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A General Guide to PhD Dissertation Word Count And Structure

When students are asked to write a PhD dissertation, the first thing that comes to the minds of the students is how to structure the dissertation and how to the breakdown word count of the dissertation. Its reason is that the structure of a dissertation is different from other academic papers. Moreover, a dissertation is also divided into different chapters. Most of the students don’t know how many words are included in the different chapters of the dissertation. Here, we will provide a general guide about the PhD dissertation word count and structure.


1) Preliminary pages

In the structure of the PhD dissertation, first of all, there come preliminary pages. These preliminary pages include specific information about the dissertation. The first preliminary page is a title page and it includes information about dissertation title, student’s name, supervisor’s name and department’s name etc. Second is known as acknowledgement page in which students have to thank all the people who are remained helpful for him while writing the dissertation. The third is abstract which provides a short summary of the dissertation. Fourth is a table of contents which provides an overview of the list of headings and sub-headings along with page numbers. In a similar way, students have to write a list of tables, list figures and glossary etc. 

2) Introduction

After preparing the preliminary pages of the dissertation, you have to compose the introductory section of the dissertation. The length of the introductory section of the dissertation is 10% of the length of the whole dissertation. It means that in 10,000 words dissertation, the word count for the introductory section should be 1000 words. In a similar way, you can adjust the word count of the introductory section of the dissertation accordingly. In this essential chapter of the dissertation, it is necessary for us to establish the research work and to provide necessary background information about the research topic. 

3) Literature review

To write a dissertation, we have to gather data from different resources. The literature review chapter of the dissertation provides us with a chance to critically analyze all of these resources. The length of the literature review chapter of the dissertation is 30%. It means that in 10,000 words dissertation, the word count for the literature review chapter of the dissertation should be 3000. Anyhow, you can adjust the length of the literature review chapter accordingly. 

4) Research methodology

The research methodology is also an essential chapter of your dissertation. In the research methodology chapter of the dissertation, you should try to provide an overview of the overall approach and type of research, possible methods of the data collection and possible methods to analyze the data. The length of the research methodology chapter of a dissertation should be 15%. It means that if you are going to write a dissertation of 10,000 words, the research methodology chapter of your dissertation should be 1500 words. You can also adjust word cont for the research methodology chapter of your dissertation accordingly. 

5) Findings

Results or findings is also an essential chapter of the dissertation. Its reason is that in the results or findings section of the dissertation, you have to write all of those findings that you have found while conducting effective research for your dissertation. While presenting results in the findings section of the dissertation, you can also use tables, figures, charts and graphs. The length of the findings section of the dissertation should be 5%. It means in 10,000 words dissertation, the findings section of the dissertation should consist of 500 words. 

6) Discussion 

Discussion is also an essential chapter of the PhD dissertation and it is also known as the lengthiest chapter of the dissertation along with literature review. The discussion chapter of the dissertation provides you with a platform to explore the meanings of your dissertation by relating the key results or key findings with the main objectives and hypothesis of the dissertation. The length of the discussion chapter of a dissertation is also 30%. It means that in 10,000 words dissertation, the length of the discussion chapter should be 3000 words. 

7) Conclusions

The last chapter of the dissertation is known as the conclusion chapter. In the concluding section of the dissertation, you have to summarize all the main points of your dissertation. The length of the concluding chapter of the dissertation should be 10%. It means that in 10,000 words dissertation, the concluding section of the dissertation should consist of 1000 words. 

8) References section

To write a dissertation, you have to gather data from different resources. It is necessary for you to provide references for these resources in the references section of the dissertation. It will save you dissertation from the plagiarism issues. 

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