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Structure

The structure of your text is the “skeleton” that holds the various elements together – in the right order. In order to ensure that your text is properly structured and flows well, it is important to understand the function of the different chapters. In a thesis, everything you write has to have a purpose. In this section you will find advice about what the different chapters should include, and what functions they are meant to serve. 

In a good thesis:

  • All questions raised by the author are answered or clarified 
  • The author’s intention is clear to the reader at all times 
  • Everything that is presented, fills a purpose  
  • The theory presented is put to work 
  • The methods section is concrete  
  • The discussion brings together empirical data, theory and method
  • The findings are duly presented 
  • The conclusion follows logically from the argumentation 

There are many different ways to structure a thesis. While the IMRaD format is widely used in health care and the natural sciences, formats are more flexible in the social sciences and humanities.

There are many excellent publications on thesis writing.

Last updated: November 20, 2013

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