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Where Can I Get Help Writing My Thesis Online?
You’ve spent years preparing for your master’s degree or PhD. You’ve read, studied and spent hours of time and energy writing papers. Now you’ve arrived at the culmination of all this effort: writing your thesis. There are plenty of compelling stories about the time and energy that students have spent drafting their dissertations and theses.
The good news is that you’re not alone. While you certainly don’t want to hire someone to write your thesis for you, which goes against most institution policies and puts your academic integrity at risk, you can get plenty of help with certain aspects of your thesis online. Whether you’re looking for a little guidance or extensive assistance, various services can make writing or editing your thesis go smoothly.
One of the greatest challenges of writing your thesis can be juggling your family or job responsibilities with your studies. The time that writing takes can add another layer of obligation to your already-packed schedule. Dissertation Editor is a company whose founder is a PhD-educated writer and professor, and it promises to help you complete your thesis or dissertation on time and in compliance with your university’s rules and regulations.
Dissertation Editor’s primary function is to guide you along in the writing process and provide a helping hand in understanding everything you need to take care of. It places you with a writer who specializes in your area of study, and this individual can help you organize and analyze your research while making sure that your thesis fits your writing style and personality. This company also specializes in helping with any statistical analysis that you use in your thesis.
If you’re concerned about using a service to help you write your thesis because you think it’ll be obvious that you hired help, don’t worry. Thesis Helpers puts its team of experienced writers to work for you to help you craft a thesis that finishes your degree on a high note. No matter what level of help you need, from narrowing down a topic to advanced editing and proofreading, they’re available to help.
The writers have advanced degrees in their areas of expertise, and one of the best things about Thesis Helpers is that it gives you ultimate say in the final product of your thesis. This company can help you with revisions and additional research, and you can rest assured that your thesis will meet anti-plagiarism standards.
Sometimes when you’re writing a thesis or dissertation, you can get stuck on one section or chapter. You may not need assistance writing the whole thing, but getting some help with the exact portion you’re struggling with can come in handy. That’s one of the strengths of using Best Dissertation . You don’t have to rely on it for help with your entire thesis if it’s not what you need.
Like most of the top thesis-assistance services, Best Dissertation employs writers with advanced degrees who specialize in various fields of study. What truly sets this company apart is the live support that it offers any time of the day or night. It claims to take the stress and strain out of writing your dissertation or thesis.
While some companies place a premium on helping you get your thesis written, others emphasize the editing and proofreading process. If you don’t need help with writing but need a hand with proofreading and editing, Scribbr is a good option for you. Its editors can help you get a grasp on the grammar and tone that are appropriate for academic writing.
Scribbr doesn’t just provide boilerplate feedback that you can find anywhere. It offers personalized feedback aimed at helping you become a better writer in the long run. You can even see examples of how its editors work by looking at the company’s website.
My Assignment Help
Writing a thesis has its own challenges that other academic writing simply doesn’t, which is why the team at My Assignment Help offers its particular brand of expertise. If you need assistance with a dissertation or thesis at the PhD or master’s level, its writers have the level of education and experience to help you write an expertly crafted and edited thesis.
My Assignment Help prides itself on hiring subject matter experts, meaning you can pair up with a helper who already has an advanced degree in your field. They understand the nuances of academic writing that are specific to your area of study, and they can provide advice on everything from making your abstract more unique to crafting a thought-provoking conclusion.
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How to write a masters dissertation or thesis: top tips.
It is completely normal to find the idea of writing a masters thesis or dissertation slightly daunting, even for students who have written one before at undergraduate level. Though, don’t feel put off by the idea. You’ll have plenty of time to complete it, and plenty of support from your supervisor and peers.
One of the main challenges that students face is putting their ideas and findings into words. Writing is a skill in itself, but with the right advice, you’ll find it much easier to get into the flow of writing your masters thesis or dissertation.
We’ve put together a step-by-step guide on how to write a dissertation or thesis for your masters degree, with top tips to consider at each stage in the process.
1. Understand your dissertation (or thesis) topic
There are slight differences between theses and dissertations , although both require a high standard of writing skill and knowledge in your topic. They are also formatted very similarly.
At first, writing a masters thesis can feel like running a 100m race – the course feels very quick and like there is not as much time for thinking! However, you’ll usually have a summer semester dedicated to completing your dissertation – giving plenty of time and space to write a strong academic piece.
By comparison, writing a PhD thesis can feel like running a marathon, working on the same topic for 3-4 years can be laborious. But in many ways, the approach to both of these tasks is quite similar.
Before writing your masters dissertation, get to know your research topic inside out. Not only will understanding your topic help you conduct better research, it will also help you write better dissertation content.
Also consider the main purpose of your dissertation. You are writing to put forward a theory or unique research angle – so make your purpose clear in your writing.
Top writing tip: when researching your topic, look out for specific terms and writing patterns used by other academics. It is likely that there will be a lot of jargon and important themes across research papers in your chosen dissertation topic.
2. Structure your dissertation or thesis
Writing a thesis is a unique experience and there is no general consensus on what the best way to structure it is.
As a postgraduate student , you’ll probably decide what kind of structure suits your research project best after consultation with your supervisor. You’ll also have a chance to look at previous masters students’ theses in your university library.
To some extent, all postgraduate dissertations are unique. Though they almost always consist of chapters. The number of chapters you cover will vary depending on the research.
A masters dissertation or thesis organised into chapters would typically look like this:
Write down your structure and use these as headings that you’ll write for later on.
Top writing tip : ease each chapter together with a paragraph that links the end of a chapter to the start of a new chapter. For example, you could say something along the lines of “in the next section, these findings are evaluated in more detail”. This makes it easier for the reader to understand each chapter and helps your writing flow better.
3. Write up your literature review
One of the best places to start when writing your masters dissertation is with the literature review. This involves researching and evaluating existing academic literature in order to identify any gaps for your own research.
Many students prefer to write the literature review chapter first, as this is where several of the underpinning theories and concepts exist. This section helps set the stage for the rest of your dissertation, and will help inform the writing of your other dissertation chapters.
What to include in your literature review
The literature review chapter is more than just a summary of existing research, it is an evaluation of how this research has informed your own unique research.
Demonstrate how the different pieces of research fit together. Are there overlapping theories? Are there disagreements between researchers?
Highlight the gap in the research. This is key, as a dissertation is mostly about developing your own unique research. Is there an unexplored avenue of research? Has existing research failed to disprove a particular theory?
Back up your methodology. Demonstrate why your methodology is appropriate by discussing where it has been used successfully in other research.
4. Write up your research
Your research is the heart and soul of your dissertation. Conducting your actual research is a whole other topic in itself, but it’s important to consider that your research design will heavily influence the way you write your final dissertation.
For instance, a more theoretical-based research topic might encompass more writing from a philosophical perspective. Qualitative data might require a lot more evaluation and discussion than quantitative research.
The methodology chapter is all about how you carried out your research and which specific techniques you used to gather data. You should write about broader methodological approaches (e.g. qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods), and then go into more detail about your chosen data collection strategy.
Data collection strategies include things like interviews, questionnaires, surveys, content analyses, discourse analyses and many more.
Data analysis and findings chapters
The data analysis or findings chapter should cover what you actually discovered during your research project. It should be detailed, specific and objective (don’t worry, you’ll have time for evaluation later on in your dissertation)
Write up your findings in a way that is easy to understand. For example, if you have a lot of numerical data, this could be easier to digest in tables.
This will make it easier for you to dive into some deeper analysis in later chapters. Remember, the reader will refer back to your data analysis section to cross-reference your later evaluations against your actual findings – so presenting your data in a simple manner is beneficial.
Think about how you can segment your data into categories. For instance, it can be useful to segment interview transcripts by interviewee.
Top writing tip : write up notes on how you might phrase a certain part of the research. This will help bring the best out of your writing. There is nothing worse than when you think of the perfect way to phrase something and then you completely forget it.
5. Discuss and evaluate
Once you’ve presented your findings, it’s time to evaluate and discuss them.
It might feel difficult to differentiate between your findings and discussion sections, because you are essentially talking about the same data. The easiest way to remember the difference is that your findings simply present the data, whereas your discussion tells the story of this data.
Your evaluation breaks the story down, explaining the key findings, what went well and what didn’t go so well.
In your discussion chapter, you’ll have chance to expand on the results from your findings section. For example, explain what certain numbers mean and draw relationships between different pieces of data.
Top writing tip: don’t be afraid to point out the shortcomings of your research. You will receive higher marks for writing objectively. For example, if you didn’t receive as many interview responses as expected, evaluate how this has impacted your research and findings. Don’t let your ego get in the way!
6. Write your introduction
Your introduction sets the scene for the rest of your masters dissertation. You might be wondering why writing an introduction isn't at the start of our step-by-step list, and that’s because many students write this chapter last.
Here’s what your introduction chapter should cover:
Significance of your research
This tells the reader what you’ll be researching as well as its importance. You’ll have a good idea of what to include here from your original dissertation proposal , though it’s fairly common for research to change once it gets started.
Writing or at least revisiting this section last can be really helpful, since you’ll have a more well-rounded view of what your research actually covers once it has been completed and written up.
Masters dissertation writing tips
When to start writing your thesis or dissertation.
When you should start writing your masters thesis or dissertation depends on the scope of the research project and the duration of your course. In some cases, your research project may be relatively short and you may not be able to write much of your thesis before completing the project.
But regardless of the nature of your research project and of the scope of your course, you should start writing your thesis or at least some of its sections as early as possible, and there are a number of good reasons for this:
Academic writing is about practice, not talent. The first steps of writing your dissertation will help you get into the swing of your project. Write early to help you prepare in good time.
Write things as you do them. This is a good way to keep your dissertation full of fresh ideas and ensure that you don’t forget valuable information.
The first draft is never perfect. Give yourself time to edit and improve your dissertation. It’s likely that you’ll need to make at least one or two more drafts before your final submission.
Writing early on will help you stay motivated when writing all subsequent drafts.
Thinking and writing are very connected. As you write, new ideas and concepts will come to mind. So writing early on is a great way to generate new ideas.
How to improve your writing skills
The best way of improving your dissertation or thesis writing skills is to:
Finish the first draft of your masters thesis as early as possible and send it to your supervisor for revision. Your supervisor will correct your draft and point out any writing errors. This process will be repeated a few times which will help you recognise and correct writing mistakes yourself as time progresses.
If you are not a native English speaker, it may be useful to ask your English friends to read a part of your thesis and warn you about any recurring writing mistakes. Read our section on English language support for more advice.
Most universities have writing centres that offer writing courses and other kinds of support for postgraduate students. Attending these courses may help you improve your writing and meet other postgraduate students with whom you will be able to discuss what constitutes a well-written thesis.
Read academic articles and search for writing resources on the internet. This will help you adopt an academic writing style, which will eventually become effortless with practice.
Keep track of your bibliography
When studying for your masters dissertation, you will need to develop an efficient way of organising your bibliography – this will prevent you from getting lost in large piles of data that you’ll need to write your dissertation.
The easiest way to keep the track of all the articles you have read for your research is to create a database where you can summarise each article/chapter into a few most important bullet points to help you remember their content.
Another useful tool for doing this effectively is to learn how to use specific reference management software (RMS) such as EndNote. RMS is relatively simple to use and saves a lot of time when it comes to organising your bibliography. This may come in very handy, especially if your reference section is suspiciously missing two hours before you need to submit your dissertation!
Avoid accidental plagiarism
Plagiarism may cost you your postgraduate degree and it is important that you consciously avoid it when writing your thesis or dissertation.
Occasionally, postgraduate students commit plagiarism unintentionally. This can happen when sections are copy and pasted from journal articles they are citing instead of simply rephrasing them. Whenever you are presenting information from another academic source, make sure you reference the source and avoid writing the statement exactly as it is written in the original paper.
What kind of format should your thesis have?
Read your university’s guidelines before you actually start writing your thesis so you don’t have to waste time changing the format further down the line. However in general, most universities will require you to use 1.5-2 line spacing, font size 12 for text, and to print your thesis on A4 paper. These formatting guidelines may not necessarily result in the most aesthetically appealing thesis, however beauty is not always practical, and a nice looking thesis can be a more tiring reading experience for your postgrad examiner .
When should I submit my thesis?
The length of time it takes to complete your MSc or MA thesis will vary from student to student. This is because people work at different speeds, projects vary in difficulty, and some projects encounter more problems than others.
Obviously, you should submit your MSc thesis or MA thesis when it is finished! Every university will say in its regulations that it is the student who must decide when it is ready to submit.
However, your supervisor will advise you whether your work is ready and you should take their advice on this. If your supervisor says that your work is not ready, then it is probably unwise to submit it. Usually your supervisor will read your final thesis or dissertation draft and will let you know what’s required before submitting your final draft.
Set yourself a target for completion. This will help you stay on track and avoid falling behind. You may also only have funding for the year, so it is important to ensure you submit your dissertation before the deadline – and also ensure you don’t miss out on your graduation ceremony !
To set your target date, work backwards from the final completion and submission date, and aim to have your final draft completed at least three months before that final date.
Don’t leave your submission until the last minute – submit your work in good time before the final deadline. Consider what else you’ll have going on around that time. Are you moving back home? Do you have a holiday? Do you have other plans?
If you need to have finished by the end of June to be able to go to a graduation ceremony in July, then you should leave a suitable amount of time for this. You can build this into your dissertation project planning at the start of your research.
It is important to remember that handing in your thesis or dissertation is not the end of your masters program . There will be a period of time of one to three months between the time you submit and your final day. Some courses may even require a viva to discuss your research project, though this is more common at PhD level .
If you have passed, you will need to make arrangements for the thesis to be properly bound and resubmitted, which will take a week or two. You may also have minor corrections to make to the work, which could take up to a month or so. This means that you need to allow a period of at least three months between submitting your thesis and the time when your program will be completely finished. Of course, it is also possible you may be asked after the viva to do more work on your thesis and resubmit it before the examiners will agree to award the degree – so there may be an even longer time period before you have finished.
How do I submit the MA or MSc dissertation?
Most universities will have a clear procedure for submitting a masters dissertation. Some universities require your ‘intention to submit’. This notifies them that you are ready to submit and allows the university to appoint an external examiner.
This normally has to be completed at least three months before the date on which you think you will be ready to submit.
When your MA or MSc dissertation is ready, you will have to print several copies and have them bound. The number of copies varies between universities, but the university usually requires three – one for each of the examiners and one for your supervisor.
However, you will need one more copy – for yourself! These copies must be softbound, not hardbound. The theses you see on the library shelves will be bound in an impressive hardback cover, but you can only get your work bound like this once you have passed.
You should submit your dissertation or thesis for examination in soft paper or card covers, and your university will give you detailed guidance on how it should be bound. They will also recommend places where you can get the work done.
The next stage is to hand in your work, in the way and to the place that is indicated in your university’s regulations. All you can do then is sit and wait for the examination – but submitting your thesis is often a time of great relief and celebration!
Some universities only require a digital submission, where you upload your dissertation as a file through their online submission system.
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- To get a degree - topic should be difficult enough, but manageable too.
- To enjoy the work - topic that you are truly interested in, something that you will not grow bored of after a short period of time.
- To get a job afterward - if you know what specifically you want to do after your studies and/or for which company, it might be useful to choose a topic, that will help with this goal.
- To be useful - thesis might actually be useful to help to make the world a little better place.
- Try thinking about your favorite subject of study - it may be a particular author, theory, time period, etc. Imagine how you might further the study of that subject.
- You might consider skimming through papers you wrote for your graduate courses and see if there is any apparent topic that you tend to gravitate towards.
- Consult with faculty members, favorite professors. They might have some good suggestions to write about. Generally, you'll be required to meet with your thesis advisor at least once before you start working.
- Consider consulting with industry partners. Your favorite company might have some work to do which might be done as a master's thesis. This might also help you get a job within the company afterward and maybe even some money for the thesis.
- If you want to help the world to be a better place, you might want to consult with your local non-profits and charities or check the Internet for possible thesis topics to write about.
- 3 Choose the right topic. From the possible topics generated in the previous step, find the one which best fits the objectives from the first step, especially the objectives most important to you. Make sure that you have a clear, specific, and organized plan on how to write a master's thesis which you will be able to then defend.
- Make sure that your question and the answers provided will provide original content to the body of research in existence. A judicious question will also keep research focused, organized, and interesting.
- Once you've formulated your topic and direction of inquiry, try formulating 5-10 different questions around your intended research. This forces you to think flexibly about your topic and visualize how small changes in wording can change the trajectory of your research.
- Usually, your committee chair will be in place before you formally start your thesis. They can help guide you and provide input into your project, so the earlier you can get their commitment, the better.
- Nothing is more frustrating than your thesis progress being held up by a professor who has too many obligations to make time to meet with you.
Selecting Your Texts
- For example, a novel written by Ernest Hemingway or a scientific journal article in which new results are documented for the first time would both be considered primary sources.
- For example, a book written about Ernest Hemingway's novel or a scientific journal article examining the findings of someone else's experiment would both be considered secondary sources.
- Use the in-text citation format appropriate to your discipline.  X Research source The most common formats are MLA, APA, and Chicago.
- Create a coordinating works cited or reference entry for each source you cite in the text of your document or in a footnote.
- Consider using a citation management software such as EndNote, Mendeley, or Zotero. These will enable you to insert and move citations within your word processor program and will automatically populate a works cited or reference page for you.
Planning an Outline
- Qualitative. This type of thesis involves completing a project that is exploratory, analytical, or creative in some way. Usually, students in the humanities will complete this kind of thesis.
- Quantitative. This type of thesis involves conducting experiments, measuring data, and recording results. Students in the sciences usually complete this kind of thesis.
- Signature page (with the completed signatures of your advising committee - usually attained at the defense, or after the project is deemed complete )
- Abstract - this is a short (one paragraph or so) description/summary of the work completed in your thesis
- Table of Contents (with page numbers)
- Body of paper
- Works Cited or Bibliography
- Any necessary appendices or endnotes
Moving through the Writing Process
- If you do not already have a review of literature written, it’s time to do your research! The review of literature is essentially a summary of all of the existing scholarship about your topic with plenty of direct quotations from the primary and secondary sources that you’re referencing.
Finalizing Your Thesis
- Many departments or programs provide a document template for theses and dissertations. If you have one of these, it may be easiest to use such a template from the beginning of your work (rather than copying and pasting your writing into it).
- Alternatively, ask a trusted colleague or friend to read over your thesis to help you catch any minor grammar/spelling/punctuation errors and typos.
- Some institutions require you to submit your thesis for a formatting check prior to uploading the document to ProQuest. Be sure to check with your department’s Director of Graduate Studies for specific instructions.
- Be aware of thesis submission deadlines, which are often well in advance of your graduation date. Late submission of your thesis may force you to push back your graduation date, which may affect your employment or continuing graduate studies.
Masters Thesis Outline
Video . By using this service, some information may be shared with YouTube.
- Remember why you are writing a Master's thesis and who will want to read and use the material. You write a Master's thesis for members of your community, so keep in mind that they will have extensive knowledge and experience before reading your work. Don't bore them with unnecessary material. Thanks Helpful 2 Not Helpful 0
- Choosing the perfect question before starting research will prevent frustration and save time. Rigorous effort on finding the perfect question is probably the most important task when learning how to write a Master's thesis. Thanks Helpful 2 Not Helpful 0
- Consult other people who have completed a Master's thesis and obtained a Master's degree. It can be a long, grueling process, and having the support and advice of someone who has already done it can be very valuable. Thanks Helpful 1 Not Helpful 0
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- ↑ https://umb.libguides.com/PrimarySources/secondary
- ↑ https://www.scribbr.com/citing-sources/in-text-citation-styles/
- ↑ https://www.unk.edu/academics/gradstudies/admissions/grad-files/Grad%20Files/ThesisGdlnsFinal08.pdf
- ↑ https://u.osu.edu/hackingthethesis/managing-stuff/your-content/outline/
- ↑ http://www.imm.dtu.dk/~janba/MastersThesisAdvice.pdf
About This Article
To write a master's thesis, make it a goal to write 500 words every day, which will help you meet your deadline without having to rush at the last minute. It's also helpful if you work in 25-minute increments and take a 5-minute break in between, which will make your work sessions less overwhelming. Also, figure out a writing time that works best for you, whether it's in the morning or at night, and stick with it so you're more productive. For more help writing your master's thesis, like how to make an outline, keep reading! Did this summary help you? Yes No
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/images/cornell/logo35pt_cornell_white.svg" alt="writing your master's thesis"> Cornell University --> Graduate School
Guide to writing your thesis/dissertation, definition of dissertation and thesis.
The dissertation or thesis is a scholarly treatise that substantiates a specific point of view as a result of original research that is conducted by students during their graduate study. At Cornell, the thesis is a requirement for the receipt of the M.A. and M.S. degrees and some professional master’s degrees. The dissertation is a requirement of the Ph.D. degree.
Formatting Requirement and Standards
The Graduate School sets the minimum format for your thesis or dissertation, while you, your special committee, and your advisor/chair decide upon the content and length. Grammar, punctuation, spelling, and other mechanical issues are your sole responsibility. Generally, the thesis and dissertation should conform to the standards of leading academic journals in your field. The Graduate School does not monitor the thesis or dissertation for mechanics, content, or style.
“Papers Option” Dissertation or Thesis
A “papers option” is available only to students in certain fields, which are listed on the Fields Permitting the Use of Papers Option page , or by approved petition. If you choose the papers option, your dissertation or thesis is organized as a series of relatively independent chapters or papers that you have submitted or will be submitting to journals in the field. You must be the only author or the first author of the papers to be used in the dissertation. The papers-option dissertation or thesis must meet all format and submission requirements, and a singular referencing convention must be used throughout.
ProQuest Electronic Submissions
The dissertation and thesis become permanent records of your original research, and in the case of doctoral research, the Graduate School requires publication of the dissertation and abstract in its original form. All Cornell master’s theses and doctoral dissertations require an electronic submission through ProQuest, which fills orders for paper or digital copies of the thesis and dissertation and makes a digital version available online via their subscription database, ProQuest Dissertations & Theses . For master’s theses, only the abstract is available. ProQuest provides worldwide distribution of your work from the master copy. You retain control over your dissertation and are free to grant publishing rights as you see fit. The formatting requirements contained in this guide meet all ProQuest specifications.
Copies of Dissertation and Thesis
Copies of Ph.D. dissertations and master’s theses are also uploaded in PDF format to the Cornell Library Repository, eCommons . A print copy of each master’s thesis and doctoral dissertation is submitted to Cornell University Library by ProQuest.
How to write a masters thesis in 2 months [Easy steps to start writing]
Writing a master’s thesis is completely possible to write a thesis within two months as long as you stay completely focused on your writing and you do a little bit every single day. I was able to write my thesis (master’s and PhD) in approximately two months – but I did have some of the sections already prepared.
To complete your master’s thesis in two months you should start by creating an outline of the sections and headings of your thesis. Then, worked diligently to fill in the gaps with data and analysis.
It would help if you create a schedule of how many sections you need to complete a day to write up in two months.
Also, it is important that you get your supervisor on board from the earliest opportunity so that they understand the urgency and their responsibility of getting any drafts back to you in a timely fashion.
How long does it take to write a master’s or graduate thesis?
Writing a graduate thesis can be a long and arduous process that can take anywhere from one month to many years.
It is essential to start writing your thesis early in your final year of graduate school, as it requires extensive research, data collection and analysis, in addition to the actual writing.
It is important that you go into the thesis writing portion of your degree with as much of the data analysis done as possible.
When you are writing you want to focus 100% on the production of words on a page.
Depending on the topic and depth of study, it can take anywhere from six weeks to two or three months just to complete the first draft.
This is followed by further revisions and edits before finalizing the dissertation.
My 8 tips on how to write a thesis or dissertation in two months
Writing a thesis or dissertation in two months can be a daunting task, but it is certainly possible. This assumes that you have all of the data analysis done and you are literally just writing up what you have found.
Here are eight tips that can help you finish writing your thesis in 30 days:
- Start by breaking up the task into manageable chunks and set deadlines for each stage of the process. This will make it easier to stay on track and not become overwhelmed by the whole project.
- Make sure to give yourself enough time to do a thorough literature review, as this is an important part of any thesis or dissertation. Many people have already completed the literature review in the early stages of their graduate degree. Revisit and use as much of this literature review is possible and add the research from recent years.
- Write your first draft as quickly as possible; don’t worry too much about grammar and spelling right now, that comes later. It is all about getting the words out onto the page as quickly as possible.
- Set aside some time every day for writing your thesis; even if it’s only an hour or two, this will help you stay focused and motivated throughout the entire writing process. I used to work in two hour blocks. I was able to squeeze three of these in a day which meant I got a lot of writing done.
- Don’t forget to use helpful tools like Grammarly to ensure the quality of your work is at its highest level before submitting it for review.
- Take regular breaks during your writing sessions; this will help you stay fresh and focused on what needs to be done next. I used to take a break every two hours away from my screen and ensure that I refuelled with good food and caffeine.
- Seek feedback from other PhD students or experts in your field; getting constructive criticism can help you improve the quality of your thesis significantly before submitting. However, do not allow people to sit on the draft for ages. We need a quick turnaround if we are going to complete your thesis in two months.
- Finally, plan ahead and stick to deadlines; this will help keep you on track with completing your thesis in a month’s time!
If you want to know more about how to finish a masters thesis in two months check out my other video where I show you the unglamorous trues about writing a thesis.
Understanding what you are going into and what is likely to happen is half the battle.
If you want to know more about how long a Masters’s thesis and PhD dissertation is you can check out my other articles:
- How Long is a Masters Thesis? [Your writing guide]
- How long is a PhD dissertation? [Data by field]
- Is writing a masters thesis hard? Tips on how to write a thesis
What are the common structures of a Masters’s thesis?
The common structure of a thesis or dissertation usually includes:
- the main text,
- literature review,
- results and discussions
Depending on the school and field of study, there may be additional elements such as appendices.
Generally speaking, the first step in writing a thesis or dissertation is to create a literature review that assesses relevant academic sources related to the topic at hand. This is typically done in the early stages of your research project so you can reuse many parts of your literature review in your thesis. Just make sure you update it with new information.
Then, the methodology section outlines how research was conducted and what methods were used.
The main text presents your findings and conclusions based on your research and the final part of the thesis is to summarise everything you have just written in an abstract.
Each section must be written with clarity and accuracy in order to be accepted by graduate school. However, initially you only have to worry about getting your ideas out onto the page – you can refine them for clarity and accuracy in the editing stage.
Here are all of the sections of a typical master’s thesis and how to write them quickly.
The introduction and literature review are an important part of any academic paper. It outlines the topic, provides background information, and introduces the research question.
The introduction is typically the first section of a paper and should explain the general context and importance of the research being undertaken.
The literature review follows the introduction and provides an overview of relevant previous studies, theories, or debates related to the paper’s research question.
This section may include summaries of key articles or books that have been published on the topic, as well as alternative perspectives and arguments.
A strong literature review will provide a comprehensive summary of prior work while also identifying gaps in knowledge that can be addressed by the current study.
Reuse your literature review from the early stages of your project and update it with more recent publications.
Methodology in a thesis
this is the part of the thesis which details the methods used in researching and writing the paper.
The methodology should include information on how data was collected, analyzed, and interpreted.
I quite often like to start with the methodology because it feels like I am making a lot of progress whilst it being a relatively easy to write.
Feel free to look at other people’s theses that have used the same techniques and follow a similar format that they used. It is common for research groups to share their methodology sections with each other including any schematics required to describe your research process.
You can republish these as long as you reference the appropriate studies and people.
It can also explain why certain methods were chosen over others and provide justification for any assumptions made during the research process.
Results and discussion
Results and discussion provide a platform to present the findings of a research study.
They are essential components of any research paper as they provide an opportunity to analyze and interpret the data collected during the study.
Results typically include descriptive statistics, tables, figures, or graphs that display the main outcomes of the research.
These are what you should place under the headings first.
Create a story with the figures and tables you have already created throughout your research. If you haven’t done them already, create the figures and tables that display your data before writing.
The discussion section should explain how these results relate to prior studies and answer the original research question posed in the introduction.
It should also discuss any limitations or unexpected findings that emerged from the study, as well as potential implications for future research.
Conclusions in a thesis
Conclusions in a thesis are important because they provide readers with a final summary of the main points and themes discussed throughout the thesis.
The conclusion should not introduce any new information, but rather draw on existing evidence to summarize the overall argument presented in the thesis.
It should also reiterate the main points of the paper and include implications for further study or action that could be taken based on the findings.
Conclusions should be written in clear language, using strong arguments and evidence to support their claims.
It is really important to avoid making broad generalizations or unsubstantiated statements in one’s conclusions as this could weaken an otherwise sound argument.
The abstract of a thesis
The abstract of a thesis is a concise summary of the contents of the entire thesis.
And it should be written as one of the last parts of your thesis.
It should give an overview of all the major aspects discussed in the thesis, such as the research question, methodology, findings and conclusions.
The aim of an abstract is to give potential readers a clear idea of what the full dissertation contains without having to read it word for word.
An effective abstract should be concise and self-contained; it should be able to stand alone without needing any explanation or clarification from outside sources.
It should provide enough detail so that readers can determine whether they have an interest in reading the full dissertation.
If you want to know more about how to increase your writing motivation check out my other video below.
this article has been through everything you need to know about if you can write a Masters thesis in two months.
It is completely doable as long as you have all of the appropriate data and figures ready and you are committed to writing consistently throughout the two months.
Another really important part of completing your master’s thesis on time is getting buy in from your supervisors so that they return any drafts as quickly as possible.
Work diligently and consistently and in no doubt that you will be able to finish your master’s thesis in two months.
Dr Andrew Stapleton has a Masters and PhD in Chemistry from the UK and Australia. He has many years of research experience and has worked as a Postdoctoral Fellow and Associate at a number of Universities. Although having secured funding for his own research, he left academia to help others with his YouTube channel all about the inner workings of academia and how to make it work for you.
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How To Write A Dissertation Or Thesis
8 straightforward steps to craft an a-grade dissertation.
By: Derek Jansen (MBA) Expert Reviewed By: Dr Eunice Rautenbach | June 2020
Writing a dissertation or thesis is not a simple task. It takes time, energy and a lot of will power to get you across the finish line. It’s not easy – but it doesn’t necessarily need to be a painful process. If you understand the big-picture process of how to write a dissertation or thesis, your research journey will be a lot smoother.
In this post, I’m going to outline the big-picture process of how to write a high-quality dissertation or thesis, without losing your mind along the way. If you’re just starting your research, this post is perfect for you. Alternatively, if you’ve already submitted your proposal, this article which covers how to structure a dissertation might be more helpful.
How To Write A Dissertation: 8 Steps
- Clearly understand what a dissertation (or thesis) is
- Find a unique and valuable research topic
- Craft a convincing research proposal
- Write up a strong introduction chapter
- Review the existing literature and compile a literature review
- Design a rigorous research strategy and undertake your own research
- Present the findings of your research
- Draw a conclusion and discuss the implications
Step 1: Understand exactly what a dissertation is
This probably sounds like a no-brainer, but all too often, students come to us for help with their research and the underlying issue is that they don’t fully understand what a dissertation (or thesis) actually is.
So, what is a dissertation?
At its simplest, a dissertation or thesis is a formal piece of research , reflecting the standard research process . But what is the standard research process, you ask? The research process involves 4 key steps:
- Ask a very specific, well-articulated question (s) (your research topic)
- See what other researchers have said about it (if they’ve already answered it)
- If they haven’t answered it adequately, undertake your own data collection and analysis in a scientifically rigorous fashion
- Answer your original question(s), based on your analysis findings
In short, the research process is simply about asking and answering questions in a systematic fashion . This probably sounds pretty obvious, but people often think they’ve done “research”, when in fact what they have done is:
- Started with a vague, poorly articulated question
- Not taken the time to see what research has already been done regarding the question
- Collected data and opinions that support their gut and undertaken a flimsy analysis
- Drawn a shaky conclusion, based on that analysis
If you want to see the perfect example of this in action, look out for the next Facebook post where someone claims they’ve done “research”… All too often, people consider reading a few blog posts to constitute research. Its no surprise then that what they end up with is an opinion piece, not research. Okay, okay – I’ll climb off my soapbox now.
The key takeaway here is that a dissertation (or thesis) is a formal piece of research, reflecting the research process. It’s not an opinion piece , nor a place to push your agenda or try to convince someone of your position. Writing a good dissertation involves asking a question and taking a systematic, rigorous approach to answering it.
If you understand this and are comfortable leaving your opinions or preconceived ideas at the door, you’re already off to a good start!
Step 2: Find a unique, valuable research topic
As we saw, the first step of the research process is to ask a specific, well-articulated question. In other words, you need to find a research topic that asks a specific question or set of questions (these are called research questions ). Sounds easy enough, right? All you’ve got to do is identify a question or two and you’ve got a winning research topic. Well, not quite…
A good dissertation or thesis topic has a few important attributes. Specifically, a solid research topic should be:
Let’s take a closer look at these:
Attribute #1: Clear
Your research topic needs to be crystal clear about what you’re planning to research, what you want to know, and within what context. There shouldn’t be any ambiguity or vagueness about what you’ll research.
Here’s an example of a clearly articulated research topic:
An analysis of consumer-based factors influencing organisational trust in British low-cost online equity brokerage firms.
As you can see in the example, its crystal clear what will be analysed (factors impacting organisational trust), amongst who (consumers) and in what context (British low-cost equity brokerage firms, based online).
Need a helping hand?
Attribute #2: Unique
Your research should be asking a question(s) that hasn’t been asked before, or that hasn’t been asked in a specific context (for example, in a specific country or industry).
For example, sticking organisational trust topic above, it’s quite likely that organisational trust factors in the UK have been investigated before, but the context (online low-cost equity brokerages) could make this research unique. Therefore, the context makes this research original.
One caveat when using context as the basis for originality – you need to have a good reason to suspect that your findings in this context might be different from the existing research – otherwise, there’s no reason to warrant researching it.
Attribute #3: Important
Simply asking a unique or original question is not enough – the question needs to create value. In other words, successfully answering your research questions should provide some value to the field of research or the industry. You can’t research something just to satisfy your curiosity. It needs to make some form of contribution either to research or industry.
For example, researching the factors influencing consumer trust would create value by enabling businesses to tailor their operations and marketing to leverage factors that promote trust. In other words, it would have a clear benefit to industry.
So, how do you go about finding a unique and valuable research topic? We explain that in detail in this video post – How To Find A Research Topic . Yeah, we’ve got you covered 😊
Step 3: Write a convincing research proposal
Once you’ve pinned down a high-quality research topic, the next step is to convince your university to let you research it. No matter how awesome you think your topic is, it still needs to get the rubber stamp before you can move forward with your research. The research proposal is the tool you’ll use for this job.
So, what’s in a research proposal?
The main “job” of a research proposal is to convince your university, advisor or committee that your research topic is worthy of approval. But convince them of what? Well, this varies from university to university, but generally, they want to see that:
- You have a clearly articulated, unique and important topic (this might sound familiar…)
- You’ve done some initial reading of the existing literature relevant to your topic (i.e. a literature review)
- You have a provisional plan in terms of how you will collect data and analyse it (i.e. a methodology)
At the proposal stage, it’s (generally) not expected that you’ve extensively reviewed the existing literature , but you will need to show that you’ve done enough reading to identify a clear gap for original (unique) research. Similarly, they generally don’t expect that you have a rock-solid research methodology mapped out, but you should have an idea of whether you’ll be undertaking qualitative or quantitative analysis , and how you’ll collect your data (we’ll discuss this in more detail later).
Long story short – don’t stress about having every detail of your research meticulously thought out at the proposal stage – this will develop as you progress through your research. However, you do need to show that you’ve “done your homework” and that your research is worthy of approval .
So, how do you go about crafting a high-quality, convincing proposal? We cover that in detail in this video post – How To Write A Top-Class Research Proposal . We’ve also got a video walkthrough of two proposal examples here .
Step 4: Craft a strong introduction chapter
Once your proposal’s been approved, its time to get writing your actual dissertation or thesis! The good news is that if you put the time into crafting a high-quality proposal, you’ve already got a head start on your first three chapters – introduction, literature review and methodology – as you can use your proposal as the basis for these.
Handy sidenote – our free dissertation & thesis template is a great way to speed up your dissertation writing journey.
What’s the introduction chapter all about?
The purpose of the introduction chapter is to set the scene for your research (dare I say, to introduce it…) so that the reader understands what you’ll be researching and why it’s important. In other words, it covers the same ground as the research proposal in that it justifies your research topic.
What goes into the introduction chapter?
This can vary slightly between universities and degrees, but generally, the introduction chapter will include the following:
- A brief background to the study, explaining the overall area of research
- A problem statement , explaining what the problem is with the current state of research (in other words, where the knowledge gap exists)
- Your research questions – in other words, the specific questions your study will seek to answer (based on the knowledge gap)
- The significance of your study – in other words, why it’s important and how its findings will be useful in the world
As you can see, this all about explaining the “what” and the “why” of your research (as opposed to the “how”). So, your introduction chapter is basically the salesman of your study, “selling” your research to the first-time reader and (hopefully) getting them interested to read more.
How do I write the introduction chapter, you ask? We cover that in detail in this post .
Step 5: Undertake an in-depth literature review
As I mentioned earlier, you’ll need to do some initial review of the literature in Steps 2 and 3 to find your research gap and craft a convincing research proposal – but that’s just scratching the surface. Once you reach the literature review stage of your dissertation or thesis, you need to dig a lot deeper into the existing research and write up a comprehensive literature review chapter.
What’s the literature review all about?
There are two main stages in the literature review process:
Literature Review Step 1: Reading up
The first stage is for you to deep dive into the existing literature (journal articles, textbook chapters, industry reports, etc) to gain an in-depth understanding of the current state of research regarding your topic. While you don’t need to read every single article, you do need to ensure that you cover all literature that is related to your core research questions, and create a comprehensive catalogue of that literature , which you’ll use in the next step.
Reading and digesting all the relevant literature is a time consuming and intellectually demanding process. Many students underestimate just how much work goes into this step, so make sure that you allocate a good amount of time for this when planning out your research. Thankfully, there are ways to fast track the process – be sure to check out this article covering how to read journal articles quickly .
Literature Review Step 2: Writing up
Once you’ve worked through the literature and digested it all, you’ll need to write up your literature review chapter. Many students make the mistake of thinking that the literature review chapter is simply a summary of what other researchers have said. While this is partly true, a literature review is much more than just a summary. To pull off a good literature review chapter, you’ll need to achieve at least 3 things:
- You need to synthesise the existing research , not just summarise it. In other words, you need to show how different pieces of theory fit together, what’s agreed on by researchers, what’s not.
- You need to highlight a research gap that your research is going to fill. In other words, you’ve got to outline the problem so that your research topic can provide a solution.
- You need to use the existing research to inform your methodology and approach to your own research design. For example, you might use questions or Likert scales from previous studies in your your own survey design .
As you can see, a good literature review is more than just a summary of the published research. It’s the foundation on which your own research is built, so it deserves a lot of love and attention. Take the time to craft a comprehensive literature review with a suitable structure .
But, how do I actually write the literature review chapter, you ask? We cover that in detail in this video post .
Step 6: Carry out your own research
Once you’ve completed your literature review and have a sound understanding of the existing research, its time to develop your own research (finally!). You’ll design this research specifically so that you can find the answers to your unique research question.
There are two steps here – designing your research strategy and executing on it:
1 – Design your research strategy
The first step is to design your research strategy and craft a methodology chapter . I won’t get into the technicalities of the methodology chapter here, but in simple terms, this chapter is about explaining the “how” of your research. If you recall, the introduction and literature review chapters discussed the “what” and the “why”, so it makes sense that the next point to cover is the “how” –that’s what the methodology chapter is all about.
In this section, you’ll need to make firm decisions about your research design. This includes things like:
- Your research philosophy (e.g. positivism or interpretivism )
- Your overall methodology (e.g. qualitative , quantitative or mixed methods)
- Your data collection strategy (e.g. interviews , focus groups, surveys)
- Your data analysis strategy (e.g. content analysis , correlation analysis, regression)
If these words have got your head spinning, don’t worry! We’ll explain these in plain language in other posts. It’s not essential that you understand the intricacies of research design (yet!). The key takeaway here is that you’ll need to make decisions about how you’ll design your own research, and you’ll need to describe (and justify) your decisions in your methodology chapter.
2 – Execute: Collect and analyse your data
Once you’ve worked out your research design, you’ll put it into action and start collecting your data. This might mean undertaking interviews, hosting an online survey or any other data collection method. Data collection can take quite a bit of time (especially if you host in-person interviews), so be sure to factor sufficient time into your project plan for this. Oftentimes, things don’t go 100% to plan (for example, you don’t get as many survey responses as you hoped for), so bake a little extra time into your budget here.
Once you’ve collected your data, you’ll need to do some data preparation before you can sink your teeth into the analysis. For example:
- If you carry out interviews or focus groups, you’ll need to transcribe your audio data to text (i.e. a Word document).
- If you collect quantitative survey data, you’ll need to clean up your data and get it into the right format for whichever analysis software you use (for example, SPSS, R or STATA).
Once you’ve completed your data prep, you’ll undertake your analysis, using the techniques that you described in your methodology. Depending on what you find in your analysis, you might also do some additional forms of analysis that you hadn’t planned for. For example, you might see something in the data that raises new questions or that requires clarification with further analysis.
The type(s) of analysis that you’ll use depend entirely on the nature of your research and your research questions. For example:
- If your research if exploratory in nature, you’ll often use qualitative analysis techniques .
- If your research is confirmatory in nature, you’ll often use quantitative analysis techniques
- If your research involves a mix of both, you might use a mixed methods approach
Again, if these words have got your head spinning, don’t worry! We’ll explain these concepts and techniques in other posts. The key takeaway is simply that there’s no “one size fits all” for research design and methodology – it all depends on your topic, your research questions and your data. So, don’t be surprised if your study colleagues take a completely different approach to yours.
Step 7: Present your findings
Once you’ve completed your analysis, it’s time to present your findings (finally!). In a dissertation or thesis, you’ll typically present your findings in two chapters – the results chapter and the discussion chapter .
What’s the difference between the results chapter and the discussion chapter?
While these two chapters are similar, the results chapter generally just presents the processed data neatly and clearly without interpretation, while the discussion chapter explains the story the data are telling – in other words, it provides your interpretation of the results.
For example, if you were researching the factors that influence consumer trust, you might have used a quantitative approach to identify the relationship between potential factors (e.g. perceived integrity and competence of the organisation) and consumer trust. In this case:
- Your results chapter would just present the results of the statistical tests. For example, correlation results or differences between groups. In other words, the processed numbers.
- Your discussion chapter would explain what the numbers mean in relation to your research question(s). For example, Factor 1 has a weak relationship with consumer trust, while Factor 2 has a strong relationship.
Depending on the university and degree, these two chapters (results and discussion) are sometimes merged into one , so be sure to check with your institution what their preference is. Regardless of the chapter structure, this section is about presenting the findings of your research in a clear, easy to understand fashion.
Importantly, your discussion here needs to link back to your research questions (which you outlined in the introduction or literature review chapter). In other words, it needs to answer the key questions you asked (or at least attempt to answer them).
For example, if we look at the sample research topic:
In this case, the discussion section would clearly outline which factors seem to have a noteworthy influence on organisational trust. By doing so, they are answering the overarching question and fulfilling the purpose of the research .
For more information about the results chapter , check out this post for qualitative studies and this post for quantitative studies .
Step 8: The Final Step Draw a conclusion and discuss the implications
Last but not least, you’ll need to wrap up your research with the conclusion chapter . In this chapter, you’ll bring your research full circle by highlighting the key findings of your study and explaining what the implications of these findings are.
What exactly are key findings? The key findings are those findings which directly relate to your original research questions and overall research objectives (which you discussed in your introduction chapter). The implications, on the other hand, explain what your findings mean for industry, or for research in your area.
Sticking with the consumer trust topic example, the conclusion might look something like this:
This study set out to identify which factors influence consumer-based trust in British low-cost online equity brokerage firms. The results suggest that the following factors have a large impact on consumer trust:
While the following factors have a very limited impact on consumer trust:
Notably, within the 25-30 age groups, Factors E had a noticeably larger impact, which may be explained by…
The findings having noteworthy implications for British low-cost online equity brokers. Specifically:
The large impact of Factors X and Y implies that brokers need to consider….
The limited impact of Factor E implies that brokers need to…
As you can see, the conclusion chapter is basically explaining the “what” (what your study found) and the “so what?” (what the findings mean for the industry or research). This brings the study full circle and closes off the document.
Let’s recap – how to write a dissertation or thesis
You’re still with me? Impressive! I know that this post was a long one, but hopefully you’ve learnt a thing or two about how to write a dissertation or thesis, and are now better equipped to start your own research.
To recap, the 8 steps to writing a quality dissertation (or thesis) are as follows:
- Understand what a dissertation (or thesis) is – a research project that follows the research process.
- Find a unique (original) and important research topic
- Craft a convincing dissertation or thesis research proposal
- Write a clear, compelling introduction chapter
- Undertake a thorough review of the existing research and write up a literature review
- Undertake your own research
- Present and interpret your findings
Once you’ve wrapped up the core chapters, all that’s typically left is the abstract , reference list and appendices. As always, be sure to check with your university if they have any additional requirements in terms of structure or content.
Psst… there’s more (for free)
This post is part of our dissertation mini-course, which covers everything you need to get started with your dissertation, thesis or research project.
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thankfull >>>this is very useful
Thank you, it was really helpful
unquestionably, this amazing simplified way of teaching. Really , I couldn’t find in the literature words that fully explicit my great thanks to you. However, I could only say thanks a-lot.
Great to hear that – thanks for the feedback. Good luck writing your dissertation/thesis.
This is the most comprehensive explanation of how to write a dissertation. Many thanks for sharing it free of charge.
Very rich presentation. Thank you
Thanks Derek Jansen|GRADCOACH, I find it very useful guide to arrange my activities and proceed to research!
Thank you so much for such a marvelous teaching .I am so convinced that am going to write a comprehensive and a distinct masters dissertation
It is an amazing comprehensive explanation
This was straightforward. Thank you!
I can say that your explanations are simple and enlightening – understanding what you have done here is easy for me. Could you write more about the different types of research methods specific to the three methodologies: quan, qual and MM. I look forward to interacting with this website more in the future.
Thanks for the feedback and suggestions 🙂
Hello, your write ups is quite educative. However, l have challenges in going about my research questions which is below; *Building the enablers of organisational growth through effective governance and purposeful leadership.*
Just listening to the name of the dissertation makes the student nervous. As writing a top-quality dissertation is a difficult task as it is a lengthy topic, requires a lot of research and understanding and is usually around 10,000 to 15000 words. Sometimes due to studies, unbalanced workload or lack of research and writing skill students look for dissertation submission from professional writers.
Thank you 💕😊 very much. I was confused but your comprehensive explanation has cleared my doubts of ever presenting a good thesis. Thank you.
thank you so much, that was so useful
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