Helpful Tips on Dissertation Conclusions
Dissertation conclusions is the part of the paper that provokes ambiguous feelings. On the one hand, you know that the end is close, and you need to make a single push in order to end the most complicated stage of the thesis writing process. On the other hand, writing dissertation conclusion might be quite a challenging task since you are likely to be squeezed out like a lemon as well as lack both strengths and ideas in order to complete it. Still, regardless of how you feel about this section, you should make the maximum of efforts in order to compose it well. Readers usually memorize the thing that was read last most of all; therefore, a conclusion will determine what impression the thesis or dissertation will leave.
For this reason, the section should obligatory conform to both general and institution-specific standards of how to write a dissertation conclusion. First of all, it must follow a discussion section of dissertation and similarly to an introduction, constitute approximately 5% of the total word count of the paper. Second, it must be appropriately organized, coherently written, and contain all the required elements. They are the restatement of research objectives, including a recap of findings and conclusions drawn from them, recommendations for the future research, and a contribution to the field.
Furthermore, as an additional point, it might be useful to provide reflection on the experience of writing a dissertation and the impact that it had on you as a scholar. It helps to illustrate that the work done strengthened your personality and assisted in becoming an expert. Besides, remember that is it advised to begin the conclusion reminding a reader about the main points discussed in the paper. In other words, you are recommended to write an introduction within a conclusion. Finally, creating thesis conclusions, mind that your approach should be as thorough and comprehensive as that to writing the body. Otherwise, it might seem that you have lost interest in writing, which inevitably will lead the same loss in a reader.
What to Include in a Dissertation Conclusion
In this part of conclusion dissertation should not be summarized. You should restate only your research objectives in an extremely concise manner and show connection between them and the finding received upon the review of literature, as well as the empirical research. Then, you need to explain what inferences can be made based on the findings. In other words, you should decide whether your have met your objectives in the course of the research. When writing about research objectives, you should avoid a major mistake that is analyzing. The analysis of findings was done in a discussion section, and you should not make a reader to check the same information once again. Instead, you should just summarize the main points, which is a key to how to write conclusion dissertation successfully since this part of the paper is not about convincing.
The aim of expounding on recommendations while concluding a dissertation is to provide a piece of advice to readers, specifically those interested in the same topic and kind of research. It is a mandatory element of the conclusion, and a failure to include it there results in the loss of points even if the recommendations are articulated somewhere in the body, for instance, the discussion section. In other words, be sure to make proper recommendations for those who might want to replicate, improve, or continue your study in the conclusion. However, they must be obligatory closely connected with the data provided in the body of the dissertation.
The recommendations might concern your evidence or future research. While the former type is called to provoke amendments to the existing approach, the latter type allows giving the research a new turn. More specifically, evidential recommendations are suitable for those you have noticed that the empirical research conducted was flawed or could be improved. Thus, based own observation, you might advise to make a sample larger, use the longer timeframe, choose a different context for the experiment, adopt another way of participants selection, etc. Future-related recommendation is basically about suggesting ideas regarding the ways of extending the research. Although the former type of recommendation is rather rare is students' works, you are still welcome to use it if you deem it necessary.
The whole point of conducting research is to look at an urgent problem of a field from a new perspective and provide an innovate solution or at least, fresh inferences. You should prove that you did it too while writing a conclusion for a dissertation since exactly such kind of information should be the basis of contribution part of this section. As a rule, the discussion of contribution is required at a Ph.D. level and is rarely necessary at Master's. Nevertheless, you are strongly advised to consult your supervisor before deciding to either include or exclude it from the conclusion as different educational institutions might have varying standards.
If you need this part in your conclusion, you can use a couple of approaches to composing it. Primarily, you should know that innovativeness of a dissertation is usually in the empirical research and in very rare cases, it might be found in the literature review. Here, innovativeness is understood as something that makes your work unique. Moreover, you should clearly show that your findings have their own place in the existing research related to the topic. For instance, you can point out the connections that your conclusions have with those of other researchers or demonstrate how your study fills in the gas in the current knowledge about the subject. Literature review will help you to do it. Besides, if your have made some kind of publications related to your dissertation, for example, an article in a scholarly or professional journal or delivered a speech during some conference, you should mention it in the conclusion.
Now, even though you already know how to write conclusion in thesis, you might still want some tips in order to do it well. First, remember that conclusion is your last chance to express something that consider important for a reader to know and understand to be able to appreciate your dissertation fully. Therefore, try not to waste the opportunity. Second, mind that a conclusion has own structure that although rather flexible, should be strictly followed. You should remind the reader your objectives, summarize findings, draw conclusions related to them, provide recommendations, and explain the contribution. Additionally, you might want to include personal reflection and the discussion of the limitations of research. Other points to consider:
- Certain dissertation might not require a conclusion in their structure. It is determined based on the topic. For instance, if the work is heavily mathematical or statistical, this section, as well as discussion, may be redundant. So, you might want to clarify this aspect with your supervisor.
- Even in case the conclusion turns out to be unnecessary, you should bring your work to a logical ending and round up the ideas discussed. Therefore, even if you are not going to write a conclusion, arrange the paper in a way to allow a reader easily understand that he/she reaches the end. In other words, the final parts of the dissertation should not finish abruptly as if you just decided to stop.
- Remember about the brevity, clarity, and coherence. These are the guarantees of how to write conclusion for dissertation well.
- Do not aim to provide a simple solution to a complex problem in a conclusion. Issues, which are usually studied and evaluated in the course of research, rarely have a single remedy that can be determined by a student while writing a thesis. That is why, if you include a solution, your professor will be sceptical about it and the dissertation as a whole. Raise questions and make suggestions instead!
- Avoid restating the same thing over and over again. It is boring and exhausting. At the same time, be fully focused on the ideas that have been expressed in the body. Impertinent and new information in a conclusion is a major mistake.
- Mind language in a conclusion. Select correct tenses and rely mostly on Present Perfect, as well as Past Simple. Try not to use the word "conclusion" carelessly in the body of the thesis. It might cause confusion and misunderstanding between the reader and you. Follow the standards of formalized English.
- You are welcome to express own opinion. However, you should do it in a subtle and preferably implicit way in order to avoid the possibility to sound authoritarian. You should not impose your point of view in any way. Still, mind that your opinion is likely to be apparent and understandable in the discussion of the findings. Therefore, to evade the potential risks, you are recommended to steer clear from expression own viewpoint in a conclusion.
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