Thesis Writing

A thesis is a student’s crowning achievement after years of hard work and study. A dissertation or a thesis (they are both the same thing) will typically consist of a title page, an abstract (this is where you state your primary position), a table of content then the body. The body will usually consist of several chapters which make the case for your argument and then deals with any counter arguments that might be made. Then a conclusion and a references section which should be formatted in the style specified by the course instructor. A thesis is the paper that represents the culmination of a student’s learning. That being the case choosing the topic and argument for the thesis is important. It should reflect your specific field of study but attempt to be a completely new perspective or even a completely new idea within your research genre.

The obvious importance of the thesis can make it seem a somewhat overwhelming prospect. It needn’t be – the thesis will reflect your acquired knowledge and if you have made it to the point that you are writing a thesis it is very likely you will do an outstanding job. Like every undertaking, it is likely to be a whole lot more daunting at the start of the task and at the finish you will probably look back and wonder what you were so afraid of when you began.

That said, there are a few things you can do to make writing the thesis a little easier:

Organize

Even if you know the work inside and out, the reader of your end document (and your professor) will appreciate it if the work is easy to follow and set out in a clear and coherent order. Set out the order of the arguments that will be made and also think through how counter-arguments will be presented and addressed. Layout any charts or graphs in a logical order to fit with the order of the arguments being made. Keep track of sources as you go and be sure to put in notes to remind you of which sources were used.

Edit

Undertake a number of edits as the project progresses using both micro editing and macro editing tools. A brilliant argument will be degraded by poor spelling, grammar and syntax. If possible have a friend or acquaintance review the final draft with a fresh perspective.

Introduce and Conclude

The introduction and conclusion of your thesis should be compatible. The introduction will invite the reader to consider your argument and so the argument you will make must be very clearly stated from the beginning. Once the reader has finished the thesis their head will be whirring with all the wonderful insights you have presented and it is just as important in the conclusion to bring the reader back to the original idea, so in the conclusion re-state what you have said in the introduction and further state how you have proved this to be true.

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