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Research Recommendations – Guiding policy-makers for evidence-based decision making

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Research recommendations play a crucial role in guiding scholars and researchers toward fruitful avenues of exploration. In an era marked by rapid technological advancements and an ever-expanding knowledge base, refining the process of generating research recommendations becomes imperative.

But, what is a research recommendation?

Research recommendations are suggestions or advice provided to researchers to guide their study on a specific topic . They are typically given by experts in the field. Research recommendations are more action-oriented and provide specific guidance for decision-makers, unlike implications that are broader and focus on the broader significance and consequences of the research findings. However, both are crucial components of a research study.

Difference Between Research Recommendations and Implication

Although research recommendations and implications are distinct components of a research study, they are closely related. The differences between them are as follows:

Difference between research recommendation and implication

Types of Research Recommendations

Recommendations in research can take various forms, which are as follows:

These recommendations aim to assist researchers in navigating the vast landscape of academic knowledge.

Let us dive deeper to know about its key components and the steps to write an impactful research recommendation.

Key Components of Research Recommendations

The key components of research recommendations include defining the research question or objective, specifying research methods, outlining data collection and analysis processes, presenting results and conclusions, addressing limitations, and suggesting areas for future research. Here are some characteristics of research recommendations:

Characteristics of research recommendation

Research recommendations offer various advantages and play a crucial role in ensuring that research findings contribute to positive outcomes in various fields. However, they also have few limitations which highlights the significance of a well-crafted research recommendation in offering the promised advantages.

Advantages and limitations of a research recommendation

The importance of research recommendations ranges in various fields, influencing policy-making, program development, product development, marketing strategies, medical practice, and scientific research. Their purpose is to transfer knowledge from researchers to practitioners, policymakers, or stakeholders, facilitating informed decision-making and improving outcomes in different domains.

How to Write Research Recommendations?

Research recommendations can be generated through various means, including algorithmic approaches, expert opinions, or collaborative filtering techniques. Here is a step-wise guide to build your understanding on the development of research recommendations.

1. Understand the Research Question:

Understand the research question and objectives before writing recommendations. Also, ensure that your recommendations are relevant and directly address the goals of the study.

2. Review Existing Literature:

Familiarize yourself with relevant existing literature to help you identify gaps , and offer informed recommendations that contribute to the existing body of research.

3. Consider Research Methods:

Evaluate the appropriateness of different research methods in addressing the research question. Also, consider the nature of the data, the study design, and the specific objectives.

4. Identify Data Collection Techniques:

Gather dataset from diverse authentic sources. Include information such as keywords, abstracts, authors, publication dates, and citation metrics to provide a rich foundation for analysis.

5. Propose Data Analysis Methods:

Suggest appropriate data analysis methods based on the type of data collected. Consider whether statistical analysis, qualitative analysis, or a mixed-methods approach is most suitable.

6. Consider Limitations and Ethical Considerations:

Acknowledge any limitations and potential ethical considerations of the study. Furthermore, address these limitations or mitigate ethical concerns to ensure responsible research.

7. Justify Recommendations:

Explain how your recommendation contributes to addressing the research question or objective. Provide a strong rationale to help researchers understand the importance of following your suggestions.

8. Summarize Recommendations:

Provide a concise summary at the end of the report to emphasize how following these recommendations will contribute to the overall success of the research project.

By following these steps, you can create research recommendations that are actionable and contribute meaningfully to the success of the research project.

Download now to unlock some tips to improve your journey of writing research recommendations.

Example of a Research Recommendation

Here is an example of a research recommendation based on a hypothetical research to improve your understanding.

Research Recommendation: Enhancing Student Learning through Integrated Learning Platforms


The research study investigated the impact of an integrated learning platform on student learning outcomes in high school mathematics classes. The findings revealed a statistically significant improvement in student performance and engagement when compared to traditional teaching methods.


In light of the research findings, it is recommended that educational institutions consider adopting and integrating the identified learning platform into their mathematics curriculum. The following specific recommendations are provided:

  • Implementation of the Integrated Learning Platform:

Schools are encouraged to adopt the integrated learning platform in mathematics classrooms, ensuring proper training for teachers on its effective utilization.

  • Professional Development for Educators:

Develop and implement professional programs to train educators in the effective use of the integrated learning platform to address any challenges teachers may face during the transition.

  • Monitoring and Evaluation:

Establish a monitoring and evaluation system to track the impact of the integrated learning platform on student performance over time.

  • Resource Allocation:

Allocate sufficient resources, both financial and technical, to support the widespread implementation of the integrated learning platform.

By implementing these recommendations, educational institutions can harness the potential of the integrated learning platform and enhance student learning experiences and academic achievements in mathematics.

This example covers the components of a research recommendation, providing specific actions based on the research findings, identifying the target audience, and outlining practical steps for implementation.

Using AI in Research Recommendation Writing

Enhancing research recommendations is an ongoing endeavor that requires the integration of cutting-edge technologies, collaborative efforts, and ethical considerations. By embracing data-driven approaches and leveraging advanced technologies, the research community can create more effective and personalized recommendation systems. However, it is accompanied by several limitations. Therefore, it is essential to approach the use of AI in research with a critical mindset, and complement its capabilities with human expertise and judgment.

Here are some limitations of integrating AI in writing research recommendation and some ways on how to counter them.

1. Data Bias

AI systems rely heavily on data for training. If the training data is biased or incomplete, the AI model may produce biased results or recommendations.

How to tackle: Audit regularly the model’s performance to identify any discrepancies and adjust the training data and algorithms accordingly.

2. Lack of Understanding of Context:

AI models may struggle to understand the nuanced context of a particular research problem. They may misinterpret information, leading to inaccurate recommendations.

How to tackle: Use AI to characterize research articles and topics. Employ them to extract features like keywords, authorship patterns and content-based details.

3. Ethical Considerations:

AI models might stereotype certain concepts or generate recommendations that could have negative consequences for certain individuals or groups.

How to tackle: Incorporate user feedback mechanisms to reduce redundancies. Establish an ethics review process for AI models in research recommendation writing.

4. Lack of Creativity and Intuition:

AI may struggle with tasks that require a deep understanding of the underlying principles or the ability to think outside the box.

How to tackle: Hybrid approaches can be employed by integrating AI in data analysis and identifying patterns for accelerating the data interpretation process.

5. Interpretability:

Many AI models, especially complex deep learning models, lack transparency on how the model arrived at a particular recommendation.

How to tackle: Implement models like decision trees or linear models. Provide clear explanation of the model architecture, training process, and decision-making criteria.

6. Dynamic Nature of Research:

Research fields are dynamic, and new information is constantly emerging. AI models may struggle to keep up with the rapidly changing landscape and may not be able to adapt to new developments.

How to tackle: Establish a feedback loop for continuous improvement. Regularly update the recommendation system based on user feedback and emerging research trends.

The integration of AI in research recommendation writing holds great promise for advancing knowledge and streamlining the research process. However, navigating these concerns is pivotal in ensuring the responsible deployment of these technologies. Researchers need to understand the use of responsible use of AI in research and must be aware of the ethical considerations.

Exploring research recommendations plays a critical role in shaping the trajectory of scientific inquiry. It serves as a compass, guiding researchers toward more robust methodologies, collaborative endeavors, and innovative approaches. Embracing these suggestions not only enhances the quality of individual studies but also contributes to the collective advancement of human understanding.

Frequently Asked Questions

The purpose of recommendations in research is to provide practical and actionable suggestions based on the study's findings, guiding future actions, policies, or interventions in a specific field or context. Recommendations bridges the gap between research outcomes and their real-world application.

To make a research recommendation, analyze your findings, identify key insights, and propose specific, evidence-based actions. Include the relevance of the recommendations to the study's objectives and provide practical steps for implementation.

Begin a recommendation by succinctly summarizing the key findings of the research. Clearly state the purpose of the recommendation and its intended impact. Use a direct and actionable language to convey the suggested course of action.

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Dissertation Recommendations — How To Write Them

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Recommendations are crucial to your paper because they suggest solutions to your research problems. You can include recommendations in the discussion sections of your writing and briefly in the conclusions of your dissertation , thesis, or research paper . This article discusses dissertation recommendations, their purpose, and how to write one.


  • 1 Dissertation Recommendations — In a Nutshell
  • 2 Definition: Dissertation recommendations
  • 3 How to write dissertation recommendations
  • 4 Dissertation recommendations based on your findings
  • 5 Purpose of dissertation recommendations

Dissertation Recommendations — In a Nutshell

  • Dissertation recommendations are an important aspect of your research paper.
  • They should be specific, measurable, and have the potential of future possibilities.
  • Additionally, these recommendations should offer practical insights and suggestions for solving real-life problems.

When making your recommendations, please ensure the following:

  • Your recommendations are an extension of your work instead of a basis for self-criticism
  • Your research stands independently instead of suggesting recommendations that will complete it
  • Your dissertation recommendations offer insights into how future research can build upon it instead of undermining your research

Definition: Dissertation recommendations

Dissertation recommendations are the actionable insights and suggestions presented after you get your research findings. These suggestions are usually based on what you find and help to guide future studies or practical applications. It’s best to place your dissertation recommendations at the conclusion.

How to write dissertation recommendations

When writing your academic paper, you can frame dissertation recommendations using one of the following methods:

Use the problem: In this approach, you should address the issues highlighted in your research.

Offer solutions: You can offer some practical solutions to the problems revealed in your research.

Use a theory: Here, you can base your recommendations on your study’s theoretical approach.

Here are some helpful tips for writing dissertation recommendations that you should incorporate when drafting a research paper:

  • Avoid general or vague recommendations
  • Be specific and concrete
  • Offer measurable insights   Ensure your suggestions are practical and implementable
  • Avoid focusing on theoretical concepts or new findings but on future possibilities

“Based on the study’s outcomes, it’s recommended that businesses and organizations develop mental health well-being frameworks to reduce workplace stress. This training should be mandatory for all employees and conducted on a monthly basis.”

Dissertation recommendations based on your findings

After analysing your findings, you can divide your dissertation recommendations into two subheadings as discussed below:

What can be done?

This section highlights the steps you can use when conducting the research. You may also include any steps needed to address the issues highlighted in your research question. For instance, if the study reveals a lack of emotional connection between employees, implementing dynamic awareness training or sit-downs could be recommended.

Is further research needed?

This section highlights the benefits of further studies that will help build on your research findings. For instance, if your research found less data on employee mental well-being, your dissertation recommendations could suggest future studies.

Purpose of dissertation recommendations

Note: Dissertation recommendations have the following purposes:

  • Provide guidance and improve the quality of further studies based on your research findings
  • Offer insights, call to action, or suggest other studies
  • Highlight specific, clear, and realistic suggestions for future studies

When writing your dissertation recommendations, always remember to keep them specific, measurable, and clear. You should also ensure that a comprehensible rationale supports these recommendations. Additionally, your requests should always be directly linked to your research and offer suggestions from that angle.

Note that your suggestions should always focus on future possibilities and not on present new findings or theoretical concepts. This is because future researchers may use your results to draw further conclusions and gather new insights from your work.

Can I include new arguments in the conclusion of a dissertation

Dissertations follow a more formal structure; hence, you can only present new arguments in the conclusion. Use your dissertation’s concluding part as a summary of your points or to provide recommendations.

How is the conclusion different from the discussion sections?

The discussion section describes a detailed account of your findings, while the conclusion answers the research question and highlights some recommendations.

What shouldn't I include in the dissertation recommendations?

Avoid concluding with weak statements like “there are good insights from both ends…”, generic phrases like “in conclusion…” or evidence that you failed to mention in the discussion or results section.

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Implications or Recommendations in Research: What's the Difference?

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High-quality research articles that get many citations contain both implications and recommendations. Implications are the impact your research makes, whereas recommendations are specific actions that can then be taken based on your findings, such as for more research or for policymaking.

Updated on August 23, 2022

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That seems clear enough, but the two are commonly confused.

This confusion is especially true if you come from a so-called high-context culture in which information is often implied based on the situation, as in many Asian cultures. High-context cultures are different from low-context cultures where information is more direct and explicit (as in North America and many European cultures).

Let's set these two straight in a low-context way; i.e., we'll be specific and direct! This is the best way to be in English academic writing because you're writing for the world.

Implications and recommendations in a research article

The standard format of STEM research articles is what's called IMRaD:

  • Introduction
  • Discussion/conclusions

Some journals call for a separate conclusions section, while others have the conclusions as the last part of the discussion. You'll write these four (or five) sections in the same sequence, though, no matter the journal.

The discussion section is typically where you restate your results and how well they confirmed your hypotheses. Give readers the answer to the questions for which they're looking to you for an answer.

At this point, many researchers assume their paper is finished. After all, aren't the results the most important part? As you might have guessed, no, you're not quite done yet.

The discussion/conclusions section is where to say what happened and what should now happen

The discussion/conclusions section of every good scientific article should contain the implications and recommendations.

The implications, first of all, are the impact your results have on your specific field. A high-impact, highly cited article will also broaden the scope here and provide implications to other fields. This is what makes research cross-disciplinary.

Recommendations, however, are suggestions to improve your field based on your results.

These two aspects help the reader understand your broader content: How and why your work is important to the world. They also tell the reader what can be changed in the future based on your results.

These aspects are what editors are looking for when selecting papers for peer review.

how to write the conclusion section of a research manuscript

Implications and recommendations are, thus, written at the end of the discussion section, and before the concluding paragraph. They help to “wrap up” your paper. Once your reader understands what you found, the next logical step is what those results mean and what should come next.

Then they can take the baton, in the form of your work, and run with it. That gets you cited and extends your impact!

The order of implications and recommendations also matters. Both are written after you've summarized your main findings in the discussion section. Then, those results are interpreted based on ongoing work in the field. After this, the implications are stated, followed by the recommendations.

Writing an academic research paper is a bit like running a race. Finish strong, with your most important conclusion (recommendation) at the end. Leave readers with an understanding of your work's importance. Avoid generic, obvious phrases like "more research is needed to fully address this issue." Be specific.

The main differences between implications and recommendations (table)

 the differences between implications and recommendations

Now let's dig a bit deeper into actually how to write these parts.

What are implications?

Research implications tell us how and why your results are important for the field at large. They help answer the question of “what does it mean?” Implications tell us how your work contributes to your field and what it adds to it. They're used when you want to tell your peers why your research is important for ongoing theory, practice, policymaking, and for future research.

Crucially, your implications must be evidence-based. This means they must be derived from the results in the paper.

Implications are written after you've summarized your main findings in the discussion section. They come before the recommendations and before the concluding paragraph. There is no specific section dedicated to implications. They must be integrated into your discussion so that the reader understands why the results are meaningful and what they add to the field.

A good strategy is to separate your implications into types. Implications can be social, political, technological, related to policies, or others, depending on your topic. The most frequently used types are theoretical and practical. Theoretical implications relate to how your findings connect to other theories or ideas in your field, while practical implications are related to what we can do with the results.

Key features of implications

  • State the impact your research makes
  • Helps us understand why your results are important
  • Must be evidence-based
  • Written in the discussion, before recommendations
  • Can be theoretical, practical, or other (social, political, etc.)

Examples of implications

Let's take a look at some examples of research results below with their implications.

The result : one study found that learning items over time improves memory more than cramming material in a bunch of information at once .

The implications : This result suggests memory is better when studying is spread out over time, which could be due to memory consolidation processes.

The result : an intervention study found that mindfulness helps improve mental health if you have anxiety.

The implications : This result has implications for the role of executive functions on anxiety.

The result : a study found that musical learning helps language learning in children .

The implications : these findings suggest that language and music may work together to aid development.

What are recommendations?

As noted above, explaining how your results contribute to the real world is an important part of a successful article.

Likewise, stating how your findings can be used to improve something in future research is equally important. This brings us to the recommendations.

Research recommendations are suggestions and solutions you give for certain situations based on your results. Once the reader understands what your results mean with the implications, the next question they need to know is "what's next?"

Recommendations are calls to action on ways certain things in the field can be improved in the future based on your results. Recommendations are used when you want to convey that something different should be done based on what your analyses revealed.

Similar to implications, recommendations are also evidence-based. This means that your recommendations to the field must be drawn directly from your results.

The goal of the recommendations is to make clear, specific, and realistic suggestions to future researchers before they conduct a similar experiment. No matter what area your research is in, there will always be further research to do. Try to think about what would be helpful for other researchers to know before starting their work.

Recommendations are also written in the discussion section. They come after the implications and before the concluding paragraphs. Similar to the implications, there is usually no specific section dedicated to the recommendations. However, depending on how many solutions you want to suggest to the field, they may be written as a subsection.

Key features of recommendations

  • Statements about what can be done differently in the field based on your findings
  • Must be realistic and specific
  • Written in the discussion, after implications and before conclusions
  • Related to both your field and, preferably, a wider context to the research

Examples of recommendations

Here are some research results and their recommendations.

A meta-analysis found that actively recalling material from your memory is better than simply re-reading it .

  • The recommendation: Based on these findings, teachers and other educators should encourage students to practice active recall strategies.

A medical intervention found that daily exercise helps prevent cardiovascular disease .

  • The recommendation: Based on these results, physicians are recommended to encourage patients to exercise and walk regularly. Also recommended is to encourage more walking through public health offices in communities.

A study found that many research articles do not contain the sample sizes needed to statistically confirm their findings .

The recommendation: To improve the current state of the field, researchers should consider doing power analysis based on their experiment's design.

What else is important about implications and recommendations?

When writing recommendations and implications, be careful not to overstate the impact of your results. It can be tempting for researchers to inflate the importance of their findings and make grandiose statements about what their work means.

Remember that implications and recommendations must be coming directly from your results. Therefore, they must be straightforward, realistic, and plausible.

Another good thing to remember is to make sure the implications and recommendations are stated clearly and separately. Do not attach them to the endings of other paragraphs just to add them in. Use similar example phrases as those listed in the table when starting your sentences to clearly indicate when it's an implication and when it's a recommendation.

When your peers, or brand-new readers, read your paper, they shouldn't have to hunt through your discussion to find the implications and recommendations. They should be clear, visible, and understandable on their own.

That'll get you cited more, and you'll make a greater contribution to your area of science while extending the life and impact of your work.

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How to write recommendations for the study in a thesis report?

Typically noted as ‘Conclusion and Recommendations for the study’ in thesis reports, the section dedicated to recommendations for the study is brief and direct. In many thesis reports it is also presented as a standalone section. Recommendations for the study do not explain anything as other sections of the research would do. Instead, the focus here is on highlighting what more can be done in that field of study. It also gives direction to fellow researchers to dive into the discussion in the future.

The main themes of this section are:

  • Improvement
  • Development

The recommendations for the study section present possible areas of improvement for future studies.

Constituents of the recommendations for the study section

Since this section of the thesis report is most often set along with the conclusion of the study, it is better presented in a brief but direct approach. It is introduced by one direct sentence that separates it from the conclusion of the study. The preceding statements should immediately note the recommendations and why these suggestions are important. It should then explain how such suggestions can be achieved in a future research. While writing the recommendations for the study section, it is important that the suggestions are:

  • Measurable,
  • Attainable,
  • Realistic, and

This section can also be presented in bullet points and focus to cover:

While there is no required specific number of recommendations but 4 recommendations for every 20000 words in a thesis report is a general thumb. Limit the number of words in this section up to 5% of the total word count of your thesis report. This is to set a balance as to what else can be done and the current investigation.

What not to do?

Remember that the recommendations for the study section should not be confused with the conclusion or the summary of the study. It should only focus on the suggestions for future possibilities. Do not present new findings or statistical or experimental data. Do not include theoretical concepts. Start with an introductory statement.

This section enlists the recommendations of the study. The purpose is to offer ideas on how the findings of this study can be implemented in academia to further this field of study. It also offers suggestions on how the challenges of the industry or individuals can be addressed for better outcomes.

Thereafter, split the section into three sub-sections as explained above. After writing the recommendations for each sub-section, close the thesis with ‘ Scope for further research ‘.

It is suggested that direct interviews with individuals who have been diagnosed with PNES be pursued in the future to allow the researchers to closely look into the situation more closely. After accomplishing the interview, a few context suggestions on how to improve the lives of the said individuals ought to be given particular attention.

The above recommendation focuses on improving the idea behind exploring the issue of how Psychological Non-Epileptic Seizures affect the functionality of a person suffering from the condition. This recommendation is for a 1000-word research paper on PNES or Psychological Non-Epileptic Seizures. There is only one specific recommendation which is explained in a few statements- which remains true to the idea behind keeping the recommendations section brief and focused.

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What Is a Dissertation? | 5 Essential Questions to Get Started

Published on 26 March 2020 by Jack Caulfield . Revised on 5 May 2022.

A dissertation is a large research project undertaken at the end of a degree. It involves in-depth consideration of a problem or question chosen by the student. It is usually the largest (and final) piece of written work produced during a degree.

The length and structure of a dissertation vary widely depending on the level and field of study. However, there are some key questions that can help you understand the requirements and get started on your dissertation project.

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Table of contents

When and why do you have to write a dissertation, who will supervise your dissertation, what type of research will you do, how should your dissertation be structured, what formatting and referencing rules do you have to follow, frequently asked questions about dissertations.

A dissertation, sometimes called a thesis, comes at the end of an undergraduate or postgraduate degree. It is a larger project than the other essays you’ve written, requiring a higher word count and a greater depth of research.

You’ll generally work on your dissertation during the final year of your degree, over a longer period than you would take for a standard essay . For example, the dissertation might be your main focus for the last six months of your degree.

Why is the dissertation important?

The dissertation is a test of your capacity for independent research. You are given a lot of autonomy in writing your dissertation: you come up with your own ideas, conduct your own research, and write and structure the text by yourself.

This means that it is an important preparation for your future, whether you continue in academia or not: it teaches you to manage your own time, generate original ideas, and work independently.

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During the planning and writing of your dissertation, you’ll work with a supervisor from your department. The supervisor’s job is to give you feedback and advice throughout the process.

The dissertation supervisor is often assigned by the department, but you might be allowed to indicate preferences or approach potential supervisors. If so, try to pick someone who is familiar with your chosen topic, whom you get along with on a personal level, and whose feedback you’ve found useful in the past.

How will your supervisor help you?

Your supervisor is there to guide you through the dissertation project, but you’re still working independently. They can give feedback on your ideas, but not come up with ideas for you.

You may need to take the initiative to request an initial meeting with your supervisor. Then you can plan out your future meetings and set reasonable deadlines for things like completion of data collection, a structure outline, a first chapter, a first draft, and so on.

Make sure to prepare in advance for your meetings. Formulate your ideas as fully as you can, and determine where exactly you’re having difficulties so you can ask your supervisor for specific advice.

Your approach to your dissertation will vary depending on your field of study. The first thing to consider is whether you will do empirical research , which involves collecting original data, or non-empirical research , which involves analysing sources.

Empirical dissertations (sciences)

An empirical dissertation focuses on collecting and analysing original data. You’ll usually write this type of dissertation if you are studying a subject in the sciences or social sciences.

  • What are airline workers’ attitudes towards the challenges posed for their industry by climate change?
  • How effective is cognitive behavioural therapy in treating depression in young adults?
  • What are the short-term health effects of switching from smoking cigarettes to e-cigarettes?

There are many different empirical research methods you can use to answer these questions – for example, experiments , observations, surveys , and interviews.

When doing empirical research, you need to consider things like the variables you will investigate, the reliability and validity of your measurements, and your sampling method . The aim is to produce robust, reproducible scientific knowledge.

Non-empirical dissertations (arts and humanities)

A non-empirical dissertation works with existing research or other texts, presenting original analysis, critique and argumentation, but no original data. This approach is typical of arts and humanities subjects.

  • What attitudes did commentators in the British press take towards the French Revolution in 1789–1792?
  • How do the themes of gender and inheritance intersect in Shakespeare’s Macbeth ?
  • How did Plato’s Republic and Thomas More’s Utopia influence nineteenth century utopian socialist thought?

The first steps in this type of dissertation are to decide on your topic and begin collecting your primary and secondary sources .

Primary sources are the direct objects of your research. They give you first-hand evidence about your subject. Examples of primary sources include novels, artworks and historical documents.

Secondary sources provide information that informs your analysis. They describe, interpret, or evaluate information from primary sources. For example, you might consider previous analyses of the novel or author you are working on, or theoretical texts that you plan to apply to your primary sources.

Dissertations are divided into chapters and sections. Empirical dissertations usually follow a standard structure, while non-empirical dissertations are more flexible.

Structure of an empirical dissertation

Empirical dissertations generally include these chapters:

  • Introduction : An explanation of your topic and the research question(s) you want to answer.
  • Literature review : A survey and evaluation of previous research on your topic.
  • Methodology : An explanation of how you collected and analysed your data.
  • Results : A brief description of what you found.
  • Discussion : Interpretation of what these results reveal.
  • Conclusion : Answers to your research question(s) and summary of what your findings contribute to knowledge in your field.

Sometimes the order or naming of chapters might be slightly different, but all of the above information must be included in order to produce thorough, valid scientific research.

Other dissertation structures

If your dissertation doesn’t involve data collection, your structure is more flexible. You can think of it like an extended essay – the text should be logically organised in a way that serves your argument:

  • Introduction: An explanation of your topic and the question(s) you want to answer.
  • Main body: The development of your analysis, usually divided into 2–4 chapters.
  • Conclusion: Answers to your research question(s) and summary of what your analysis contributes to knowledge in your field.

The chapters of the main body can be organised around different themes, time periods, or texts. Below you can see some example structures for dissertations in different subjects.

  • Political philosophy

This example, on the topic of the British press’s coverage of the French Revolution, shows how you might structure each chapter around a specific theme.

Example of a dissertation structure in history

This example, on the topic of Plato’s and More’s influences on utopian socialist thought, shows a different approach to dividing the chapters by theme.

Example of a dissertation structure in political philosophy

This example, a master’s dissertation on the topic of how writers respond to persecution, shows how you can also use section headings within each chapter. Each of the three chapters deals with a specific text, while the sections are organised thematically.

Example of a dissertation structure in literature

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Like other academic texts, it’s important that your dissertation follows the formatting guidelines set out by your university. You can lose marks unnecessarily over mistakes, so it’s worth taking the time to get all these elements right.

Formatting guidelines concern things like:

  • line spacing
  • page numbers
  • punctuation
  • title pages
  • presentation of tables and figures

If you’re unsure about the formatting requirements, check with your supervisor or department. You can lose marks unnecessarily over mistakes, so it’s worth taking the time to get all these elements right.

How will you reference your sources?

Referencing means properly listing the sources you cite and refer to in your dissertation, so that the reader can find them. This avoids plagiarism by acknowledging where you’ve used the work of others.

Keep track of everything you read as you prepare your dissertation. The key information to note down for a reference is:

  • The publication date
  • Page numbers for the parts you refer to (especially when using direct quotes)

Different referencing styles each have their own specific rules for how to reference. The most commonly used styles in UK universities are listed below.

You can use the free APA Reference Generator to automatically create and store your references.

APA Reference Generator

The words ‘ dissertation ’ and ‘thesis’ both refer to a large written research project undertaken to complete a degree, but they are used differently depending on the country:

  • In the UK, you write a dissertation at the end of a bachelor’s or master’s degree, and you write a thesis to complete a PhD.
  • In the US, it’s the other way around: you may write a thesis at the end of a bachelor’s or master’s degree, and you write a dissertation to complete a PhD.

The main difference is in terms of scale – a dissertation is usually much longer than the other essays you complete during your degree.

Another key difference is that you are given much more independence when working on a dissertation. You choose your own dissertation topic , and you have to conduct the research and write the dissertation yourself (with some assistance from your supervisor).

Dissertation word counts vary widely across different fields, institutions, and levels of education:

  • An undergraduate dissertation is typically 8,000–15,000 words
  • A master’s dissertation is typically 12,000–50,000 words
  • A PhD thesis is typically book-length: 70,000–100,000 words

However, none of these are strict guidelines – your word count may be lower or higher than the numbers stated here. Always check the guidelines provided by your university to determine how long your own dissertation should be.

At the bachelor’s and master’s levels, the dissertation is usually the main focus of your final year. You might work on it (alongside other classes) for the entirety of the final year, or for the last six months. This includes formulating an idea, doing the research, and writing up.

A PhD thesis takes a longer time, as the thesis is the main focus of the degree. A PhD thesis might be being formulated and worked on for the whole four years of the degree program. The writing process alone can take around 18 months.

Cite this Scribbr article

If you want to cite this source, you can copy and paste the citation or click the ‘Cite this Scribbr article’ button to automatically add the citation to our free Reference Generator.

Caulfield, J. (2022, May 05). What Is a Dissertation? | 5 Essential Questions to Get Started. Scribbr. Retrieved 22 April 2024, from https://www.scribbr.co.uk/thesis-dissertation/what-is-a-dissertation/

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How to write recommendations in a research paper

Many students put in a lot of effort and write a good report however they are not able to give proper recommendations. Recommendations in the research paper should be included in your research. As a researcher, you display a deep understanding of the topic of research. Therefore you should be able to give recommendations. Here are a few tips that will help you to give appropriate recommendations. 

Recommendations in the research paper should be the objective of the research. Therefore at least one of your objectives of the paper is to provide recommendations to the parties associated or the parties that will benefit from your research. For example, to encourage higher employee engagement HR department should make strategies that invest in the well-being of employees. Additionally, the HR department should also collect regular feedback through online surveys.

Recommendations in the research paper should come from your review and analysis For example It was observed that coaches interviewed were associated with the club were working with the club from the past 2-3 years only. This shows that the attrition rate of coaches is high and therefore clubs should work on reducing the turnover of coaches.

Recommendations in the research paper should also come from the data you have analysed. For example, the research found that people over 65 years of age are at greater risk of social isolation. Therefore, it is recommended that policies that are made for combating social isolation should target this specific group.

Recommendations in the research paper should also come from observation. For example, it is observed that Lenovo’s income is stable and gross revenue has displayed a negative turn. Therefore the company should analyse its marketing and branding strategy.

Recommendations in the research paper should be written in the order of priority. The most important recommendations for decision-makers should come first. However, if the recommendations are of equal importance then it should come in the sequence in which the topic is approached in the research. 

Recommendations in a research paper if associated with different categories then you should categorize them. For example, you have separate recommendations for policymakers, educators, and administrators then you can categorize the recommendations. 

Recommendations in the research paper should come purely from your research. For example, you have written research on the impact on HR strategies on motivation. However, nowhere you have discussed Reward and recognition. Then you should not give recommendations for using rewards and recognition measures to boost employee motivation.

The use of bullet points offers better clarity rather than using long paragraphs. For example this paragraph “ It is recommended  that Britannia Biscuit should launch and promote sugar-free options apart from the existing product range. Promotion efforts should be directed at creating a fresh and healthy image. A campaign that conveys a sense of health and vitality to the consumer while enjoying biscuit  is recommended” can be written as:

  • The company should launch and promote sugar-free options
  • The company should work towards creating s fresh and healthy image
  • The company should run a campaign to convey its healthy image

The inclusion of an action plan along with recommendation adds more weightage to your recommendation. Recommendations should be clear and conscience and written using actionable words. Recommendations should display a solution-oriented approach and in some cases should highlight the scope for further research. 

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Evans D, Coad J, Cottrell K, et al. Public involvement in research: assessing impact through a realist evaluation. Southampton (UK): NIHR Journals Library; 2014 Oct. (Health Services and Delivery Research, No. 2.36.)

Cover of Public involvement in research: assessing impact through a realist evaluation

Public involvement in research: assessing impact through a realist evaluation.

Chapter 9 conclusions and recommendations for future research.

  • How well have we achieved our original aim and objectives?

The initially stated overarching aim of this research was to identify the contextual factors and mechanisms that are regularly associated with effective and cost-effective public involvement in research. While recognising the limitations of our analysis, we believe we have largely achieved this in our revised theory of public involvement in research set out in Chapter 8 . We have developed and tested this theory of public involvement in research in eight diverse case studies; this has highlighted important contextual factors, in particular PI leadership, which had not previously been prominent in the literature. We have identified how this critical contextual factor shapes key mechanisms of public involvement, including the identification of a senior lead for involvement, resource allocation for involvement and facilitation of research partners. These mechanisms then lead to specific outcomes in improving the quality of research, notably recruitment strategies and materials and data collection tools and methods. We have identified a ‘virtuous circle’ of feedback to research partners on their contribution leading to their improved confidence and motivation, which facilitates their continued contribution. Following feedback from the HS&DR Board on our original application we did not seek to assess the cost-effectiveness of different mechanisms of public involvement but we did cost the different types of public involvement as discussed in Chapter 7 . A key finding is that many research projects undercost public involvement.

In our original proposal we emphasised our desire to include case studies involving young people and families with children in the research process. We recruited two studies involving parents of young children aged under 5 years, and two projects involving ‘older’ young people in the 18- to 25-years age group. We recognise that in doing this we missed studies involving children and young people aged under 18 years; in principle we would have liked to have included studies involving such children and young people, but, given the resources at our disposal and the additional resource, ethical and governance issues this would have entailed, we regretfully concluded that this would not be feasible for our study. In terms of the four studies with parental and young persons’ involvement that we did include, we have not done a separate analysis of their data, but the themes emerging from those case studies were consistent with our other case studies and contributed to our overall analysis.

In terms of the initial objectives, we successfully recruited the sample of eight diverse case studies and collected and analysed data from them (objective 1). As intended, we identified the outcomes of involvement from multiple stakeholders‘ perspectives, although we did not get as many research partners‘ perspectives as we would have liked – see limitations below (objective 2). It was more difficult than expected to track the impact of public involvement from project inception through to completion (objective 3), as all of our projects turned out to have longer time scales than our own. Even to track involvement over a stage of a case study research project proved difficult, as the research usually did not fall into neatly staged time periods and one study had no involvement activity over the study period.

Nevertheless, we were able to track seven of the eight case studies prospectively and in real time over time periods of up to 9 months, giving us an unusual window on involvement processes that have previously mainly been observed retrospectively. We were successful in comparing the contextual factors, mechanisms and outcomes associated with public involvement from different stakeholders‘ perspectives and costing the different mechanisms for public involvement (objective 4). We only partly achieved our final objective of undertaking a consensus exercise among stakeholders to assess the merits of the realist evaluation approach and our approach to the measurement and valuation of economic costs of public involvement in research (objective 5). A final consensus event was held, where very useful discussion and amendment of our theory of public involvement took place, and the economic approach was discussed and helpfully critiqued by participants. However, as our earlier discussions developed more fully than expected, we decided to let them continue rather than interrupt them in order to run the final exercise to assess the merits of the realist evaluation approach. We did, however, test our analysis with all our case study participants by sending a draft of this final report for comment. We received a number of helpful comments and corrections but no disagreement with our overall analysis.

  • What were the limitations of our study?

Realist evaluation is a relatively new approach and we recognise that there were a number of limitations to our study. We sought to follow the approach recommended by Pawson, but we acknowledge that we were not always able to do so. In particular, our theory of public involvement in research evolved over time and initially was not as tightly framed in terms of a testable hypothesis as Pawson recommends. In his latest book Pawson strongly recommends that outcomes should be measured with quantitative data, 17 but we did not do so; we were not aware of the existence of quantitative data or tools that would enable us to collect such data to answer our research questions. Even in terms of qualitative data, we did not capture as much information on outcomes as we initially envisaged. There were several reasons for this. The most important was that capturing outcomes in public involvement is easier the more operational the focus of involvement, and more difficult the more strategic the involvement. Thus, it was relatively easy to see the impact of a patient panel on the redesign of a recruitment leaflet but harder to capture the impact of research partners in a multidisciplinary team discussion of research design.

We also found it was sometimes more difficult to engage research partners as participants in our research than researchers or research managers. On reflection this is not surprising. Research partners are generally motivated to take part in research relevant to their lived experience of a health condition or situation, whereas our research was quite detached from their lived experience; in addition people had many constraints on their time, so getting involved in our research as well as their own was likely to be a burden too far for some. Researchers clearly also face significant time pressures but they had a more direct interest in our research, as they are obliged to engage with public involvement to satisfy research funders such as the NIHR. Moreover, researchers were being paid by their employers for their time during interviews with us, while research partners were not paid by us and usually not paid by their research teams. Whatever the reasons, we had less response from research partners than researchers or research managers, particularly for the third round of data collection; thus we have fewer data on outcomes from research partners‘ perspectives and we need to be aware of a possible selection bias towards more engaged research partners. Such a bias could have implications for our findings; for example payment might have been a more important motivating factor for less engaged advisory group members.

There were a number of practical difficulties we encountered. One challenge was when to recruit the case studies. We recruited four of our eight case studies prior to the full application, but this was more than 1 year before our project started and 15 months or more before data collection began. In this intervening period, we found that the time scales of some of the case studies were no longer ideal for our project and we faced the choice of whether to continue with them, although this timing was not ideal, or seek at a late moment to recruit alternative ones. One of our case studies ultimately undertook no involvement activity over the study period, so we obtained fewer data from it, and it contributed relatively little to our analysis. Similarly, one of the four case studies we recruited later experienced some delays itself in beginning and so we had a more limited period for data collection than initially envisaged. Research governance approvals took much longer than expected, particularly as we had to take three of our research partners, who were going to collect data within NHS projects, through the research passport process, which essentially truncated our data collection period from 1 year to 9 months. Even if we had had the full year initially envisaged for data collection, our conclusion with hindsight was that this was insufficiently long. To compare initial plans and intentions for involvement with the reality of what actually happened required a longer time period than a year for most of our case studies.

In the light of the importance we have placed on the commitment of PIs, there is an issue of potential selection bias in the recruitment of our sample. As our sampling strategy explicitly involved a networking approach to PIs of projects where we thought some significant public involvement was taking place, we were likely (as we did) to recruit enthusiasts and, at worst, those non-committed who were at least open to the potential value of public involvement. There were, unsurprisingly, no highly sceptical PIs in our sample. We have no data therefore on how public involvement may work in research where the PI is sceptical but may feel compelled to undertake involvement because of funder requirements or other factors.

  • What would we do differently next time?

If we were to design this study again, there are a number of changes we would make. Most importantly we would go for a longer time period to be able to capture involvement through the whole research process from initial design through to dissemination. We would seek to recruit far more potential case studies in principle, so that we had greater choice of which to proceed with once our study began in earnest. We would include case studies from the application stage to capture the important early involvement of research partners in the initial design period. It might be preferable to research a smaller number of case studies, allowing a more in-depth ethnographic approach. Although challenging, it would be very informative to seek to sample sceptical PIs. This might require a brief screening exercise of a larger group of PIs on their attitudes to and experience of public involvement.

The economic evaluation was challenging in a number of ways, particularly in seeking to obtain completed resource logs from case study research partners. Having a 2-week data collection period was also problematic in a field such as public involvement, where activity may be very episodic and infrequent. Thus, collecting economic data alongside other case study data in a more integrated way, and particularly with interviews and more ethnographic observation of case study activities, might be advantageous. The new budgeting tool developed by INVOLVE and the MHRN may provide a useful resource for future economic evaluations. 23

We have learned much from the involvement of research partners in our research team and, although many aspects of our approach worked well, there are some things we would do differently in future. Even though we included substantial resources for research partner involvement in all aspects of our study, we underestimated how time-consuming such full involvement would be. We were perhaps overambitious in trying to ensure such full involvement with the number of research partners and the number and complexity of the case studies. We were also perhaps naive in expecting all the research partners to play the same role in the team; different research partners came with different experiences and skills, and, like most of our case studies, we might have been better to be less prescriptive and allow the roles to develop more organically within the project.

  • Implications for research practice and funding

If one of the objectives of R&D policy is to increase the extent and effectiveness of public involvement in research, then a key implication of this research is the importance of influencing PIs to value public involvement in research or to delegate to other senior colleagues in leading on involvement in their research. Training is unlikely to be the key mechanism here; senior researchers are much more likely to be influenced by peers or by their personal experience of the benefits of public involvement. Early career researchers may be shaped by training but again peer learning and culture may be more influential. For those researchers sceptical or agnostic about public involvement, the requirement of funders is a key factor that is likely to make them engage with the involvement agenda. Therefore, funders need to scrutinise the track record of research teams on public involvement to ascertain whether there is any evidence of commitment or leadership on involvement.

One of the findings of the economic analysis was that PIs have consistently underestimated the costs of public involvement in their grant applications. Clearly the field will benefit from the guidance and budgeting tool recently disseminated by MHRN and INVOLVE. It was also notable that there was a degree of variation in the real costs of public involvement and that effective involvement is not necessarily costly. Different models of involvement incur different costs and researchers need to be made aware of the costs and benefits of these different options.

One methodological lesson we learned was the impact that conducting this research had on some participants’ reflection on the impact of public involvement. Particularly for research staff, the questions we asked sometimes made them reflect upon what they were doing and change aspects of their approach to involvement. Thus, the more the NIHR and other funders can build reporting, audit and other forms of evaluation on the impact of public involvement directly into their processes with PIs, the more likely such questioning might stimulate similar reflection.

  • Recommendations for further research

There are a number of gaps in our knowledge around public involvement in research that follow from our findings, and would benefit from further research, including realist evaluation to extend and further test the theory we have developed here:

  • In-depth exploration of how PIs become committed to public involvement and how to influence agnostic or sceptical PIs would be very helpful. Further research might compare, for example, training with peer-influencing strategies in engendering PI commitment. Research could explore the leadership role of other research team members, including research partners, and how collective leadership might support effective public involvement.
  • More methodological work is needed on how to robustly capture the impact and outcomes of public involvement in research (building as well on the PiiAF work of Popay et al. 51 ), including further economic analysis and exploration of impact when research partners are integral to research teams.
  • Research to develop approaches and carry out a full cost–benefit analysis of public involvement in research would be beneficial. Although methodologically challenging, it would be very useful to conduct some longer-term studies which sought to quantify the impact of public involvement on such key indicators as participant recruitment and retention in clinical trials.
  • It would also be helpful to capture qualitatively the experiences and perspectives of research partners who have had mixed or negative experiences, since they may be less likely than enthusiasts to volunteer to participate in studies of involvement in research such as ours. Similarly, further research might explore the (relatively rare) experiences of marginalised and seldom-heard groups involved in research.
  • Payment for public involvement in research remains a contested issue with strongly held positions for and against; it would be helpful to further explore the value research partners and researchers place on payment and its effectiveness for enhancing involvement in and impact on research.
  • A final relatively narrow but important question that we identified after data collection had finished is: what is the impact of the long periods of relative non-involvement following initial periods of more intense involvement for research partners in some types of research, particularly clinical trials?

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  • Cite this Page Evans D, Coad J, Cottrell K, et al. Public involvement in research: assessing impact through a realist evaluation. Southampton (UK): NIHR Journals Library; 2014 Oct. (Health Services and Delivery Research, No. 2.36.) Chapter 9, Conclusions and recommendations for future research.
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How to craft an a-grade recommendations chapter.

Henley Recommendations Chapter

So, let’s have a look at the 6 components of a solid recommendations chapter.

#1: Directly address the key issues from your analysis chapter.

It sounds obvious, but all too often, there is a disconnect between the analysis chapter and the recommendations chapter. In other words, students start solving problems that didn’t exist in the analysis and ignore those that did.

Simply put, there should be a firm, intuitive, logical link between the end of your analysis chapter and the beginning of your recommendations chapter. There should really be no surprise for the reader – in fact, they should pretty much be able to anticipate what you’ll prescribe. To highlight this link, you should have a brief summary (in bullet point or visual format) at the end of your analysis chapter that reminds the reader of your key findings. Then, your recommendations chapter should directly address the issues/shortcomings highlighted there.

There’s always a temptation to digress into the irrelevant when writing assignments. Don’t create new issues and don’t present new information – stay focused on the key issues raised in your analysis. Keep yourself on track by regularly checking whether your recommendations directly link to the issues you found in your analysis. If not, it’s time to kill your darlings.

Henley MBA Help

#2: Explicitly discuss the “what”.

Another obvious sounding one, but one which is no less common in assignments. All too often, I read lengthy recommendations that roll on for pages and pages, and I’m still left asking myself, “but what exactly are you recommending be done?”.

Simply put, students are not specific and detailed enough regarding their recommendations. They speak at a high level, very conceptually and theoretically, but not practically. There is not enough real-world detail and, as a result, it’s unclear what exactly is being recommended. They might draw on plenty theory, but there’s no real-world application – resulting in limited marks.

Here’s an example:

“The reward structure must be strategically realigned to encourage and incentivise staff behaviours which are required by the organisation’s strategy (Higgs, 2006).”

Sounds great, right? It even includes the word “strategically”! But what does it mean? There are no specifics, no details.  It means nothing.

Compare it to the following:

“The focus of the reward structure must be shifted from the top left quadrant (pay structure) to the bottom right quadrant (work environment) to encourage collective behaviours (teamwork), intrinsic motivation and discretionary behaviour, as required by the organisation’s innovation-centric strategy (Higgs, 2016). For example, leadership communication could be improved by…”

The difference is in the level of detail. Notice how the latter example explicitly states what must be shifted, from where to where, and what the outcome is expected to be. Additionally, it provides a practical example, linking theory to practice , the conceptual world to the real world.

For complex recommendations, you might also consider presenting a revised model or framework, visually demonstrating the recommended change(s). In other words, you’ll have a “before and after” type presentation . For example, if your recommendation was to revise a process map (which you presented previously in the analysis), you could present the new and improved process map in the recommendations chapter. Oftentimes, visual representations can save you a good deal of word count, while also aiding marker comprehension and breaking “walls of text” – so make use of this approach wherever you can.

#3: Justify your recommendations both practically and theoretically.

You’ll notice that the last example also touched on the “why?” – in other words, the justification for the recommendation. It’s critically important that your recommendations are justified . There are, however, two forms of justification – practical and theoretical:

Practical justification : which problem (identified in your analysis chapter) does this solve? Be very explicit about which problem(s) each recommendation solves, so that you systematically resolve as many of the highlighted issues as possible. Also, briefly explain how this solves the problem – it might be obvious, but don’t leave it to the markers imagination. This needn’t be lengthy and detailed, for example:

“This recommendation resolves the key issue of X by ensuring that…”

Short and sweet.

Another aspect of the practical justification is (very brief) consideration of the feasibility . In other words, how likely is it that the organisation can pull it off. Naturally, good recommendations are realistic ones, so make it clear how each recommendation is feasible in the real world. Again, this can be a one-liner, something like this:

“This recommendation can be implemented using the organisation’s existing resources, including X and Y.”

Don’t get into an implementation discussion (this is typically a separate chapter, if at all) – just demonstrate that your recommendation is not a far-fetched pipe dream.

Theoretical justification : simply put, I’m talking about citations/references here. Whenever you make a recommendation, be sure to credit the author of the underlying theory . While some of your recommendations may just be common sense or logical deductions, it’s still likely that you came to each conclusion as a result of a model, framework or theory, which needs to be cited. By citing generously, you’ll demonstrate the link between theory and practice, which will earn you marks.

#4: Aim for a handful of key recommendations.

Typically, you should aim to present 3-5 hearty key recommendations, as opposed to a list of 10-15 lightweight recommendations. In other words, go deep, not broad.

If you have a long list of recommendations, run through them and bundle them into homogenous groups . By doing so, you’ll add more depth to each recommendation, while also making your overall argument easier for the marker to digest. Aim for quality, not quantity. Also, note that some assignments may require that you only make “one key recommendation” (for example, MP). In such cases, you need to think very carefully about how you package your recommendation to earn good marks.

On a related presentation note, you should aim to maintain a consistent structure and argumentative approach for each recommendation. In other words, for each recommendation, structure the discussion in the same order. For example:

  • A detailed explanation of what is being recommended.
  • Identification of what issue(s) it resolves.
  • Explanation of how it resolves the issue(s), including examples.

Consistency is more important than order here. Pick any order that works for you, but be sure to apply it consistently.

#5: Summarise at the end of the chapter.

In common with the introduction chapter, you should provide a concise summary of your key recommendations at the end of the chapter to aid digestibility of your full argument. Remember, while this is the umpteenth time you’ve read your assignment, it’s the first time for the marker. Make it easy for them to understand and recall your key points. After all, this is what they’ll mark you on…

In terms of presentation, there is nothing wrong with using bullet points to summarise previously discussed content, as long as you are not presenting new information. Alternatively, if you used a particular model or framework to summarise your analysis issues, you could again present a “before and after” figure, detailing how your recommendations resolve the issues.

Here’s an example:

Visual summary henley mba

#6: Note the assumptions and limitations.

Last but not least, you need to briefly acknowledge the assumptions and limitations of your recommendations. Every argument features assumptions and qualifications , and as a result, has limitations. Therefore, it’s important to acknowledge the assumptions that went into your analysis and consequently recommendations, and the resultant limitations these create. Highlighting the potential shortcomings of your work is not a weakness , but rather a strength in academia. It shows that you can think critically, not just of other’s points, but of your own.

That said, there’s no need to go deconstruct and discredit your entire argument. Just include a concise paragraph highlighting the key assumptions and limitations. You might also mention how these could be resolved with further data or fieldwork.

Let’s recap…

Incorporate these 6 practices into your next recommendations chapter and you will no doubt increase your mark earning capability. To recap:

  • Directly address the key issues highlighted in your analysis.
  • Explicitly discuss the “what”.
  • Justify your recommendations both practically and theoretically.
  • Group similar recommendations and apply a consistent structure.
  • Summarise your key recommendation at the end of the chapter.
  • Note the assumptions and limitations.

Have a question or suggestion?  We’d love to hear from you. Simply leave a comment below or get in touch with us.

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Very helpful Derek. Thank you very timely advice.

Derek Jansen

My pleasure! Glad you found it useful 🙂

Thomas Hilz

Thanks Derek! I appreciate your tips…

It’s a pleasure, Thomas.

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How to Write a Dissertation or Thesis Conclusion: Guide & Examples


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A dissertation conclusion serves as the final chapter and is often the last thing the reader will see. It should provide a concise summary of the research project, including the research questions or hypotheses, the methods used to conduct the research, and the key findings and conclusions. The conclusion section should also discuss the implications of the research, including its significance for the field and any practical applications of the findings.

Are you a PhD, doctorate, or bachelor student looking forward to writing your dissertation/thesis conclusion and don't know where to start? Stop worrying — help is here. Continue reading this blog post to gain an idea on how to write a conclusion for a thesis or dissertation. In this article, we will discuss what a dissertation conclusion is, its length, and what it should include. Our dissertation services  also provided examples, and explained some typical mistakes you have to avoid.

What Is a Dissertation Conclusion?

So, what is a thesis conclusion? It is a concluding chapter in a dissertation or thesis paper. It is the last section of an academic work, carefully written to summarize the information discussed in a document and offer readers insight into what the research has achieved. Your dissertation or thesis conclusion should be well-drafted as it is a reference point that people will remember most. The purpose of dissertation conclusion is to give those reading a sense of closure and reiterate any critical issues discussed. Each conclusion for dissertation should be concise, clear, and definitive. Also, its aim is to offer recommendations for further investigation as well as give readers an understanding of the dissertation discussion chapter .

Dissertation Conclusion

Thesis or Dissertation Conclusion Length

The conclusion of a thesis or a dissertation is a long chapter — not one single sentence but a whole page or more. Generally, it should be 5–7% of the overall word count. The length of a thesis or dissertation conclusion chapter depends on several factors, such as your academic field, research topic , and stated number of pages. However, it can vary depending on other circumstances. Indeed, you should always refer to each set of your university guidelines for writing conclusions. It's important to note that this section ought not to introduce any new information and be a summary of the research findings. Also, every dissertation conclusion must not be too long as it can distract from other aspects of your thesis. Make sure that you provide a balanced summary and avoid repeating yourself. Lastly, it has to be long enough to discuss its implications for future studies.

What to Include in the Conclusion of a Dissertation or Thesis?

Writing a thesis conclusion can be challenging, but every student needs to understand how to create it, as this is one of the most critical parts of your Ph.D. work. Below is the list of things every dissertation conclusion structure should include:

  • Summary of the major findings of your research Summarize the main points discussed in your work.
  • Implications of your research Discuss your study's implications for future research and academic fields. Doing this here is essential to indicate an author's transparency and willingness to accept the flaws of their report.
  • Recommendations for further study Provide suggestions for the next investigation if needed.
  • Reviewing any limitations and weaknesses of the research process and findings It is an integral part of dissertation conclusions as it allows authors to reflect on the process.
  • Evaluation or analysis of your findings Analyze your research findings and provide an assessment.
  • Conclusion statement Provide a specific conclusion that summarizes your thesis or dissertation.

Hopefully, these tips on writing a conclusion chapter for your thesis or dissertation will help you finish your work confidently. All these components should be present when writing a conclusion for thesis or dissertation. Additionally, ensure that you do not repeat yourself. Lastly, keep your length appropriate and based on your university guidelines.

How to Write a Dissertation Conclusion Chapter?

When writing this chapter, you should ensure its content is clear and concise. Equipping yourself with some knowledge of how to write a conclusion for a dissertation or thesis is imperative, as it will help you keep your piece organized, logical, and interesting. This chapter is the last part of your work that your professors or readers will read, and it should make a lasting impression on them. Below is a step-by-step instruction on how to write a dissertation conclusion section.

How to Write a Dissertation Step-by-Step

1. Restate Your Research Question and Answer It

While writing a dissertation conclusion, your first step is to restate the research question offered in your dissertation introduction and reveal the answer. It is essential to do this in your conclusion in thesis or dissertation because it helps readers be aware of every primary point you were trying to achieve in writing. In addition, restating available research questions in your conclusion in a dissertation or thesis will also make people understand the significance of your inquiry. In other words, it should remind people of the original purpose of writing. Provide further insights into a topic when answering each research question. In addition, responses must be related to your dissertation results section and offer evidence for any conclusions you made in your study. When writing a dissertation conclusion chapter, you ought to be able to give a meaningful response to the study question that adds value to your work. Keeping replies short, concise, and clear will help you to avoid writing irrelevant content. Below is an example of how to start a dissertation conclusion:

In conclusion, this research has successfully answered the primary research question: how does gender discrimination impact job satisfaction in the workplace? The study determined that gender discrimination directly impacts job satisfaction and can make employees feel demoralized, undervalued, and frustrated. Furthermore, employers must create policies and initiatives promoting workplace inclusion and equality. It can help employees feel valued, respected, and satisfied.

2. Summarize Key Points

The next element in your conclusion section is summarizing the main points of your dissertation. In this section, students need to reflect on their study and mention critical findings and the methodology's effectiveness. Straightforwardly compose your summary and ensure you use your own words to write a conclusion in a dissertation. Avoid copying and pasting sentences from other parts of your work to evade plagiarism and repetition. In concluding a dissertation, each written summary should include findings, results, data, and additional relevant literature. The following is an example of how to summarize a dissertation:

The study aimed to research the effects of gender discrimination on job satisfaction in the workplace. A survey was conducted on 106 participants across different industries using qualitative and quantitative research methods, allowing data collection from employees. Findings revealed that gender discrimination has a direct impact and can lead to feeling demoralized, undervalued, and frustrated. On the other hand, the research found that inclusivity and equality initiatives can help employees feel better about their job roles. Therefore, it is essential that organizations take adequate steps to create a more inclusive and equitable workstation.

3. Explain Why Your Study Is Valuable

After summarizing your key points, the next step to writing a dissertation conclusion is to explain why your research was valuable. Here you should provide readers with an additional perspective of the study to better understand the importance of your study. When it's time to write a conclusion to a thesis paper or dissertation, you must explain what makes it worthwhile to any academic or scientific community. It can include topics such as answering a critical research question, using unique methods to explore an issue, or discovering something new about an existing topic. You should note that you have to provide further recommendations to help improve the research. Composing a dissertation conclusion shows how your work has impacted the field of study, either in progress or resolving an existing problem. It is essential to demonstrate how your study contributes to future studies and influences society or policymaking. Doing this is crucial in your dissertation conclusion chapter as it shows readers the importance of research in that field and validates what you have achieved throughout your investigation. Also, explaining some study implications to society will help people understand why this topic is valuable and relevant. Below you can find an example of how to write contributions in a dissertation conclusion:

The research discussed in this work demonstrates that gender discrimination directly impacts job satisfaction in the workplace. The results of this study have several implications for society, most notably for employers, to create policies and initiatives to promote workplace inclusion. In addition, it's valuable to organizations to help them make more equitable and inclusive offices, to academics to inform their research on diversity and inclusivity, and to policymakers to develop initiatives to reduce gender discrimination in places of work. The research provides valuable insight to inform future studies on this topic and serves to highlight the need to create policies to protect employees from gender discrimination better.

If you experience difficulties with any section of your PhD work, don’t hesitate to ask our professional academic writers for thesis help. 

4. Mention the Limitations of Your Study

When writing a thesis or dissertation conclusion, mentioning your study's limitations is imperative. It includes discussing any issues you encountered in collecting data, constraints that limited your research, and specific parameters. Citing these shortcomings can help provide insight into why certain elements may not be included in your work and explain any discrepancies your readers might have noticed and, hence, missing in your conclusion chapter. Additionally, writing about any drawbacks can deliver an opportunity to offer further suggestions for future studies and make recommendations on how best to address these uncovered issues. In concluding a dissertation, constraints should not be seen as unfavorable but rather as an additional chance to deliver more understanding of your investigation. Limitations in a thesis conclusion example can look as follows:

The study is subject to some limitations, such as small sample size and limited scope of data collection. Moreover, due to time constraints, this research did not address some potential implications of gender discrimination in other areas, such as pay, career development, and career advancement. Future studies could further explore these topics in more depth to gain a more comprehensive understanding of their effects on job satisfaction.

When writing about identified limitations of the research, you demonstrate to readers that you considered critical shortcomings and that you are aware of available potential issues. That will provide insight into addressing these limitations and help display your researching and writing credibility.

5. Offer Recommendations Based on Implications

Including recommendations is an integral part of writing every conclusion of a dissertation. In this section, you can provide insight into how to address any issues you have uncovered in your study and make suggestions for future research. When including recommendations, you should first give an overview of the implications of your research and then link it to how you may deal with them. A bachelor conclusion ought to consist of advice for students to guide their future writing. Offer insights for further investigation based on data results and analysis of literature review . Below is an example of how to write dissertation conclusion recommendations:

The research discussed in this study provides several implications for employers, academics, and policymakers. For employers, the results of this study suggest that they should create policies and initiatives to promote workplace inclusion and diversity. Academics can use these findings to inform their research on gender discrimination in the workplace, and policymakers can develop initiatives to reduce it. Furthermore, future studies should explore other potential implications of gender discrimination in the workplace, such as pay, career development, and career advancement. Doing so would provide a more comprehensive understanding of the issue and potential solutions.

6. Conclude Your Dissertation with a Summary

The end of conclusion final chapter will close with a summary of the study. Wrapping up your dissertation or thesis conclusions is an excellent way to leave long-lasting impressions on your readers and ensure they remember all critical points of your research. You should summarize key points from previous sections and how they contribute to your overall context. When writing the conclusion chapter of a dissertation, the summary should be brief but comprehensive. Moreover, these findings can offer an innovative perspective on how to conclude a thesis or a dissertation. It provides comprehensive insights into outcomes and their relevance in today's world. Here is how to wrap up a conclusion of a dissertation example:

Overall, the findings from this research suggest that gender discrimination in the workplace has adverse effects on job satisfaction. Such discrimination often takes the form of unequal pay, career development opportunities, and access to promotions. Employers should take action to create policies that promote workplace inclusion and diversity to address this problem. Additionally, academics and policymakers should further explore the implications of gender discrimination in the workplace and develop initiatives to reduce it. The research provides a valuable starting point for understanding this complex issue and offers insight into potential solutions.

Thesis & Dissertation Conclusion Examples

Before writing a thesis or dissertation conclusion, you are encouraged to check at least two examples. These instances can provide insights on effectively linking your key findings with possible implications for future studies. In addition, you may use these examples as guides to writing your dissertation conclusions. Attached below is a thesis conclusion example sample.

Thesis paper conclusion example


Dissertation conclusion example

Mistakes to Avoid When Writing Dissertation Conclusions

Mistakes are inevitable when writing conclusions in a dissertation, but you can avoid them through careful proofreading and editing. Including new information or data in your dissertation or thesis conclusion chapter is one such mistake. The chapter should only incorporate information or data already mentioned and discussed in other preceding body paragraphs. How not to write a dissertation conclusion can be seen in complex language, lengthy sentences, and confusing grammar. In addition, one should evade making unsubstantiated claims or generalizations not supported by research findings. Shun writing phrases or any argument considered jargon. Lastly, ensuring that the conclusion chapter in a dissertation answers the research question and that you have provided sufficient evidence to support your conclusions is essential. Therefore, we simply recommend that you review and proofread it before submission. Following these tips mentioned above and examples of dissertation or thesis conclusions should help you write effectively.

Dissertation/ Thesis Dissertation Conclusion Writing Checklist

Writing a conclusion to a thesis paper or dissertation can be daunting because there is a lot of pressure to ensure you wrap up all the key points and tie together any loose ends. Checklists are helpful guides. The reason is that they provide practical tips on how to write dissertation conclusions by breaking each writing process down into manageable steps. Below is a checklist of important things you should keep in mind and follow when writing any conclusion:

  • checkbox There is a summary of the research objectives and findings.
  • checkbox I have covered research implications for a broader field.
  • checkbox I have offered study limitations and how to address them in future exploration.
  • checkbox I have provided recommendations for further research and applications of the findings.
  • checkbox I have made a summary of all main points from the discussion section.
  • checkbox I have explained why I chose that particular field for examination.
  • checkbox My main conclusions are stated.
  • checkbox I have proofread and edited my work after completion.

Final Thoughts on Dissertation Conclusion

The article discussed how to write the conclusion of a dissertation or thesis writing. It has outlined some critical steps and provided a checklist that you can use as a practical guide. Reasonable inferences require clear objectives, knowing the appropriate structure, addressing any limitations within your work, summarizing key points, providing recommendations for further research, and citing sources appropriately. Also, we offered some samples of how to write a thesis conclusion example. Following these steps will ensure that you conclude your dissertation or thesis writing successfully. Finally, proofread and edit your writing to provide high-quality outcome. All these tips will help you in writing a thesis or dissertation conclusion chapter that is effective and comprehensive.


Keep in mind that our expert writers are always here to support you! They can assist in preparing any section of your study. While we are assisting you with writing, you are relaxing your mind or focusing on other important tasks!

FAQ About How to Write a Conclusion to a Thesis or Dissertation

1. how to write a good thesis conclusion.

When writing every thesis conclusion, it's essential to focus on summarizing the key points, providing implications to that broader field, addressing any limitations, and making recommendations for further study. Additionally, it should be concise, clear, logical, and coherent. Finally, it's crucial to proofread and edit it to ensure its high quality.

2. How to start a dissertation conclusion?

Beginning each dissertation's concluding chapter is best done by restating the research question, as it provides the link between your introduction, research objectives, and conclusion. That allows an individual to transition smoothly into summarizing all main points from the discussion. For you to start a dissertation conclusion chapter effectively, it is essential to understand the purpose of writing it in the first place.

4. What is the difference between discussion and conclusion?

The difference between a discussion and a conclusion is in the depth of exploration. A discussion is a detailed assessment of the results, while a conclusion is shorter and more general. The discussion section will usually include a detailed analysis of the data collected, while the conclusion section will often provide an overview of the key points and implications. Additionally, this part will offer recommendations for further research.

3. Can I add new data in a conclusion of the dissertation?

No, including new data in the conclusion of a dissertation is not advisable. This section should summarize the research objectives, findings, and implications. Adding new data would not be appropriate as it may create confusion or inconsistency throughout your research. Conversely, it is prudent to summarize every content your work addresses.

5. How to end a thesis or a dissertation?

The end of a dissertation or a thesis should be memorable and end on a high note. One way to accomplish this is by including something unforgettable, such as a question, warning, or call to action. It will give every reader something to think about and engage in further discussion. 


Joe Eckel is an expert on Dissertations writing. He makes sure that each student gets precious insights on composing A-grade academic writing.


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How to Write a Thesis Conclusion and Recommendation Chapter?



A student is asked to write many papers during their time in college. However, a thesis is the ultimate and most important paper they are supposed to write. A lot depends on their thesis. It is accounted for as their final paper before getting their degrees. There are many professionals who stress the importance of writing a good thesis. They tend to focus a lot on the literature and the overall format. The thesis conclusion and recommendation chapter are the most underrated chapters. There’s hardly any discussion about them. However, they are equally important. The thesis conclusion and recommendation are of great importance. They are very important and leave a lasting impact on the minds of the readers. Which is why it is extremely important that the thesis conclusion and recommendation chapter are very well written.

Let us get a better understanding of how to write the thesis conclusion and recommendation chapter. But before we get to that, we should have better knowledge of thesis conclusion chapter.

What Is a Thesis Conclusion and Recommendation Chapter?

A thesis conclusion chapter is not like the conclusions of the rest of the academic papers you write. Unlike most conclusions, a thesis conclusion chapter consists of the overall summary of your literature . Whatever you write in your literature, it is written in a concise format in the conclusion. A good thesis conclusion is a blend of all the facts you have written in your main body. It gives you a brief summary of whatever you have written in your main body. A good conclusion is able to explain the entire gist of your thesis without omitting any major facts or figures.

On the other hand, the recommendations consist of all the recommendations you make. These recommendations can mainly be for future researches, government offices, or even corporate offices.

How to Write a Good Thesis Conclusion?

Here are a few points you should keep in mind while writing a thesis conclusion and recommendation chapters.

Stick to the Question

Keep in mind to provide answers to your research problems in your conclusion chapter. Explain all the problems you have highlighted in the course of your research. Make sure you provide the readers with answers to these questions with reference to your research. This will satisfy the readers and will leave them with a sense of completeness.

You must keep in mind to address your hypothesis in your thesis conclusion chapter. There is always a hypothesis a student begins with while writing the dissertation . Make sure you either confirm that hypothesis or reject it in your conclusion chapter. You must give out a verdict in your conclusion. That is the whole point behind writing it. If you don’t give out a verdict, then your entire research is pointless.


You must keep in mind that your conclusion is the summary of your literature. You must not introduce any new information in your thesis conclusion. This will completely confuse all your readers since they will be expecting a verdict on your hypothesis, not a new theory. Not only that, it will also leave a bad impression on their mind.

Say No to Examples

Like we’ve mentioned in the last step, you should not introduce any new facts and information in your conclusion. Introducing new facts in your conclusion will only confuse your readers.

No First Person’s

Because your conclusions are all about summarizing all the previously mentioned facts; you must make sure not to use the first person while writing. You are simply drawing a conclusion and giving a verdict considering all the facts you have mentioned in your main body. There is no room whatsoever for personal opinions. Which is why you shouldn’t use the first person.

Know the Difference Between Conclusion and Result

It is important that you understand the difference between a conclusion and a result. There’s a lot of difference between the two. Do not copy your result into the conclusion. In the result section, you write about what you have found while conducting your research. On the other hand, in the conclusion, you discuss your result and deliver a verdict.

Validate Your Sources

While recommending, you must make sure that your sources are credible and valid. Only recommend genuine sources and literature. Otherwise, it might leave a bad impression on the readers.

Now that you have understood all the points, you are capable of writing a good conclusion and recommendation chapter. In case you still need professional help or guidance, you can always opt for Uniresearchers . We have a highly trained and equipped team which is ready to help you with all your academic writings.

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  1. How to Write Recommendations in Research

    Recommendations for future research should be: Concrete and specific. Supported with a clear rationale. Directly connected to your research. Overall, strive to highlight ways other researchers can reproduce or replicate your results to draw further conclusions, and suggest different directions that future research can take, if applicable.

  2. How to Write Recommendations in Research

    Recommendation in research example. See below for a full research recommendation example that you can use as a template to write your own. Recommendation section. The current study can be interpreted as a first step in the research on COPD speech characteristics. However, the results of this study should be treated with caution due to the small ...

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    For example, recommendations from research on climate change can be used to develop policies that reduce carbon emissions and promote sustainability. Program development: Research recommendations can guide the development of programs that address specific issues. For example, recommendations from research on education can be used to develop ...

  4. What are Implications and Recommendations in Research? How to Write It

    Basic differences between implications and recommendations in research. Implications and recommendations in research are two important aspects of a research paper or your thesis or dissertation. Implications discuss the importance of the research findings, while recommendations offer specific actions to solve a problem.

  5. How to Write Recommendations in Research

    Here is a step-wise guide to build your understanding on the development of research recommendations. 1. Understand the Research Question: Understand the research question and objectives before writing recommendations. Also, ensure that your recommendations are relevant and directly address the goals of the study. 2.

  6. Dissertation Recommendations ~ How To Write Them

    Definition: Dissertation recommendations. Dissertation recommendations are the actionable insights and suggestions presented after you get your research findings. These suggestions are usually based on what you find and help to guide future studies or practical applications. It's best to place your dissertation recommendations at the conclusion.

  7. Implications or Recommendations in Research: What's the Difference

    High-quality research articles that get many citations contain both implications and recommendations. Implications are the impact your research makes, whereas recommendations are specific actions that can then be taken based on your findings, such as for more research or for policymaking. That seems clear enough, but the two are commonly confused.

  8. How to Write Recommendations in Research Paper

    Recommendations in a research paper: meaning and goals ... Research papers, dissertations, or theses typically adhere to a formal structure. Exposing all your arguments and findings in the thesis body is crucial. It's better to do it in the discussion and results chapters. The conclusion should serve as a summary and reflection of your ...

  9. How To Write A Dissertation Or Thesis

    Craft a convincing dissertation or thesis research proposal. Write a clear, compelling introduction chapter. Undertake a thorough review of the existing research and write up a literature review. Undertake your own research. Present and interpret your findings. Draw a conclusion and discuss the implications.

  10. What Is a Dissertation?

    A dissertation is a long-form piece of academic writing based on original research conducted by you. It is usually submitted as the final step in order to finish a PhD program. Your dissertation is probably the longest piece of writing you've ever completed. It requires solid research, writing, and analysis skills, and it can be intimidating ...

  11. Draft your Recommendations for Research

    Draft Recommendations for Research: In the introduction assert how many Recommendations for Research will be presented and relevance. Draft a paragraph or two of discussion for each recommendation. In each discussion, assert the Recommendation for Research and provide insights for how the recommendation would improve or extend the research.

  12. How to write recommendations for the study in a thesis report?

    TIP. While there is no required specific number of recommendations but 4 recommendations for every 20000 words in a thesis report is a general thumb. Limit the number of words in this section up to 5% of the total word count of your thesis report. This is to set a balance as to what else can be done and the current investigation.

  13. How to Write a Dissertation Conclusion

    Step 3: Make future recommendations. You may already have made a few recommendations for future research in your discussion section, but the conclusion is a good place to elaborate and look ahead, considering the implications of your findings in both theoretical and practical terms. Example: Recommendation sentence.

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    Revised on 5 May 2022. A dissertation is a large research project undertaken at the end of a degree. It involves in-depth consideration of a problem or question chosen by the student. It is usually the largest (and final) piece of written work produced during a degree. The length and structure of a dissertation vary widely depending on the ...

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    Recommendations in the research paper should come from your review and analysis For example It was observed that coaches interviewed were associated with the club were working with the club from the past 2-3 years only. This shows that the attrition rate of coaches is high and therefore clubs should work on reducing the turnover of coaches.

  17. Conclusions and recommendations for future research

    The initially stated overarching aim of this research was to identify the contextual factors and mechanisms that are regularly associated with effective and cost-effective public involvement in research. While recognising the limitations of our analysis, we believe we have largely achieved this in our revised theory of public involvement in research set out in Chapter 8. We have developed and ...


    6.2.6 Chapter 6: Summary, conclusions and recommendations. Chapter six, this Chapt er, presents the conclusions, guided by the research questions. as outlined in section 1.4 and section 5.4 ...

  19. Henley MBA: How To Write The Recommendations Chapter

    Directly address the key issues highlighted in your analysis. Explicitly discuss the "what". Justify your recommendations both practically and theoretically. Group similar recommendations and apply a consistent structure. Summarise your key recommendation at the end of the chapter. Note the assumptions and limitations.

  20. Thesis and Dissertation Conclusion Writing Guide & Examples

    The conclusion of a thesis or a dissertation is a long chapter — not one single sentence but a whole page or more. Generally, it should be 5-7% of the overall word count. The length of a thesis or dissertation conclusion chapter depends on several factors, such as your academic field, research topic, and stated number of pages.

  21. How to Write a Thesis or Dissertation Conclusion

    Step 1: Answer your research question. Step 2: Summarize and reflect on your research. Step 3: Make future recommendations. Step 4: Emphasize your contributions to your field. Step 5: Wrap up your thesis or dissertation. Full conclusion example. Conclusion checklist. Other interesting articles.

  22. How to Write a Thesis Conclusion and Recommendation Chapter?

    Keep in mind to provide answers to your research problems in your conclusion chapter. Explain all the problems you have highlighted in the course of your research. Make sure you provide the readers with answers to these questions with reference to your research. This will satisfy the readers and will leave them with a sense of completeness.

  23. What Are The Recommendations In a Dissertation?

    The conclusions and recommendations chapter is the most important chapter of a dissertation. The term conclusions are different from the conclusion. To write down the conclusion, it is necessary for the students to provide a brief summary of all the main points of the dissertation.