Mastering the Dissertation Writing Techniques
Good dissertation writing is a very important part of doing an advanced degree. Completing a dissertation successfully is highly regarded and therefore, it is essential and important for students to do well in this aspect. To complete a dissertation successfully, you must master the techniques of writing a dissertation properly. All aspects of a dissertation project are considered important and most students are willing to learn these points, especially of how to conduct field investigations. However, the final report writing phase leaves most students in a difficult situation due to the highly formal nature of the task. In order to gain an understanding of what is required let us first try and assimilate what it is and how it is done.
- What is dissertation writing?
This involves the author’s presentation of his dissertation research and findings on a chosen subject area for an advanced academic study program. The author of the dissertation should conceptualize a study, design a research methodology and conduct empirical research to investigate on the research question. Then the data yielded by the research study must be analysed with qualitative or quantitative methods and interpreted, discussed and conclusions arrived at which should then be presented in a formally written dissertation paper.
- Format of a dissertation
A standard dissertation will have many chapters. These are title page, table of contents, dissertation acknowledgement, abstract, introduction, literature review, methodology, findings and discussions, conclusion, references and appendix. Most often the formats for dissertations are assigned according to each college or university. Students must refer to the hand book of dissertations provided by the university and also refer to the formatting requirements prescribed such as APA system.
- Writing procedure
Good dissertation writing cannot be done without planning. Without proper planning you will find yourself with no time to complete the task of writing a proper dissertation.
• First a certain amount of planning goes into the dissertation proposal which needs to be submitted to the committee before proceeding any further. Everything else is done once the approval is given by the committee. You are expected to outline your dissertation topic, the research questions and the methodology planned for. A time plan is also called for in a tentative basis.
• Your introduction chapter is an expansion of the initial sections of your proposal where the background to the research, the inspirations and reason for research study, the scope of the study and the research questions are to be outlined.
• Once the approval is received, the students must engage in extensive exploration and review of literature available on the subject. This will form the basis of writing your literature review chapter which is usually the longest chapter in the dissertation.
• Next step is to design the dissertation methodology and make choices on research techniques, sample sizes etc. These decisions needs to be justified and these are the points that need to be addressed in the methodology chapter.
• The results and findings chapter outlines key findings and cite the analysis of data while the discussion chapter contains the synthesis of the findings with the literature, and the research objectives and questions.
• The conclusion basically provides a summation of overall study.
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