Basics of Writing an Excellent Dissertation or Thesis

09 Nov 2020By Mtemi

The objective of a dissertation is to produce original academic research on a particular topic. It is essential to commit enough time and effort to plan and structure a dissertation because it is considered as one of the most critical pieces of work in one's studies.

Dissertations are commonly structured as follows:

1. Title Page

The first page of the dissertation contains the title of the paper, student’s name, institution, and date.

2. Abstract

The abstract provides a summary of the dissertation. It should contain the following:

·                  A brief introduction of the topic

·                  The objective of the research

·                  The methodologies used

·                  The research findings and conclusion.

3. Table of Contents

The table of content provides a list of all the topics and subtopics and their page numbers.

4. An introduction to the topic

The introduction should be clear and engaging.  It states the research topic and provides an overview of its aims and objective, provides background information, discusses the current state of research on the topic, and provides an overview of the structure of the dissertation.

5. Literature review

The literature review provides a detailed analysis of the existing studies on the topic.  The writer should draw connections between these studies and the current research topic to make the overall point of the dissertation.

6. Methodology

The methodology section aims to report what you did, how you did it, and why. The reader should be convinced that the best methods were used in the research process.

7. Overview of the results of the research

The research results should match the objectives of the study and the research questions. To make this section more elaborative, the writer can include tables, charts, and graphs.

8. Discussion of the research findings

This section discusses the meaning and implications of the research findings. It provides an interpretation of the results, as well as the limitations that may have affected the research.

9. Conclusion

This section answers the research question and summarizes the findings of the research. It reflects on what was done and how it was achieved. The conclusion should include the recommendations for future research.

10. Reference List

In this section, full details of the sources used are listed according to the specified reference style. Every source that is listed in the reference section should also have an in-text citation

11. Appendices

The dissertation should only contain information that is relevant to the research. The appendix contains documents and instruments used in the research but does not fit in the dissertation. These include the full transcripts of interviews and questionnaires and figures.


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