Ways to Structure Your Thoughts and Ideas before Writing a Dissertation

Students often face the dilemma of translating the thoughts into a logical and cautiously expressed assignment. Sometimes their minds are flooding with ideas but it becomes extremely difficult to put them on a paper or the computer screen. But, if they already know some ways to structurize their thoughts and ideas before actually getting into dissertation writing, a lot of their time and energy could be saved. We have come up with some useful techniques that can help the students get started with the dissertation writing task successfully:

1. Analyze the question

Understand the question/topic and analyze what is exactly you are asked to write in it. Sometimes when a question or topic has more than one part, students often concentrate on the first part and do not pay much attention to the rest of the question. Hence, read the question/topic very carefully otherwise you may lose marks on submitting an incomplete dissertation.

2. Collect your ideas/research

If you do not know much about the topic you can refer to your books, class notes, or online resources to gather sufficient knowledge about the topic. Once you start researching you can prepare some short notes side by side and mention the main points. This can serve as an outline for your dissertation.

3. Organize ideas

Assuming that you already have some resources with you for dissertation writing it’s time to organize them and create a structure for dissertation. Relate and mention the main headings and subheadings along with the word limit associated with each. You can do this in the following ways:
Create mind-maps or spider diagrams
Write table of contents

4. Brain-dump

When numerous of ideas are floating into your mind it becomes difficult to organize them. So, just take a piece of paper and put down everything that comes to your mind regarding that topic. This activity is called as brain-dump. Then, you can take the points which you find suitable and include them in your dissertation.

5. Prepare yourself to write

  • Having knowledge about the dissertation topic is really important but preparing your mind to write also plays a significant role in creating a good quality dissertation. Follow these psychological hacks to prepare your mind to write:
    Prepare the environment around you in a way that boosts your creativity
    Work at your preferred location such as your study desk, library etc.
    Clear out your mind before you write. Go for a walk, exercise, get some fresh air, listen to music, or do anything that makes you feel better and then, start writing with a relaxed mind.
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