To write an effective thesis statement, choose a statement that answers a general question about your topic. Check that your thesis is arguable, not factual, and make sure you can back it up your with evidence. For example, your thesis statement could be something like "Computers allow fourth graders an early advantage in technological and scientific education." For help tailoring your thesis to the kind of essay you're writing, read on!
Out of love for the truth and the desire to bring it to light, the following propositions will be discussed at Wittenberg, under the presidency of the Reverend Father Martin Luther, Master of Arts and of Sacred Theology, and Lecturer in Ordinary on the same at that place. Wherefore he requests that those who are unable to be present and debate orally with us, may do so by letter.
Usually a guide of this nature focuses on the actual implementationof the research. This is not the focus of this guide. Instead of examiningsuch aspects as identifying appropriate sample size, field testing theinstrument and selecting appropriate statistical tests, this guide looksat many of the quasi-political aspects of the process. Such topics as howto select a supportive committee, making a compelling presentation of yourresearch outcomes and strategies for actually getting the paper writtenare discussed.
The "thinking about it stage" is when you are finallyfaced with the reality of completing your degree. Usually the early phasesof a graduate program proceed in clear and very structured ways. The beginningphases of a graduate program proceed in much the same manner as an undergraduatedegree program. There are clear requirements and expectations, and the graduatestudent moves along, step by step, getting ever closer to the completionof the program. One day, however, the clear structure begins to diminishand now you're approaching the thesis/dissertation stage. This is a newand different time. These next steps are more and more defined by youand not your adviser, the program, or the department.
2. Write down your ideas. This will allow you to revisit anidea later on. Or, you can modify and change an idea. If you don't writeyour ideas they tend to be in a continual state of change and you will probablyhave the feeling that you're not going anywhere. What a great feeling itis to be able to sit down and scan the many ideas you have been thinkingabout, if they're written down.
This text was converted to ASCII text for Project Wittenberg by Allen Mulvey, and is in the public domain. You may freely distribute, copy or print this text. Please direct any comments or suggestions to:
22. Dissertation-style writing is not designed to be entertaining. Dissertationwriting should be clear and unambiguous. To do this well you should preparea list of key words that are important to your research and then your writingshould use this set of key words throughout. There is nothing so frustratingto a reader as a manuscript that keeps using alternate words to mean thesame thing. If you've decided that a key phrase for your research is "educationalworkshop", then do not try substituting other phrases like "in-serviceprogram", "learning workshop", "educational institute",or "educational program." Always stay with the same phrase -"educational workshop." It will be very clear to the reader exactlywhat you are referring to.
It is then developed in the main body of the paper, and mentioned again in the discussion section (and, of course, in the abstract and conclusions).
Some suggestions on how to shorten your paper:
21. The one area where I would caution you about using a word processoris in the initial creation of elaborate graphs or tables. I've seen too many studentsspend too many hours in trying to use their word processor to create an elaborate graph that could have been done by hand in 15 minutes. So, the simple ruleis to use hand drawing for elaborate tables and graphs for the early draft ofyour dissertation. Make sure your data are presented accurately so your advisor can clearly understand yourgraph/table, but don't waste the time trying to make it look word processor perfect at this time. Once you and your advisor agree upon how the data should be graphically represented it is time to prepare "perfect" lookinggraphs and tables.
If there are no data provided to support a given statement of result or observation, consider adding more data, or deleting the unsupported "observation."
Examine figure(s) or table(s) pertaining to the result(s).
Assess whether: How does one fairly and accurately indicate who has made what contributions towards the results and interpretations presented in your paper?: by referencing, authorship, and acknowledgements.
19. I must assume you're using some form of word processing on a computerto write your dissertation. (if you aren't, you've missed a major partof your doctoral preparation!) If your study has specific names of people,institutions and places that must be changed to provide anonymity don'tdo it too soon. Go ahead and write your dissertation using the real names.Then at the end of the writing stage you can easily have the computer makeall of the appropriate name substitutions. If you make these substitutionstoo early it can really confuse your writing.
27. If you are including a Conclusions/Implications section in yourdissertation make sure you really present conclusions and implications.Often the writer uses the conclusions/implications section to merely restatethe research findings. Don't waste my time. I've already read the findingsand now, at the Conclusion/Implication section, I want you to help me understandwhat it all means. This is a key section of the dissertation and is sometimesbest done after you've had a few days to step away from your research andallow yourself to put your research into perspective. If you do this youwill no doubt be able to draw a variety of insights that help link yourresearch to other areas. I usually think of conclusions/implications asthe "So what" statements. In other words, what are the key ideasthat we can draw from your study to apply to my areas of concern.