February 21, 2024
Dissertation Structure

Dissertation Structure

So, you have been assigned to write a dissertation. Awesome! It is now time to showcase your writing and research skills and craft a perfectly structured dissertation. What? Do you not know about the dissertation structure and layout? OH, it is a serious matter, dear student. However, you do not need to worry when we are here for you. In today’s article, we will discuss each component of a dissertation and explain its layout. However, before that, let’s explain why you need to follow a structure for writing a dissertation. Let’s answer this question first, and then we will move on to our topic, i.e., dissertation structure and layout.

Why should you follow a structure while writing a dissertation?

A dissertation is a lengthy writing task. It is so long that sometimes, 100 pages are not enough to discuss the information relevant to the research topic. One hundred pages and tons of information would look very dull and unattractive if no structure is followed. Therefore, it is mandatory to follow a dissertation structure. Well, this is just one point. A brief description of other points explaining the importance of structure is as follows:

  • The structure maintains the flow of ideas. Also, it helps the reader navigate through the dissertation quite easily.
  • A perfectly structured dissertation makes sure that all the ideas discussed in it are cohesive and that there is a natural flow.
  • Following the structure is also a sign of professionalism. It tells the readers that someone expert in academic writing has written the dissertation.

A guide to dissertation structure and layout

The structure of a dissertation is not quite rigid. It changes with the discipline and requirements of the university you are enrolled in. Different universities worldwide have different guidelines regarding the structure of a dissertation. However, there are some parts that are standard. Without the inclusion of those sections, a dissertation is incomplete. A brief look into such components of a dissertation is as follows:

Title page

The title page is the very first structural element of a dissertation. It tells the reader what the dissertation is about, who has written it, and to whom it is submitted, i.e., the name of the supervisor. As the writer, you must pay special attention to this page. A title page should be:

  • Succinct: meaning not too much lengthy and wordy
  • Specific: meaning it should be to-the-point
  • Representative: means it should represent the research you are undertaking


The second component of a dissertation structure is known as the acknowledgement. It is the section where you acknowledge all your research supporters. You mention all the people who have supported you morally, financially, ethically, and academically. Mostly, the researchers mention teachers, parents, friends, and family members in this section.


The abstract is the 3rd element of a dissertation. It explains the bigger picture of the research to first-time readers. In the abstract, you need to talk about the key ideas and thoughts discussed in your dissertation. Also, you need to mention the methods used along with the mention of the major results and findings. This is what this section is all about.

Table of contents

This section is pretty straightforward and easy to craft. The table of contents is the part of the dissertation structure that mentions the major sections and subsections of the dissertation. Along with names, it also contains the page numbers of all sections and subsections. Normally, the list of figures and list of tables is also crafted with the table of contents.

The core chapters

The above-discussed elements of a dissertation are known as admin sections. Once you are done crafting those sections, it is time to move to the core chapters of your dissertation. There are normally 5 or 6 core chapters of a dissertation. In this section, we will look at all those chapters and see what they include.

  • Introduction. It is the first chapter of a dissertation. It opens up the discussion and explains the dissertation topic and everything associated with it. The research aims, objectives, and questions also fall in this section of the dissertation.
  • Literature review. The second and most important chapter is the literature review chapter. It asks you to evaluate all the published information on your topic and discuss it in relation to your research questions.
  • Research methodology. It is the chapter where you discuss the adopted methodology and applied research methods to collect and analyse data. In this chapter, you also need to give proper reasons for the choice of a methodology.
  • Results & Discussion. The 4th chapter of a dissertation is the results chapter. It is where you present all your research results in the form of tables and discuss them.
  • Conclusion. It is the last chapter in the dissertation structure. In this chapter, you conclude the discussion and summarise the ideas and thoughts discussed.

Reference list

The 6th element of a dissertation is the reference list. It is where you give references to all the sources used in the dissertation. When creating this list, make sure that all the references are in a particular style. For example, if the guideline says that the references should be in APA style, then you should follow this style. However, if you do not know the guidelines for creating references in APA style, then take dissertation help online UK.


The last structural element of a dissertation is known as an appendix. It is where you include any additional information that facilitates the understanding of the dissertation topic. The appendix should include nice-to-know and depth-adding information relevant to your topic. Know that supervisors take this section into consideration when grading your assignment. So, craft it in an appropriate manner.

Final Thoughts

To sum up, the above-mentioned are the 7 structural elements of a dissertation. Without these, the dissertation structure is incomplete. Thus, include every element discussed above in your dissertation, as following the structure is the first step towards securing an A+ grade. Go through each line given above discussed above and write your dissertation by following exactly the same structure.

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