Drafting a thesis is one thing every student dreads the most. Just the thought of it makes every student shudder in fear as they are fully aware of what it would mean for them. The funny thing is, I and my partner are about to have our oral defense in a week’s time since we were able to submit our manuscript to our instructor and thesis adviser. After 7 months of grueling effort and painstakingly effort of working our butts off to find the right sources, sleepless nights, misunderstandings, numerous consultations, countless revisions, we were finished! Thank the Maker for that. We’re on the road to graduation!
So, if you happen to be an undergraduate student reading this, then you have come to the “write” place. Welcome to Thesis 101 and learn how to survive it.
This is a document submitted in support of candidature for an academic degree or professional qualification presenting the author’s research and findings. In some contexts, the word “thesis” or a cognate is used as an integral part of a bachelor’s or master’s course. The required complexity or quality of research of a thesis or dissertation can vary by country, university, or program, and the required minimum study period may thus vary significantly in duration. In my case, my whole thesis duration lasted for two semesters. And no two thesis outlines are similar, but below is a sample outline of my school.
In this chapter, you will have to introduce the problem itself and its extent that it has covered. Listed below are the components of chapter 1 broken down.
Like every good book, even a thesis must have an introduction. To further break down the introduction aspect, you have 3 sub-components namely: the rationale of the study, theoretical background, and conceptual framework.
In two to three pages, the researcher must indicate a little background of the said topic and come up with a purpose as to why he or she is delving into this subject. Is this an original study or has this been already studied before and you want to update the masses on this? In this section, it is also important to indicate on what specific components will you be tackling in your research.
It is the heart of every research. Also known as the most difficult and most exhausting part of chapter 1, the theoretical background comprises of the previous studies in relation to your certain study along with its findings as well based on the number of theories that you need to apply sub-component. Theories are formulated to explain, predict, and understand phenomena and, in many cases, to challenge and extend existing knowledge within the limits of critical bounding assumptions. The theoretical framework is the structure that can hold or support a theory of a research study.
This is nothing more than a diagram informing the people on how your study will be conducted and the theories that will be utilized in the research.
This part indicates the sub-components that the researchers would like to discover. The problem is divided into the statement of the problem and the significance of the study.
A problem statement is a short description of the issues that need to be addressed by a problem-solving team in which they create a set of questions that need to be solved during the research.
The significance of the study lists down the beneficiaries of the research study.
Now we proceed to the fun part of the thesis, fieldwork. This is further divided into seven categories: research environment, research data, research respondents, research instruments, research procedures, gathering of data and treatment of data.
This part indicates where the research will be conducted. If it is going to be in a school, make sure that the school will consent to your purpose before even conducting the research.
This is the data that you will be utilizing that will be able to answer your sub-problems. It is also in this part that the researchers will also give a brief description on how the data is going to be gathered and what is going to be done with the data once the researcher obtains it.
The respondents are the participants of your study and it is important that you should identify the demographics before you start giving out the research instruments.
These are instruments that researchers use for a measurement device (survey, test, questionnaire, etc.) to obtain the required data.
This segment purely gives a more detailed description of how the data will be gathered and how it will be treated.
Unlike the research data, this provides a more detailed explanation of how the said data will be gathered.
As for the treatment of the data, this part focuses on how the data will be sorted out, categorized and verified.
This is a separate section that enumerates and defines the related terminologies to the study to paint a clearer picture as to its meaning.
Chapter 2 is a by-product of chapter 1 once the data has already been gathered and treated. This particular chapter also answers on whether the findings of the previous studies conducted before are in line with your own. Per sub-problem, as the title mentions, would need to have a presentation, analysis and interpretation data.
This is probably the chapter that allows you to breathe a little easier as it signifies the end of your thesis journey. This particular chapter is divided into three sections like the title suggests.
After accomplishing chapter 2, this is where you need to give the readers a condensed version of your findings. Present them per sub-problem so that the readers will be able to locate faster on what particular content he or she is on.
A conclusion should stress the importance of the thesis statement and gives it a sense of completeness, leaving a final impression on the reader.
You have to recall that this is for the beneficiaries found in the significance of the study. So it is understandable to provide recommendations for them so that they may have an idea on what they should do to address the problem.
This segment refers to all of the references that you have used or borrowed in making your thesis. You don’t want to be sued for plagiarism, right?
An appendix (or attachment) is a useful tool for providing additional information in a dissertation. You can use appendices to make sure your paper is not too long, avoid disrupting the text with a lot of tables and figures and add background information on your topic.
This ladies and gents is the final part of your thesis and consider it finished and complete!
It took seven months for me and my partner to complete this, but I am sure that you can do it too! For after the storm, comes the rainbow. Beautiful and glorious!