If you are studying at undergraduate or masters level it's likely that you will have to write a dissertation, critical essay or project report before you can graduate. Unfortunately, many good pieces of student research and inquiry are devalued - and sometimes even fail - because they are badly planned, structured or written. Make all that hard work count! This new guide looks directly at the processes, techniques and objectives of writing the dissertation itself. It covers longer term aspects - such as planning, scheduling, structuring - and more immediate ones - such as style, detail and managing the length. - Learn how to understand and decode the academic language of research questions, learning outcomes, objectives and assessment criteria, and translate them into the right form of words. - Discover how to maintain that essential focus on your objectives and research question or hypothesis, and their connection to your discussion and eventual conclusions. - Develop a schedule, identifying the tasks and milestones that will keep you on track, and update the plan as you go. - Find a style and structure that will help shape your writing to satisfy the examiners.
- Manage the overall length and chapter lengths, and learn how to cut excess content and avoid repetition. - Master the technicalities of dissertation writing, such as methodologies, literature reviews, note systems, referencing...- Learn to how to transform an adequate dissertation into a good one by attending to fluency and detail - grammar, accuracy, consistency, punctuation - and the controlled use of aids such as spellcheckers and style checkers. - Avoid plagiarism and other evils. How can you avoid falling into cheating, either by accident or by carelessness under pressure? With examples and self-checking exercises to help you to stay on the right track, this essential guide will also serve as a valuable aid to all types of academic writing. Contents: CONTENTS; Preface; Introduction; 1.RTFM; 2. Planning, scheduling and resources; 3. Some formal elements; 4. The rigours of reasoning; 5. Using and managing information technology; 6. Stop dithering - just write; 7. Working with notes and references; 8. When things go wrong; 9. The dark side; 10. The final frontier; Further reading; Index