Ways to Write Your Ph.D. Thesis
Writing a thesis can be stressful because it is challenging. You have to do a lot of research for a long time without fail. If it is your first time writing it, you can always talk to people who have written it before. The process will not be as complicated as you think. You have to be positive when it comes to writing so that you do not mess.
How to structure your thesis: the approach and length
Since departments are different, you have to ensure that you know what your department requires. That is the first thing you should confirm before you start writing. For me, I was not supposed to write more than 175 pages. You can choose the method you want to use. You can either use the traditional approach that many people are familiar with or the manuscript format. I started working on my piece a few months ago, and I chose to go with the manuscript format.
There were no guidelines given on the format to use. Our instructor told us to look at the older thesis and try to develop something similar. There were papers that I published before. I took my time and arranged them properly so that I do not confuse myself. I started with the background information, another part that introduced the topic and data analysis. I wrote some chapters that brought out the original work and, lastly, the conclusion. My paper was approximately 150 pages.
It took me two months to write the paper. I had to because the deadline was almost there, and I could not afford to fail. I studied for my Ph.D. in the Netherlands, and there was a way we were required to arrange our work. We had to start with the introduction, then chapters of the research work, and last summarizing discussion. We are not supposed to copy work that is published or written with someone else. I was lucky since I had already published research papers and reviewed the career that I am taking that served as the introduction.
I was also going through a manuscript that I handed into a journal. After all that, I had to work on a single chapter and summarizing the discussion. I had time to work on that because I had planned myself properly. For my work to be sufficient, I started by writing an outline. After that, I went to my instructor to confirm if I was on the right track before I continue. My work was approved, and I had to write a better outline. I write a strategy for the sections I had not written.
It was vital for the research manuscript that I was trying to put together. I had a close friend who helped confirm that the data that I had was correct. The outline made work more manageable when it came to figures. I was able to come up with an average piece of 135 pages. I had to spend so much time to work on it for me to reach there. I worked for months without giving up, and I was proud of myself. It got written in published chapters. I tried so hard to ensure that the chapters were short since the manuscript submissions require that. I removed some information to make my work worth it.
I started by arranging the data and the results by printing and putting them on a giant table. The strategy worked for me pretty well in ensuring that my work was making sense and correct. I also noticed a few mistakes that I corrected for the better. It took me so much time, but I was not ready to give up because of the hard work. I went ahead and started my dissertation from the beginning. At that time, I was dealing with journal submission. I was to write my scientific results in a few chapters, which I did. I also had to work on the introduction part, methods, and lastly, the conclusion. It was a tough road, but I did the best that I could to stay motivated.