This article aims to assist students in meeting the thesis paper requirements in particular programs and allowing them to maintain their notes and source organized.
Organizing the project
At the planning stage, you need to need to be expensive in your thinking. Attempt to be creative, and this means that you should be:
- Creatively explore mind map, dream, and play around with the ideas of what you intend to do with your thesis. It has the potential to be exciting and fun.
- Once you begin to narrow down to a topic, consider the thesis project’s scope, feasibility, and interest level. Again, ponder on your key research question.
- Think about the type of research that will answer your research questions, such as lab work, historical, quantitative, or qualitative.
- Examine available literature to ensure that the thesis project contributes to the body of knowledge.
- Conduct a preliminary study to ascertain the feasibility of your thesis project.
Preparing your thesis proposal
A thesis proposal project is a contract between your committee and yourself to have a defendable and feasible project to finish within a reasonable period. The following is a general checklist for choosing a defensible thesis project: Familiarity with the field of study, the stages of conducting research, ability, willingness to navigate all the stages, and the motivation to stick to the project. Though conventions might be different from program to program; however, a thesis proposal should include the following:
- A title
- Review of the literature
- Statement of the problem
- Research questions
- Background study
- Research methods
- Table of contents
- Work schedule
Writing a thesis proposal
- Consult your fellow students in the department or school for the possibility of sharing their thesis proposals. You will have the opportunity to sample the best propels in your field of research or study. If possible, peruse through the thesis proposals of fellow students who have had an opportunity to work with your committee members or supervisor.
- Have candid discussions with your supervisor. Supervisors have a particular style or format most of the time that they anticipate their students to follow. Some might be willing to see drafts and even give valuable feedback.
Formatting your thesis
- You can access online the McMaster University guidelines for formatting a thesis project.
- There exist specific requirements for dissertation format, and starting with a well-formatted document can go a long way in the final stages of your project.
The process of writing a thesis
However, currently, some departments do offer non-traditional thesis designs and formats. But, in general, you can write a sandwich thesis or a traditional thesis.
- Monograph Thesis
Standard thesis resamples a book and is like a monograph that has linked chapters such as general introduction, literature review, research methods, research findings, and conclusions. It usually identifies your contribution to the body of knowledge. In general, a master’s thesis is approximately 150 pages, while a doctoral one is approximately 300 pages long.
- Sandwich thesis: by publication
A dissertation by publication is a set of related papers submitted or accepted for publication in reputable research journals. Such papers get connected by practical or theoretical linkages that structure the research. Such a thesis will require several papers in the range of 3 to 7 papers. The traditional thesis consists of the following components.
- The title
- Review of literature
- Research questions or problems
- Research methods
- Research outcomes
- Supporting arguments in support of the research findings
- The conclusions and recommendations for further research
MacSphere is an internal repository; digital space for McMaster University for organizing and offering access to ongoing research in the University. MacSphere is a valuable tool for dissertation authors since they can access successful students in your study program. When you keenly follow others’ work, it can help you write specific sections and even chapters, formatting, and access some supervisors or school/department untold expectations.
Those who are writing a sandwich thesis can check in the MacSphere how such projects look like in their respective departments or schools. MacSphere comforts you that other students did succeed in the type of research they were doing.
The length of a thesis paper project
In general, doctoral students write their dissertations to a maximum of approximately 300 pages long, while a Master’s dissertation should not exceed 200 pages.