Updated on: 7th Jun 2022 2328 Views

Dissertation Structure: Definitive Guide

The structure of the Dissertation is completely dependent on the type of research you are performing. College-going students often face issues in determining an appropriate structure for their Dissertation. In this article, our dissertation writing professional is providing the guideline based on which you can decide your Dissertation Structure.

Dissertation Structure

Choosing Structure According to Field of Dissertation

The dissertation is a lengthy piece of academic writing which is dependent on original research which you need to submit as a Doctoral, Master’s, or bachelor’s degree.  It is very much important for you to note that the structure of the entire dissertation is not the same.

When choosing a dissertation structure you need to consider the type of research you intend to execute.  You also need to think about disciple, location, approach, and research topic at the time of making choices related to the structure of the Dissertation.

For Example, if you are writing the dissertation in the field of humanities then you need to structure your dissertation like a long essay. In a lengthy essay, you also need to include arguments for supporting the main thesis, with chapters which you should organize around various themes.

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In case you are performing empirical research in the field of science or social science then you need to include the following elements.  You need to write everything in different chapters, but in a few cases or according to the university guideline you can integrate different sections.

For example: If you are performing research in the field of social science then you can combine results and discussion sections.  It is very much important for you to review University guidelines before selecting the Dissertation structure.

Structuring Dissertation According to Layout

The structure of the Dissertation includes the following:

1. Title page

It is the first page of the dissertation which consists of the name of the topic, supervisor, student name, degree program, date of submission, the logo of the university, etc.

2. Acknowledgment

In this chapter in the structure of the dissertation, you need to thank all those people who have helped you in completing the thesis. It is completely optional to include acknowledgement in the dissertation.

3. Abstract

Abstract in the Dissertation structure mainly contains a summary of the content of the dissertation.  The things which you need to include in the abstract are:

  • The main topic and research aim
  • Research methods
  • Summary of main results
  • Concluding statement

    4. Table of contents

It is the section in the structure of the dissertation which contains a list of all chapters along with respective page numbers. The tables of content in the dissertation structure provide the reader with an overview of the structure. It also provides the reader with ease in navigating the document.

5. List of figures and tables

You need to provide a list of tables and figures which you have included in the dissertation. You can automatically generate this list using the Insert Caption feature in Word.

6. List of abbreviations

In case use has used lots of abbreviations then you need to include the list of the same in the Abbreviation section of the Dissertation structure.

7. Glossary

If you have used any technical or complex terms in the dissertation then you need to provide a list of such words along with their meaning in the glossary.

8. Introduction

In the introduction section of the Dissertation structure, you need to clearly state the research topic. You are also requiring defining the objective and relevance of the research. It is also important for you to clearly state what you expect from the rest of the dissertation.  You should include the following elements in the Dissertation introduction such as:

  • State research topics and provide essential background information.
  • Narrow down focus and write the scope of research
  • You should discuss the state of existing research on the topic. You need to demonstrate the relevancy of research.
  • Properly write research questions and objectives
  • Write an overview of the dissertation structure

9. Literature Review

Before starting research you need to write a literature review. The literature review section in the Dissertation helps you in gaining an in-depth understanding of the existing literature related to the topic of the dissertation.

Note: While writing the Dissertation literature review section, you should not provide a summary of existing literature. In this chapter of the dissertation structure, you need to provide relevant arguments that properly justify your research.  While writing the literature review section of the dissertation structure, your intention should be to:

  • To find the gap in the literature
  • Adopt a new methodological or theoretical approach to the topic
  • Suggest an effective solution to the issue
  • Advances a theoretical debate

A literature review is considered a theoretical framework where you need to define and analyze the important theories.  Here, you need to provide a descriptive answer to research questions.

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10. Methodology

0In the research methodology section of the Dissertation you need to specify the research methods, strategies, or techniques that you are utilizing for performing research on a specific topic.  The methodology sections in the structure of the dissertation enable the teaser to access the validity. The things which you need to include in the methodology section of the Dissertation structure include:

  • Overall approach and type of research
  • Method of gathering information
  • Information about Where, When, and with whom the research took place
  • Techniques of analyzing information.
  • Tools and materials which you utilize for performing research.
  • You can discuss any issues which you have faced in performing research.
  • It is also very much important to justify methods.

11. Results

The structure of the dissertation consists of one more section that is the Result section. It is the chapter in the dissertation structure where you need to present the results of your research. You can organize this section around a hypothesis, Questions, etc.  It is very much essential for you to report such results that are related to your objectives and research questions. There are few research fields where you need to write both discussions and results in sections separately.

For instance, if you’re are performing the Qualitative research or using Qualitative methods then can combine both Discussion and analysis section together.  In case you are applying Quantitative methods, then you need to have a separate discussion and result section.

You should include graphs, tables, and charts when presenting the outcomes or findings in the result section of the dissertation structure.

12. Discussion

In this section of the Dissertation structure, you need to explain the meaning and write the implication of research results in the context of research questions. You should provide a detailed interpretation of outcomes and you should facilitate a discussion that whether your expectations have been fulfilled or not. If in case you found unexpected outcomes then you need to provide the possible reasons for the same. Here, in this section, you can also have a discussion related to the limitation of the study which can affect research results.

You can analyze the previous discussion on the topic. As it is the tactics that will help you in determining the way research results fit with existing knowledge. In the discussion section, you can provide suggestions related to future research.

13. Conclusion

The Dissertation Conclusion consists of a summary of key findings. In this section of the Dissertation structure, you need to clearly state the answer to the research question.  After writing the Conclusion for the Dissertation, you should make sure that it enables the reader to develop an understanding of key arguments.  In the context of the Dissertation structure, the conclusion is a very short section that comes before the discussion chapter.  According to the basic dissertation structure, you need to first write an overall conclusion and after that, you need to have a discussion and interpretation of the meaning.

In the concluding chapter of the dissertation, you need to write a reflection about the things which you have done and techniques that you have to utilize for performing particular research activity.  You can also provide a few suggestions in the conclusion chapter of the dissertation. It is also very essential for you to demonstrate the way the findings of your research contribute to knowledge about the respective fields.  You should also demonstrate the importance of research.

14. Reference List

Here, in this part of the dissertation structure, you need to provide a complete list of sources from where you have gathered information related to a specific topic.  You must maintain consistency in citation style. You should also note that every citation style has a specific requirement which you should consider when doing the formatting of sources in the reference list.

The basic citation style includes MLA or APA.  Before making the selection of any of the citation styles it is very much essential for you to review the college guidelines. If you are not confirmed about which citation style to use then you can confirm the same from your supervisor.

15. Appendices

It is the section in the Dissertation that contains important information that directly contributes to answering research questions.  You need to include such documents in this part of the dissertation which directly do not fits into the main section of the dissertation.  In the appendices of the Dissertation, you can include the following interview transcript, questionnaire form, additional tables, and figures.

Final Words/Key TakeAway

It has been concluded from the above article that deciding on an appropriate structure for a dissertation is very much essential for getting good marks. Another fact that has been summarised from the above is that structure of the dissertation is completely based on the type of investigation you intend to perform.

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