thesis tips

thesis tips

You should provide a thesis early in your essay — in the introduction, or in longer essays in the second paragraph — in order to establish your position and give your reader a sense of direction.

  • Avoid burying a great thesis statement in the middle of a paragraph or late in the paper.
  • Be as clear and as specific as possible; avoid vague words.
  • Indicate the point of your paper but avoid sentence structures like, “The point of my paper is…”

Thesis tips
Some useful tools for this are:
First, write down what you want to say. This may not be clear, so after you have done this, attempt a re-write to make sure that it is reader-friendly. It helps to ask for feedback. Find out where a reader is confused or engaged, interested or struggling and use this knowledge to improve your work.

Thesis tips
As part of your proposal¸ which is the starting document that guides your thesis, you’ll often already write an introduction or a first draft based on the literature you want to focus on. Having a solid introduction is crucial.
Some questions you could ask yourself when designing a quantitative study, are: how could I reach my desired participants? What possibilities are there for me to do so, and what response rate can I expect? If you, for example, would like to set up a quantitative study for a relatively small start-up company investigating a new product from China, it might be difficult to employ surveys as a means of reaching existing customers in China. You could opt to go for a qualitative study design. When designing a survey, it is important to have a clear goal in mind. As soon as you’ve listed what information you need to obtain, you can use such an overview to create your survey. One tool which might come in handy, is the so-called operationalization model.

A thesis is never a list. “For political, economic, social and cultural reasons, communism collapsed in Eastern Europe” does a good job of “telegraphing” the reader what to expect in the essay—a section about political reasons, a section about economic reasons, a section about social reasons, and a section about cultural reasons. However, political, economic, social and cultural reasons are pretty much the only possible reasons why communism could collapse. This sentence lacks tension and doesn’t advance an argument. Everyone knows that politics, economics, and culture are important.
A thesis should be as clear and specific as possible. Avoid overused, general terms and abstractions. For example, “Communism collapsed in Eastern Europe because of the ruling elite’s inability to address the economic concerns of the people” is more powerful than “Communism collapsed due to societal discontent.”

Thesis tips
The role of your advisor is to mentor you so you learn how to be an independent researcher, not to hold your hand for the rest of your life.
Once you decide on the order in which you will write your chapters, continue breaking them down into smaller chunks.


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