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In Summary your Dissertation will comprise:
Findings and Analysis (may be separate)
Maximum 300 words – may be single-spaced
Separate from the written work (before the Contents page)
Summarises the entire work, including the methodology, main outcomes and conclusions,
i.e. an Abstract is not a brief introduction
Title and purpose of written work
Background and rationale for study – why you are doing it, why you are doing it now, why it matters, to whom it matters etc
Context – inter/national, sectoral, institutional, theoretical
Purpose of study and clear statement of aims or research questions (i.e. a list!) – the clearer and more specific, the better!
An explanation of the structure of the work and the purpose of the various sections/chapters is unnecessary since there is a Contents page.
A Contents page is important because it allows the reader to see, at glance, the overall structure/shape of the work
Findings and Analysis
References (not ‘Bibliography’):
List all the sources to which you have made reference in the text (but only those).
In alphabetical order and, within that, by date
Do not separate the different types of sources (books, articles etc), i.e. present one list
Follow the specified referencing system (the Harvard System – see Course Handbook)
Appendices should generally be avoided unless they are directly relevant
May be useful in presenting samples of research instruments, raw data such as sample of interview notes
Only include appendices to which you have referred in the text
Do not use appendices for ‘padding’
A useful guide to approximate word lengths is the ‘ Rule of Sevenths’, i.e.
Introduction = 1/7
Literature Review = 2/7
Methodology = 1/7
Findings and analysis* = 2/7
Conclusions = 1/7
* If Findings and analysis are in separate chapters, the ratio is approximately:
1/3 Findings; 2/3 Analysis (or ‘Discussion’)
This translates to:
Introduction = c.2,500
Literature Review = c.6,000
Methodology = c.3,000
Findings and Analysis** = c.6,000*
Conclusions = c.2,500
* or Findings 2,000 maximum
Analysis 4,000 minimum
** Do not confuse ‘conceptual analysis’ with the analysis (‘interpretation’) of your data
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