Writing a dissertation is a rigorous process that requires a lot of devotion, energy, and willpower to finish. The task involves a lot of research and reporting in a distinct format laid down by the institution or an academic supervisor.
While devoting enough time to plan and structure any academic work at the university is vital for any project, writing a dissertation may require a more in-depth preparation and proper approach to complete.
Until you hand in the final script, the whole process can be intimidating and marred with feelings of self-doubt, panic, and excitement. However, using proper strategy, you can make the process less painful.
Whether you’re gearing up for a PhD, Master’s, or an undergraduate dissertation, the below tips will keep you grounded on the right track through to the finish line.
Choose a Unique and Valuable Research Topic
The research topic should align with your career aspirations besides being engaging and meaningful to the academic community.
Make it something you’re genuinely interested in so that you remain motivated and confident while showcasing your investigative and research skills.
Use academic journals, newspapers, research course materials, and other available media to draw inspiration on your topic’s latest ideas.
Work closely with the supervisor to agree on the research question and have a clear focus before starting.
Understand The Dissertation Requirements
To avoid common mistakes that may cost you later, familiarize yourself with referencing style guides, faculty’s ethics protocols, and module handbooks. Pay attention to the following before you begin:
- Word count
- Academic writing outlook for the specific discipline
- Dissertation due date and where to submit it
Engage your supervisor in a discussion to develop an understating of a dissertation. You can ask questions about your dissertation discipline and other academic writings. Your questions may include:
- Types of dissertation research sources and how to use them
- Dissertation structuring
- Analysis forms perceived as appropriate
Use Appropriate Structure and Have a Clear Goal
Your dissertation should follow an appropriate structure that aligns with the institution’s or supervisor’s instructions. Ask many questions on areas that are not clear such as whether to attach questionnaire findings and interview scripts in the appendix.
Stick to a plan and demonstrate the relevance of your research. Make a clear proposal outline showing how you intend to go about the dissertation research. That way, your introduction, methodology, and literature review will be easier to tackle.
Stick to your plan and avoid being overambitious to come with a solid and coherent argument.
Write Your Dissertation
When you start writing, have a target to meet. It can be a page per day or 1,000 words per week. Start writing immediately as it helps you understand the topic better along the way.
While at it, check to ensure that you address everything in each section. Each section should serve a specific function and transition smoothly to the next. Make frequent backups along the way and write down notes and a comprehensive research sources list.
Maintain an open and critical thinking mindset throughout your dissertation writing process. That way, you can come up with viable arguments and counter-arguments about the author’s original script.
Finish Up and Edit
Once done, create time to do thorough editing to ensure the final piece is coherent and well-structured. Reassess the logic of the entire work and proofread while correcting spelling mistakes, checking on the referencing formats, and ensuring all arguments are supported with relevant citations.
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