When printing this page, you must include the entire legal notice. This material may not be published, reproduced, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission. Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our terms and conditions of fair use.
The chapter most likely to provoke fear, uncertainty and doubt. The discussion section is scary because Dissertation discussion headings have to make new knowledge claims of your own, not just agree Dissertation discussion headings disagree with other people.
Knowledge claims are like dumplings in the thesis soup or chocolate chips in the PhD cookie. They will evaluate the quality, amount and — most importantly — the believability of your knowledge claims. If you are too speculative you might tip over the believability cliff.
Years ago I wrote a post on how to start the discussion chapter. I gave a few suggestions for generating creative ideas, but not a detailed discussion of how to do any of them.
The post was a useful starting point, but unfortunately not enough to actually help one of my students, Wendy, write her discussion chapters. Like many thesis writers, Wendy has had a long slog with this project and is having trouble seeing the wood for the trees. Wendy is in the creative arts, so her findings are not in the form of formulas and graphs.
The findings are really a series of observations which can be backed up with evidence. I think we made good progress with a whiteboard in the last meeting and I asked her if I could share what we did with the world, she generously agreed thanks Wendy!
The book suggests that you write this list with the help of a sympathetic listener who knows the project, like a supervisor. Wendy sat in a chair and just talked at me. I wrote what she said on the whiteboard, asking a question now and then to clarify or expand on a point.
The whiteboard was an ideal medium for this task. We could both see it and it was easy to rub out stuff. Assess the findings The mud map enabled us to start sorting and organising the ideas.
Wendy still has one data collection round to run so some findings are more speculative than others. I added a few arrows and brackets to connect obviously related statements.
This is a creative process which involves reading over the mud map again and again, writing ideas for over arching themes under which the findings might fit. After about another 45 minutes of fiddling and arguing about it, we had this provisional list of four themes: We took a couple of photos of the board with my phone and then rubbed it all out.
We put the overall aim of the thesis in the middle of the bubble and put the emergent themes in the first layer of bubbles around it: The third layer of bubbles contained findings from our mud map recorded in the photos on my phone that we thought fell under these themes.
As we wrote the findings into the bubbles we shifted the wording to find shorter ways of saying the same thing and started to blend some of the findings together.
This process enabled us to see how some findings from the mud map might fall under multiple themes, which suggested a satisfactory repetition was emerging. You know you have a thesis on your hands when you feel like you are saying the same thing over and over, but in a slightly different way every time.
This is a stylistic choice — there is no right or wrong way to do it, but the diagram lets you imagine different results and discuss the implications of the various choices. We took several photos as this diagram evolved and changed to present different options. Make a snowflake At this point I was happy.
I know I can work from a spider diagram, but Wendy was still not comfortable. She is a more creative person than me and was worried that she would muck around and just find more and more connections — a fair point.
So I suggested we try using a matrix.
While a spider diagram encourages you to see connections, a matrix forces you to think about hierarchy.research in the discussion section of your dissertation. In your literature review you will Writing a Literature Review in a dissertation 4 | P a g e Overleaf is an example of how to use numbered headings and sub-headings in your dissertation.
Under the Literature Review section, you can see an example of how to. Depending on your discipline, the number of chapters in a dissertation may vary.
Let's examine the most common case and see how we can help you! The final stage and chapter in your dissertation research paper is the conclusion and this is where you’re most likely going to be making recommendations, whether these be for future research, a government body or a corporations.
About Karen Kelsky I am a former tenured professor at two institutions--University of Oregon and University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign.
I have trained numerous Ph.D. students, now gainfully employed in academia, and handled a number of successful tenure cases as Department Head.
A Complete Dissertation The Big Picture OVERVIEW An outline of the entire dissertation, list-ing headings and subheadings with their respective page numbers, the table of con- dissertation.
Discussion is concise and precise. Frequent Errors Errors occur when the introduction does.
Before posting, please read this section. Copyediting-L is not an editing service or business and does not employ anyone. Copyediting-L also is not a professional association for editors; it is an email discussion list only.