As a student, your thesis represents one of the pinnacles of your academic life. See that you give it the time and the attention it deserves, so that you come out with a good thesis at the end of your thesis writing labors!
Be organized: Right at the outset of your thesis writing, it is essential that you get organized. Complete all your research work; write down all the thoughts and ideas you have gathered on the topic you have selected. The following simple steps will help you in chalking out your planning session:
■ What is the overarching idea that you wish to write about? Put it down.
■ Brainstorm all the arguments that you will be made for and against the idea.
■ Go over your research work for evidence that will support your argument.
■ Decide what sequence you will follow while presenting your arguments.
Complete these steps, and you will find it easier to write a lucid, coherent and logically set out dissertation. In the absence of this planning, you will have a tough time organizing and presenting your thoughts to make sense to your reader.
Supporting research to back up your arguments: However forceful the arguments you have thought up in support of your thesis, it will not seem convincing to your readers unless they are supported by solid research to back up your findings. Incorporate supporting research work after every claim and report that you make – this is indispensable in a good thesis.
To get the maximum benefit out of the research work you have put in, go over it carefully and make notes of which parts will go into supporting the arguments you are presenting. You can put labels on your arguments – Point A, Point B etc, and put these labels on the corresponding paragraphs in your research. You will then find it easy to locate the relevant data as and when you need it.
Proofreading is an absolute must: You are probably exhausted after the weeks and months you have spent in putting together your thesis – but your work is not yet over, if you wish to turn out a good thesis which is flawless in every respect! Yes, proofreading is the last critical step that you will have to take. It will enable you to get rid of every error in your writing whether small or big, and will give you the opportunity to rewrite/reword any sentence that appears awkward on rereading.
While your word processor is no doubt helpful in checking the spelling and grammar of your document, unfortunately it is not enough. You must do the proofreading yourself, physically, and preferably more than once, to eliminate all the typos and small errors that may have crept in.
A close friend or a trusted colleague can bring a fresh mind and fresh eyes to go over your dissertation to help you find more errors; they may even suggest minor improvements in wordings or phrases to make your document look better. If you happen to have a bit of spare money, you can consider hiring a professional proofreader to help you do this final, but important job in producing a good thesis.
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