Do you need help with how to write a dissertation?
Getting your degree will require you to write your dissertation and have it accepted. Achieving this however in practice is far from easy. Many students will have their dissertations rejected for revisions delaying their graduation while others may even find their dissertation just too much and will never get to the point of submission. It takes a huge amount of time and dedication to write your dissertation and a huge amount of organization if you are going to do it right. The following dissertation tips will help you:
Selecting the right topic for your dissertation
This is the first stage in learning how to write a dissertation, you need to select what it is that you are actually going to research. Most universities and colleges will help you with some lists and ideas as to research that you could do but often these are uninspiring or just do not match your own interests. The best way to select what you want to research is to actually jump in and start reading research that exists in areas in which you have an interest. There is no point selecting a topic that you have no interest in, can you imagine working on something that you don’t like for the next year?
Doing your literature research
Your literature research is one of the most important parts of your dissertation; you will have to be able to set the scene for your own research with regards to what others have already written as well as find support or even opposing views for your ideas. Research however is not something that is just done through Google on a wet afternoon when you have nothing else to do. Ensure that you look at actual books and dissertations within the library and other learned journals – this will help to prevent sleepless nights thinking about “how to write my dissertation literature review“.
Good note taking
Many students will find something of interest for inclusion within their writing and will copy down what was said but then fail to get the full details of who said it and where. It is vital that you carefully make detailed notes of every publication that you review for your literature research and detail authors, dates of publication, page numbers, publication names and if what you have written in your notes is a direct quotation or is a paraphrased version of what was written. You don’t want to get accused of plagiarism by failing to cite a source correctly.
Getting the right format for your dissertation
Your dissertation is a piece of learned writing and as such will require to be written in a specific format and that format must be maintained throughout your work. Ensure that you have the right template and that you follow precisely what your tutor provides you with regards to your format. Also ensure that you know exactly how you can format your dissertation citations and references and what formatting style is required for them. The best way to format your dissertation correctly is to have a dissertation sample from the previous year by your hand.
Writing your dissertation proposal
Your dissertation proposal is one of the most important of your writing steps. It is done to show that you have chosen something to study that is not only of interest and importance to your field but that you also have a clear idea of how you are going to approach your research. You also need to demonstrate that you can actually handle the project and that the scope of the project is not too big and that you have the resources and the time to complete it within the timescale available. A well written proposal will form the backbone of your main dissertation so it is worth spending a lot of time and effort in doing your proposal well.
Many students will collect data through the use of surveys or even through observation but whatever you do you need to actually start as soon as possible. Too often students will procrastinate over the design of their surveys and other factors and will fail to actually start collecting data soon enough. Many will also overestimate how many people will actually respond to a request to complete a survey and will end up with too little data. It is important to note that you should decide at once what kind of research you are doing: qualitative or quantitative and plan your methodology and data collection parts accordingly.
Data analysis can be tough especially if you are not a statistical wizard. It is not enough to just throw up a couple of bar charts and to say that your thesis is proven. While bar charts and other representations of your data may give a good representation of your data you will want to also show that any correlations are statistically valid so you are going to have to do your homework with regards to using stats for your data analysis. Many students will seek out help with dissertation statistical data analysis.
Writing your dissertation
A dissertation does not have to be written in a specific order, there is no need to start with your dissertation introduction, often it is best to write something like your dissertation abstract at the end of your writing. The important part however is to get the writing done and get it done well. It is best to set yourself a firm time table for your writing and ensure that you stick to it. In most cases you are writing the equivalent of text book so you are going to have to dedicate a significant amount of time to your writing. So set yourself aside an hour or two each day for doing the actual writing and set firm milestones as to when you expect each section to be complete.
Edit your Dissertation
One of the biggest reasons for a dissertation being returned for revisions is not because of the research that has been done but because there are issues with the actual writing. Academic writing is very strict and you are going to need to ensure that you eliminate every error in your writing and ensure that your dissertation is written in an engaging and thorough manner. Read several other dissertations so that you are sure of how you should write and follow all of the advice that you tutor provides. This is one area that even your tutor will recommend that you outsource to “edit my dissertation” services as it is often tough to spot errors in your own work.
Defend your dissertation
Learning how to write a dissertation for many is easy when compared to actually defending your dissertation. All of the dissertation help in the world is often not enough for many students as they feel very nervous when it comes to actually defending their work. The best thing to do is to attend several defenses so that you can see the reality of what happens. Also carefully follow the guidelines that are set down for your institution for preparing for your defense.