Your College Professor Can Help You Write a Dissertation Conclusion

Your college professor has probably given a class on how to write your dissertation. They have given handouts with instructions and hints and tips on the best way to handle the production of your dissertation. The college will also have the document posted somewhere on its website. But you may still be struggling. If you are struggling you need to let your professor know, preferably by arranging an appointment to discuss your difficulties.

In order to get the best use of your time with your professor, you need to prepare.

  1. Take a step back and try to focus on where your difficulty lies in writing the conclusion.

    • Make a check that your dissertation statement actually challenges the questions or problems that you hoped to highlight.
    • Read through your introduction. Do you feel that your statement is adequately represented by your introduction?
    • Literature search - check that it meets your needs for the dissertation. Does the work that you have referenced actually provide a balanced approach?

  2. To write effectively for a dissertation is like taking part in an academic conversation; the only thing is that you are providing both sides of the conversation.

    • Is your discussion/conversation focused?
    • Have you represented the context of your discussion/conversation?
    • Have you discussed the limitations of your research?

  3. Now look again at your work.

    • Do you need to change your dissertation statement in any way? Do you need to refine some of the terminology? This is time well spent, as not only does it help ground your ideas it also helps to make a statement that is more representative of the dissertation. This is not about changing what you have produced in your document it is about improving your description of it.
    • Have you acknowledged both the limitations and the implications of findings of your research? What is the impact on your research?
    • Are there any limitations to your argument? If there are how are you going to resolve this?
    • List and discuss the implications of your findings.

  4. Offer advice to the reader. This has to be through academic dialogue and is part of your conclusion.

  5. With all this information you can meet with your professor and discuss the best way forward to present your finding in your conclusion. Don’t go to the meeting empty handed and expect your professor to give you a magic formula to complete the dissertation.

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