The Savvy Scientist

The Savvy Scientist

Experiences of a London PhD student and beyond

Thesis Title: Examples and Suggestions from a PhD Grad

Graphic of a researcher writing, perhaps a thesis title

When you’re faced with writing up a thesis, choosing a title can often fall to the bottom of the priority list. After all, it’s only a few words. How hard can it be?!

In the grand scheme of things I agree that picking your thesis title shouldn’t warrant that much thought, however my own choice is one of the few regrets I have from my PhD . I therefore think there is value in spending some time considering the options available.

In this post I’ll guide you through how to write your own thesis title and share real-world examples. Although my focus is on the PhD thesis, I’ve also included plenty of thesis title examples for bachelor’s and master’s research projects too.

Hopefully by the end of the post you’ll feel ready to start crafting your own!

Why your thesis title is at least somewhat important

It sounds obvious but your thesis title is the first, and often only, interaction people will have with your thesis. For instance, hiring managers for jobs that you may wish to apply for in the future. Therefore you want to give a good sense of what your research involved from the title.

Many people will list the title of their thesis on their CV, at least for a while after graduating. All of the example titles I’ve shared below came from my repository of academic CVs . I’d say roughly 30% of all the academics on that page list their thesis title, which includes academics all the way up to full professor.

Your thesis title could therefore feature on your CV for your whole career, so it is probably worth a bit of thought!

My suggestions for choosing a good thesis title

  • Make it descriptive of the research so it’s immediately obvious what it is about! Most universities will publish student theses online ( here’s mine! ) and they’re indexed so can be found via Google Scholar etc. Therefore give your thesis a descriptive title so that interested researchers can find it in the future.
  • Don’t get lost in the detail . You want a descriptive title but avoid overly lengthy descriptions of experiments. Unless a certain analytical technique etc was central to your research, I’d suggest by default* to avoid having it in your title. Including certain techniques will make your title, and therefore research, look overly dated, which isn’t ideal for potential job applications after you graduate.
  • The title should tie together the chapters of your thesis. A well-phrased title can do a good job of summarising the overall story of your thesis. Think about each of your research chapters and ensure that the title makes sense for each of them.
  • Be strategic . Certain parts of your work you want to emphasise? Consider making them more prominent in your title. For instance, if you know you want to pivot to a slightly different research area or career path after your PhD, there may be alternative phrasings which describe your work just as well but could be better understood by those in the field you’re moving into. I utilised this a bit in my own title which we’ll come onto shortly.
  • Do your own thing. Having just laid out some suggestions, do make sure you’re personally happy with the title. You get a lot of freedom to choose your title, so use it however you fancy. For example, I’ve known people to use puns in their title, so if that’s what you’re into don’t feel overly constrained.

*This doesn’t always hold true and certainly don’t take my advice if 1) listing something in your title could be a strategic move 2) you love the technique so much that you’re desperate to include it!

Thesis title examples

To help give you some ideas, here are some example thesis titles from Bachelors, Masters and PhD graduates. These all came from the academic CVs listed in my repository here .

Bachelor’s thesis title examples

Hysteresis and Avalanches Paul Jager , 2014 – Medical Imaging – DKFZ Head of ML Research Group –  direct link to Paul’s machine learning academic CV

The bioenergetics of a marine ciliate, Mesodinium rubrum Holly Moeller , 2008 – Ecology & Marine Biology – UC Santa Barbara Assistant Professor –  direct link to Holly’s marine biology academic CV

Functional syntactic analysis of prepositional and causal constructions for a grammatical parser of Russian Ekaterina Kochmar , 2008 – Computer Science – University of Bath Lecturer Assistant Prof –  direct link to Ekaterina’s computer science academic CV

Master’s thesis title examples

Creation of an autonomous impulse response measurement system for rooms and transducers with different methods Guy-Bart Stan , 2000 – Bioengineering – Imperial Professor –  direct link to Guy-Bart’s bioengineering academic CV

Segmentation of Nerve Bundles and Ganglia in Spine MRI using Particle Filters Adrian Vasile Dalca , 2012 – Machine Learning for healthcare – Harvard Assistant Professor & MIT Research Scientist –  direct link to Adrian’s machine learning academic CV

The detection of oil under ice by remote mode conversion of ultrasound Eric Yeatman , 1986 – Electronics – Imperial Professor and Head of Department –  direct link to Eric’s electronics academic CV

Ensemble-Based Learning for Morphological Analysis of German Ekaterina Kochmar , 2010 – Computer Science – University of Bath Lecturer Assistant Prof –  direct link to Ekaterina’s computer science academic CV

VARiD: A Variation Detection Framework for Color-Space and Letter-Space Platforms Adrian Vasile Dalca , 2010 – Machine Learning for healthcare – Harvard Assistant Professor & MIT Research Scientist –  direct link to Adrian’s machine learning academic CV

Identification of a Writer’s Native Language by Error Analysis Ekaterina Kochmar , 2011 – Computer Science – University of Bath Lecturer Assistant Prof –  direct link to Ekaterina’s computer science academic CV

On the economic optimality of marine reserves when fishing damages habitat Holly Moeller , 2010 – Ecology & Marine Biology – UC Santa Barbara Assistant Professor –  direct link to Holly’s marine biology academic CV

Sensitivity Studies for the Time-Dependent CP Violation Measurement in B 0 → K S K S K S at the Belle II-Experiment Paul Jager , 2016 – Medical Imaging – DKFZ Head of ML Research Group –  direct link to Paul’s machine learning academic CV

PhD thesis title examples

Spatio-temporal analysis of three-dimensional real-time ultrasound for quantification of ventricular function Esla Angelini  – Medicine – Imperial Senior Data Scientist –  direct link to Elsa’s medicine academic CV

The role and maintenance of diversity in a multi-partner mutualism: Trees and Ectomycorrhizal Fungi Holly Moeller , 2015 – Ecology & Marine Biology – UC Santa Barbara Assistant Professor –  direct link to Holly’s marine biology academic CV

Bayesian Gaussian processes for sequential prediction, optimisation and quadrature Michael Osborne , 2010 – Machine Learning – Oxford Full Professor –  direct link to Michael’s machine learning academic CV

Global analysis and synthesis of oscillations: a dissipativity approach Guy-Bart Stan , 2005 – Bioengineering – Imperial Professor –  direct link to Guy-Bart’s bioengineering academic CV

Coarse-grained modelling of DNA and DNA self-assembly Thomas Ouldridge , 2011– Bioengineering – Imperial College London Senior Lecturer / Associate Prof –  direct link to Thomas’ bioengineering academic CV

4D tomographic image reconstruction and parametric maps estimation: a model-based strategy for algorithm design using Bayesian inference in Probabilistic Graphical Models (PGM) Michele Scipioni , 2018– Biomedical Engineer – Harvard Postdoctoral Research Fellow –  direct link to Michele’s biomedical engineer academic CV

Error Detection in Content Word Combinations Ekaterina Kochmar , 2016 – Computer Science – University of Bath Lecturer Assistant Prof –  direct link to Ekaterina’s computer science academic CV

Genetic, Clinical and Population Priors for Brain Images Adrian Vasile Dalca , 2016 – Machine Learning for healthcare – Harvard Assistant Professor & MIT Research Scientist –  direct link to Adrian’s machine learning academic CV

Challenges and Opportunities of End-to-End Learning in Medical Image Classification Paul Jager , 2020 – Medical Imaging – DKFZ Head of ML Research Group –  direct link to Paul’s machine learning academic CV

K 2 NiF 4  materials as cathodes for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells Ainara Aguadero , 2006 – Materials Science – Imperial Reader –  direct link to Ainara’s materials science academic CV

Applications of surface plasmons – microscopy and spatial light modulation Eric Yeatman , 1989 – Electronics – Imperial Professor and Head of Department –  direct link to Eric’s electronics academic CV

Geometric Algorithms for Objects in Motion Sorelle Friedler , 2010 – Computer science – Haverford College Associate Professor –  direct link to Sorelle’s computer science academic CV .

Geometrical models, constraints design, information extraction for pathological and healthy medical image Esla Angelini  – Medicine – Imperial Senior Data Scientist –  direct link to Elsa’s medicine academic CV

Why I regret my own choice of PhD thesis title

I should say from the outset that I assembled my thesis in quite a short space of time compared to most people. So I didn’t really spend particularly long on any one section, including the title.

However, my main supervisor even spelled out for me that once the title was submitted to the university it would be permanent. In other words: think wisely about your title.

What I started with

Initially I drafted the title as something like: Three dimensional correlative imaging for cartilage regeneration . Which I thought was nice, catchy and descriptive.

I decided to go for “correlative imaging” because, not only did it describe the experiments well, but it also sounded kind of technical and fitting of a potential pivot into AI. I’m pleased with that bit of the title.

What I ended up with

Before submitting the title to the university (required ahead of the viva), I asked my supervisors for their thoughts.

One of my well intentioned supervisors suggested that, given that my project didn’t involve verifying regenerative quality, I probably shouldn’t state cartilage regeneration . Instead, they suggested, I should state what I was experimenting on (the materials) rather than the overall goal of the research (aid cartilage regeneration efforts).

With this advice I dialled back my choice of wording and the thesis title I went with was:

Three dimensional correlative imaging for measurement of strain in cartilage and cartilage replacement materials

Reading it back now I’m reminder about how less I like it than my initial idea!

I put up basically no resistance to the supervisor’s choice, even though the title sounds so much more boring in my opinion. I just didn’t think much of it at the time. Furthermore, most of my PhD was actually in a technique which is four dimensional (looking at a series of 3D scans over time, hence 4D) which would have sounded way more sciency and fitting of a PhD.

What I wish I’d gone with

If I had the choice again, I’d have gone with:

Four-dimensional correlative imaging for cartilage regeneration

Which, would you believe it, is exactly what it states on my CV…

Does the thesis title really matter?

In all honesty, your choice of thesis title isn’t that important. If you come to regret it, as I do, it’s not the end of the world. There are much more important things in life to worry about.

If you decide at a later stage that you don’t like it you can always describe it in a way that you prefer. For instance, in my CV I describe my PhD as I’d have liked the title to be. I make no claim that it’s actually the title so consider it a bit of creative license.

Given that as your career progresses you may not even refer back to your thesis much, it’s really not worth stressing over. However, if you’re yet to finalise your thesis title I do still think it is worth a bit of thought and hopefully this article has provided some insights into how to choose a good thesis title.

My advice for developing a thesis title

  • Draft the title early. Drafting it early can help give clarity for the overall message of your research. For instance, while you’re assembling the rest of your thesis you can check that the title encompasses the research chapters you’re included, and likewise that the research experiments you’re including fall within what the title describes. Drafting it early also gives more time you to think it over. As with everything: having a first draft is really important to iterate on.
  • Look at some example titles . Such as those featured above!
  • If you’re not sure about your title, ask a few other people what they think . But remember that you have the final say!

I hope this post has been useful for those of you are finalising your thesis and need to decide on a thesis title. If you’ve enjoyed this article and would like to hear about future content (and gain access to my free resource library!) you can subscribe for free here:

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SciSpace Resources

What is a thesis | A Complete Guide with Examples

Madalsa

Table of Contents

A thesis is a comprehensive academic paper based on your original research that presents new findings, arguments, and ideas of your study. It’s typically submitted at the end of your master’s degree or as a capstone of your bachelor’s degree.

However, writing a thesis can be laborious, especially for beginners. From the initial challenge of pinpointing a compelling research topic to organizing and presenting findings, the process is filled with potential pitfalls.

Therefore, to help you, this guide talks about what is a thesis. Additionally, it offers revelations and methodologies to transform it from an overwhelming task to a manageable and rewarding academic milestone.

What is a thesis?

A thesis is an in-depth research study that identifies a particular topic of inquiry and presents a clear argument or perspective about that topic using evidence and logic.

Writing a thesis showcases your ability of critical thinking, gathering evidence, and making a compelling argument. Integral to these competencies is thorough research, which not only fortifies your propositions but also confers credibility to your entire study.

Furthermore, there's another phenomenon you might often confuse with the thesis: the ' working thesis .' However, they aren't similar and shouldn't be used interchangeably.

A working thesis, often referred to as a preliminary or tentative thesis, is an initial version of your thesis statement. It serves as a draft or a starting point that guides your research in its early stages.

As you research more and gather more evidence, your initial thesis (aka working thesis) might change. It's like a starting point that can be adjusted as you learn more. It's normal for your main topic to change a few times before you finalize it.

While a thesis identifies and provides an overarching argument, the key to clearly communicating the central point of that argument lies in writing a strong thesis statement.

What is a thesis statement?

A strong thesis statement (aka thesis sentence) is a concise summary of the main argument or claim of the paper. It serves as a critical anchor in any academic work, succinctly encapsulating the primary argument or main idea of the entire paper.

Typically found within the introductory section, a strong thesis statement acts as a roadmap of your thesis, directing readers through your arguments and findings. By delineating the core focus of your investigation, it offers readers an immediate understanding of the context and the gravity of your study.

Furthermore, an effectively crafted thesis statement can set forth the boundaries of your research, helping readers anticipate the specific areas of inquiry you are addressing.

Different types of thesis statements

A good thesis statement is clear, specific, and arguable. Therefore, it is necessary for you to choose the right type of thesis statement for your academic papers.

Thesis statements can be classified based on their purpose and structure. Here are the primary types of thesis statements:

Argumentative (or Persuasive) thesis statement

Purpose : To convince the reader of a particular stance or point of view by presenting evidence and formulating a compelling argument.

Example : Reducing plastic use in daily life is essential for environmental health.

Analytical thesis statement

Purpose : To break down an idea or issue into its components and evaluate it.

Example : By examining the long-term effects, social implications, and economic impact of climate change, it becomes evident that immediate global action is necessary.

Expository (or Descriptive) thesis statement

Purpose : To explain a topic or subject to the reader.

Example : The Great Depression, spanning the 1930s, was a severe worldwide economic downturn triggered by a stock market crash, bank failures, and reduced consumer spending.

Cause and effect thesis statement

Purpose : To demonstrate a cause and its resulting effect.

Example : Overuse of smartphones can lead to impaired sleep patterns, reduced face-to-face social interactions, and increased levels of anxiety.

Compare and contrast thesis statement

Purpose : To highlight similarities and differences between two subjects.

Example : "While both novels '1984' and 'Brave New World' delve into dystopian futures, they differ in their portrayal of individual freedom, societal control, and the role of technology."

When you write a thesis statement , it's important to ensure clarity and precision, so the reader immediately understands the central focus of your work.

What is the difference between a thesis and a thesis statement?

While both terms are frequently used interchangeably, they have distinct meanings.

A thesis refers to the entire research document, encompassing all its chapters and sections. In contrast, a thesis statement is a brief assertion that encapsulates the central argument of the research.

Here’s an in-depth differentiation table of a thesis and a thesis statement.

Aspect

Thesis

Thesis Statement

Definition

An extensive document presenting the author's research and findings, typically for a degree or professional qualification.

A concise sentence or two in an essay or research paper that outlines the main idea or argument.  

Position

It’s the entire document on its own.

Typically found at the end of the introduction of an essay, research paper, or thesis.

Components

Introduction, methodology, results, conclusions, and bibliography or references.

Doesn't include any specific components

Purpose

Provides detailed research, presents findings, and contributes to a field of study. 

To guide the reader about the main point or argument of the paper or essay.

Now, to craft a compelling thesis, it's crucial to adhere to a specific structure. Let’s break down these essential components that make up a thesis structure

15 components of a thesis structure

Navigating a thesis can be daunting. However, understanding its structure can make the process more manageable.

Here are the key components or different sections of a thesis structure:

Your thesis begins with the title page. It's not just a formality but the gateway to your research.

title-page-of-a-thesis

Here, you'll prominently display the necessary information about you (the author) and your institutional details.

  • Title of your thesis
  • Your full name
  • Your department
  • Your institution and degree program
  • Your submission date
  • Your Supervisor's name (in some cases)
  • Your Department or faculty (in some cases)
  • Your University's logo (in some cases)
  • Your Student ID (in some cases)

In a concise manner, you'll have to summarize the critical aspects of your research in typically no more than 200-300 words.

Abstract-section-of-a-thesis

This includes the problem statement, methodology, key findings, and conclusions. For many, the abstract will determine if they delve deeper into your work, so ensure it's clear and compelling.

Acknowledgments

Research is rarely a solitary endeavor. In the acknowledgments section, you have the chance to express gratitude to those who've supported your journey.

Acknowledgement-section-of-a-thesis

This might include advisors, peers, institutions, or even personal sources of inspiration and support. It's a personal touch, reflecting the humanity behind the academic rigor.

Table of contents

A roadmap for your readers, the table of contents lists the chapters, sections, and subsections of your thesis.

Table-of-contents-of-a-thesis

By providing page numbers, you allow readers to navigate your work easily, jumping to sections that pique their interest.

List of figures and tables

Research often involves data, and presenting this data visually can enhance understanding. This section provides an organized listing of all figures and tables in your thesis.

List-of-tables-and-figures-in-a-thesis

It's a visual index, ensuring that readers can quickly locate and reference your graphical data.

Introduction

Here's where you introduce your research topic, articulate the research question or objective, and outline the significance of your study.

Introduction-section-of-a-thesis

  • Present the research topic : Clearly articulate the central theme or subject of your research.
  • Background information : Ground your research topic, providing any necessary context or background information your readers might need to understand the significance of your study.
  • Define the scope : Clearly delineate the boundaries of your research, indicating what will and won't be covered.
  • Literature review : Introduce any relevant existing research on your topic, situating your work within the broader academic conversation and highlighting where your research fits in.
  • State the research Question(s) or objective(s) : Clearly articulate the primary questions or objectives your research aims to address.
  • Outline the study's structure : Give a brief overview of how the subsequent sections of your work will unfold, guiding your readers through the journey ahead.

The introduction should captivate your readers, making them eager to delve deeper into your research journey.

Literature review section

Your study correlates with existing research. Therefore, in the literature review section, you'll engage in a dialogue with existing knowledge, highlighting relevant studies, theories, and findings.

Literature-review-section-thesis

It's here that you identify gaps in the current knowledge, positioning your research as a bridge to new insights.

To streamline this process, consider leveraging AI tools. For example, the SciSpace literature review tool enables you to efficiently explore and delve into research papers, simplifying your literature review journey.

Methodology

In the research methodology section, you’ll detail the tools, techniques, and processes you employed to gather and analyze data. This section will inform the readers about how you approached your research questions and ensures the reproducibility of your study.

Methodology-section-thesis

Here's a breakdown of what it should encompass:

  • Research Design : Describe the overall structure and approach of your research. Are you conducting a qualitative study with in-depth interviews? Or is it a quantitative study using statistical analysis? Perhaps it's a mixed-methods approach?
  • Data Collection : Detail the methods you used to gather data. This could include surveys, experiments, observations, interviews, archival research, etc. Mention where you sourced your data, the duration of data collection, and any tools or instruments used.
  • Sampling : If applicable, explain how you selected participants or data sources for your study. Discuss the size of your sample and the rationale behind choosing it.
  • Data Analysis : Describe the techniques and tools you used to process and analyze the data. This could range from statistical tests in quantitative research to thematic analysis in qualitative research.
  • Validity and Reliability : Address the steps you took to ensure the validity and reliability of your findings to ensure that your results are both accurate and consistent.
  • Ethical Considerations : Highlight any ethical issues related to your research and the measures you took to address them, including — informed consent, confidentiality, and data storage and protection measures.

Moreover, different research questions necessitate different types of methodologies. For instance:

  • Experimental methodology : Often used in sciences, this involves a controlled experiment to discern causality.
  • Qualitative methodology : Employed when exploring patterns or phenomena without numerical data. Methods can include interviews, focus groups, or content analysis.
  • Quantitative methodology : Concerned with measurable data and often involves statistical analysis. Surveys and structured observations are common tools here.
  • Mixed methods : As the name implies, this combines both qualitative and quantitative methodologies.

The Methodology section isn’t just about detailing the methods but also justifying why they were chosen. The appropriateness of the methods in addressing your research question can significantly impact the credibility of your findings.

Results (or Findings)

This section presents the outcomes of your research. It's crucial to note that the nature of your results may vary; they could be quantitative, qualitative, or a mix of both.

Results-section-thesis

Quantitative results often present statistical data, showcasing measurable outcomes, and they benefit from tables, graphs, and figures to depict these data points.

Qualitative results , on the other hand, might delve into patterns, themes, or narratives derived from non-numerical data, such as interviews or observations.

Regardless of the nature of your results, clarity is essential. This section is purely about presenting the data without offering interpretations — that comes later in the discussion.

In the discussion section, the raw data transforms into valuable insights.

Start by revisiting your research question and contrast it with the findings. How do your results expand, constrict, or challenge current academic conversations?

Dive into the intricacies of the data, guiding the reader through its implications. Detail potential limitations transparently, signaling your awareness of the research's boundaries. This is where your academic voice should be resonant and confident.

Practical implications (Recommendation) section

Based on the insights derived from your research, this section provides actionable suggestions or proposed solutions.

Whether aimed at industry professionals or the general public, recommendations translate your academic findings into potential real-world actions. They help readers understand the practical implications of your work and how it can be applied to effect change or improvement in a given field.

When crafting recommendations, it's essential to ensure they're feasible and rooted in the evidence provided by your research. They shouldn't merely be aspirational but should offer a clear path forward, grounded in your findings.

The conclusion provides closure to your research narrative.

It's not merely a recap but a synthesis of your main findings and their broader implications. Reconnect with the research questions or hypotheses posited at the beginning, offering clear answers based on your findings.

Conclusion-section-thesis

Reflect on the broader contributions of your study, considering its impact on the academic community and potential real-world applications.

Lastly, the conclusion should leave your readers with a clear understanding of the value and impact of your study.

References (or Bibliography)

Every theory you've expounded upon, every data point you've cited, and every methodological precedent you've followed finds its acknowledgment here.

References-section-thesis

In references, it's crucial to ensure meticulous consistency in formatting, mirroring the specific guidelines of the chosen citation style .

Proper referencing helps to avoid plagiarism , gives credit to original ideas, and allows readers to explore topics of interest. Moreover, it situates your work within the continuum of academic knowledge.

To properly cite the sources used in the study, you can rely on online citation generator tools  to generate accurate citations!

Here’s more on how you can cite your sources.

Often, the depth of research produces a wealth of material that, while crucial, can make the core content of the thesis cumbersome. The appendix is where you mention extra information that supports your research but isn't central to the main text.

Appendices-section-thesis

Whether it's raw datasets, detailed procedural methodologies, extended case studies, or any other ancillary material, the appendices ensure that these elements are archived for reference without breaking the main narrative's flow.

For thorough researchers and readers keen on meticulous details, the appendices provide a treasure trove of insights.

Glossary (optional)

In academics, specialized terminologies, and jargon are inevitable. However, not every reader is versed in every term.

The glossary, while optional, is a critical tool for accessibility. It's a bridge ensuring that even readers from outside the discipline can access, understand, and appreciate your work.

Glossary-section-of-a-thesis

By defining complex terms and providing context, you're inviting a wider audience to engage with your research, enhancing its reach and impact.

Remember, while these components provide a structured framework, the essence of your thesis lies in the originality of your ideas, the rigor of your research, and the clarity of your presentation.

As you craft each section, keep your readers in mind, ensuring that your passion and dedication shine through every page.

Thesis examples

To further elucidate the concept of a thesis, here are illustrative examples from various fields:

Example 1 (History): Abolition, Africans, and Abstraction: the Influence of the ‘Noble Savage’ on British and French Antislavery Thought, 1787-1807 by Suchait Kahlon.
Example 2 (Climate Dynamics): Influence of external forcings on abrupt millennial-scale climate changes: a statistical modelling study by Takahito Mitsui · Michel Crucifix

Checklist for your thesis evaluation

Evaluating your thesis ensures that your research meets the standards of academia. Here's an elaborate checklist to guide you through this critical process.

Content and structure

  • Is the thesis statement clear, concise, and debatable?
  • Does the introduction provide sufficient background and context?
  • Is the literature review comprehensive, relevant, and well-organized?
  • Does the methodology section clearly describe and justify the research methods?
  • Are the results/findings presented clearly and logically?
  • Does the discussion interpret the results in light of the research question and existing literature?
  • Is the conclusion summarizing the research and suggesting future directions or implications?

Clarity and coherence

  • Is the writing clear and free of jargon?
  • Are ideas and sections logically connected and flowing?
  • Is there a clear narrative or argument throughout the thesis?

Research quality

  • Is the research question significant and relevant?
  • Are the research methods appropriate for the question?
  • Is the sample size (if applicable) adequate?
  • Are the data analysis techniques appropriate and correctly applied?
  • Are potential biases or limitations addressed?

Originality and significance

  • Does the thesis contribute new knowledge or insights to the field?
  • Is the research grounded in existing literature while offering fresh perspectives?

Formatting and presentation

  • Is the thesis formatted according to institutional guidelines?
  • Are figures, tables, and charts clear, labeled, and referenced in the text?
  • Is the bibliography or reference list complete and consistently formatted?
  • Are appendices relevant and appropriately referenced in the main text?

Grammar and language

  • Is the thesis free of grammatical and spelling errors?
  • Is the language professional, consistent, and appropriate for an academic audience?
  • Are quotations and paraphrased material correctly cited?

Feedback and revision

  • Have you sought feedback from peers, advisors, or experts in the field?
  • Have you addressed the feedback and made the necessary revisions?

Overall assessment

  • Does the thesis as a whole feel cohesive and comprehensive?
  • Would the thesis be understandable and valuable to someone in your field?

Ensure to use this checklist to leave no ground for doubt or missed information in your thesis.

After writing your thesis, the next step is to discuss and defend your findings verbally in front of a knowledgeable panel. You’ve to be well prepared as your professors may grade your presentation abilities.

Preparing your thesis defense

A thesis defense, also known as "defending the thesis," is the culmination of a scholar's research journey. It's the final frontier, where you’ll present their findings and face scrutiny from a panel of experts.

Typically, the defense involves a public presentation where you’ll have to outline your study, followed by a question-and-answer session with a committee of experts. This committee assesses the validity, originality, and significance of the research.

The defense serves as a rite of passage for scholars. It's an opportunity to showcase expertise, address criticisms, and refine arguments. A successful defense not only validates the research but also establishes your authority as a researcher in your field.

Here’s how you can effectively prepare for your thesis defense .

Now, having touched upon the process of defending a thesis, it's worth noting that scholarly work can take various forms, depending on academic and regional practices.

One such form, often paralleled with the thesis, is the 'dissertation.' But what differentiates the two?

Dissertation vs. Thesis

Often used interchangeably in casual discourse, they refer to distinct research projects undertaken at different levels of higher education.

To the uninitiated, understanding their meaning might be elusive. So, let's demystify these terms and delve into their core differences.

Here's a table differentiating between the two.

Aspect

Thesis

Dissertation

Purpose

Often for a master's degree, showcasing a grasp of existing research

Primarily for a doctoral degree, contributing new knowledge to the field

Length

100 pages, focusing on a specific topic or question.

400-500 pages, involving deep research and comprehensive findings

Research Depth

Builds upon existing research

Involves original and groundbreaking research

Advisor's Role

Guides the research process

Acts more as a consultant, allowing the student to take the lead

Outcome

Demonstrates understanding of the subject

Proves capability to conduct independent and original research

Wrapping up

From understanding the foundational concept of a thesis to navigating its various components, differentiating it from a dissertation, and recognizing the importance of proper citation — this guide covers it all.

As scholars and readers, understanding these nuances not only aids in academic pursuits but also fosters a deeper appreciation for the relentless quest for knowledge that drives academia.

It’s important to remember that every thesis is a testament to curiosity, dedication, and the indomitable spirit of discovery.

Good luck with your thesis writing!

Frequently Asked Questions

A thesis typically ranges between 40-80 pages, but its length can vary based on the research topic, institution guidelines, and level of study.

A PhD thesis usually spans 200-300 pages, though this can vary based on the discipline, complexity of the research, and institutional requirements.

To identify a thesis topic, consider current trends in your field, gaps in existing literature, personal interests, and discussions with advisors or mentors. Additionally, reviewing related journals and conference proceedings can provide insights into potential areas of exploration.

The conceptual framework is often situated in the literature review or theoretical framework section of a thesis. It helps set the stage by providing the context, defining key concepts, and explaining the relationships between variables.

A thesis statement should be concise, clear, and specific. It should state the main argument or point of your research. Start by pinpointing the central question or issue your research addresses, then condense that into a single statement, ensuring it reflects the essence of your paper.

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  • What Is a Thesis? | Ultimate Guide & Examples

What Is a Thesis? | Ultimate Guide & Examples

Published on September 14, 2022 by Tegan George . Revised on April 16, 2024.

A thesis is a type of research paper based on your original research. It is usually submitted as the final step of a master’s program or a capstone to a bachelor’s degree.

Writing a thesis can be a daunting experience. Other than a dissertation , it is one of the longest pieces of writing students typically complete. It relies on your ability to conduct research from start to finish: choosing a relevant topic , crafting a proposal , designing your research , collecting data , developing a robust analysis, drawing strong conclusions , and writing concisely .

Thesis template

You can also download our full thesis template in the format of your choice below. Our template includes a ready-made table of contents , as well as guidance for what each chapter should include. It’s easy to make it your own, and can help you get started.

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Table of contents

Thesis vs. thesis statement, how to structure a thesis, acknowledgements or preface, list of figures and tables, list of abbreviations, introduction, literature review, methodology, reference list, proofreading and editing, defending your thesis, other interesting articles, frequently asked questions about theses.

You may have heard the word thesis as a standalone term or as a component of academic writing called a thesis statement . Keep in mind that these are two very different things.

  • A thesis statement is a very common component of an essay, particularly in the humanities. It usually comprises 1 or 2 sentences in the introduction of your essay , and should clearly and concisely summarize the central points of your academic essay .
  • A thesis is a long-form piece of academic writing, often taking more than a full semester to complete. It is generally a degree requirement for Master’s programs, and is also sometimes required to complete a bachelor’s degree in liberal arts colleges.
  • In the US, a dissertation is generally written as a final step toward obtaining a PhD.
  • In other countries (particularly the UK), a dissertation is generally written at the bachelor’s or master’s level.

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The final structure of your thesis depends on a variety of components, such as:

  • Your discipline
  • Your theoretical approach

Humanities theses are often structured more like a longer-form essay . Just like in an essay, you build an argument to support a central thesis.

In both hard and social sciences, theses typically include an introduction , literature review , methodology section ,  results section , discussion section , and conclusion section . These are each presented in their own dedicated section or chapter. In some cases, you might want to add an appendix .

Thesis examples

We’ve compiled a short list of thesis examples to help you get started.

  • Example thesis #1:   “Abolition, Africans, and Abstraction: the Influence of the ‘Noble Savage’ on British and French Antislavery Thought, 1787-1807” by Suchait Kahlon.
  • Example thesis #2: “’A Starving Man Helping Another Starving Man’: UNRRA, India, and the Genesis of Global Relief, 1943-1947″ by Julian Saint Reiman.

The very first page of your thesis contains all necessary identifying information, including:

  • Your full title
  • Your full name
  • Your department
  • Your institution and degree program
  • Your submission date.

Sometimes the title page also includes your student ID, the name of your supervisor, or the university’s logo. Check out your university’s guidelines if you’re not sure.

Read more about title pages

The acknowledgements section is usually optional. Its main point is to allow you to thank everyone who helped you in your thesis journey, such as supervisors, friends, or family. You can also choose to write a preface , but it’s typically one or the other, not both.

Read more about acknowledgements Read more about prefaces

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An abstract is a short summary of your thesis. Usually a maximum of 300 words long, it’s should include brief descriptions of your research objectives , methods, results, and conclusions. Though it may seem short, it introduces your work to your audience, serving as a first impression of your thesis.

Read more about abstracts

A table of contents lists all of your sections, plus their corresponding page numbers and subheadings if you have them. This helps your reader seamlessly navigate your document.

Your table of contents should include all the major parts of your thesis. In particular, don’t forget the the appendices. If you used heading styles, it’s easy to generate an automatic table Microsoft Word.

Read more about tables of contents

While not mandatory, if you used a lot of tables and/or figures, it’s nice to include a list of them to help guide your reader. It’s also easy to generate one of these in Word: just use the “Insert Caption” feature.

Read more about lists of figures and tables

If you have used a lot of industry- or field-specific abbreviations in your thesis, you should include them in an alphabetized list of abbreviations . This way, your readers can easily look up any meanings they aren’t familiar with.

Read more about lists of abbreviations

Relatedly, if you find yourself using a lot of very specialized or field-specific terms that may not be familiar to your reader, consider including a glossary . Alphabetize the terms you want to include with a brief definition.

Read more about glossaries

An introduction sets up the topic, purpose, and relevance of your thesis, as well as expectations for your reader. This should:

  • Ground your research topic , sharing any background information your reader may need
  • Define the scope of your work
  • Introduce any existing research on your topic, situating your work within a broader problem or debate
  • State your research question(s)
  • Outline (briefly) how the remainder of your work will proceed

In other words, your introduction should clearly and concisely show your reader the “what, why, and how” of your research.

Read more about introductions

A literature review helps you gain a robust understanding of any extant academic work on your topic, encompassing:

  • Selecting relevant sources
  • Determining the credibility of your sources
  • Critically evaluating each of your sources
  • Drawing connections between sources, including any themes, patterns, conflicts, or gaps

A literature review is not merely a summary of existing work. Rather, your literature review should ultimately lead to a clear justification for your own research, perhaps via:

  • Addressing a gap in the literature
  • Building on existing knowledge to draw new conclusions
  • Exploring a new theoretical or methodological approach
  • Introducing a new solution to an unresolved problem
  • Definitively advocating for one side of a theoretical debate

Read more about literature reviews

Theoretical framework

Your literature review can often form the basis for your theoretical framework, but these are not the same thing. A theoretical framework defines and analyzes the concepts and theories that your research hinges on.

Read more about theoretical frameworks

Your methodology chapter shows your reader how you conducted your research. It should be written clearly and methodically, easily allowing your reader to critically assess the credibility of your argument. Furthermore, your methods section should convince your reader that your method was the best way to answer your research question.

A methodology section should generally include:

  • Your overall approach ( quantitative vs. qualitative )
  • Your research methods (e.g., a longitudinal study )
  • Your data collection methods (e.g., interviews or a controlled experiment
  • Any tools or materials you used (e.g., computer software)
  • The data analysis methods you chose (e.g., statistical analysis , discourse analysis )
  • A strong, but not defensive justification of your methods

Read more about methodology sections

Your results section should highlight what your methodology discovered. These two sections work in tandem, but shouldn’t repeat each other. While your results section can include hypotheses or themes, don’t include any speculation or new arguments here.

Your results section should:

  • State each (relevant) result with any (relevant) descriptive statistics (e.g., mean , standard deviation ) and inferential statistics (e.g., test statistics , p values )
  • Explain how each result relates to the research question
  • Determine whether the hypothesis was supported

Additional data (like raw numbers or interview transcripts ) can be included as an appendix . You can include tables and figures, but only if they help the reader better understand your results.

Read more about results sections

Your discussion section is where you can interpret your results in detail. Did they meet your expectations? How well do they fit within the framework that you built? You can refer back to any relevant source material to situate your results within your field, but leave most of that analysis in your literature review.

For any unexpected results, offer explanations or alternative interpretations of your data.

Read more about discussion sections

Your thesis conclusion should concisely answer your main research question. It should leave your reader with an ultra-clear understanding of your central argument, and emphasize what your research specifically has contributed to your field.

Why does your research matter? What recommendations for future research do you have? Lastly, wrap up your work with any concluding remarks.

Read more about conclusions

In order to avoid plagiarism , don’t forget to include a full reference list at the end of your thesis, citing the sources that you used. Choose one citation style and follow it consistently throughout your thesis, taking note of the formatting requirements of each style.

Which style you choose is often set by your department or your field, but common styles include MLA , Chicago , and APA.

Create APA citations Create MLA citations

In order to stay clear and concise, your thesis should include the most essential information needed to answer your research question. However, chances are you have many contributing documents, like interview transcripts or survey questions . These can be added as appendices , to save space in the main body.

Read more about appendices

Once you’re done writing, the next part of your editing process begins. Leave plenty of time for proofreading and editing prior to submission. Nothing looks worse than grammar mistakes or sloppy spelling errors!

Consider using a professional thesis editing service or grammar checker to make sure your final project is perfect.

Once you’ve submitted your final product, it’s common practice to have a thesis defense, an oral component of your finished work. This is scheduled by your advisor or committee, and usually entails a presentation and Q&A session.

After your defense , your committee will meet to determine if you deserve any departmental honors or accolades. However, keep in mind that defenses are usually just a formality. If there are any serious issues with your work, these should be resolved with your advisor way before a defense.

If you want to know more about AI for academic writing, AI tools, or research bias, make sure to check out some of our other articles with explanations and examples or go directly to our tools!

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The conclusion of your thesis or dissertation shouldn’t take up more than 5–7% of your overall word count.

If you only used a few abbreviations in your thesis or dissertation , you don’t necessarily need to include a list of abbreviations .

If your abbreviations are numerous, or if you think they won’t be known to your audience, it’s never a bad idea to add one. They can also improve readability, minimizing confusion about abbreviations unfamiliar to your reader.

When you mention different chapters within your text, it’s considered best to use Roman numerals for most citation styles. However, the most important thing here is to remain consistent whenever using numbers in your dissertation .

A thesis or dissertation outline is one of the most critical first steps in your writing process. It helps you to lay out and organize your ideas and can provide you with a roadmap for deciding what kind of research you’d like to undertake.

Generally, an outline contains information on the different sections included in your thesis or dissertation , such as:

  • Your anticipated title
  • Your abstract
  • Your chapters (sometimes subdivided into further topics like literature review , research methods , avenues for future research, etc.)

A thesis is typically written by students finishing up a bachelor’s or Master’s degree. Some educational institutions, particularly in the liberal arts, have mandatory theses, but they are often not mandatory to graduate from bachelor’s degrees. It is more common for a thesis to be a graduation requirement from a Master’s degree.

Even if not mandatory, you may want to consider writing a thesis if you:

  • Plan to attend graduate school soon
  • Have a particular topic you’d like to study more in-depth
  • Are considering a career in research
  • Would like a capstone experience to tie up your academic experience

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  • Writing Tips

7 Top Tips for Picking a Dissertation Title

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  • 9th July 2015

You only get once chance to make a first impression, so when writing a dissertation it helps if you pick a good title. And while the title of your paper won’t determine whether you pass or fail, the information you provide therein can make your work easier to follow for the reader.

To make sure you set out on the right foot, the title of your dissertation should be clear and informative. It helps to think about what you want your reader to know from the moment they pick up your work (unlike a good novel, your dissertation doesn’t need a twist ending). So here are a few things to consider when picking a title for your dissertation.

1. What Is Your Research About?

The most vital thing that any dissertation title can do is communicate the topic and focus of your research. This includes the general area you’re researching and the specific aspect of this being investigated.

For instance, in a dissertation called “Barriers to Using Social Media in Marketing a Luxury Fashion Brand,” the topic is the marketing of luxury fashion brands and the focus is the factors preventing the use of social media.

2. Your Research Approach

Your research approach has a major impact on the results you achieve and it can help to include this in your title. For example, if you have conducted a large-scale survey of management strategy, you might pick a title such as “Management Strategy: A Quantitative Study of Current Practice.”

3. The Outcomes of Your Research

More specific is better when it comes to the results of your research.

Rather than calling your dissertation “Factors Influencing Recovery from Anterior Cruciate Ligament Injuries,” it makes sense to specify the kind of factors being investigated. Are they success factors? Factors which impede recovery? Stating this in the title means your reader will know immediately.

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Seeking a second opinion on your title can be helpful. Try asking a friend or professor to check it for clarity . If they can tell what your work is about from the title alone, you’re doing a good job. If not, think of how you can make it clearer. It is also advisable to avoid acronyms in titles for this reason.

Overly long titles can be confusing or off-putting. Regardless of how good the work is, for instance, only the most dedicated are going to want to read a paper called “In silico exploration of the fructose-6-phosphate phosphorylation step in glycolysis: genomic evidence of the coexistence of an atypical ATP-dependent along with a PPi-dependent phosphofructokinase in Propionibacterium freudenreichii subsp. shermanii.”

Check your college’s style guide for how to format your title. Different institutions have different requirements when it comes to factors like capitalization, so you’ll need to make sure you get your formatting right.

7. Uniqueness and Humor

Generally, it is good if your title makes your dissertation stand out. It is also tempting to use a humorous title, though this is best saved for when writing for a popular audience. Neither uniqueness nor humor, however, should come at the expense of communicating important details about your work.

Hopefully these tips will have helped you come to a decision over your dissertation title. But if not, then our expert proofreaders can let you know of any issues to do with the title and headings in your dissertation, as well as providing a variety of services to ensure the quality of your work. For more information about writing a dissertation or thesis, read our full dissertation writing guide.

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While Sandel argues that pursuing perfection through genetic engineering would decrease our sense of humility, he claims that the sense of solidarity we would lose is also important.

This thesis summarizes several points in Sandel’s argument, but it does not make a claim about how we should understand his argument. A reader who read Sandel’s argument would not also need to read an essay based on this descriptive thesis.  

Broad thesis (arguable, but difficult to support with evidence) 

Michael Sandel’s arguments about genetic engineering do not take into consideration all the relevant issues.

This is an arguable claim because it would be possible to argue against it by saying that Michael Sandel’s arguments do take all of the relevant issues into consideration. But the claim is too broad. Because the thesis does not specify which “issues” it is focused on—or why it matters if they are considered—readers won’t know what the rest of the essay will argue, and the writer won’t know what to focus on. If there is a particular issue that Sandel does not address, then a more specific version of the thesis would include that issue—hand an explanation of why it is important.  

Arguable thesis with analytical claim 

While Sandel argues persuasively that our instinct to “remake” (54) ourselves into something ever more perfect is a problem, his belief that we can always draw a line between what is medically necessary and what makes us simply “better than well” (51) is less convincing.

This is an arguable analytical claim. To argue for this claim, the essay writer will need to show how evidence from the article itself points to this interpretation. It’s also a reasonable scope for a thesis because it can be supported with evidence available in the text and is neither too broad nor too narrow.  

Arguable thesis with normative claim 

Given Sandel’s argument against genetic enhancement, we should not allow parents to decide on using Human Growth Hormone for their children.

This thesis tells us what we should do about a particular issue discussed in Sandel’s article, but it does not tell us how we should understand Sandel’s argument.  

Questions to ask about your thesis 

  • Is the thesis truly arguable? Does it speak to a genuine dilemma in the source, or would most readers automatically agree with it?  
  • Is the thesis too obvious? Again, would most or all readers agree with it without needing to see your argument?  
  • Is the thesis complex enough to require a whole essay's worth of argument?  
  • Is the thesis supportable with evidence from the text rather than with generalizations or outside research?  
  • Would anyone want to read a paper in which this thesis was developed? That is, can you explain what this paper is adding to our understanding of a problem, question, or topic?
  • picture_as_pdf Thesis

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How to write a thesis statement + examples

Thesis statement

What is a thesis statement?

Is a thesis statement a question, how do you write a good thesis statement, how do i know if my thesis statement is good, examples of thesis statements, helpful resources on how to write a thesis statement, frequently asked questions about writing a thesis statement, related articles.

A thesis statement is the main argument of your paper or thesis.

The thesis statement is one of the most important elements of any piece of academic writing . It is a brief statement of your paper’s main argument. Essentially, you are stating what you will be writing about.

You can see your thesis statement as an answer to a question. While it also contains the question, it should really give an answer to the question with new information and not just restate or reiterate it.

Your thesis statement is part of your introduction. Learn more about how to write a good thesis introduction in our introduction guide .

A thesis statement is not a question. A statement must be arguable and provable through evidence and analysis. While your thesis might stem from a research question, it should be in the form of a statement.

Tip: A thesis statement is typically 1-2 sentences. For a longer project like a thesis, the statement may be several sentences or a paragraph.

A good thesis statement needs to do the following:

  • Condense the main idea of your thesis into one or two sentences.
  • Answer your project’s main research question.
  • Clearly state your position in relation to the topic .
  • Make an argument that requires support or evidence.

Once you have written down a thesis statement, check if it fulfills the following criteria:

  • Your statement needs to be provable by evidence. As an argument, a thesis statement needs to be debatable.
  • Your statement needs to be precise. Do not give away too much information in the thesis statement and do not load it with unnecessary information.
  • Your statement cannot say that one solution is simply right or simply wrong as a matter of fact. You should draw upon verified facts to persuade the reader of your solution, but you cannot just declare something as right or wrong.

As previously mentioned, your thesis statement should answer a question.

If the question is:

What do you think the City of New York should do to reduce traffic congestion?

A good thesis statement restates the question and answers it:

In this paper, I will argue that the City of New York should focus on providing exclusive lanes for public transport and adaptive traffic signals to reduce traffic congestion by the year 2035.

Here is another example. If the question is:

How can we end poverty?

A good thesis statement should give more than one solution to the problem in question:

In this paper, I will argue that introducing universal basic income can help reduce poverty and positively impact the way we work.

  • The Writing Center of the University of North Carolina has a list of questions to ask to see if your thesis is strong .

A thesis statement is part of the introduction of your paper. It is usually found in the first or second paragraph to let the reader know your research purpose from the beginning.

In general, a thesis statement should have one or two sentences. But the length really depends on the overall length of your project. Take a look at our guide about the length of thesis statements for more insight on this topic.

Here is a list of Thesis Statement Examples that will help you understand better how to write them.

Every good essay should include a thesis statement as part of its introduction, no matter the academic level. Of course, if you are a high school student you are not expected to have the same type of thesis as a PhD student.

Here is a great YouTube tutorial showing How To Write An Essay: Thesis Statements .

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How to Write a Strong Thesis Statement: 4 Steps + Examples

what is a good title in thesis

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What is the purpose of a thesis statement, writing a good thesis statement: 4 steps, common pitfalls to avoid, where to get your essay edited for free.

When you set out to write an essay, there has to be some kind of point to it, right? Otherwise, your essay would just be a big jumble of word salad that makes absolutely no sense. An essay needs a central point that ties into everything else. That main point is called a thesis statement, and it’s the core of any essay or research paper.

You may hear about Master degree candidates writing a thesis, and that is an entire paper–not to be confused with the thesis statement, which is typically one sentence that contains your paper’s focus. 

Read on to learn more about thesis statements and how to write them. We’ve also included some solid examples for you to reference.

Typically the last sentence of your introductory paragraph, the thesis statement serves as the roadmap for your essay. When your reader gets to the thesis statement, they should have a clear outline of your main point, as well as the information you’ll be presenting in order to either prove or support your point. 

The thesis statement should not be confused for a topic sentence , which is the first sentence of every paragraph in your essay. If you need help writing topic sentences, numerous resources are available. Topic sentences should go along with your thesis statement, though.

Since the thesis statement is the most important sentence of your entire essay or paper, it’s imperative that you get this part right. Otherwise, your paper will not have a good flow and will seem disjointed. That’s why it’s vital not to rush through developing one. It’s a methodical process with steps that you need to follow in order to create the best thesis statement possible.

Step 1: Decide what kind of paper you’re writing

When you’re assigned an essay, there are several different types you may get. Argumentative essays are designed to get the reader to agree with you on a topic. Informative or expository essays present information to the reader. Analytical essays offer up a point and then expand on it by analyzing relevant information. Thesis statements can look and sound different based on the type of paper you’re writing. For example:

  • Argumentative: The United States needs a viable third political party to decrease bipartisanship, increase options, and help reduce corruption in government.
  • Informative: The Libertarian party has thrown off elections before by gaining enough support in states to get on the ballot and by taking away crucial votes from candidates.
  • Analytical: An analysis of past presidential elections shows that while third party votes may have been the minority, they did affect the outcome of the elections in 2020, 2016, and beyond.

Step 2: Figure out what point you want to make

Once you know what type of paper you’re writing, you then need to figure out the point you want to make with your thesis statement, and subsequently, your paper. In other words, you need to decide to answer a question about something, such as:

  • What impact did reality TV have on American society?
  • How has the musical Hamilton affected perception of American history?
  • Why do I want to major in [chosen major here]?

If you have an argumentative essay, then you will be writing about an opinion. To make it easier, you may want to choose an opinion that you feel passionate about so that you’re writing about something that interests you. For example, if you have an interest in preserving the environment, you may want to choose a topic that relates to that. 

If you’re writing your college essay and they ask why you want to attend that school, you may want to have a main point and back it up with information, something along the lines of:

“Attending Harvard University would benefit me both academically and professionally, as it would give me a strong knowledge base upon which to build my career, develop my network, and hopefully give me an advantage in my chosen field.”

Step 3: Determine what information you’ll use to back up your point

Once you have the point you want to make, you need to figure out how you plan to back it up throughout the rest of your essay. Without this information, it will be hard to either prove or argue the main point of your thesis statement. If you decide to write about the Hamilton example, you may decide to address any falsehoods that the writer put into the musical, such as:

“The musical Hamilton, while accurate in many ways, leaves out key parts of American history, presents a nationalist view of founding fathers, and downplays the racism of the times.”

Once you’ve written your initial working thesis statement, you’ll then need to get information to back that up. For example, the musical completely leaves out Benjamin Franklin, portrays the founding fathers in a nationalist way that is too complimentary, and shows Hamilton as a staunch abolitionist despite the fact that his family likely did own slaves. 

Step 4: Revise and refine your thesis statement before you start writing

Read through your thesis statement several times before you begin to compose your full essay. You need to make sure the statement is ironclad, since it is the foundation of the entire paper. Edit it or have a peer review it for you to make sure everything makes sense and that you feel like you can truly write a paper on the topic. Once you’ve done that, you can then begin writing your paper.

When writing a thesis statement, there are some common pitfalls you should avoid so that your paper can be as solid as possible. Make sure you always edit the thesis statement before you do anything else. You also want to ensure that the thesis statement is clear and concise. Don’t make your reader hunt for your point. Finally, put your thesis statement at the end of the first paragraph and have your introduction flow toward that statement. Your reader will expect to find your statement in its traditional spot.

If you’re having trouble getting started, or need some guidance on your essay, there are tools available that can help you. CollegeVine offers a free peer essay review tool where one of your peers can read through your essay and provide you with valuable feedback. Getting essay feedback from a peer can help you wow your instructor or college admissions officer with an impactful essay that effectively illustrates your point.

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The Thesis Title – What It Takes to Create a Good One

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Inhaltsverzeichnis

  • 1 Definition: Thesis Title
  • 3 Thesis Title: Main Components
  • 4 Examples of Thesis Titles
  • 5 Tips for your Title
  • 6 In a Nutshell

Definition: Thesis Title

A thesis title is a statement that frames the argument you are presenting in an academic paper. It is a short phrase that tells the audience what the content is about. Readers should be able to get a glimpse of the study from the thesis title. It is why you have to invest time in coming up with an excellent one. Think of the title as the packaging to your thesis.

It has to be pretty enough to attract the right audience. The thesis title should comply with certain requirements. Different disciplines have varying formats for academic writing . MLA, APA and PPA are three of the common styles. These formats determine elements like capitalisation, abbreviations and quotations.

The title of a thesis is the first real contact that readers will have with a piece of academic writing , and therefore, it has to be compelling enough. A thesis title sets the pace for the content. It can entice the audience to proceed with the rest of the material or pass it over. This article explores some elementals of a good thesis title.

What is the best title for a thesis?

An exceptional title for a thesis must accomplish several things. It has to reflect the content in the paper. Readers should know at first glance, what your thesis topic is. For this reason, a thesis title should be concise, precise and relevant. The best titles are brief. Too many words can discourage some readers. In the same breath, it shouldn’t be too short. Thesis titles thrive on specificity, and that requires using more than four words.

Can a thesis title be a question?

Yes. You can structure the title of your academic paper as a question. Questions are catchy and go a long way in capturing attention. They incite curiosity and get the reader to want to know more. For a question to work as a thesis title, it must reflect the tone of the paper and predict the content. It should also be closely linked with your thesis statement . Readers should not left wondering what the piece is about after they’ve read the title.

How long can a thesis title be?

The length of a thesis title is not definite because it’s an element that depends on many factors. A thesis advisor might have a specific range for students. For example, a professor might ask a paper to have 15 to 25 words in the title. 10 to 15 is a great number to work with for a thesis title. Never have a title that is less than 5 words.

Tip: If you’re having trouble getting the words from your brain onto the paper, you may be struggling with writer’s block . Head over to our blog post to read about how you can escape from the clutches of writer’s block.

What is a research title?

The research title shows the main idea of your study. The reader should have an idea of the thesis formatting after reading the thesis title. If the title states ‘case study’ for example, then the reader will expect an abstract. It is possible that you are using the fewest possible words needed to describe the purpose of your research paper. It is important that the research title predicts content, reflects tone, includes important keywords and is interesting.

What are important steps for creating a thesis title?

During the beginning of the writing phase, you should have a ‘working title’. This doesn’t have to be the final title and it will probably be altered as you develop your thesis statement , but the working title can help to keep you on the right track. You can also include a subtitle to explain additional content.

Thesis Title: Main Components

Thesis titles are as distinct as the research they describe. However, several fundamental factors exist in every thesis title. Whether its social sciences, economics or political science, these elements always apply. They are the drivers that help writers create titles that are worth reading.

Area of Interest

The objectives of the study are a huge part of a thesis title. What you are looking to accomplish with your research sets the tone for everything that happens. A good title should be a reflection of that. The area of interest provides the broad scope of the paper, but you also have to factor in the specifics. For example, a study on the effects of social media marketing on the buying process offers a wide range to work with. However, your study might be on specific networks such as Twitter and Instagram. The title should, therefore, mention the exact social media sites. Use the area of interest as a rough guide to what the thesis title should be about.

Internal Consistency

An effective title should not just be precise and attractive; it must remain consistent internally. Any decent title should reflect the study as accurately as possible. When readers see the thesis title, they have a clue of what the paper contains. If the thesis title says ‘a case study approach,’ the readers will expect to have an abstract, introduction , methodology, and so on. A lack of consistency can generate a disconnect that will push the audience away. Be cautious about the language and style of writing to avoid losing or misleading the reader along the way.

Never submit a thesis without checking that the title adheres to the required formatting standards. Not every academic paper needs formatting. Styles vary depending on disciplines and institutions. The formatting requirements matter because they determine how to write quotations and citations. A writing style also dictates the organisation of the piece. Writers might have specific instructions about the tone of the thesis. Consider all these elements carefully when crafting a thesis title. Don’t forget about the rules of capitalisation of a title.

Examples of Thesis Titles

Here are two examples of thesis titles:

Thesis-Title-Example-Estimation-of-the-Effects-of-Climate-Change

‘Estimation of the Effects of Climate Change: The Case of the Deforestation of the Amazon’

As you read earlier above one of the main components of a thesis title is the area of interest . The first part of the thesis title ‘Estimation of the Effects of Climate Chance’ isn´t enough because the range is to wide.

Therefore it is important to add the second part of the thesis title ‘The Case of the Deforestation of the Amazon’. This gives the reader the exact information what your academic paper is about.

Here are a few other examples of thesis titles:

‘How Mobile Money is Banking the Unbankable in Third World Economies’

‘The Correlation Between Social Inequalities and Poor Voting Habits’

‘How the Mobile Phone Disrupts Sleep Patterns’

Thesis-Title-Example-Jumping-on-the-Cryptocurrency-Bandwagon

‘Jumping on the Cryptocurrency Bandwagon: A Study in the Evolution of Digital Currency’

In this example you can see that there is internal consistency because it shows the reader what the paper comprises.

The formatting of the thesis title depends on institutions. So there are more possibilities of how your layout could look like. Furthermore the thesis title in this example is still brief enough which is very important. The length of 10 to 15 words is a good number of words.

Tips for your Title

A missed punctuation mark, too many words or too much jargon are some aspects that can easily ruin a thesis title and consequently, the entire paper. You can avoid common mistakes like these by focusing on these simple tenets:

  • Purpose of the study
  • Scope of the study
  • Techniques used for the study
  • Tone of the study

Before crafting the final title for your academic paper, have a working thesis title. A working title is a loose topic that you need to help direct your study. It’s easy to lose track of your research when you don’t have a concrete anchor.

Bear in mind that the final thesis title comes after the completion of the research. You should know how much ground the content covers to develop a proper thesis title.

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In a Nutshell

What to take away about writing a captivating thesis title:

  • Be clear about the subject of the research and its scope while ensuring that the title reflects the study accurately.
  • The thesis title should be concise, engaging, descriptive and explanatory without being informal or cute.
  • Avoid too much jargon, abbreviations, initials, acronyms and redundant words unless the requirements specify it.
  • Capitalise all the necessary words, including all nouns, pronouns, adjectives, verbs, and adverbs.

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Organizing Your Social Sciences Research Paper

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The title summarizes the main idea or ideas of your study. A good title contains the fewest possible words needed to adequately describe the content and/or purpose of your research paper.

Importance of Choosing a Good Title

The title is the part of a paper that is read the most, and it is usually read first . It is, therefore, the most important element that defines the research study. With this in mind, avoid the following when creating a title:

  • If the title is too long, this usually indicates there are too many unnecessary words. Avoid language, such as, "A Study to Investigate the...," or "An Examination of the...." These phrases are obvious and generally superfluous unless they are necessary to covey the scope, intent, or type of a study.
  • On the other hand, a title which is too short often uses words which are too broad and, thus, does not tell the reader what is being studied. For example, a paper with the title, "African Politics" is so non-specific the title could be the title of a book and so ambiguous that it could refer to anything associated with politics in Africa. A good title should provide information about the focus and/or scope of your research study.
  • In academic writing, catchy phrases or non-specific language may be used, but only if it's within the context of the study [e.g., "Fair and Impartial Jury--Catch as Catch Can"]. However, in most cases, you should avoid including words or phrases that do not help the reader understand the purpose of your paper.
  • Academic writing is a serious and deliberate endeavor. Avoid using humorous or clever journalistic styles of phrasing when creating the title to your paper. Journalistic headlines often use emotional adjectives [e.g., incredible, amazing, effortless] to highlight a problem experienced by the reader or use "trigger words" or interrogative words like how, what, when, or why to persuade people to read the article or click on a link. These approaches are viewed as counter-productive in academic writing. A reader does not need clever or humorous titles to catch their attention because the act of reading research is assumed to be deliberate based on a desire to learn and improve understanding of the problem. In addition, a humorous title can merely detract from the seriousness and authority of your research. 
  • Unlike everywhere else in a college-level social sciences research paper [except when using direct quotes in the text], titles do not have to adhere to rigid grammatical or stylistic standards. For example, it could be appropriate to begin a title with a coordinating conjunction [i.e., and, but, or, nor, for, so, yet] if it makes sense to do so and does not detract from the purpose of the study [e.g., "Yet Another Look at Mutual Fund Tournaments"] or beginning the title with an inflected form of a verb such as those ending in -ing [e.g., "Assessing the Political Landscape: Structure, Cognition, and Power in Organizations"].

Appiah, Kingsley Richard et al. “Structural Organisation of Research Article Titles: A Comparative Study of Titles of Business, Gynaecology and Law.” Advances in Language and Literary Studies 10 (2019); Hartley James. “To Attract or to Inform: What are Titles for?” Journal of Technical Writing and Communication 35 (2005): 203-213; Jaakkola, Maarit. “Journalistic Writing and Style.” In Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Communication . Jon F. Nussbaum, editor. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2018): https://oxfordre.com/communication.

Structure and Writing Style

The following parameters can be used to help you formulate a suitable research paper title:

  • The purpose of the research
  • The scope of the research
  • The narrative tone of the paper [typically defined by the type of the research]
  • The methods used to study the problem

The initial aim of a title is to capture the reader’s attention and to highlight the research problem under investigation.

Create a Working Title Typically, the final title you submit to your professor is created after the research is complete so that the title accurately captures what has been done . The working title should be developed early in the research process because it can help anchor the focus of the study in much the same way the research problem does. Referring back to the working title can help you reorient yourself back to the main purpose of the study if you find yourself drifting off on a tangent while writing. The Final Title Effective titles in research papers have several characteristics that reflect general principles of academic writing.

  • Indicate accurately the subject and scope of the study,
  • Rarely use abbreviations or acronyms unless they are commonly known,
  • Use words that create a positive impression and stimulate reader interest,
  • Use current nomenclature from the field of study,
  • Identify key variables, both dependent and independent,
  • Reveal how the paper will be organized,
  • Suggest a relationship between variables which supports the major hypothesis,
  • Is limited to 5 to 15 substantive words,
  • Does not include redundant phrasing, such as, "A Study of," "An Analysis of" or similar constructions,
  • Takes the form of a question or declarative statement,
  • If you use a quote as part of the title, the source of the quote is cited [usually using an asterisk and footnote],
  • Use correct grammar and capitalization with all first words and last words capitalized, including the first word of a subtitle. All nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs that appear between the first and last words of the title are also capitalized, and
  • Rarely uses an exclamation mark at the end of the title.

The Subtitle Subtitles are frequently used in social sciences research papers because it helps the reader understand the scope of the study in relation to how it was designed to address the research problem. Think about what type of subtitle listed below reflects the overall approach to your study and whether you believe a subtitle is needed to emphasize the investigative parameters of your research.

1.  Explains or provides additional context , e.g., "Linguistic Ethnography and the Study of Welfare Institutions as a Flow of Social Practices: The Case of Residential Child Care Institutions as Paradoxical Institutions." [Palomares, Manuel and David Poveda.  Text & Talk: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Language, Discourse and Communication Studies 30 (January 2010): 193-212]

2.  Adds substance to a literary, provocative, or imaginative title or quote , e.g., "Listen to What I Say, Not How I Vote": Congressional Support for the President in Washington and at Home." [Grose, Christian R. and Keesha M. Middlemass. Social Science Quarterly 91 (March 2010): 143-167]

3.  Qualifies the geographic scope of the research , e.g., "The Geopolitics of the Eastern Border of the European Union: The Case of Romania-Moldova-Ukraine." [Marcu, Silvia. Geopolitics 14 (August 2009): 409-432]

4.  Qualifies the temporal scope of the research , e.g., "A Comparison of the Progressive Era and the Depression Years: Societal Influences on Predictions of the Future of the Library, 1895-1940." [Grossman, Hal B. Libraries & the Cultural Record 46 (2011): 102-128]

5.  Focuses on investigating the ideas, theories, or work of a particular individual , e.g., "A Deliberative Conception of Politics: How Francesco Saverio Merlino Related Anarchy and Democracy." [La Torre, Massimo. Sociologia del Diritto 28 (January 2001): 75 - 98]

6.  Identifies the methodology used , e.g. "Student Activism of the 1960s Revisited: A Multivariate Analysis Research Note." [Aron, William S. Social Forces 52 (March 1974): 408-414]

7.  Defines the overarching technique for analyzing the research problem , e.g., "Explaining Territorial Change in Federal Democracies: A Comparative Historical Institutionalist Approach." [ Tillin, Louise. Political Studies 63 (August 2015): 626-641.

With these examples in mind, think about what type of subtitle reflects the overall approach to your study. This will help the reader understand the scope of the study in relation to how it was designed to address the research problem.

Anstey, A. “Writing Style: What's in a Title?” British Journal of Dermatology 170 (May 2014): 1003-1004; Balch, Tucker. How to Compose a Title for Your Research Paper. Augmented Trader blog. School of Interactive Computing, Georgia Tech University; Bavdekar, Sandeep B. “Formulating the Right Title for a Research Article.” Journal of Association of Physicians of India 64 (February 2016); Choosing the Proper Research Paper Titles. AplusReports.com, 2007-2012; Eva, Kevin W. “Titles, Abstracts, and Authors.” In How to Write a Paper . George M. Hall, editor. 5th edition. (Oxford: John Wiley and Sons, 2013), pp. 33-41; Hartley James. “To Attract or to Inform: What are Titles for?” Journal of Technical Writing and Communication 35 (2005): 203-213; General Format. The Writing Lab and The OWL. Purdue University; Kerkut G.A. “Choosing a Title for a Paper.” Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part A: Physiology 74 (1983): 1; “Tempting Titles.” In Stylish Academic Writing . Helen Sword, editor. (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2012), pp. 63-75; Nundy, Samiran, et al. “How to Choose a Title?” In How to Practice Academic Medicine and Publish from Developing Countries? A Practical Guide . Edited by Samiran Nundy, Atul Kakar, and Zulfiqar A. Bhutta. (Springer Singapore, 2022), pp. 185-192.

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An academic title is probably the first thing your readers will experience about your paper. This handout will show you two approaches to creating paper titles, one that is more informative, and another that is more creative. The first is most often used for formal academic papers. The second is more likely to be used for narratives or personal essays, but it can sometimes be used for academic papers as well.

General Considerations

Before deciding on a title, be sure to think carefully about your audience. Who will be reading this paper and what are their motivations? Do they want to be entertained? Are they concerned with acquiring information as clearly and concisely as possible? How do you want your reader to feel about the content of your paper? Asking questions such as these will help you determine the appropriate tone for your title.

A great academic title should tell your readers as much as possible about your paper’s central claim and its significance. Good titles often include: A hook A set of key terms A source

Approach #1: Titles for Academic Papers

Good academic titles reveal not only the topic of the paper but some idea of your specific approach, argument, and area of discussion. Here are some typical and useful academic titles:

  • Good Bye Lenin!: Free Market Nostalgia for Socialist Consumerism
  • The Artful Thunder as Dramatic Technique in Shakespeare’s The Tempest

The Effects of Light and Temperature on the Growth of Populations of the Bacterium, Escherichia coli

“The Machine-Language of the Muscles”: Reading, Sport and the Self in Infinite Jest

Though representing a range of disciplines, each of these titles is clear, independent and self-explanatory. Notice how each title is relatively long and contains multiple phrases. Academic writing is complex and demands equally complex and purposeful titles. If you look carefully at the sample titles, you will notice that each has three separate elements:

  • The hook – This is a creative element that draws in the reader. Typically this is a catchy, readable phrase that advertises the paper’s specific subject. The hook is sometimes a direct quotation from a text or a sudden introduction of a new and exciting element of your topic.
  • Key terms – These are crucial words or phrases that are indispensable to the topic at hand. In academic writing, scholars are often asked to identify a few select terms that will identify their paper in an index. Similarly, the use of key terms in a paper’s title will make the paper more searchable in a database. You want to load your title with important terminology as a way to orient the reader to the concepts under discussion in the paper to follow. The best titles are like very brief summaries of the paper itself.
  • The source – Sometimes called a “location,” this is the place in the title where the concepts under discussion are to be found. Depending on the discipline, your source might be a piece of writing, the name of a text, a geographical place, a person, an existing debate, an organism, and so on.

Good titles never state the obvious nor do they apply a generic label to a paper. Titles like “Paper #1” or “Lab Report” are clearly too general and unhelpful. Similarly, titles that rely too much on large abstractions are not welcome: “Society and its Many Problems.” In this title the reader has no idea which society is under discussion, what the particular problems may be, or why this is at all current and significant. Avoid clichés at all costs as well: “A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words”. This title is virtually meaningless. If it feels like a common title to you, it will likely seem as common to another reader. Remember, the assignment may be given by the instructor, but the title is your first chance to make the paper your own. Remember also to center your title at the top of your first page of your text. Use the same font and size as the rest of your paper.

Analyzing an Example of an Academic Paper Title

Consider this title from above:

This title’s parts are all clearly visible. The hook is a direct quotation from the novel under discussion, a well-chosen particular that advances an important theme in the novel. The next part: “Reading, Sport and the Self” contains the title’s key terms. The title is making a promise here to the reader that the paper will engage these three critical concepts. Finally we see the source of the title, prompted by the preposition “in”. Someone reading this title or searching for it in a database would easily identify it as a study of a particular book, in this case, a novel by David Foster Wallace, which is concerned with the ideas of reading, sport and the self. In the humanities, you will often see writers divide their titles into two distinct parts, as in this example, marked by a colon that allows the hook to introduce the rest of the title.

Here is another example, this time from the sciences:

Science writing rarely uses a hook in the same way as papers in the humanities. The hook in a science paper is often simply a highly relevant but exciting and direct introduction of a new approach or discovery. What you mostly find in science writing titles is a catalog of key terms that corresponds directly to the paper’s thesis, significance and methods. Here we see a number of key terms: light, temperature, growth, and the bacterium itself. This title would be highly searchable and is very informative. The final part is the source which simply and clearly identifies the bacterium under discussion.

Approach #2: Titles for Narrative and Personal Papers

Being simple and clear can be very useful in a formal academic essay, but what if you aren’t writing an analytical paper? How do you write a title for a personal essay or statement? How about a title for that English paper that asks you to write a narrative or share an observation? These types of papers might well demand titles that simply sound interesting and creative rather than strictly academic.

In these cases you may want to use an interesting phrase from your paper. Perhaps there is a humorous or dramatic anecdote you offer in your creative paper that sums it all up. Perhaps there is a quotation or phrase that could serve as the title. In these cases you simply want to interest the reader by making the paper seem unique. Here is your opportunity to really put your stamp on the paper and to intrigue the reader. Here are some interesting and intriguing titles for creative essays:

“Why I Screen My Calls” “The Week of Rental Car Disasters” “My Son, the Burglar, Revisited” “What’s So Wrong with the Brady Bunch?”

Each of these titles is provocative. The first two offer the agenda for the paper; presumably you will learn the hilarious and awful history behind each title by reading the paper. The final two titles depend on humorous and contrary bits of information: a father writing about his burglar son, which seems at odds with what we might expect a father to write about his son (and in this case “revisited” is a provocative word since perhaps the son has burgled again). The Brady Bunch title is also funny because it promises a defense of an unexpected position or at least an eminently arguable one, which makes it an intriguing paper title.

In Practice

Imagine you are a student writing a paper for a class on animal behavior. You have a particular species to study, you have done the field work, and you have some conclusions to offer. Here is your first attempt: “Monkey Behavior”.

This is very general and tells us nothing about the kind of monkey or a particular behavior. It does little to attract the reader.

Your second attempt is a little better: “The Effects of Sugar on Monkey Behavior”.

This title is a little clearer and even mildly amusing. Now, at least we have some idea of a cause and an understanding of some important concepts. But can you be more specific? Wouldn’t it make sense to add more key terms from the paper itself? Readers already can conjecture that sugar would have some effect on monkey behavior, so this title needs to be less mysterious and more precise. Here is a better academic title:

“Sugar Stimulates Intensity of Tail-Twitch Social Behavior in Panamanian Monkeys”

Now you have a title that is full of specific key terms, includes a clear location, and provides a bold and specific claim before the text of the paper begins. This is incredibly helpful to your readers.

Try your hand at creating an academic title for a paper with the following topic:

“Write a 5-7 page paper analyzing any work of the author and illustrator Dr. Seuss. You may make reference to one or more of his books, but you must analyze the text(s) based on at least one of the following: Seuss’s use of metaphor, imagery, symbolism, or rhyme. You must also make a connection between this device and his drawing technique or subject matter. Use quotes to support your argument.”

HINT: This is a tough (though potentially interesting) assignment prompt, but remember the three parts of the academic title: hook, key terms, and source. Your hook could be a quote, perhaps a direct quote that shows either metaphor, imagery, symbolism or rhyme. This would be a smart move because you would reveal in the title which of the four options you chose for the paper topic. In other words, by quoting, you would already have an example before you introduce your argument. Your key terms would likely be lifted from the assignment prompt itself (metaphor, imagery, etc. . .). The source would be just that: the name of the book you chose to explore.

Now challenge yourself to make a creative title for this paper. The possibilities are endless here. Think in terms of being clever and witty and actually making use of the terms and techniques the assignment asks you to consider.

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what is a good title in thesis

Dissertation Structure & Layout 101: How to structure your dissertation, thesis or research project.

By: Derek Jansen (MBA) Reviewed By: David Phair (PhD) | July 2019

So, you’ve got a decent understanding of what a dissertation is , you’ve chosen your topic and hopefully you’ve received approval for your research proposal . Awesome! Now its time to start the actual dissertation or thesis writing journey.

To craft a high-quality document, the very first thing you need to understand is dissertation structure . In this post, we’ll walk you through the generic dissertation structure and layout, step by step. We’ll start with the big picture, and then zoom into each chapter to briefly discuss the core contents. If you’re just starting out on your research journey, you should start with this post, which covers the big-picture process of how to write a dissertation or thesis .

Dissertation structure and layout - the basics

*The Caveat *

In this post, we’ll be discussing a traditional dissertation/thesis structure and layout, which is generally used for social science research across universities, whether in the US, UK, Europe or Australia. However, some universities may have small variations on this structure (extra chapters, merged chapters, slightly different ordering, etc).

So, always check with your university if they have a prescribed structure or layout that they expect you to work with. If not, it’s safe to assume the structure we’ll discuss here is suitable. And even if they do have a prescribed structure, you’ll still get value from this post as we’ll explain the core contents of each section.  

Overview: S tructuring a dissertation or thesis

  • Acknowledgements page
  • Abstract (or executive summary)
  • Table of contents , list of figures and tables
  • Chapter 1: Introduction
  • Chapter 2: Literature review
  • Chapter 3: Methodology
  • Chapter 4: Results
  • Chapter 5: Discussion
  • Chapter 6: Conclusion
  • Reference list

As I mentioned, some universities will have slight variations on this structure. For example, they want an additional “personal reflection chapter”, or they might prefer the results and discussion chapter to be merged into one. Regardless, the overarching flow will always be the same, as this flow reflects the research process , which we discussed here – i.e.:

  • The introduction chapter presents the core research question and aims .
  • The literature review chapter assesses what the current research says about this question.
  • The methodology, results and discussion chapters go about undertaking new research about this question.
  • The conclusion chapter (attempts to) answer the core research question .

In other words, the dissertation structure and layout reflect the research process of asking a well-defined question(s), investigating, and then answering the question – see below.

A dissertation's structure reflect the research process

To restate that – the structure and layout of a dissertation reflect the flow of the overall research process . This is essential to understand, as each chapter will make a lot more sense if you “get” this concept. If you’re not familiar with the research process, read this post before going further.

Right. Now that we’ve covered the big picture, let’s dive a little deeper into the details of each section and chapter. Oh and by the way, you can also grab our free dissertation/thesis template here to help speed things up.

The title page of your dissertation is the very first impression the marker will get of your work, so it pays to invest some time thinking about your title. But what makes for a good title? A strong title needs to be 3 things:

  • Succinct (not overly lengthy or verbose)
  • Specific (not vague or ambiguous)
  • Representative of the research you’re undertaking (clearly linked to your research questions)

Typically, a good title includes mention of the following:

  • The broader area of the research (i.e. the overarching topic)
  • The specific focus of your research (i.e. your specific context)
  • Indication of research design (e.g. quantitative , qualitative , or  mixed methods ).

For example:

A quantitative investigation [research design] into the antecedents of organisational trust [broader area] in the UK retail forex trading market [specific context/area of focus].

Again, some universities may have specific requirements regarding the format and structure of the title, so it’s worth double-checking expectations with your institution (if there’s no mention in the brief or study material).

Dissertations stacked up

Acknowledgements

This page provides you with an opportunity to say thank you to those who helped you along your research journey. Generally, it’s optional (and won’t count towards your marks), but it is academic best practice to include this.

So, who do you say thanks to? Well, there’s no prescribed requirements, but it’s common to mention the following people:

  • Your dissertation supervisor or committee.
  • Any professors, lecturers or academics that helped you understand the topic or methodologies.
  • Any tutors, mentors or advisors.
  • Your family and friends, especially spouse (for adult learners studying part-time).

There’s no need for lengthy rambling. Just state who you’re thankful to and for what (e.g. thank you to my supervisor, John Doe, for his endless patience and attentiveness) – be sincere. In terms of length, you should keep this to a page or less.

Abstract or executive summary

The dissertation abstract (or executive summary for some degrees) serves to provide the first-time reader (and marker or moderator) with a big-picture view of your research project. It should give them an understanding of the key insights and findings from the research, without them needing to read the rest of the report – in other words, it should be able to stand alone .

For it to stand alone, your abstract should cover the following key points (at a minimum):

  • Your research questions and aims – what key question(s) did your research aim to answer?
  • Your methodology – how did you go about investigating the topic and finding answers to your research question(s)?
  • Your findings – following your own research, what did do you discover?
  • Your conclusions – based on your findings, what conclusions did you draw? What answers did you find to your research question(s)?

So, in much the same way the dissertation structure mimics the research process, your abstract or executive summary should reflect the research process, from the initial stage of asking the original question to the final stage of answering that question.

In practical terms, it’s a good idea to write this section up last , once all your core chapters are complete. Otherwise, you’ll end up writing and rewriting this section multiple times (just wasting time). For a step by step guide on how to write a strong executive summary, check out this post .

Need a helping hand?

what is a good title in thesis

Table of contents

This section is straightforward. You’ll typically present your table of contents (TOC) first, followed by the two lists – figures and tables. I recommend that you use Microsoft Word’s automatic table of contents generator to generate your TOC. If you’re not familiar with this functionality, the video below explains it simply:

If you find that your table of contents is overly lengthy, consider removing one level of depth. Oftentimes, this can be done without detracting from the usefulness of the TOC.

Right, now that the “admin” sections are out of the way, its time to move on to your core chapters. These chapters are the heart of your dissertation and are where you’ll earn the marks. The first chapter is the introduction chapter – as you would expect, this is the time to introduce your research…

It’s important to understand that even though you’ve provided an overview of your research in your abstract, your introduction needs to be written as if the reader has not read that (remember, the abstract is essentially a standalone document). So, your introduction chapter needs to start from the very beginning, and should address the following questions:

  • What will you be investigating (in plain-language, big picture-level)?
  • Why is that worth investigating? How is it important to academia or business? How is it sufficiently original?
  • What are your research aims and research question(s)? Note that the research questions can sometimes be presented at the end of the literature review (next chapter).
  • What is the scope of your study? In other words, what will and won’t you cover ?
  • How will you approach your research? In other words, what methodology will you adopt?
  • How will you structure your dissertation? What are the core chapters and what will you do in each of them?

These are just the bare basic requirements for your intro chapter. Some universities will want additional bells and whistles in the intro chapter, so be sure to carefully read your brief or consult your research supervisor.

If done right, your introduction chapter will set a clear direction for the rest of your dissertation. Specifically, it will make it clear to the reader (and marker) exactly what you’ll be investigating, why that’s important, and how you’ll be going about the investigation. Conversely, if your introduction chapter leaves a first-time reader wondering what exactly you’ll be researching, you’ve still got some work to do.

Now that you’ve set a clear direction with your introduction chapter, the next step is the literature review . In this section, you will analyse the existing research (typically academic journal articles and high-quality industry publications), with a view to understanding the following questions:

  • What does the literature currently say about the topic you’re investigating?
  • Is the literature lacking or well established? Is it divided or in disagreement?
  • How does your research fit into the bigger picture?
  • How does your research contribute something original?
  • How does the methodology of previous studies help you develop your own?

Depending on the nature of your study, you may also present a conceptual framework towards the end of your literature review, which you will then test in your actual research.

Again, some universities will want you to focus on some of these areas more than others, some will have additional or fewer requirements, and so on. Therefore, as always, its important to review your brief and/or discuss with your supervisor, so that you know exactly what’s expected of your literature review chapter.

Dissertation writing

Now that you’ve investigated the current state of knowledge in your literature review chapter and are familiar with the existing key theories, models and frameworks, its time to design your own research. Enter the methodology chapter – the most “science-ey” of the chapters…

In this chapter, you need to address two critical questions:

  • Exactly HOW will you carry out your research (i.e. what is your intended research design)?
  • Exactly WHY have you chosen to do things this way (i.e. how do you justify your design)?

Remember, the dissertation part of your degree is first and foremost about developing and demonstrating research skills . Therefore, the markers want to see that you know which methods to use, can clearly articulate why you’ve chosen then, and know how to deploy them effectively.

Importantly, this chapter requires detail – don’t hold back on the specifics. State exactly what you’ll be doing, with who, when, for how long, etc. Moreover, for every design choice you make, make sure you justify it.

In practice, you will likely end up coming back to this chapter once you’ve undertaken all your data collection and analysis, and revise it based on changes you made during the analysis phase. This is perfectly fine. Its natural for you to add an additional analysis technique, scrap an old one, etc based on where your data lead you. Of course, I’m talking about small changes here – not a fundamental switch from qualitative to quantitative, which will likely send your supervisor in a spin!

You’ve now collected your data and undertaken your analysis, whether qualitative, quantitative or mixed methods. In this chapter, you’ll present the raw results of your analysis . For example, in the case of a quant study, you’ll present the demographic data, descriptive statistics, inferential statistics , etc.

Typically, Chapter 4 is simply a presentation and description of the data, not a discussion of the meaning of the data. In other words, it’s descriptive, rather than analytical – the meaning is discussed in Chapter 5. However, some universities will want you to combine chapters 4 and 5, so that you both present and interpret the meaning of the data at the same time. Check with your institution what their preference is.

Now that you’ve presented the data analysis results, its time to interpret and analyse them. In other words, its time to discuss what they mean, especially in relation to your research question(s).

What you discuss here will depend largely on your chosen methodology. For example, if you’ve gone the quantitative route, you might discuss the relationships between variables . If you’ve gone the qualitative route, you might discuss key themes and the meanings thereof. It all depends on what your research design choices were.

Most importantly, you need to discuss your results in relation to your research questions and aims, as well as the existing literature. What do the results tell you about your research questions? Are they aligned with the existing research or at odds? If so, why might this be? Dig deep into your findings and explain what the findings suggest, in plain English.

The final chapter – you’ve made it! Now that you’ve discussed your interpretation of the results, its time to bring it back to the beginning with the conclusion chapter . In other words, its time to (attempt to) answer your original research question s (from way back in chapter 1). Clearly state what your conclusions are in terms of your research questions. This might feel a bit repetitive, as you would have touched on this in the previous chapter, but its important to bring the discussion full circle and explicitly state your answer(s) to the research question(s).

Dissertation and thesis prep

Next, you’ll typically discuss the implications of your findings . In other words, you’ve answered your research questions – but what does this mean for the real world (or even for academia)? What should now be done differently, given the new insight you’ve generated?

Lastly, you should discuss the limitations of your research, as well as what this means for future research in the area. No study is perfect, especially not a Masters-level. Discuss the shortcomings of your research. Perhaps your methodology was limited, perhaps your sample size was small or not representative, etc, etc. Don’t be afraid to critique your work – the markers want to see that you can identify the limitations of your work. This is a strength, not a weakness. Be brutal!

This marks the end of your core chapters – woohoo! From here on out, it’s pretty smooth sailing.

The reference list is straightforward. It should contain a list of all resources cited in your dissertation, in the required format, e.g. APA , Harvard, etc.

It’s essential that you use reference management software for your dissertation. Do NOT try handle your referencing manually – its far too error prone. On a reference list of multiple pages, you’re going to make mistake. To this end, I suggest considering either Mendeley or Zotero. Both are free and provide a very straightforward interface to ensure that your referencing is 100% on point. I’ve included a simple how-to video for the Mendeley software (my personal favourite) below:

Some universities may ask you to include a bibliography, as opposed to a reference list. These two things are not the same . A bibliography is similar to a reference list, except that it also includes resources which informed your thinking but were not directly cited in your dissertation. So, double-check your brief and make sure you use the right one.

The very last piece of the puzzle is the appendix or set of appendices. This is where you’ll include any supporting data and evidence. Importantly, supporting is the keyword here.

Your appendices should provide additional “nice to know”, depth-adding information, which is not critical to the core analysis. Appendices should not be used as a way to cut down word count (see this post which covers how to reduce word count ). In other words, don’t place content that is critical to the core analysis here, just to save word count. You will not earn marks on any content in the appendices, so don’t try to play the system!

Time to recap…

And there you have it – the traditional dissertation structure and layout, from A-Z. To recap, the core structure for a dissertation or thesis is (typically) as follows:

  • Acknowledgments page

Most importantly, the core chapters should reflect the research process (asking, investigating and answering your research question). Moreover, the research question(s) should form the golden thread throughout your dissertation structure. Everything should revolve around the research questions, and as you’ve seen, they should form both the start point (i.e. introduction chapter) and the endpoint (i.e. conclusion chapter).

I hope this post has provided you with clarity about the traditional dissertation/thesis structure and layout. If you have any questions or comments, please leave a comment below, or feel free to get in touch with us. Also, be sure to check out the rest of the  Grad Coach Blog .

what is a good title in thesis

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This post was based on one of our popular Research Bootcamps . If you're working on a research project, you'll definitely want to check this out ...

36 Comments

ARUN kumar SHARMA

many thanks i found it very useful

Derek Jansen

Glad to hear that, Arun. Good luck writing your dissertation.

Sue

Such clear practical logical advice. I very much needed to read this to keep me focused in stead of fretting.. Perfect now ready to start my research!

hayder

what about scientific fields like computer or engineering thesis what is the difference in the structure? thank you very much

Tim

Thanks so much this helped me a lot!

Ade Adeniyi

Very helpful and accessible. What I like most is how practical the advice is along with helpful tools/ links.

Thanks Ade!

Aswathi

Thank you so much sir.. It was really helpful..

You’re welcome!

Jp Raimundo

Hi! How many words maximum should contain the abstract?

Karmelia Renatee

Thank you so much 😊 Find this at the right moment

You’re most welcome. Good luck with your dissertation.

moha

best ever benefit i got on right time thank you

Krishnan iyer

Many times Clarity and vision of destination of dissertation is what makes the difference between good ,average and great researchers the same way a great automobile driver is fast with clarity of address and Clear weather conditions .

I guess Great researcher = great ideas + knowledge + great and fast data collection and modeling + great writing + high clarity on all these

You have given immense clarity from start to end.

Alwyn Malan

Morning. Where will I write the definitions of what I’m referring to in my report?

Rose

Thank you so much Derek, I was almost lost! Thanks a tonnnn! Have a great day!

yemi Amos

Thanks ! so concise and valuable

Kgomotso Siwelane

This was very helpful. Clear and concise. I know exactly what to do now.

dauda sesay

Thank you for allowing me to go through briefly. I hope to find time to continue.

Patrick Mwathi

Really useful to me. Thanks a thousand times

Adao Bundi

Very interesting! It will definitely set me and many more for success. highly recommended.

SAIKUMAR NALUMASU

Thank you soo much sir, for the opportunity to express my skills

mwepu Ilunga

Usefull, thanks a lot. Really clear

Rami

Very nice and easy to understand. Thank you .

Chrisogonas Odhiambo

That was incredibly useful. Thanks Grad Coach Crew!

Luke

My stress level just dropped at least 15 points after watching this. Just starting my thesis for my grad program and I feel a lot more capable now! Thanks for such a clear and helpful video, Emma and the GradCoach team!

Judy

Do we need to mention the number of words the dissertation contains in the main document?

It depends on your university’s requirements, so it would be best to check with them 🙂

Christine

Such a helpful post to help me get started with structuring my masters dissertation, thank you!

Simon Le

Great video; I appreciate that helpful information

Brhane Kidane

It is so necessary or avital course

johnson

This blog is very informative for my research. Thank you

avc

Doctoral students are required to fill out the National Research Council’s Survey of Earned Doctorates

Emmanuel Manjolo

wow this is an amazing gain in my life

Paul I Thoronka

This is so good

Tesfay haftu

How can i arrange my specific objectives in my dissertation?

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Enjoy a completely custom, expertly-written dissertation. Choose from hundreds of writers, all of whom are career specialists in your subject.

Guide for Writing a Thesis Title

thesis title

A thesis title refers to a paper’s short header comprising of two parts. The first section comprises the information regarding the work’s topic while the second part covers the research methods. The primary objective of a title is to capture the reader’s attention while briefly describing the paper. Consequently, students should know how to compose a good title when writing a dissertation.

Ideally, thesis titles express the arguments and subjects of the papers. Therefore, researchers should write titles after writing their theses. That’s because they know the course of their arguments after completing their theses. Remember that this title is the first thing that readers see upon receiving the paper. Therefore, this section should provide a concise topic view that the paper addresses.

To ensure your thesis title captures the reader’s attention and effectively describes your paper, consider seeking the assistance of a professional dissertation writer . Our experts will help you craft a compelling and informative title that accurately reflects the content of your dissertation. With the guidance of a professional dissertation writer, you can enhance the impact of your research and make a strong impression on your readers.

Why a Thesis Title Matters

As hinted, a dissertation title is the text’s hallmark. It reveals the essence of your paper while framing the central argument in an academic paper. While it’s a short phrase, it tells your audience more about the content. This section of the text should give readers a glimpse of your study. That’s why you should invest your time in creating a brilliant title of your paper. Ideally, you should think about this part for your paper as its packaging.

The title should be sufficiently pretty to capture the right audience’s attention. What’s more, the topic should meet certain requirements, depending on the academic writing format of your paper. Thus, whether you’re writing an APA, MLA, or PPA paper will determine aspects like quotation, abbreviation, and capitalization.

Since a title enables you to make your first contact with your readers, make it sufficiently compelling while using it to set the pace for your content. It can also entice your audience to read the entire paper.

Primary Components of a Dissertation Title

The topic of your thesis paper should be as distinct as the text it describes. However, a good title exhibits certain fundamental factors. Whether it is political science, economics, or social sciences, these elements apply to this part of a paper. And they should guide you when writing titles for the theses that the audiences find worth reading.

  • Formatting: Students should never submit their thesis without checking to ensure that their titles meet the formatting standards of their academic writing styles. While not all academic papers require formatting, styles differ, depending on institutions and disciplines. Formatting requirements are essential because they influence how learners write citations and quotations. What’s more, your writing style dictates how you organize the piece. Your educator might also specify the instructions to follow regarding your thesis’ tone. Therefore, consider such elements carefully to write a brilliant title. Also, remember capitalization rules when writing your topic.
  • Interest areas: Your study’s objectives are a significant part of the title. What you want to accomplish with the study should set a tone for your paper. Therefore, make sure that your title reflects those objectives. Your interest areas should give your paper its broad scope. However, factor in your specifics. For instance, if writing a thesis about social media marketing’s impacts on the purchasing process provides a broad scope to work with. Nevertheless, you can focus on specific networks like Instagram and Twitter. Therefore, your title should mention specific social media websites. Thus, your interest area should provide a rough guide regarding your title.
  • Internal Consistency: Effective thesis titles are not just attractive and precise. They are also internally consistent. Your title should accurately reflect your study. When a reader sees your title, they should get a glue of the content of your paper. If your title is about a case study approach, readers expect to find an introduction, abstract, and methodology section in the paper. Lacking consistency can create a disconnect that may push some readers away. Therefore, pay attention to the style and language of your writing to avoid misleading or losing your audience along the way.

The best dissertation titles are precise, concise, and relevant. They are also brief because many words discourage some audiences. However, a good title is not too short. Instead, it comprises over four words while thriving on specificity.

How to Title a Thesis

The title of your thesis paper should summarize your study’s main idea. It should also comprise as few words as possible, while adequately describing the purpose and/or content of the research paper. Most people read the title first and the most. If it’s too long, it will have unnecessary words. And if it’s too short, it uses too general words. Therefore, focus on creating a title that provides information regarding the focus of your work.

If your goal is to learn how to write a thesis title, these parameters should help you formulate a suitable topic.

  • Your research objectives or purpose
  • Your paper’s narrative tone, typically defined by your research type
  • Your research methods

Always remember to focus your title on capturing your audience’s attention while drawing their interest to the research problem that you intend to investigate.

Write the final title after completing your research to ensure that it accurately captures what you did. That means you can have a working title that you develop early during the research process. That’s because your working title can anchor the focus of your study the way a research problem does. Essentially, you should consistently refer to your working title to avoid forgetting the main purpose of your study. That way, you can avoid drifting off on the tangent when writing. Final thesis titles have several characteristics that make them effective.

These include:

  • Accurate indication of the study subject and scope
  • Wording that stimulates the reader’s interest while creating a positive impression
  • They do not use abbreviations
  • They use the current study field’s nomenclature
  • A revelation of the paper’s organization
  • Identification of independent and dependent variables
  • A suggestion of a relationship between the variables that support the primary hypothesis
  • A limit to substantive words
  • Can be in a question or phrase form
  • Correct capitalization and grammar with capital last and first words

The title of a thesis is the only aspect that readers will find when searching indexing databases or search engines. Therefore, it should be persuasive and clear to tell leaders what your research is about.

Sample Dissertation Titles

Using samples is a great way to master the art of writing brilliant titles. And the internet is awash with dissertation title examples. An ideal title should summarize your manuscript’s main idea while informing the readers about your dissertation’s nature and main topic. It can also mention your research’s subjects, location, and methodology. It may also specify theoretical issues or variables you investigated and their relationship. Often, a title should indicate your discovery.

Effective titles have eloquent and interesting wording that provides precise and necessary details. Their vocabulary can also bear relevant allusions and nuances. However, they are short and informative. Universities, departments, and style guides set strict character or word limits for titles. For instance, the APA’s publication manual limits a title to 12 words.

Since search engines use titles, words that lack a specific relationship with research become extra baggage. Thus, such titles might not work in bringing the right audience. As such, there are reasons to avoid unnecessary adjectives and adverbs. Essentially, use them sparingly to maximize your title’s effect. Words like methods, study, and methods are extraneous. However, some titles identifying the study type and dissertation methodologies can include such words.

Reading and analyzing quality samples can help you learn how to make a dissertation title. Nevertheless, check samples that fit in your study field to understand what educators in your area look for in titles.

Sample Dissertation Titles Law Students can Use

Educators require law students in the US and UK universities to write dissertations or theses at some point. In most cases, this task is the last hurdle for learners before graduating from law graduate schools. The requirement evokes horror and excitement in equal measures. But, this task provides a chance for learners to interrogate their interest area academically. Nevertheless, completing this task is a monumental responsibility. Here are dissertation titles samples that law students can use as their guide when writing this paper.

  • A comprehensive evaluation of female and male rape legislations: How do they differ?
  • Analysis of lie detectors usage in criminal justice: Are they effective?
  • Challenges that parties face in Vienna Convention on Contracts application for international sales
  • A comparison of human right law gaps in different countries
  • How family law has changed over the years
  • What are the repercussions for females vs. males involved in domestic violence?
  • A literature review of religion and employment laws convergence in the US
  • Evaluating sexual harassment at the workplace
  • Assessing corporate social responsibility and its mediating role in companies performance
  • How do medical law and ethics coexist?

Dissertations are long papers. Therefore, their topics are crucial because they determine the difficulty or simplicity of completing them. Use these samples to guide you when creating a topic for your thesis if you’re a law student.

Sample PR Dissertation Titles

When writing dissertations, public relations students should make reasonable arguments and answer research questions. Their hypotheses should provide evidence to serve as their basis. And educators expect learners to time collecting and documenting the evidence. An ideal title can make this task simple and interesting. Therefore, students should select titles that align with their developing practice area. Here are sample topics that PR students can consider exploring in their studies and writing about.

  • How fake and truth news change the operations of public relations offers
  • How essential is storytelling versus truth?
  • How should public relations practitioners ensure that their messages resonate well in the current fake news era?
  • How transparency looks like in public relations
  • Analyzing effective reputation and crisis management in the mobile and social media’s world
  • How public relations has changed- The shifting skillset for modern public relations practitioners
  • How mobile has affected public relations
  • Inbound marketing and public relations- Can PR be inbound?
  • How public relation practitioners are adapting to social media
  • Public relations monitoring and measurement- How to determine PR ROI

Public relations students can use these topic samples as their guide for creating value-adding and industry-relevant topics. However, learners should develop topics they are passionate about to enjoy their writing process.

Sample Dissertation Titles Sociology Students will Love

Several issues in social science can be a good foundation for a sociology dissertation topic. If looking for the best title for your sociology thesis, here are sample topics to consider.

  • Analyzing the differences in gender and sexual issues between males and females
  • How religious beliefs vary according to the practices and customs of a country
  • How modern social science studies link education and religion
  • How social change is taking over the world- The link between religion and social change
  • What are the effects of education’s sociological policies after World War II?
  • How immigrants’ foreign culture affects the practices and values of the indigenous people
  • Examining counterculture’s shifting fundamentals
  • How Japan’s culture compares to that of the UK
  • Examining the dimensions and trends of gender voting in British and American political systems
  • Examining the influence and power of minority interests in a society

These ideas can help you come up with a title for your thesis. However, create a title you will find interesting to research and write about. That’s the only way you will enjoy working on your thesis.

Sample Med Dissertation Titles

If pursuing medical studies, you’ll need a good topic for your dissertation at some point. Medical studies present a broad field. However, your topic should capture specific objectives and goals of your research. Here are sample topics that medical students can explore.

  • How to manage and take care of patients suffering from acute pain
  • Medical management and psychological treatment of prisoners with drug dependence problems
  • How midwives can improve the pregnancy outcomes
  • How midwives can help in high-risk pregnancies improvement
  • Occupational health psychology in stress management
  • How to prevent work-related injuries and illnesses
  • How to prevent the side effects of mineral fertilizers on plant workers and the environment
  • How emergency doctors’ mental health and their life quality relate
  • How to ensure personnel mental health in a security company
  • Occupational safety- Why is it essential for factory workers?

Whether you need an undergraduate or a Ph.D. thesis title, each of these ideas can provide a basis for formulating your topic. Nevertheless, make sure that you will be comfortable working with your title.

Sample Dissertation Titles for Business Management

A business management dissertation can cover different areas in business studies. When writing this paper, a student should focus on answering specific questions. Here are sample topics that students majoring in business management can explore in their papers.

  • How remote workers affect business management
  • How businesses can manage collaborations and communications with remote workers
  • Effect of wages changes on business costs
  • How investing in artificial intelligence enables business managers to satisfy their customers
  • Risk management by companies and focusing performance on the competitive advantage mediating role
  • Effective management models for the tourism sector
  • An empirical investigation of cost-leadership, business performance, and market orientation
  • Why intellectual capital management matters in business
  • Hyper-competitiveness in modern business environments- What is it about?
  • How banks can enhance their international connectivity with enterprise customers

This category has brilliant undergraduate thesis title samples. However, learners should take their time to identify topics they can confidently and comfortably work on. That way, they can enjoy their dissertation writing process.

Sample Interior Design Dissertation Titles

When pursuing interior design studies, your educator might ask you to write a dissertation. If allowed to select your title, consider exploring these ideas.

  • Why interior design is not for the wealthy people only
  • The interior design concept for people with tight budgets
  • How long interior design should take when working on a standard house
  • Benefits of terracotta tiles combined with woven rugs
  • Effects of modern trends on interior design
  • How to rework a retirement home from an interior designer’s perspective
  • The link between fashion and interior design- How each borrows ideas from the other
  • Why you should use your kitchen floor mats for your home’s design
  • How a building’s design affects the owner’s mental health
  • How a good design can help in managing workplace distractions

This category has some of the best titles that interior design students can explore in their papers. But like with the other categories, learners should settle on topics they can comfortably research and write about.

Sample Primary Education Dissertation Titles

Education is among the broadest study fields. The purpose of dissertation assignments in this field is to help learners explore and understand different learning approaches and education types. Here are sample topics to explore in this study field.

  • How the COVID-19 pandemic has affected primary education
  • How to maintain social distance in primary schools
  • How the COVID-19 pandemic has increased online primary education
  • The practice and theory of primary education games as tools for enhancing learning
  • How the learning ability of children affect their performance
  • How to create efficient learning settings for enhancing early childhood education
  • Factors enhancing and inhibiting creativity in primary schools
  • How primary education can develop life skills among pupils
  • Effective ways teachers can evaluate and monitor students in primary schools
  • How computer-based programs can enhance learning in primary schools

Primary education is compulsory in most developed and developing countries. This education helps in establishing foundations in mathematics, geography, history, social sciences, and science. Students that want to become primary teachers can explore these ideas when writing dissertations.

Sample Art History Dissertation Titles

Art history entails studying the objects that humans have made for aesthetic pleasure purposes. And this study field is varied and wide. If looking for a thesis title example in this field, here are brilliant ideas to consider.

  • How humans have exemplified their desire to touch and see God in art
  • How Gothic architecture is more than pointed arch
  • Describe the change in Egyptian art over time
  • How does the Gertrude Stein picture by Picasso marks his development as an artist?
  • Examining Picasso from the perspectives of social and political movements of his time
  • Describe Miro’s contribution to a surrealist movement
  • Discuss biomorphic in 20 th -century painting
  • How humans have appropriated sculpture for political display
  • Did the British architectural style provide a basis for the Delhi center?
  • How necessary is aesthetic and art appreciation?

If pursuing art history, consider any of these ideas for your dissertation, but make sure that it’s a topic you will be happy to research and write about.

Sample Globalization Dissertation Titles

When writing globalization dissertations, learners have a wide range of topic ideas they can use as the basis of their work. Here are sample topics to consider for your globalization thesis.

  • How globalization can affect your identity
  • Effects of globalization in sports
  • How trade relates to globalization
  • How globalization affects economic growth
  • Analysis of workers’ interests from a globalization perspective
  • The Cold War globalization
  • Is globalization bad or good for mankind?
  • How water scarcity affects globalization
  • How globalization affects the poor
  • Globalization and feminism

These are brilliant ideas to explore when writing a globalization thesis paper. Nevertheless, students must research their topics to come up with excellent papers about these topics.

Sample LLM Dissertation Titles

LLM dissertations topics cover the subject areas that students pursue during LLM program modules. This paper can tackle doctrinal, theoretical, policy, and jurisprudential issues that are relevant in modern legal and policy affairs. Here are sample titles for LLM dissertations.

  • Speech freedom and privacy right in the media and press- Should governments restrict it?
  • What are the weak and strong points of the judicial review process?
  • How to justify civil liberties restriction for public safety’s sake
  • How effective are anti-corruption laws in a country?
  • Precautions for preventing mistakes and abuse of assisted suicides legalization
  • National and international law- Which one should prevail?
  • Migrating with a minor- What legal gaps do people face when relocating?
  • Dividing assets after divorce- Is the law fair for the involved parties?
  • Effective legal mechanisms for preventing child labor
  • How to ease conflict when protecting trade secrets within the business law

If pursuing legal studies, you can find a title of thesis your educator will find interesting to read. But pay attention to select an interesting topic you’ll be glad to research and work with.

Sample Ph.D. Thesis Titles

A title for a Ph.D. thesis should tell the readers what you examined during your research. Thus, it should summarize your work and indicate the topic. Here are examples of attention-grabbing and catchy titles for Ph.D. theses.

  • Small business strategies and how to adjust them to globalization
  • Human resource management and strategies in non-profit organizations
  • Risks and benefits of international joint revenue
  • Outsourcing as a practice in business
  • Gender equality in business- Effective management approaches
  • Working remotely versus modern workplaces
  • How mentoring influences individual success
  • How business size impacts financial decisions
  • Financial risks for modern businesses
  • How to reduce risks at the workplace

These are brilliant thesis titles to explore when writing a Ph.D. dissertation. However, you can tweak your preferred title to make it unique and suitable for your study field.

Tips for Creating Thesis Titles

Even with the above samples, some learners can have difficulties creating titles for their thesis. These tips will make creating the best thesis title for high school students, undergraduates, masters, and Ph.D. learners easier.

  • Select the words to use in your title carefully
  • Seek advice from the professor, a friend, or classmate
  • Follow the format specified by your department or school
  • Write the final title after writing the paper
  • Make your title informative, brief, and catchy
  • Avoid abbreviations, initials, and acronyms

To ensure the creation of an exceptional thesis title, consider seeking the assistance of a professional dissertation writers . Experts have the experience and expertise to guide you in selecting the most appropriate words and crafting an informative, brief, and catchy title. Additionally, they can help you follow the format specified by your department or school while avoiding the use of abbreviations, initials, and acronyms.

Final Thoughts

The title of your thesis should indicate the subject and scope of your research. It should be engaging, concise, explanatory, and descriptive. Also, avoid abbreviations, jargon, acronyms, initials, and redundant words. Additionally, follow the requirements of your academic formatting styles and use examples to create a good title for your thesis.

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Richard Ginger is a dissertation writer and freelance columnist with a wealth of knowledge and expertise in the writing industry. He handles every project he works on with precision while keeping attention to details and ensuring that every work he does is unique.

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Dissertation titles

The dissertation title is your first opportunity to let the reader know what your dissertation is about. With just a few words, the title has to highlight the purpose of the study, which can often include its context, outcomes, and important aspects of the research strategy adopted. But a poorly constructed title can also mislead the reader into thinking the study is about something it is not, confusing them from the very start.

In our articles on EXPECTATIONS and LEARNING , we explain what the reader expects and learns from your dissertation title, before setting out the major COMPONENTS that can be included in dissertation titles. Finally, since your dissertation title should follow a specific written style, which explains when to capitalise words, which words to capitalise, how to deal with quotation marks, abbreviations, numbers, and so forth, we provide some guidance in our article on STYLES .

  • EXPECTATIONS: What readers "expect" from a dissertation title
  • LEARNING: What the reader "learns" from a dissertation title
  • COMPONENTS: The main "components" of a dissertation title
  • STYLES: Make sure your title uses the correct "style"

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Library Guides

Dissertations 1: getting started: thinking of a title.

  • Starting Your Dissertation
  • Choosing A Topic and Researching
  • Devising An Approach/Method
  • Thinking Of A Title
  • Writing A Proposal

Dissertation Titles

Giving your dissertation a title early on can help to remind you of your argument and what you want to demonstrate to the reader.  

A good dissertation title should be: 

Descriptive and explanatory (not general) 

Precise 

Possibly include important components/aspects of the research strategy e.g. situated nature, population, methodology 

Avoid using abbreviations and acronyms 

A simple way to write a dissertation title is to set out two parts separated by a colon: 

A general area: A specific focus within the area 

For example:  Barriers to Internet banking adoption: A qualitative study among corporate customers in Thailand 

OR  

Engaging bit : Informative bit 

For example:   Changing Bodies : Matters of the Body in the Fiction of Octavia E. Butler 

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  • Next: Planning >>
  • Last Updated: Aug 1, 2023 2:36 PM
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  • What Is a Thesis? | Ultimate Guide & Examples

What Is a Thesis? | Ultimate Guide & Examples

Published on 15 September 2022 by Tegan George . Revised on 5 December 2023.

Structure of a Thesis

A thesis is a type of research paper based on your original research. It is usually submitted as the final step of a PhD program in the UK.

Writing a thesis can be a daunting experience. Indeed, alongside a dissertation , it is the longest piece of writing students typically complete. It relies on your ability to conduct research from start to finish: designing your research , collecting data , developing a robust analysis, drawing strong conclusions , and writing concisely .

Thesis template

You can also download our full thesis template in the format of your choice below. Our template includes a ready-made table of contents , as well as guidance for what each chapter should include. It’s easy to make it your own, and can help you get started.

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Table of contents

Thesis vs. thesis statement, how to structure a thesis, acknowledgements or preface, list of figures and tables, list of abbreviations, introduction, literature review, methodology, reference list, proofreading and editing, defending your thesis, frequently asked questions about theses.

You may have heard the word thesis as a standalone term or as a component of academic writing called a thesis statement . Keep in mind that these are two very different things.

  • A thesis statement is a very common component of an essay, particularly in the humanities. It usually comprises 1 or 2 sentences in the introduction of your essay , and should clearly and concisely summarise the central points of your academic essay .
  • A thesis is a long-form piece of academic writing, often taking more than a full semester to complete. It is generally a degree requirement to complete a PhD program.
  • In many countries, particularly the UK, a dissertation is generally written at the bachelor’s or master’s level.
  • In the US, a dissertation is generally written as a final step toward obtaining a PhD.

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The final structure of your thesis depends on a variety of components, such as:

  • Your discipline
  • Your theoretical approach

Humanities theses are often structured more like a longer-form essay . Just like in an essay, you build an argument to support a central thesis.

In both hard and social sciences, theses typically include an introduction , literature review , methodology section ,  results section , discussion section , and conclusion section . These are each presented in their own dedicated section or chapter. In some cases, you might want to add an appendix .

Thesis examples

We’ve compiled a short list of thesis examples to help you get started.

  • Example thesis #1:   ‘Abolition, Africans, and Abstraction: the Influence of the “Noble Savage” on British and French Antislavery Thought, 1787-1807’ by Suchait Kahlon.
  • Example thesis #2: ‘”A Starving Man Helping Another Starving Man”: UNRRA, India, and the Genesis of Global Relief, 1943-1947’ by Julian Saint Reiman.

The very first page of your thesis contains all necessary identifying information, including:

  • Your full title
  • Your full name
  • Your department
  • Your institution and degree program
  • Your submission date.

Sometimes the title page also includes your student ID, the name of your supervisor, or the university’s logo. Check out your university’s guidelines if you’re not sure.

Read more about title pages

The acknowledgements section is usually optional. Its main point is to allow you to thank everyone who helped you in your thesis journey, such as supervisors, friends, or family. You can also choose to write a preface , but it’s typically one or the other, not both.

Read more about acknowledgements Read more about prefaces

An abstract is a short summary of your thesis. Usually a maximum of 300 words long, it’s should include brief descriptions of your research objectives , methods, results, and conclusions. Though it may seem short, it introduces your work to your audience, serving as a first impression of your thesis.

Read more about abstracts

A table of contents lists all of your sections, plus their corresponding page numbers and subheadings if you have them. This helps your reader seamlessly navigate your document.

Your table of contents should include all the major parts of your thesis. In particular, don’t forget the the appendices. If you used heading styles, it’s easy to generate an automatic table Microsoft Word.

Read more about tables of contents

While not mandatory, if you used a lot of tables and/or figures, it’s nice to include a list of them to help guide your reader. It’s also easy to generate one of these in Word: just use the ‘Insert Caption’ feature.

Read more about lists of figures and tables

If you have used a lot of industry- or field-specific abbreviations in your thesis, you should include them in an alphabetised list of abbreviations . This way, your readers can easily look up any meanings they aren’t familiar with.

Read more about lists of abbreviations

Relatedly, if you find yourself using a lot of very specialised or field-specific terms that may not be familiar to your reader, consider including a glossary . Alphabetise the terms you want to include with a brief definition.

Read more about glossaries

An introduction sets up the topic, purpose, and relevance of your thesis, as well as expectations for your reader. This should:

  • Ground your research topic , sharing any background information your reader may need
  • Define the scope of your work
  • Introduce any existing research on your topic, situating your work within a broader problem or debate
  • State your research question(s)
  • Outline (briefly) how the remainder of your work will proceed

In other words, your introduction should clearly and concisely show your reader the “what, why, and how” of your research.

Read more about introductions

A literature review helps you gain a robust understanding of any extant academic work on your topic, encompassing:

  • Selecting relevant sources
  • Determining the credibility of your sources
  • Critically evaluating each of your sources
  • Drawing connections between sources, including any themes, patterns, conflicts, or gaps

A literature review is not merely a summary of existing work. Rather, your literature review should ultimately lead to a clear justification for your own research, perhaps via:

  • Addressing a gap in the literature
  • Building on existing knowledge to draw new conclusions
  • Exploring a new theoretical or methodological approach
  • Introducing a new solution to an unresolved problem
  • Definitively advocating for one side of a theoretical debate

Read more about literature reviews

Theoretical framework

Your literature review can often form the basis for your theoretical framework, but these are not the same thing. A theoretical framework defines and analyses the concepts and theories that your research hinges on.

Read more about theoretical frameworks

Your methodology chapter shows your reader how you conducted your research. It should be written clearly and methodically, easily allowing your reader to critically assess the credibility of your argument. Furthermore, your methods section should convince your reader that your method was the best way to answer your research question.

A methodology section should generally include:

  • Your overall approach ( quantitative vs. qualitative )
  • Your research methods (e.g., a longitudinal study )
  • Your data collection methods (e.g., interviews or a controlled experiment
  • Any tools or materials you used (e.g., computer software)
  • The data analysis methods you chose (e.g., statistical analysis , discourse analysis )
  • A strong, but not defensive justification of your methods

Read more about methodology sections

Your results section should highlight what your methodology discovered. These two sections work in tandem, but shouldn’t repeat each other. While your results section can include hypotheses or themes, don’t include any speculation or new arguments here.

Your results section should:

  • State each (relevant) result with any (relevant) descriptive statistics (e.g., mean , standard deviation ) and inferential statistics (e.g., test statistics , p values )
  • Explain how each result relates to the research question
  • Determine whether the hypothesis was supported

Additional data (like raw numbers or interview transcripts ) can be included as an appendix . You can include tables and figures, but only if they help the reader better understand your results.

Read more about results sections

Your discussion section is where you can interpret your results in detail. Did they meet your expectations? How well do they fit within the framework that you built? You can refer back to any relevant source material to situate your results within your field, but leave most of that analysis in your literature review.

For any unexpected results, offer explanations or alternative interpretations of your data.

Read more about discussion sections

Your thesis conclusion should concisely answer your main research question. It should leave your reader with an ultra-clear understanding of your central argument, and emphasise what your research specifically has contributed to your field.

Why does your research matter? What recommendations for future research do you have? Lastly, wrap up your work with any concluding remarks.

Read more about conclusions

In order to avoid plagiarism , don’t forget to include a full reference list at the end of your thesis, citing the sources that you used. Choose one citation style and follow it consistently throughout your thesis, taking note of the formatting requirements of each style.

Which style you choose is often set by your department or your field, but common styles include MLA , Chicago , and APA.

Create APA citations Create MLA citations

In order to stay clear and concise, your thesis should include the most essential information needed to answer your research question. However, chances are you have many contributing documents, like interview transcripts or survey questions . These can be added as appendices , to save space in the main body.

Read more about appendices

Once you’re done writing, the next part of your editing process begins. Leave plenty of time for proofreading and editing prior to submission. Nothing looks worse than grammar mistakes or sloppy spelling errors!

Consider using a professional thesis editing service to make sure your final project is perfect.

Once you’ve submitted your final product, it’s common practice to have a thesis defense, an oral component of your finished work. This is scheduled by your advisor or committee, and usually entails a presentation and Q&A session.

After your defense, your committee will meet to determine if you deserve any departmental honors or accolades. However, keep in mind that defenses are usually just a formality. If there are any serious issues with your work, these should be resolved with your advisor way before a defense.

The conclusion of your thesis or dissertation shouldn’t take up more than 5-7% of your overall word count.

When you mention different chapters within your text, it’s considered best to use Roman numerals for most citation styles. However, the most important thing here is to remain consistent whenever using numbers in your dissertation .

If you only used a few abbreviations in your thesis or dissertation, you don’t necessarily need to include a list of abbreviations .

If your abbreviations are numerous, or if you think they won’t be known to your audience, it’s never a bad idea to add one. They can also improve readability, minimising confusion about abbreviations unfamiliar to your reader.

A thesis or dissertation outline is one of the most critical first steps in your writing process. It helps you to lay out and organise your ideas and can provide you with a roadmap for deciding what kind of research you’d like to undertake.

Generally, an outline contains information on the different sections included in your thesis or dissertation, such as:

  • Your anticipated title
  • Your abstract
  • Your chapters (sometimes subdivided into further topics like literature review, research methods, avenues for future research, etc.)

Cite this Scribbr article

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  • How to Write a Great Title

Title

Maximize search-ability and engage your readers from the very beginning

Your title is the first thing anyone who reads your article is going to see, and for many it will be where they stop reading. Learn how to write a title that helps readers find your article, draws your audience in and sets the stage for your research!

How your title impacts the success of your article

Researchers are busy and there will always be more articles to read than time to read them.  Good titles help readers find your research, and decide whether to keep reading. Search engines use titles to retrieve relevant articles based on users’ keyword searches. Once readers find your article, they’ll use the title as the first filter to decide whether your research is what they’re looking for. A strong and specific title is the first step toward citations, inclusion in meta-analyses, and influencing your field. 

what is a good title in thesis

What to include in a title

Include the most important information that will signal to your target audience that they should keep reading.

Key information about the study design

Important keywords

What you discovered

Writing tips

Getting the title right can be more difficult than it seems, and researchers refine their writing skills throughout their career. Some journals even help editors to re-write their titles during the publication process! 

what is a good title in thesis

  • Keep it concise and informative What’s appropriate for titles varies greatly across disciplines. Take a look at some articles published in your field, and check the journal guidelines for character limits. Aim for fewer than 12 words, and check for journal specific word limits.
  • Write for your audience Consider who your primary audience is: are they specialists in your specific field, are they cross-disciplinary, are they non-specialists?
  • Entice the reader Find a way to pique your readers’ interest, give them enough information to keep them reading.
  • Incorporate important keywords Consider what about your article will be most interesting to your audience: Most readers come to an article from a search engine, so take some time and include the important ones in your title!
  • Write in sentence case In scientific writing, titles are given in sentence case. Capitalize only the first word of the text, proper nouns, and genus names. See our examples below.

what is a good title in thesis

Don’t

  • Write your title as a question In most cases, you shouldn’t need to frame your title as a question. You have the answers, you know what you found. Writing your title as a question might draw your readers in, but it’s more likely to put them off.
  • Sensationalize your research Be honest with yourself about what you truly discovered. A sensationalized or dramatic title might make a few extra people read a bit further into your article, but you don’t want them disappointed when they get to the results.

Examples…

Format: Prevalence of [disease] in [population] in [location]

Example: Prevalence of tuberculosis in homeless women in San Francisco

Format: Risk factors for [condition] among [population] in [location]

Example: Risk factors for preterm births among low-income women in Mexico City

Format (systematic review/meta-analysis): Effectiveness of [treatment] for [disease] in [population] for [outcome] : A systematic review and meta-analysis

Example: Effectiveness of Hepatitis B treatment in HIV-infected adolescents in the prevention of liver disease: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Format (clinical trial): [Intervention] improved [symptoms] of [disease] in [population] : A randomized controlled clinical trial

Example: Using a sleep app lessened insomnia in post-menopausal women in southwest United States: A randomized controlled clinical trial

Format  (general molecular studies): Characterization/identification/evaluation of [molecule name] in/from [organism/tissue] (b y [specific biological methods] ) 

Example: Identification of putative Type-I sex pheromone biosynthesis-related genes expressed in the female pheromone gland of Streltzoviella insularis

Format  (general molecular studies): [specific methods/analysis] of organism/tissue reveal insights into [function/role] of [molecule name] in [biological process]  

Example: Transcriptome landscape of Rafflesia cantleyi floral buds reveals insights into the roles of transcription factors and phytohormones in flower development

Format  (software/method papers): [tool/method/software] for [what purpose] in [what research area]

Example: CRISPR-based tools for targeted transcriptional and epigenetic regulation in plants

Tip: How to edit your work

Editing is challenging, especially if you are acting as both a writer and an editor. Read our guidelines for advice on how to refine your work, including useful tips for setting your intentions, re-review, and consultation with colleagues.

  • How to Write an Abstract
  • How to Write Your Methods
  • How to Report Statistics
  • How to Write Discussions and Conclusions
  • How to Edit Your Work

The contents of the Peer Review Center are also available as a live, interactive training session, complete with slides, talking points, and activities. …

The contents of the Writing Center are also available as a live, interactive training session, complete with slides, talking points, and activities. …

There’s a lot to consider when deciding where to submit your work. Learn how to choose a journal that will help your study reach its audience, while reflecting your values as a researcher…

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what is a good title in thesis

4 tips for creating the perfect dissertation title

(Last updated: 12 May 2021)

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In this blog, we will highlight some of the ways to better develop the “best” dissertation title. Drawing on our own experience, here are four of our tried-and-tested tips for getting the best possible title, so you can focus on the other stuff that matters.

1. The Name Game

While it might not seem like the most vital issue while you're working through mountains of data, choosing a title for your dissertation still leaves many confused, whether they're working on their undergraduate project or even their PhD thesis. The “right” dissertation title isn't simply a line or two of text which crowns the printed document; it has an important role to play in signalling to readers what you're attempting to do, how you're going to do it, and why it might be important.

Like any good book, a dissertation title should “grab” your attention, convincing you to read more. Titles are difficult to conceive because, in only a handful of words, they must condense the entire scope and objectives of a project that has lasted months and includes thousands of words of subtle argument. The fear – for many - is of how to reduce 10,000 words to less than fifty.

2. Make it relevant

Say you're writing a dissertation about the role of a particular plant within an ecosystem, or attempting to use primary historical data to explain why an event may have happened in the way it did. You want to ensure that you are being crystal clear about your subject matter, the key “players”, and the overarching themes. At the same time, there are different rules for different subjects; humanities essays may be more expressive and exciting, whereas scientific dissertations may need a drier and more direct tone.

In all cases, you can be direct about this; use adverbs such as “how” or “what” to make it obvious you're asking a question of the data, rather than simply writing at length about a subject. You want to make it clear that you're asking a specific question, or interrogating a particular idea or theory. You may write, “Testing the propagation of electromagnetic waves through a vacuum”. You can specify further; “How do electromagnetic waves propagate through different mediums?”. Again, you can specify further still; “How do electromagnetic waves propagate through three different brands of jelly?”.

What this title does is; (a) ask a question; (b) make it clear what is being studied; and (c) allude to the “how”, the methodology.

After reading it, we understand what the rest of the pages are about. Specifying is a key way of guiding the reader toward understanding what the rest of your project is about.

what is a good title in thesis

3. The Goldilocks Zone

That being said, it's important to ensure you don't over-extend the question; too short and it becomes mysterious (“On Waves”), whereas a dissertation title that is too long can become confusing and bogged down in technicalities. Many, especially in the humanities, utilize a three-part structure, often using three key words to define their field of study (e.g., the history of urbanization or the development of post-war continental philosophy). For example, “Iron, Labour, and Communism: the formation of new industrial cities in the Soviet Union”. This question uses three key terms to show that the dissertation is going to look at the interrelationship between key themes, of natural resources, work, and politics, through the lens of urbanisation in the USSR.

There's room to specify a little further, perhaps by defining a date range: “Iron, Labour, and Communism: the formation of new industrial cities in the Soviet Union, 1929 – 1937”. This creates a very clear signal to the reader about what you're looking at and also, crucially, when. But it's also not too long.

4. Anchor your writing

We have already alluded to key words; these represent a way to “anchor” your writing within particular areas of study and debates. By using key terms such as “labour”, in the context of a question about the Soviet Union and industrial politics, we automatically understand the angle of approach and its considerations. We know it's not a dissertation about the technicalities of mining engineering. We also know that it happened in the past.

Above, we talked about “propagation”; this lets us quickly identify the scientific principle being examined. It also lets us know that this is a dissertation about physics. Every word in a title should be doing something; it should be helping to ask a question, highlighting a methodology or way of “doing”, or defining the area of examination. The other parts of speech are only useful in so far as they connect these key parts of the question.

Every dissertation has a “how” component. In other words, it has a technique or methodology for gathering data, interpreting it, and producing conclusions. This might entail close-reading of a literary text; the scientific measurement of energy; or the examination of historical sources. The methodology is important because it lets the reader know what you're going to be doing before you fully say it. For example, “Using X-rays to identify broken bones". The reader can understand ahead of time whether this is a qualitative dissertation or a quantitative dissertation; of whether it is theoretical or practical. The writer may define the dissertation as theoretical by stating that they are examining a particular theory (“Revisiting Einstein's Theory of Relativity”) or by observing that they are using new, primary data (“A qualitative analysis of attitudes toward vegetarianism”).

"You should see the title not as an unnecessary piece of baggage, but as a kind of product label which informs the reader how to categorize it"

You should see the title not as an unnecessary piece of baggage, but as a kind of product label which informs the reader how to categorise it. Mention specific techniques if relevant (e.g., the propagation of photons through optical fibre). A common problem is that people are too descriptive, only stating a field (“The lives of peasants in late medieval France”) without pointing out what they're actually asking, and how. Better would be to say, “The lives of peasants in late medieval France: an archival study”, or “Understanding the lives of peasants in late medieval France through church records”. Not all projects will need to state the methodology; this is mainly a consideration for those undertaking technical, science-based projects or when using very specific frameworks and models (e.g., a particular kind of psychological test).

Simply put, you're pointing out several things: (1) what; (2) how; and ideally, (3) why.

Communicating the significance of your work is perhaps the hardest part, but you can certainly allude to it. By saying you're attempting to “understand” the lives of people through unique, historical records, you're demonstrating a high level of granularity and a potentially unique approach to a particular subject of study. You can also highlight the significance of the work in the dissertation title by referring to what alternative views it has opened up. For example, “Developing a new technique for measuring long-bones”.

And so, while titles are not the “be all and end all” of a research project, they play a key role in defining what it is, and what it is not. While you may know the subject and methodology of your work, your reader does not. Ultimately, creating the perfect dissertation title is about helping that reader to understand all of the hard work and effort you have put into your project, and convincing them to read on.

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170 Original Thesis Topics and Ideas For Your Winning Paper

thesis topics

Throughout your college and graduate school career, you will be required to write hundreds of academic papers across myriad subjects. Choosing good thesis topics is just one of the major factors necessary to achieve academic excellence. This article does not tell you how to write a good thesis but focuses on the process of developing great senior thesis topics that are challenging yet don’t leave you feeling overwhelmed.

  • How to Develop and Choose Great Thesis Paper Topics?

Computer Science Thesis Topics

Psychology thesis topics, art history thesis topics, sociology thesis topics, economics thesis topics, psychology dissertation topics, architecture thesis topics, criminal justice thesis topics, philosophy thesis topics, history thesis topics, ms thesis topics, where you can find thesis writing help for your topics.

Our list of 170 free thesis statement topics is broken into 12 of the most popular subjects. These are only suggestions and you’re certainly encouraged to modify them as you deem appropriate. Keep in mind that good dissertation topics should aim to push the envelope of academic research while answering important scholarly questions within the field. Don’t feel constrained by what these thesis topics attempt to explore – what inspires your curiosity is the most important aspect of writing a thesis that warrants readership and appreciation.

How to Develop and Choose Great Thesis Topics?

Your thesis statement should be interesting.

You’ve likely heard over and over that the best master thesis topics should always be on something interesting – but does not take this to mean that it only applies to what a reader thinks is interesting. You should genuinely be curious about the topic you want to explore. This will invariably lead to more effective research, writing, and presentation of the chosen topic.

Make Sure You Can Find Enough Resources

Time is limited, and so too are resources. If your topic is too narrow you may not have access to all the resources you need to adequately answer the questions you seek. Ask the resource librarian for some dissertation topic examples to get a sense of the number of resources you will need to include in the bibliography and then triple that number. This is the average amount of research materials you will need to locate in your study.

Meet with Your Advisor to Discuss Options

Finally, you will need to meet with your academic advisor throughout the process of finishing your capstone project, so you will benefit from meeting with him or her as you consider your topics to discuss options. If, for instance, you are going over art history thesis topics , an advisor can point you to previous studies, research, resources, and more. You may find early that your topic may not be doable – and save yourself time by choosing altogether different.

Our List of Great Thesis Ideas On Any Subject

  • How have different methodologies changed the way comp-science is used in business?
  • How has the user interface changed the way society interacts with one another?
  • What are the advances in encryption and decryption we need to fight cybercrime?
  • In what ways have computer viruses altered international finance rules & regulations?
  • How do biometric systems affect the way data is recognized across financial industries?
  • Will artificial intelligence make human labor a thing of the past or will it only be a burden?
  • What are the best defense strategies companies should consider fighting cyber-attacks?
  • How will quantum computers change the way mainstream data is factored into primes?
  • A survey of how different technologies and algorithms can be used for parsing and indexing.
  • Technique to use when visualizing text categorization that has complex hierarchical structures and machine learning.
  • Different tools and techniques in the software required can be used to understand the UK.
  • How to have dependable and secure computing.
  • Definition and explanation of context-aware computing.
  • Top 5 challenges in database design and the information of system development?
  • What are the multiple dimensions or states of high-functioning schizophrenia in adults?
  • How effective is the DSM-IV in categorizing abnormal symptoms in young adults?
  • In what ways does a leader’s presence affect the way his sports teammates perform?
  • How does culture affect the way teaching programs are instituted around the world?
  • In what ways does chemotherapy affect the way patients get attention from family?
  • Is anger an emotion that can be controlled for the benefit of a person’s mental health?
  • What did the 9/11 attacks have on the general psychology of U.S. citizens toward immigrants?
  • How are LGBTQ teens likely to cope with pressures and how does it link to issues of depression?
  • Explain the social identity theory of Tajfel and Turner.
  • What are the REM phase and the continuous sleep disruption?
  • Defining how a brain functions when a person is in love.
  • How do the different forms of amnesia damage your brain activities?
  • What is the significance of a strong self-perception?
  • Is it possible for PTSD to lead to Alzheimer’s disease?
  • How do people respond to the world’s most famous art pieces in an age of social media?
  • In what ways is music considered to be a form of art when there are no actual tangible forms?
  • Are the building styles of the ancient world legitimate representations of artistic work?
  • Do you believe anyone will ever be able to have as much impact as the Renaissance greats?
  • In what ways has the value of art diminished in the last 25 years in terms of investment?
  • How does art affect the way humans develop creatively in terms of their communication?
  • What motivates people to invest in modern art despite there being such a high risk?
  • How does a modern artist make enough income in the days of technology and digital art?
  • Analyze the Monalisa painting and why it is popular.
  • What is the origin of the traditional Chinese and Japanese costumes?
  • What are the most popular pies of Mesopotamian art, and what made them popular?
  • How did Hinduism influence the early Indian Act?
  • Research on the construction of the Great Wall of China.
  • What is the origin of the Greek theatre?
  • How much influence do parents have on their children’s educational and social engagement?
  • In what ways do cross-cultural relationships change the way children think about the world?
  • What are the most important aspects of gender inequality at work and how is it fixed?
  • How much do food cultures link to anticipated health and welfare in American adults?
  • What is the relationship between ethnicity and the levels of completed education in children?
  • What are the biggest factors leading certain populations to alcohol or drug addiction?
  • How is media affecting the way youth view their images as a result of how they are represented?
  • In what ways has social media impacted the way America’s youth interacts with the world?
  • Impacts of Alcohol among the youths.
  • Adaption and the consequences of adopting a child.
  • Diffusion and innovation in European culture and what it means for the features of these countries.
  • How would people react if organ transplant gets completely banned?
  • What are the challenges that working women face in today’s society?
  • What are the impacts of life sentences, and should this be changed
  • What are the five major principles of global economics and how do they affect international law?
  • In what ways are developing countries in Asia affected by short and long-term econ policies?
  • How important is it for the average American investor to know about global economics?
  • In what ways should a person’s wealth be distributed to more philanthropic or charitable activities?
  • What do international economics offer the average American in terms of financial happiness?
  • How has the alcohol industry changed over the last century across different parts of Europe?
  • In what ways has big data mining affected the way global economics and financing have changed?
  • What are the main reasons why the Trump presidency has negatively affected international trade?
  • What is fiscal policy, and what should people know about it?
  • Define and explain three opportunity costs.
  • How do banks set the exchange rate?
  • What is the reason why some resources are rare?
  • What does economic forecasting entail?
  • What are the pros and cons of privatization?
  • What are the connections between employee satisfaction and how they perform at work?
  • How are women affected by misogynistic language in the workplace that emphasizes inequality?
  • In what ways does the formation of negative habits make it harder for people to learn new things?
  • What role does anxiety have in the way students score on standardized high school level tests?
  • How does jealousy determine how long or successful a marriage can be in today’s age of the web?
  • What effect does a person’s amount of time that is spent on social media impact his/her satisfaction?
  • Are humans becoming far more dependent on instant information and less likely to learn the truth?
  • What are some of the negative assumptions about women suffering from postpartum depression?
  • Some eating and personality disorder
  • What is the importance of communication in a relationship?
  • What are the social and psychological effects of virtue networks?
  • What role does a medium play in provoking aggression?
  • How does cognitive behavior therapy help in dealing with depressed adolescents?
  • How can depression and its risk factor be prevented?
  • In what ways did ancient architecture from Greece and Rome influence modern government buildings?
  • What impact did Frank Lloyd Wright’s architectural style have on Los Angeles’ urban planning?
  • Why do historians believe the Egyptian Pyramids were created to their exact shape and scale?
  • How did Roman aqueducts impact the way communities evolved as a result of improved canals?
  • What dangers do the Venice canal systems face as a result of increasing temperatures and water levels?
  • How will architecture in major metropolitan areas change as a result of rising populations in the world?
  • Is architecture considered a science or an art and how does this affect the way we study it today?
  • What is parametric architecture and what other forms blend appropriately with it aesthetically?
  • Explain the construction of Time conception in the Architectural Realm.
  • Waterfront development- the process of beach convention and exhibition centers.
  • What is the design of ruled surfaces?
  • An analytic study of the design potential kinetic Architecture.
  • A survey of China from an archeologist’s point of view.
  • A look at Russian fairy-tale-style houses and huts.
  • How is jury selection affected by how politicians are perceived on social media?
  • Is it accurate to say that minorities receive a fair and unbiased trial in today’s political climate?
  • How do President Trump’s policies and comments targeting minorities affect their rights in court?
  • What challenges does cyber-crime present for lawmakers who have to put corporations on trial?
  • Should large corporations face larger crimes as a result of the amount of money they make publicly?
  • Why aren’t CEOs of multi-billion dollar companies held to the same criminal standards as the public?
  • Should human trafficking face larger penalties as a result of the dark web and ease of communication?
  • Does the internet perpetuate certain crimes as a result of its widespread and virtual anonymity?
  • The relationship between the police and people from different backgrounds.
  • What is the reliability of an eye-witness testimony?
  • What methods can be used to help prevent international drug trafficking?
  • Why does the crime rate increase during emergencies?
  • Why are men more likely to get death penalties?
  • In what ways does the drug court assist or hurt people with addiction?

Thesis Topics in Education

  • What are the biggest evolutionary changes to the major approaches in education throughout the world?
  • How have China’s educational methods changed in the last half-century to position them as world leaders?
  • Can educational programs in South America help those countries combat poverty in their communities?
  • Should core subjects be re-evaluated in light of the quickly changing needs of today’s modern world?
  • Should the United States make bigger investments in bringing tech tools to poorer school districts?
  • Can teachers continue to use traditional methods for grading when class size continues to increase?
  • Why do people lose the desire to learn new subjects in their adult years? How can this be addressed?
  • Should more parents be involved in schools’ educational policies and curriculum development?
  • Do graduate programs in education adequately prepare tomorrow’s teachers for the business world?
  • Are there any career development programs in Elementary schools?
  • What are the character development programs in elementary schools?
  • Should the use of the pass-fail grading be limited?
  • What is the impact of promoting parent volunteering in schools?
  • Teaching children with speech-language pathology.
  • How does the efficiency of classroom management help to reduce stress?
  • Is abortion a philosophical or political question? Should ethics be removed from this conversation?
  • Is it a must to lead an ethical life to achieve true human happiness in today’s competitive world?
  • What does it mean to support ethical farming practices in light of the world’s hunger problems?
  • Should parents have the ability to manipulate their children’s genetics and characteristics to an ideal?
  • How does genetic modification in animals affect our understanding of what we can do for humans?
  • In what ways do religious ethics and philosophy ethics contradict each other when it comes to crimes?
  • How does humanity’s history to commit evil acts affect the way we view our place in the world?
  • Is it morally ethical to love someone who is legally unattainable? (E.g., someone who is married).
  • Are contemporary philosophical theories inclusive of different societies or limiting to specific nations?
  • What can truly upset you, and in what ways can you deal with it?
  • Would you live your life more than once?
  • What do the beauty standards change often?
  • Are there situations where it is better to lie than tell the truth?
  • Some people think that love only lasts for three years. Is it true?
  • What is a perfect life? What prevents you from living it?
  • How has the rise and fall of famous and influential dictators changed throughout history?
  • How have the events leading to the 1980s conflicts in Afghanistan caused the turmoil we see today?
  • In what ways have border wars in South America led to increased asylum seekers fleeing those countries?
  • How did the North Atlantic Trade Agreement impact the way Europe has sought trade deals with China?
  • What impact did the Mormons have in shaping the American city landscape during the 19th century?
  • What role did Mormons have in further expelling Native Americans from their ancestral lands?
  • Why did the Southern States resist the freeing of slaves for so long? What economic factors were there?
  • What impact did pirates have on the development of Caribbean culture in Central America?
  • How have 21st-century marketing strategies affected how we value cultural history in the U.S.A?
  • Trends of migration through the years.
  • What is the history of immigration in the USA?
  • What causes the significant waves of migration in Syria?
  • How were women treated in the Soviet zone during WWII?
  • How did the fall of Hitler and the Nazis affect Germany?
  • The Spanish Inquisition- What is the truth behind its moral justification?
  • How do supercomputers and data mining affect political policy in today’s first-world governments?
  • In what ways have the roles of mediators changed in the world of globalized financial institutions?
  • How important is cultural awareness for large corporations? How is this different in small businesses?
  • Should politicians be allowed to maintain investments that can influence their political decisions?
  • Why are blind trusts necessary for anyone running for public office in today’s global economy?
  • What are the effects of bringing more technology into the home to automate day-to-day activities?
  • In what ways does automation keep people from controlling the same systems we want to be safe?
  • How does cyber activity affect how governments contribute to international economies?
  • How can we learn from past cultures to develop new societies where there is no poverty or hunger?
  • What was the correlation between political climate and literature during the eighteenth century?
  • What is the connection between religious conviction and rational thinking?
  • A comprehensive analysis of gun violence in the US.
  • Case study of Australia and how cyberbullying might result in suicides.
  • Civil war is the greatest inspiration for art. Discuss this concept.
  • Women empowerment in Saudi Arabia in the 2000s.

For more information on how to write a thesis or for more thesis ideas, check out what a professional writing site has to offer. On top of hundreds of free resources, you can pay to have a custom master’s thesis sample made from scratch or can have your work reviewed, edited, and proofread by an academic expert from our thesis writing services , whose job is to stay up-to-date on all educational requirements for capstone projects.

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  1. How to Title an Essay

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  2. How to Title an Essay: Tips and Examples

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  3. How To Write Dissertation Title Page in 2024

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  4. 30 Strong Thesis Statement Examples For Your Research Paper

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  6. How to Write a Good PhD Thesis?

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VIDEO

  1. HOW TO WRITE RESEARCH TITLE?

  2. QUALITIES OF GOOD THESIS EXAMINERS

  3. Essay Terminology: Prompt, Topic, Title, Thesis Statement, Topic Sentence

  4. Final Thesis Presentation(Blockchain Technology)

  5. Thesis and Publication Strategies with and without AI 2024

  6. Guidelines in Writing the Title/How To Formulate Thesis Title?

COMMENTS

  1. Thesis Title: Examples and Suggestions from a PhD Grad

    Why your thesis title is at least somewhat important. It sounds obvious but your thesis title is the first, and often only, interaction people will have with your thesis. For instance, hiring managers for jobs that you may wish to apply for in the future. Therefore you want to give a good sense of what your research involved from the title.

  2. How to Write a Thesis Statement

    A thesis statement summarizes the central points of your essay. It is a signpost telling the reader what the essay will argue and why. The best thesis statements are: Concise: A good thesis statement is short and sweet—don't use more words than necessary. State your point clearly and directly in one or two sentences.

  3. What is a thesis

    A thesis is an in-depth research study that identifies a particular topic of inquiry and presents a clear argument or perspective about that topic using evidence and logic. Writing a thesis showcases your ability of critical thinking, gathering evidence, and making a compelling argument. Integral to these competencies is thorough research ...

  4. What Is a Thesis?

    Revised on April 16, 2024. A thesis is a type of research paper based on your original research. It is usually submitted as the final step of a master's program or a capstone to a bachelor's degree. Writing a thesis can be a daunting experience. Other than a dissertation, it is one of the longest pieces of writing students typically complete.

  5. 7 Top Tips for Picking a Dissertation Title

    7. Uniqueness and Humor. Generally, it is good if your title makes your dissertation stand out. It is also tempting to use a humorous title, though this is best saved for when writing for a popular audience. Neither uniqueness nor humor, however, should come at the expense of communicating important details about your work.

  6. Developing A Thesis

    A good, standard place for your thesis statement is at the end of an introductory paragraph, especially in shorter (5-15 page) essays. Readers are used to finding theses there, so they automatically pay more attention when they read the last sentence of your introduction. Although this is not required in all academic essays, it is a good rule ...

  7. How to Write an Effective Dissertation Title

    The title of your dissertation serves several important functions: First Impression: It is the first thing readers see, setting the tone for the entire document. Clarity: It provides a clear and concise summary of the research topic. Scope: It indicates the scope and focus of the study. Keywords: It includes important keywords that help others find your research in databases and search engines.

  8. Thesis

    Thesis. Your thesis is the central claim in your essay—your main insight or idea about your source or topic. Your thesis should appear early in an academic essay, followed by a logically constructed argument that supports this central claim. A strong thesis is arguable, which means a thoughtful reader could disagree with it and therefore ...

  9. How to write a thesis statement + Examples

    It is a brief statement of your paper's main argument. Essentially, you are stating what you will be writing about. Organize your papers in one place. Try Paperpile. No credit card needed. Get 30 days free. You can see your thesis statement as an answer to a question. While it also contains the question, it should really give an answer to the ...

  10. How to Write a Strong Thesis Statement: 4 Steps + Examples

    Step 4: Revise and refine your thesis statement before you start writing. Read through your thesis statement several times before you begin to compose your full essay. You need to make sure the statement is ironclad, since it is the foundation of the entire paper. Edit it or have a peer review it for you to make sure everything makes sense and ...

  11. The Thesis Title

    The thesis title should be concise, engaging, descriptive and explanatory without being informal or cute. Avoid too much jargon, abbreviations, initials, acronyms and redundant words unless the requirements specify it. Capitalise all the necessary words, including all nouns, pronouns, adjectives, verbs, and adverbs.

  12. Q: How to write the title for a thesis or an article

    How to write the title for a thesis or an article. Detailed Question -. Title of Study (Please state the title of your study in a brief and concise manner, as the title of a thesis or an article.) (Maximum 30 words) this question came from Turkish master program scholarship. Asked by Qamaruddin muhammadi on 17 Feb, 2018.

  13. Choosing a Title

    A good title should provide information about the focus and/or scope of your research study. In academic writing, catchy phrases or non-specific language may be used, but only if it's within the context of the study [e.g., "Fair and Impartial Jury--Catch as Catch Can"]. However, in most cases, you should avoid including words or phrases that do ...

  14. How Do I Write a Great Title?

    Good titles never state the obvious nor do they apply a generic label to a paper. Titles like "Paper #1" or "Lab Report" are clearly too general and unhelpful. ... What you mostly find in science writing titles is a catalog of key terms that corresponds directly to the paper's thesis, significance and methods. Here we see a number of ...

  15. Dissertation Structure & Layout 101 (+ Examples)

    Time to recap…. And there you have it - the traditional dissertation structure and layout, from A-Z. To recap, the core structure for a dissertation or thesis is (typically) as follows: Title page. Acknowledgments page. Abstract (or executive summary) Table of contents, list of figures and tables.

  16. Guide for Writing a Thesis Title

    A thesis title refers to a paper's short header comprising of two parts. The first section comprises the information regarding the work's topic while the second part covers the research methods. The primary objective of a title is to capture the reader's attention while briefly describing the paper. Consequently, students should know how ...

  17. How to write a great dissertation title

    The dissertation title is your first opportunity to let the reader know what your dissertation is about. With just a few words, the title has to highlight the purpose of the study, which can often include its context, outcomes, and important aspects of the research strategy adopted. But a poorly constructed title can also mislead the reader ...

  18. Dissertations 1: Getting Started: Thinking Of A Title

    A good dissertation title should be: A simple way to write a dissertation title is to set out two parts separated by a colon: A general area: A specific focus within the area. For example: Barriers to Internet banking adoption: A qualitative study among corporate customers in Thailand. OR. Engaging bit: Informative bit.

  19. What Is a Thesis?

    A thesis is a type of research paper based on your original research. It is usually submitted as the final step of a PhD program in the UK. Writing a thesis can be a daunting experience. Indeed, alongside a dissertation, it is the longest piece of writing students typically complete. It relies on your ability to conduct research from start to ...

  20. How to Write a Great Title

    Good titles help readers find your research, and decide whether to keep reading. Search engines use titles to retrieve relevant articles based on users' keyword searches. Once readers find your article, they'll use the title as the first filter to decide whether your research is what they're looking for. A strong and specific title is the ...

  21. 4 tips for creating the perfect dissertation title

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