified sources
  • Categories and structure

Abstract: Describe the scope and the main ideas of your research in a condensed form. Explain why your work is relevant and how it could benefit the community. Do not forget to include a statement defining the topic, objective, and methodology. There are two types of abstracts that you can include in your dissertation—descriptive and informative.

Descriptive abstract: Inform the readers about the purpose, method, aim, and scope. This is meant to introduce the subject to the target readers and does not include other components such as the result and conclusion.

Informative abstract: For writing an informative abstract, you can include the method, scope, and purpose, and result. Use it to provide a glimpse to the readers and engage with them.

Method: Explain the methods used to solve the research problem. Mention the reason for choosing a specific research methodology. The reviewers assess the quality of work done by you based on this very section. Describe the methods and the type of research you did. Name the process used for collecting and analyzing quantitative and qualitative data.

Survey: Talk about the research design and questions. Mention the sample size and rate of response.

Experiment: Describe the method, approach, and procedure used for conducting the research.

Existing data: Use the available data such as published papers or databases for data analysis.

Interview: Discuss the selected participants and the format of the interview. You can also attach a list of all the interview questions that were asked from the group.

Conclusion: In this section explain why your research is important and include recommendations for future research. Write down the key objectives and explain them one by one. While providing an overview of the entire research process, try to correlate the research findings with the conclusion.

Chapters: The depth of your research usually decides the total number of chapters to be included. Create a structure for writing down the chapters addressing the various aspects of your research. Write down the title of each chapter and decide what you want to include in each one of them. Usually, the average number of chapters can be up to five to six.

Bibliography: List all the sources you have used for reference or researching in alphabetical order. Use the same format throughout to prepare the list of the cited resources. Make sure to include the name of every paper and online source along with the name of the respective author.

Appendices: Additional information that is used to present the data in the form of tables and figures comes under appendices. For example, you can describe the research sample and provide supplementary information you have collected through surveys, interviews, and questionnaires. Also, create a list of all the abbreviations you have used while drafting your dissertation. To submit a well-formatted dissertation for review, you can hire the dissertation editing and proofreading service.

Table of contents: List the chapters, as it helps readers check out the type of content available for reading. A properly formatted table is an indicator that you as an author have devoted your time to plan and draft the dissertation.

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