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Who here has written a dissertation?

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yiddo
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2009/07/15 23:03:10 (permalink)

Who here has written a dissertation?

I currently have 6 and half weeks to write a 15k word dissertation on the reform of the law surroubnding the defence of provocation in murder..
 
I have done a lot of reading/reserach but am struggling to put it all together and the clock is really ticking now
 
Who here has writtena  dissertation and do you have any tips at all on how to write one or that may help me?
 
Cheers
#1

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    evad
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/15 23:08:28 (permalink)
    i've done one, 6 weeks is a tall order depending on how far you are in

    the tip with a dissertation is to keep records of all of you information, and do your references, etc as you go along, it seems like your not really getting anywhere but in the end in the last couple of weeks it saves spending 2 weeks just checking commas, etc are in the right place

    i did a 28k word one in the end
    #2
    erekose
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/15 23:24:30 (permalink)
    I used to write summaries / notes of different points - put them all together and you have a basic essay structure.  Then you go through taking each note / summary at a time and do the actual writing.

    This breaks it into manageable chunks so the whole process doesn't seem quite so daunting as you are maybe only doing 500-800 words at a time.  Aim to do one or two chunks per day and then switch to research for the next days chunks.
    #3
    AWG
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/15 23:27:01 (permalink)
    If it's any consolation to you, when I reach my final year I don't have to do a dissertation
    #4
    Red_Alert
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/15 23:29:42 (permalink)
    Yep. Was about 18,000 words. Took about 12 months total with say 2 months solid writing/editing.

    Good luck with that.

    "I believe in taking care of myself" - Patrick Bateman
      
    #5
    yiddo
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/15 23:44:55 (permalink)
    AWG

    If it's any consolation to you, when I reach my final year I don't have to do a dissertation


    None whatsoever
    #6
    AWG
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/15 23:47:47 (permalink)
    Not that I am aware of
    #7
    badladmark
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/15 23:53:59 (permalink)
    Decide in advance what the main thrust of your argument is gong to be and build from there.

    If you're doing a standard undergraduate literature review type dissertation, then I'd suggest doing a chronological piece outlining key developments. Include comparison literature, and debate the pro's and con's of the current situation.

    #8
    tac
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/16 00:45:53 (permalink)
    if you're using firefox (you should be anyway) then download zotero - its a godsend and will do all the referencing for you


    #9
    Dave284
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/16 01:15:31 (permalink)
    Did a 10k last year and have a 20k masters one in for Sept 11th.
     
    If you have all your research done then 6 weeks is ****ing ages to be honest. I havent written a word and im not worried in the slightest.
     
    Best advice I can give you is to break it down and then to effectively micro-manage. For instance im basically doing 2, 2000 word essays (intro and conc) and then 4, 4000 word chapters. Each chapter will have an intro and conc and then 3 borad sections etc etc etc. Map it all on paper and then you are hot to trot.
     
    Research is what takes the time, ive spent months ****ing about in archives. Writing should be the good part.
    #10
    just t
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/16 01:16:39 (permalink)
    Im still doing mine................... YAWN

    Influence of common cooking methods on the myrosinase activity of white cabbage.

    .................... :(

    Done my lit rev, method, got my results. Just need to write up my results and do my discussion and edit it all. prob take me a month?

    #11
    bizzlewood
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/16 07:32:28 (permalink)
    i started mine in the summer, what ever you do dont rush it you will only regret it
    #12
    littlejones
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/16 08:42:16 (permalink)
    6 weeks is fine. You only really need one week to do the actual writing if it's about 10-15,000 words.

    Mine was "How has the 'information age' changed the ways in which terrorist groups operate?" or something like that. I'm a lazy bastard and my girlfriend went to all the lectures throughout the 2 years I was going out with her while I stayed in bed. I ended up with a first and her a 2.2 - needless to say the relationship didn't last much longer after the results came out!

    My lazy man's advice: Go to the library and take out every book you can remotely related to the subject. Don't read the books. Instead, spend a couple of days flicking through them looking for any quotes that sound good and mark down what page they're on. My entire dissertation was built on quotes from other authors and virtually every paragraph contained one and I just wrote my thoughts around them. Then spend a day deciding the titles of your chapters and working out how many words you'll do for each to reach the word count. Then decide which quotes you're going to put in which chapters and in which order. Once you've done this then the hardest bit about writing the damn thing is the Introduction and Methodology, for which I recommend searching google and looking at other people's and taking all of the 'big' 'intelligent' words and sticking them in yours.
    #13
    mad_cereal_lover
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/16 09:49:15 (permalink)
    As said if research is done, then 6 weeks is a decent time.

    I did 3 dissertations in the region of 15-20,000 words each I wrote in 2-3 weeks.

    I did a PhD thesis in 3 months writing in excess of 50,000 words.

    The best thing to do IMO is make a layout.  So start with the basic structure.  For me this was Abstract, then Intro (lit review) then Methods chapter then results chapter (4 in total, each with short specific intro, results, discussion), overall discussion, conclusion, references.  Then expand on each area in your plan - specific things to talk about in each area.  Eg, in intro you might put in your plan subheadings.  these can change around, but seeing it in front of you allows you to set up a good flow and how you will start from the basic and cover what you are researching, and how it connects together. 

    this gives you a structure of writing.  the problem with "just writing" is that you will go off on tangents, things all over the place, in wrong order, illogical at times when you read it back.  A structure and outline that is a guide to you helps you correct this before it happens and breaks it down into chunks that you can work on at a time, also helps with time management.

    mcl
    #14
    evad
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/16 17:59:46 (permalink)
    tac

    if you're using firefox (you should be anyway) then download zotero - its a godsend and will do all the referencing for you


    apart from if your uni specifies a certain type of referencing
    #15
    Rasputin
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/16 18:01:59 (permalink)
    Wrote my 17k dissertation in a week from doing all the research then spent another 5 weeks tweaking and fine tuning it. Once you actually get down to it there pretty easy... 

    Get organised early set targets and you will find it really easy i loved doing mine

    Ras


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    #16
    yiddo
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    Re:Who here has written a dissertation? 2009/07/17 17:57:26 (permalink)
    Thanks lads some good advice there and what I was after

    Littlejones that sounds very much like the sort of research I usually do for my essays! I have got a fairbit of research done, altho nowhere near enough yet, but what I will do now is some planning and make sure I dont go off on a tangent like you say

    Cheers
    #17
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