The Basics Components Of A Good Dissertation Outline

Generally, a dissertation outline involves two main elements. These are the list of the things that you will do and a sketch of the things that you will discuss. The task of outlining a dissertation may seem easier to some. However, there are several items that should be included in a dissertation outline proposal. These items make the task overwhelming to most students. This section presents a basic format of a good dissertation outline and things to include in every part of the outline.

  1. Introduction
  2. This is the first section of a dissertation chapter outline where you give readers a preview of what you will discuss in the paper. The introduction should be punchy and give your readers a quick overview of what your research entails. It should also highlight the specific approach that you will pursue in the content.

    Among the things to feature in the introduction include:

    • Background and statement of the problem
    • Purpose of the research
    • Research questions
    • Significance of the study
    • Definition of terminologies
    • Assumptions, limitations and how you intend to overcome them
    • Conclusion

    For inspiration, you can check online resources or consult with your supervisor on how to write a good dissertation introduction outline.

  3. Literature Review
  4. Based on your chosen topic and the subject area, you should give a description of the research. Under literature review, cover the conceptual and theoretical framework of the study. Highlight the key thinkers and texts related to your study.

  5. Methodology
  6. The methodology section forms the basic component of a dissertation defense outline where you tell readers about the particular types of research that you will use in your work. Here, you should address the pros and cons of the different research methods that you will apply. Methodology can be organized in qualitative, quantitative or mixed design.

    Whether your study requires a qualitative, quantitative or a mixed design, the methodology section of an ideal dissertation outline APA format paper should highlight the following key elements:

    • Research questions, design and hypotheses
    • Data collection and analysis
    • Conclusions
  7. Research Findings
  8. As it suggests, this section should provide a detailed review of the findings of your study. It is advisable that you address each finding separately and effectively answer the questions or hypotheses pointed out in the previous chapters. This is an important chapter in a PhD dissertation outline. Therefore, tackle it with keen attention to every detail to avoid misleading readers.

  9. Conclusion
  10. This is the final section of a dissertation outline where you provide a summary of the findings of the study. Your conclusion should answer other questions that have not been addressed in the other chapters clearly. It should also give suggestions for future research.

The sections highlighted above are the main components of a dissertation outline. It’s also wise to use a well-written dissertation proposal outline sample as your writing guide.