Guidelines On How to Structure a Dissertation

Despite the information available online and in books, figuring out how to structure or write a dissertation is still complex. The stakes couldn’t be higher. How you structure your dissertation will affect its quality, success, or failure.

This article contains guidelines and tips on how to get started, organize your ideas, analyze them, and more.

Why Having The Proper Dissertation Structure Is The Key To Success

The dissertation is the culmination of a student’s academic career. It is the final step in their education and research, prone to prove their knowledge. However, that process takes time, and while you want to write your dissertation fast, you shouldn’t.

There is no doubt that the dissertation structure is a crucial aspect of the writing process. It provides a guideline for the writer and helps them stay on track. Simultaneously, a proper plan helps the reader to quickly grasp the idea of the writing without getting confused. It further ensures that the thesis is logically written and that all arguments are well-supported.

Dissertation Chapters Structure

Now that you know how to start, it is time to focus on the primary body of the dissertation. First, the text must be easy to follow, so the readers can understand the content and find the info they need quickly.

Suppose you want your assignment to look like a professional dissertation writing service does it; you have to nail the best-used practices. The main body text includes an introduction, literature review, methodology, discoveries, discussion, and Conclusion. Remember that you must follow the plan to ensure a logical flow of arguments throughout the paper.


The introduction chapter of a dissertation is the first part of the writing.

That means it is crucial to write it to be engaging. For example, the intro should contain an overview of your research and a review of the literature on which your piece is based.

It must also form a discussion of the research questions you will explore in your study and state why these inquiries are vital to pursue.

Towards the end, it should form an outline for the research paper giving the readers details about what they will read, how, and why.

Tip: Keep this chapter brief, clear, relevant, and explanatory.

Literature review

As the heading suggests, you will showcase your information sources in this chapter. Therefore, the writing here will focus on the existing analyses on the matter. And you will have to summarize the facts you took from them. Afterward, analyze it and show the current state of the studies and if there are any limitations in their knowledge.


Suppose the previous chapter was all about your information sources and their credibility. Here you will have to point out how you reached that statement. What methods did you use to extract the knowledge, and why were they the best?

This section usually includes things like:

  • All tools you have used — can be software or some equipment
  • Data collections — lab experiments, consultation with professors
  • Various analyses — statistics or others

You will have to boost the credibility of your research. For example, show the reader that you employed the best methods to gather reliable facts for your study.


At this point of the dissertation, you have your info collected and analyzed. Therefore, comes the moment to show it.

Here you have to show the information analyses and highlight them. Here you can use graphics, tables, or charts for support.

Note: In this chapter, you only show the findings. You will not discuss it unless you combine this with the following chapter.


This chapter plays a central role in the structure of a dissertation. Its point is to continue the result chapter by interpreting the outcomes of your analyses from the gathered data.

Based on the methodology you follow in this component, you may discuss the different variables popping up from the previous chapter and how they connect. Or focus on the info, and talk about whether the facts you found validate or not.


Finally, we are at the final chapter of your papers. Here it would be best if you focused on answering your primary research question.

The dissertation conclusion structure is simple. First, you must present the answers, leaving the reader without further question marks in mind and proving why your research was done and how it contributed to the field of work.

Reference List

That is a crucial element of your work, as it helps you to prevent plagiarism.

You must cite every source you used for your research. Usually, it is done by software because it prevents you from making mistakes with the citing.


In the appendix, you enclose notes that can help you with the research questions. It is crucial to know that these facts support the dissertation and add to your answers to the inquiries.

Dissertation Structures — Breakdown Sample

Below you will see a breakdown of two tables. We added them because they are a perfect example. The best website that writes essays — Paperell, for example, uses something similar. By looking at them, you will grasp the approximate size of each core section and how to structure a dissertation.

Dissertation in 10000 words about

“Climate change and how it affects the wildlife”

Chapters The Goal of the Chapter Example How Long Should the Section Be
Introduction Identify the research questions. How does it affect the wildlife 10% about 1000 words
Literature review Understand the problem from already existing research. WWF research about climate changes and their effects 30% or 3000 words
Methodology Report what you did and how. Analysis of statistics 15% of the text — 1500 words
Results Highlight what you discovered The negative effects of these changes. 5% — about 500 words
Discussion Write a comment on your finding. Discuss the results 30% — 3000 words
Conclusion Answer the research questions. It affects the wildlife negatively… 10% — 1000 words

Here is another example; keep in mind that the percentage is the same, only the scale change!

Dissertation in 20000 words about

“The Story Behind Coronavirus.”

Chapters The Goal of the Chapter Example How Long Should the Section Be
Introduction Identify the research questions. When did Covid start 10% about 2000 words
Literature review Understand the problem from already existing research. The problem with how it started 30% = 6000 words
Methodology Report what you did and how. Analysis of already existing medical reports 15% approx. 3000 words
Results Highlight what you discovered The negative mark it left on people’s life 5% — 1000 words
Discussion Write a comment on your finding. Talk about the results 30% — 6000 words
Conclusion Answer the research questions. Give an exact answer 10% — 2000 words

Now, you can imagine what the general dissertation chapter structure looks like!

Guidelines Summary

As you probably already know, writing a dissertation is a challenging but not impossible task. Reading our guide taught you how to write the core of your academic work, and now it’s time to show you what a complete structure must look like!

At the start of every such work, you will see The Title Page, Acknowledgments, a Dissertation Abstract, a Table of Contents, a List of Figures, Tables, Abbreviations, and a Glossary.

These serve as an opening before the culmination of your work, the core chapters:

  • Chapter 1: Introduction — This chapter should state the purpose and scope of your research and introduce any relevant background information.
  • Chapter 2: Literature Review — This chapter should summarize relevant research in the field, including primary and secondary sources.
  • Chapter 3: Methodology — The dissertation methodology structure should describe the methods you used to conduct your research, including any constraints or biases.
  • Chapter 4: Findings — Explain your conclusions. You can use graphs and statistics to highlight them!
  • Chapter 5: Discussion — Continue talking about your findings, discuss in detail and interpret them.
  • Chapter 6: Conclusion — This chapter should summarize the pivotal points from each previous chapter with a conclusion about the implications of your findings and recommendations for future analyses.

If you read this far, you can structure your dissertation efficiently. However, if you still have issues, you can take a course and learn in detail.

The last tip, remember that the core text body is vital, and you must not differ from the above-mentioned ones!

Bottom Line:

Assume you have read everything; you now know how to structure a dissertation. You saw which features you must add and where to pay focus to.

It is crucial to keep in mind that the main body of the dissertation (the core chapters) should take the majority of your assignment and follow the whole research cycle and finish with a great and defined answer to the research questions. Still finding it difficult to structure a dissertation? Buy a dissertation online and make things easy for you. All the best with whatever you choose!

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