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❶The length of each section and its level of critical analysis will depend on your specific research area and degree programme. The contents pages will show up the structure of the dissertation.


Getting on with the writing
Structure of a dissertation
What Are the Chapters of a Dissertation?

The kinds of literature you will cover in a Literature Review will vary according to your discipline; in Humanities subjects you might pay more attention to philosophical works, for example, while Science topics might require more coverage of methodological theories. More importantly though, it will provide a justification for your chosen methodology and a detailed explanation of its practical application. For example, it is not enough to tell readers that you will be using questionnaires as your major methodology; you should also explain why you think this is the best approach, and discuss the design and distribution of the questionnaires.

After the standard Abstract, Introduction and Methodology chapters you will need to write the main body of your dissertation, which will provide a discussion of your own research and explain and analyse your results. This can take the form of more than one dissertation chapter, depending on the complexity of your methodology and findings. The length and nature of these chapters will also vary depending on the area of your studies — in MSc subjects you would be less likely to present conclusions in these chapters, focusing instead on the data from your empirical research.

However, in Humanities and Social Sciences your theoretical conclusions should be woven into your overall analysis of data. In all cases you should be sure to refer back to the works cited in your literature review, and use them to support your analysis.

The Conclusion should provide a brief but thorough overview of your research project as a whole, and give special attention to the significance of your results.

Try to address any potential criticisms of your research. Avoid the temptation to make rhetorical flourishes in your final paragraphs and end simply, clearly and factually.

The Bibliography of the Masters Dissertation will vary depending on the citation style prescribed for your university and discipline. Details of the style guidelines will be made available to you by your institution, and most can be found online. Be sure to pay careful attention to the details of the style conventions and avoid costly errors.

Some Masters Dissertations will also include an Appendix or Appendices. These give you an opportunity to provide additional details to readers.

An Appendix might include charts, tables or figures that you refer to in your text, or essential documents that are not readily available to readers.

Together these sections form the standard UK Dissertation structure, which is almost universal across disciplines. As long as you include each of the sections above you will be well on your way to a successful UK Masters Dissertation! David Brigden and Graham Lamont, Last accessed 08 Apr Kjell Erik Rudestam, A Comprehensive Guide to Content and Process.

You are not expected to interview or survey anybody, but you must be able to understand the organisation, literature review and methodology, up until the point that you can write a convincing thesis to answer your proposed research question ask for samples if you need them.

I suggest and totally recommend that you start from the literature review. We have provided a simple guide called, how to write a dissertation the literature review , that might be helpful to you. Since you are not really conducting the interviews and reports, the literature review would give you a well-rounded overview of the topic.

Most social sciences and Law dissertations adopt secondary research, compared to business dissertations that primarily use Primary Research. Ensure that your choice of research is the most adequate for the topic you are working on. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to receive more just like it.

Including student tips and advice. You must be logged in to post a comment. How to Structure a Dissertation: How to Structure a Dissertation? Subscribe If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to receive more just like it.

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The following post includes a concise and in-depth overview of the chapters and subchapters normally contained within a dissertation. These would be very useful when deciding what should go where, and what you should write next.

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Dissertation Structure: explaining chapters of your dissertation. Many postgraduate students feel daunted by the required length of the Masters thought of writing 20, – 50, words can strike fear into the heart of even the most dedicated scholar!

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Dissertation Structure Based on BS the recommended sequence is as follows. The items in italics may not be relevant for your project and the following sections will try to explain the items most likely to be needed in your dissertation. Designing your detailed structure. If your dissertation is well-structured, easy to follow, logical, and coherent, your examiners will probably enjoy reading it, and will be able to listen to your argument without the distraction of trying to make all the links themselves.

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Usually, the basic parts of a thesis include the introductory chapter, the dissertation chapter (literature review), another dissertation methodology chapter, discussion and the last “conclusion” chapter. Dissertation in the social and hard sciences will usually closely follow the chapter structure given above. Remember, this is just a general outline. Depending on the length of your dissertation, these general sections will likely be broken down into several chapters.