Revising A Dissertation: 7 Key Aspects To Consider
Writing a dissertation can be a challenging thing, and revising it can be just as challenging! Don’t overlook how important the revision stage of your dissertation is. Here are 7 key aspects to consider when revising:
- Ask yourself…
The more you pay attention to small details, the better you will be able to hone and polish your essay. So when reading through your dissertation, ask yourself questions like: Is this segment too long? Do my paragraphs flow well enough? Could I have used a better word here? Do I need to provide this quote in full? Is this paragraph concise enough? Have I gone off topic in this section? The more objective you can be about your thesis, the better it will be.
- Consider your reader.
Consider the reader. You may think that your paper is easily understood, but do you only think that because you know about it? It’s easy to get lost in one’s own world and forget that the writing needs to be accessible to anyone who doesn’t know anything about the topic being presented. Try to imagine you are someone else (your tutor, for instance) and read your thesis through their eyes. How would they read it?
- Don’t overdo it.
Pay attention to word length. Maybe you’ve crammed in a couple sections because you feel they’re necessary, but actually it means your word lengths for each section are disproportionate. This doesn’t necessarily matter, but it can. You don’t want to waffle on about something and forget all about length, when it’s easy to cut things down.
- Just as important…
Remember that the introduction and conclusion need to be scrutinized, reviewed and revised just as much as your chapters.
- Correct format.
You need to make sure that the format is correct. You will have already been given the guidelines of what’s required with regards to things like: font size, line spacing, margins, word count, particular formatting styles like APA and MLA etc.
If you don’t have the requirements, make sure you get them! Most universities will publish these guidelines online. Failing that, simply ask your tutor.
You will need to revise your paper for proofing issues too. Don’t just rely on your computer program to tell you whether spelling, punctuation and grammar is correct. Double check everything for yourself.
- One last time…
When you are finished with each part of the revision process, it doesn’t hurt to just re-read it one final time, just to be sure everything’s right. The more time you spend on your dissertation, the better it will be.