A thesis is simply a document submitted to an academic institution supporting candidature for a given academic program. This document usually details the author's research, findings, limitations, and perhaps recommendations for future research. In some context, this term "thesis" will be widely used in bachelor's or master's programs with the "dissertation"' term being applied in doctorate programs. However, the reverse might be true. It all depends on countries, institutions, and programs being offered. Although the complexity and quality of the thesis might differ based on universities and programs, there is usually a common basic structure that usually applies across the board. This structure is on introduction, literature review, methodology, findings, analysis and discussion, and finally conclusion.
This part of the thesis gives detailed background information regarding the subject matter under investigation. It prepares the reader for what to expect and also gives a preliminary structure of the entire thesis. In this section, the author has to capture the real essence in the topic so that it won't appear detached from the rest of the paper. Once this section is complete, the next section is on the literature review.
This section entails analyzing the previous studies which have been done in the area of interest. The focus is to understand what other scholars have had to say about the phenomenon under investigation and also what their findings were. Usually, the literature review lays a foundation on the problem statement of the thesis. It reveals the gap of knowledge which the research of concern is aiming to fill. In essence, the literature review will be required to analyze recent studies with the most recommended being those papers that have been published not later than 10 years. However, this time might vary depending on the topic under research, as well as the institutional recommendations.
This section of a thesis concentrates on detailing the procedural approach to be undertaken in collecting and analyzing the data. Two broad approaches can be undertaken in the methodology approach. These are the qualitative and quantitative approaches. The latter involves gathering first-hand information from study participants, while the second mostly relies on secondary data. Basically, a researcher has to clearly state the method he/she will use in conducting the research.
This is where a summary of raw data is provided. Here, a researcher will state what he/she found from collecting data. The researcher needs to be detailed as much as possible in this section as it is the one laying the foundation for the most crucial section of a thesis, which is the analysis and discussion.
Analysis and discussion
Theanalysis and discussion part is usually the "meat" section of a thesis. It usually carries the highest grade and therefore requires the highest level of details. This is where the findings are discussed with the appropriate statistical analysis being carried out. At the end of this section, the reader of a thesis should be able to understand the research outcomes without much struggle comfortably. Therefore, the main points should be brought out clearly.
This is the last section of a thesis, and it summaries the findings in a detailed and brief manner. All the main points should be brought here with everything mentioned briefly.