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How to Write a Master's Thesis


The student who wishes to learn how to write a master's thesis may begin with the following guidelines. The master's thesis takes up to a year to write, and it progresses through six stages: idea, research, organization, writing, editing, and formatting. The student should allow a sufficient amount of time for each stage and should complete each stage with a modicum of thoroughness before moving on to the next one.

1.) Idea. One key element in how to write a master's thesis is to begin with a workable, original idea. The goal of a master's thesis is to contribute significantly to the field; therefore, the student should invest effort in the creation of an idea that will produce a meaningful thesis.

2.) Research. The student should research the chosen idea as much as possible. The student should read everything that is available on the topic, write down all questions that arise in his or her mind, and try to discover the answers.

3.) Organization. Students who include thesis outlines in their plans for how to write master's theses will vastly expedite their writing stages. A thorough outline includes all the points the student wishes to make and all the sources that support those points.

4.) Writing. In the writing stage, the student forms his or her idea and its supporting evidence into sentences, paragraphs, and chapters. The student must include everything he or she intended to say but must not include irrelevant information or go off on tangents.

5.) Editing. After writing, the student should edit for style and grammar and should omit all extraneous material. If the thesis becomes too short due to lengthy textual cuts, the student should fill that space with further evidence that supports the argument.

6.) Formatting. The student should create a table of contents, an index, and any appendices that might be necessary.

Students who begin without knowing how to write master's theses will learn as they proceed, but these six principles outline the process.


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