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Succeeding with Your Master's Dissertation

"I found this book indispensable and consulted it pretty much on a daily basis throughout the whole process of planning and writing my dissertation. By following the book from beginning to end I was able to hand-in a piece of work that I was both proud of and confident would meet Masters standards." (Lee Pimlott, Masters Student, University of Derby, UK). Amazon reviews for the 1st edition: "The ONE book you need to guide you through writing your master's thesis. It ensures you 'tick all the boxes' necessary for a good result. I especially liked the 'common mistake by students' in each section." "The book provides structure, clarity, time management and advice on content for your dissertation. I am delighted to say I passed my Master's with a distinction and owe a lot to the guidance provided by this book." This popular book continues to demystify the dissertation writing process. Taking a step-by-step approach to the dissertation life cycle and highlighting examples of good and bad practice and the common mistakes that students often make, the book provides clear guidance on how to gain marks, as well as how to avoid losing them. From your initial research proposal to your final submission, you will find this book an indispensible guide. This new edition offers: additional advice on mind-mapping, note taking and speed reading techniques, as well as time management and how to make the most of your supervisor; more information on research methods; a new chapter 'Systematic Reviews'. Succeeding with Your Master's Dissertation is essential reading for all students tackling dissertations on Master's courses or on short postgraduate courses, the social sciences, business and humanities. The book is also key reading for supervisors and undergraduates considering postgraduate study.
Product Details

Table of Contents

Introduction A Master's dissertation: what is it? So, what skills do you need to succeed? Watch your words! How to use this book Summary of key points Preparing for your dissertation Putting together your research proposal Research focus and overall research aim Research objectives and keywords Research methods Setting a timescale Producing a dissertation template Supervisor meetings Supervisor and Student: roles and responsibilities Summary of key points Developing your i-skills What are i-skills? Information needs Organising skills Literature search techniques Speed reading skills Critiquing skills Communication skills and mind-mapping Summary of key points The dissertation Introduction The general structure of the Introduction Background Research focus (revisited) Overall research aim and individual research objectives Value of your research A further suggestion Summary of key points The Literature Review Focus on your research objectives Referencing Description vs critical evaluation Learning theory and your dissertation Structuring your Literature Review Summary of key points Systematic Reviews What is a systematic review? The stages of a systematic review AMSTAR: a checklist for systematic reviews Summary of key points Research methods What's it all about? Research strategy Introduction Quantitative vs qualitative research Sampling techniques Positivism and phenomenology Justifying your research strategy The question of reliability (and validity) Data collection Preparation, preparation, preparation What and why? Framework for data analysis Limitations and potential problems Summary of key points Writing up your findings The general approach The process of description, analysis and synthesis: an example Summary of key points Concluding your dissertation What's in a Conclusion? Research objectives: summary of findings and conclusions Recommendations Contribution to knowledge Self-reflection Summary of key points Finally: Writing the abstract? What is an abstract? How to write an abstract Abstract template Summary of key points Practical issues Presenting your work and preparing for a viva Presenting your work: common mistakes Preparing for a viva The marking scheme Good grammar A word of warning: plagiarism What counts as plagiarism? What if you are accused of plagiarism? Research ethics Summary of good practice to adopt and bad practice to avoid Forewarned is forearmed Dissertation writing: summary of good practice to adopt and bad practice to avoid Practical issues: summary of good practice to adopt and bad practice to avoid

About the Author

Dr John Biggam is a lecturer at Glasgow Caledonian University and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. He has an international reputation in teaching and learning. He is also a Union Learning Representative, the first in Scotland for the University and College Union (UCU).

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