Writing guidelines for students - dissertation introduction structure

One of the best ways to improve the score you get for your writing activities is to understand the structure of the project. If you can divide your essay activity writing into two broad sections it would be as follows.

  • The structure or layout of the essay.
  • The content of the essay.

In all of this the content of the essay is vitally important. As your teacher or professor, the person marking your dissertation reads your writing, they are concentrating on what you have to say. The content of your dissertation will determine whether or not you receive a high score. But so many students fail to see the link between what they write in their dissertation, that is the content, and the structure or layout of their essay. These two things are inextricably linked.

If you understand the structure or layout of your essay and every part of your essay, then you are in a much better position to find appropriate content and hopefully to write it. Of course the art of good prose writing is a separate issue but assuming you can improve your writing skills, if you understand the layout or structure of the dissertation, your chances of writing well are greatly improved.

What about the dissertation introduction?

Every piece of writing, every essay and every dissertation can be divided into various sections. And certainly the introduction is one of those sections. Some will say it is the most important section of your dissertation because it is the first thing the reader encounters. It's the old saying that ‘you don't get a second chance to make a first impression’ so make sure that your introduction works really well.

The structure of the introduction of your dissertation contains a number of vital components.

  • The thesis statement.
  • A summary of what is to come.
  • None of the detailed material you will find elsewhere in the dissertation.

The thesis statement of course is the raison d'être of your dissertation. What are you talking about? What question are you going to answer? Make your thesis statement powerful and use as few words as possible. Place it at the beginning of your introduction or very close thereto. Whet the appetite of the reader by giving them information and encouraging them to continue to read. That's the role of the dissertation introduction. But make sure you do not include material which you then later add in the body of the dissertation.

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