as you edit and rewrite your dissertation you will probably gain and lose references that you had in earlier versions. if you used particular equipment, processes, or materials, you will need to be clear and precise in how you describe them. purpose of this chapter is to show that you are aware of where your own piece of research fits into the overall context of research in your field. it is better to read something that is not central to your dissertation than miss something that might be an important and relevant contribution to the field. a critical(ist) approach may draw on elements of either or both of the other approaches insofar as they help to explain or understand social policy, but it is sceptical of empiricism and interpretivism because they do not necessarily question the underlying basis of the status quo. it is not a mere ‘summary’ of your research, but needs to be ‘conclusions’ as to the main points that have emerged and what they mean for your field. writing is seen as an activity that happens after everything else:“the research is going well, so the writing should be straightforward - i can leave it until later”. social policy dissertations are 'applied' rather than 'theoretical', and you may find it difficult to be explicit about your chosen methodology. however, don't become pre-occupied with word length, the main thing is that your literature review should capture the general and specific aspects of the literature of your subject. are currently no published research ethics guidelines specific to social policy as an academic subject (but see dean, h. the two most widely discussed principles in this connection are informed consent and confidentiality: participants should clearly understand the purposes of the research and must explicitly agree to take part; and they should have a right, if they choose, to have any personal data treated in confidence. when you have completed the main body of the work and your tutor has commented on your complete draft, you may well wish to revisit the introduction to take into account your findings and your tutor's comments on their significance. you need to be aware that some internet sites may be putting forward particular perspectives, so you will need to take this into account in your dissertation. it is concerned to understand the nature or meaning of the social world from the subjective standpoint of the people involved. many of you will be staying in the uk whilst others will be going further afield to carry out research. should write as concisely as is possible, with clear and adequate exposition. permission may be granted for the inclusion of an appendix of a substantial quantity of text which is necessary for the understanding of the thesis. and discuss your findings, whilst demonstrating how they relate to your original question. indeed they may highlight the gap in the literature that exists that you seek to fill; they may provide the basis on which you seek to build, or they might be works which require some critique from your particular perspective. need to check that your quotations from and references to both primary and secondary texts are clearly and consistently identified according to the conventions of the harvard referencing systems (or whatever system your department requires). make sure that your sentences are well constructed and that you are expressing yourself clearly, precisely and fluently. a guide to better writing for scientists, engineers and students. expect all students to behave responsibly and comply with this advice. will be clear that some of the reading you have done is of more relevance than others. one a4 page consisting largely of statistics, symbols or figures shall be regarded as the equivalent of 250 words. you can refer back to the rationale that you gave for your research in the literature review, and discuss what your own research has added in this context. only under the most exceptional circumstances will permission be granted to exceed the limit in other cases. where appropriate a research ethics checklist and a research ethics review questionnaire may need to be completed. this is not a failure, but a positive sign of increased experience and skill. here is an indicative structure that might help you with your initial plan. in writing your dissertation you will draw on some of this earlier writing to produce a longer and more comprehensive account. the examiners will therefore assess your abstract both as part of your thesis, and as a potentially independent document. headings to notes about analysis, and from ideas for graphical representation to ideas for further research. of astronomy, department of materials science & metallurgy, department of physics:The thesis is not to exceed, without prior permission of the degree committee, 60,000 words, including summary/abstract, tables, footnotes and appendices, but excluding table of contents, photographs, diagrams, figure captions, list of figures/diagrams, list of abbreviations/acronyms, bibliography and acknowledgements. for example, your supervisor may advise you to write a short proposal or abstract, say of about 300 words, in which you set out as clearly as possible what you intend to do in the dissertation. writing is seen as an activity that happens after everything else:“the research is going well, so the writing should be straightforward - i can leave it until later”. the second semester, when drafting the remaining main chapters of the dissertation, you will follow the practice established in the first semester of submitting the drafts to your supervisor for comments and advice. process of having to describe your study in detail, in a logical sequence of written words, will inevitably highlight where more thought is needed, and it may lead to new insight into connections, implications, rationale, relevance, and may lead to new ideas for further research.
, however, you are taking the dissertation module over one semester, you will need to adjust this time frame accordingly. this may involve critiquing the work of established leaders in the field. in order to maximise the meetings' productivity it is also advisable that you give to your supervisor a list of topics for discussion (e. in this case each segment can have its own sub-heading, with a synthesis that brings the findings together at the end of the chapter. your dissertation is well-structured, easy to follow, logical, and coherent, your examiners will probably enjoy reading it, and will be able to listen to your argument without the distraction of trying to make all the links themselves. can be a good idea to put the word limit to the back of your mind at this point, and concentrate on getting everything recorded in a document. planning is essential, but do not be hesitate to draw up new plans whether it is a brief abstract of your dissertation as a whole, or a detailed breakdown of a particular chapter. thesis must be not less than 50,000 and not more than 80,000 words for the phd degree, and not less than 30,000 and not more than 60,000 words for the mlitt degree, in all cases including appendices and notes of reference. is your opportunity to mention individuals who have been particularly helpful. your application should (a) explain in detail the reasons why you are seeking the extension and (b) be accompanied by a full supporting statement from your supervisor showing that the extension is absolutely necessary in the interests of the total presentation of the subject. you should consider the benefits of your chosen method as well as identifying any disadvantages and how you overcame them. > department of social policy > information for current students > the dissertation. in short, the literature review is a discussion or 'review' of secondary literature that is of general and central relevance to the particular area under investigation. it is often only one page long, and there may be a word limit to adhere to. the phd degree, not to exceed 60,000 words (or 80,000 by special permission of the degree committee), and for the msc degree, not to exceed 40,000 words. the degree committee point out that some very successful doctoral dissertations have been submitted which extend to no more than three-quarters of the maximum permitted length. to include: footnotes, table of contents and list of illustrations, but excluding acknowledgements and the bibliography. is also a very useful moodle resource developed by dr sunil kumar entitled sa452. if you began by making a long and unstructured list of content, you can now feed that into the developing structure by inserting it as bullet points under the relevant headings. as well as covering the ethical issues it should also contain an element of reflection on the research process. it is important therefore to check that all the references in your reference list are actually referenced within the text; and that all the references that appear in the text appear also in the reference list. of earth sciences:The thesis is not to exceed, without the prior permission of the degree committee, 275 numbered pages of which not more than 225 pages are text, appendices, illustrations and bibliography. applications should be made in good time before the date on which a candidate proposes to submit the dissertation, made to the graduate committee. this video clip contains comments from the following academics:Christopher christopher-dowey. is no preference as to which type of dissertation you write. is very important:Do not try to put too much on one page. how is it different from the way others have dealt with this issue? when you hand in this draft, you should arrange a tutorial to receive your supervisor's verbal or written comments and suggestions on how it may be improved. in such instances the school has recently established a research ethics committee that may be consulted. this is a difficult question given that the total length of your dissertation might be anything from five to twelve thousand words. is likely, and advisable, that you will not wait until the end of your research before starting to write it up. of chemistry:The thesis is not to exceed, without prior permission of the degree committee, 60,000 words, including summary/abstract, tables, and footnotes, but excluding table of contents, photographs, diagrams, figure captions, list of figures/diagrams, list of abbreviations/acronyms, bibliography, appendices and acknowledgements. permission may also be given if a candidate's application is supported by a letter from the supervisor certifying that such exemption from the prescribed limit of length is absolutely necessary in the interests of the total presentation of the subject. you do this, be aware of whether you need to increase the number of words, or decrease it to reach your target. this section should also discuss any variations from the original fieldwork plan, and should conclude with a reflection on the experience of doing fieldwork. discussion links your findings with the research question and literature review. they may have a well defined research question, yet without placing this question in the appropriate context, it can lose its significance. taylor’s (1989) book on writing in the arts and social sciences, he suggests that the following different approaches offer a range of academically legitimate ways to engage with published work.
should refer to the guidance provided by your own department, but in general you should think about the following:Your dissertation must normally be typed or word-processed on a4 paper. obviously your supervisor may be able to give some indication of the approximate length of your literature review. allow plenty of time for final revisions after your tutor has seen a complete draft. good news is that you have already started writing if you have written any of the following in relation to this study:A report of any pilot studies that you undertook;. this may be more than one chapter, but should certainly be written in sections. may be one of the shortest sections of your thesis or dissertation, but it is worthwhile taking great care to write it well. this may involve critiquing the work of established leaders in the field. own personal safety is important when you are carrying out primary research (see personal safety and risk assessment). © dr malcolm todd (leeds met), ian baker (sheffield hallam university), professor chris winch (ncu), andy pilkington (ncu), dr john steel (university of sheffield), dr anne hollows (sheffield hallam university). in all cases (a) a candidate must give notice of their application to exceed the prescribed maximum length at least three months before the date on which a candidate proposes to submit their dissertation and (b) the application must be accompanied by a full supporting statement from the candidate's supervisor showing that such exemption from the prescribed limit of length is absolutely necessary. in either event, it is a requirement that dissertations or theses that are based on data directly gathered from human participants should include a statement to demonstrate that the research has been conducted in accordance with appropriate ethical principles.]  ethics and social policy research, published by the social policy association). may choose to review your draft from the standpoint of a dissertation examiner, which might involve preparing a list of questions that you want to see answered, then reading through your dissertation scribbling comments, suggestions, criticisms, and ideas in the margin. candidates whose work is practice-based may include as part of the doctoral submission either a portfolio of substantial musical compositions, or one or more recordings of their own musical performance(s). thesis is not to exceed, without the prior permission of the degree committee, 60,000 words including tables, footnotes, bibliography and appendices. presented by candidates in the research centre for english and applied linguistics must follow as closely as possible the printed style of the journal applied linguistics and referencing and spelling conventions should be consistent.. your stance on what should pass as acceptable knowledge) basis of the study and demonstrate a good working knowledge of the methods to be employed. only under exceptional circumstances will permission be granted to exceed this limit. can be best to write the abstract last, once you are sure what exactly you are summarising. literature review should include literature that is pertinent to your research topic and the policy context. here you have the opportunity:To ensure that your argument is clearly developed from sentence to sentence and from paragraph to paragraph. what follows is a step by step guide on how to go about conducting and presenting your literature review. thesis is not to exceed, without the prior permission of the degree committee, 60,000 words including tables and footnotes, but excluding appendices, bibliography, photographs and diagrams. for part time students, this applies to the september following your second year of study. the examiners will therefore assess your abstract both as part of your thesis, and as a potentially independent document. if candidates need to increase their word limits they will need to apply for permission. is where you review your own research in relation to the wider context in which it is located. in the detail, concentrating on getting everything recorded rather than sticking to the word limit at this stage. involving groups where permission of a gatekeeper is required for access to members. it is not the same as your research topic, but is a specific question that you want to try and answer. a candidate must submit, with the dissertation, a statement signed by her or himself attesting to the length of the dissertation. more detailed specifications should be obtained from the division concerned. the conclusions drawn should be substantiated from within the body of the dissertation. permission to submit a thesis falling outside these limits, or to submit an appendix which does not count towards the word limit, must be obtained in advance from the degree committee. (1993:136) suggests that you ‘think of your report as part of your investigation, not as a duty to be undertaken when your work is otherwise complete’, and this study guide suggests that: writing is an integral part of the research process. they will have to:Formulate a clear question that your dissertation seeks to answer. only in the most exceptional circumstances will permission be given to exceed the stated limits. if you are planning to do quantitative or qualitative research for your dissertation, it might also be useful to audit other relevant my courses.
is your opportunity to mention individuals who have been particularly helpful. is important, however, to write the introduction as though you are setting out on a process of investigation. addition, if you are travelling to a country where you are not normally resident you should check to be sure that you have all of your immunisations current and do not require any further medical treatment before you travel. each case the object of the writing was to communicate to yourself, your supervisors, or to others, something about your work. essentially, the abstract is a succinct summary of the research. it will also provide you with a framework to refer back to in your discussion chapter, when you reflect on the extent to which your research has achieved what it set out to do. this is something that many researchers and dissertation students go through and is often a necessary part of the process. your research question needs to be defined with care and your supervisor will help you to do this. your dissertation supervisor may advise on the title in order to help you find and define the focus of the dissertation. chapters are expected to be included, in which order, and what kind of material is expected in each;. it helps to attempt such an abstract even if your supervisor has not suggested that you write one. with ethical issues, students should discuss the risk assessment issues of their research work with their supervisors in the first instance. final note on the more central literature is that this more focused analysis can also serve to bring your empirical or theoretical work into sharper focus. in this way you are building on work that has already been conducted by adopting similar strategies and concepts, yet focusing the question on something that interests you. the abstract is an important element of the thesis, and will become a document in its own right if the thesis is registered within any database. you are doing a piece of empirical research, a common structure is as follows:Introduction, including research question and structure of essay. should also be recognised that researchers have a responsibility to themselves and the school has a responsibility for the safety of staff and students involved in research. thesis is not to exceed 80,000 for the phd degree and 60,000 words for the msc or mlitt degree, both including footnotes, references and appendices but excluding bibliographies. this is not a failure, but a positive sign of increased experience and skill. each sub-heading, list the main content that needs to be included, creating sub-sub-headings if needed. in writing your dissertation you will draw on some of this earlier writing to produce a longer and more comprehensive account. that an existing point of view has certain merits but that it needs to be qualified in certain important respects. while it is important to be respectful in the way that you discuss others’ ideas and research, you are expected to engage directly, and even openly disagree with existing writing. this is one of the most important parts of your dissertation as it links with your methods and can help with structuring your dissertation. remember the dissertation needs to demonstrate your ability to undertake and report research rather than to answer every question on a topic., this can have a detrimental effect on your other modules - one student said ‘i did the dissertation and left the other work’ - don’t make his mistake. it is important nonetheless to acknowledge that no dissertation can be free from the conceptual assumptions and the values that you yourself bring to it. when you’re doing it, it seems so much more that the rest of your work (todd, bannister and clegg, 2004, p341). you have a list of references for your dissertation, you now have to access and read this material. the conclusion offers the opportunity to review your work as a whole, to identify the points of comparison and contrast the various texts you have examined, and to show that, in the process of your study, you have developed a more precise, critical understanding of the way they deal with your topic. a literature based dissertation a possible structure is as follows:Introduction - explain the purpose of the long essay, give research question, describe the structure. course consists of two lectures in the michaelmas term (weeks 8 and 9) and three lectures in the lent term (weeks 2, 4 and 6). it is often only one page long, and there may be a word limit to adhere to. thesis is for the phd degree not to exceed 80,000 words exclusive of footnotes, appendices and bibliography but subject to an overall word limit of 100,000 words exclusive of bibliography. theoretical approach can result in criticism of social policy, but a critical(ist) approach to the use of evidence is one that is grounded in the analysis of social conflict or relationships of power (for example, marxism, feminism, or post-structuralism). this is the first piece of writing the reader comes to, it is often best to leave its preparation to last as, until then, you will not be absolutely sure what you are introducing. thesis is not to exceed 80,000 words for the phd degree and 60,000 words for the mlitt degree, both including all notes and appendices but excluding the bibliography. to the very restrictive word / space limit, while at the same including all the relevant material is quite a challenge.
at this early stage, your title may be a provisional one that you will revise later. it can be helpful to break the task down into smaller, more easily accomplished elements. dissertation provides you with an opportunity to write a substantial piece of academic work on a topic of interest to you. it is important to be prepared to critique and revise your own work several times. a candidate must submit with their thesis a statement signed by the candidate themself giving the length of the thesis and the number of figures. it is important, however, that you do not discard the less relevant work; instead this can form the broad background of your discussion of the more relevant literature within your field. discursive footnotes are generally discouraged, and under no circumstances should footnotes be used to include material that would normally be in the main text, and thus to circumvent the word limits. it is a requirement of the degree committee for the faculty of modern and medieval languages that dissertations presented must conform with the advice concerning abbreviations, quotations, footnotes, references, and other matters published in the 'style book of the modern humanities research association (notes for authors and editors). these chapters a straightforward description is required of how you conducted the research. a page of text is a4 one-and-a-half-spaced normal size type. to the phd in psychology (former sdp students only) for all submissions from 30 november 2013. with so many variables and permutations it is impossible to offer specific advice about personal safety. you can refer back to the rationale that you gave for your research in the literature review, and discuss what your own research has added in this context. (1993:136) suggests that you ‘think of your report as part of your investigation, not as a duty to be undertaken when your work is otherwise complete’, and this study guide suggests that: writing is an integral part of the research process. this section looks at effective planning, which should be a continuous process that intensifies during the writing of your dissertation and not something that fades into the background. that an existing point of view has certain merits but that it needs to be qualified in certain important respects. your supervisor will be able to help you to do this. if you have a marking guide then apply it to your dissertation and see if there are aspects that you can improve. the abstract is an important element of the thesis, and will become a document in its own right if the thesis is registered within any database. of geography:The thesis is not to exceed, without the prior permission of the degree committee, 80,000 words for the phd degree and 60,000 words for the msc or mlitt degree, including the summary/abstract. is highly advisable to draft a plan of the dissertation. you should not introduce any new literature at this stage. contents pages will show up the structure of the dissertation. will need to check which style of reporting is preferred in your field. this 10,000 words refers to the abstract and the main body of the text along with any of the following that you may also include:Title page (not the department summative coursework cover sheet). could start by making a comprehensive and unstructured list of all the elements and ideas that you need to include, ranging from. this is a useful check on whether amalgamation of sections, or creation of further sections or sub-sections is needed. if you are carrying out secondary data analysis you need to describe the data set you are using and relevant variables. thesis is not to exceed 80,000 words for the phd degree and 60,000 words for the msc and mlitt degrees, in all cases excluding appendices, footnotes, reference list or bibliography. first task is to choose a topic that interests you. it can be useful to think of the research question or topic going like a strong thread throughout the dissertation: linking all the elements of the study, and giving coherence to its reporting. try and get a sense of the theoretical perspective of the author, this will be of use when you organise and present your literature review. important aspect running through your dissertation will be your argument for:Why this specific topic is worth researching;. exceptional cases (when, for example, a candidate's thesis largely consists of an edition of a text) the degree committee may grant permission to exceed these limits but in such instances (a) a candidate must apply to exceed the length at least three months before the date on which a candidate proposes to submit their thesis and (b) the application must be supported by a letter from a candidate's supervisor certifying that such exemption from the prescribed limit of length is absolutely necessary. any dissertation that exceeds the limit will be referred back to candidate for revision before being forwarded to the examiners. is where you review your own research in relation to the wider context in which it is located. there is more about this in the section on plagiarism. it is the student's responsibility to submit to the supervisor, with reasonable notice, material that can form the basis of discussion in these meetings.