Looking for outline thesis and dissertation tools? Check out our selection and tips for making the writing process simpler.
Writing a thesis or dissertation outline is no easy feat. The outline sets up the entire piece. Approach it carefully. Whether you’re writing a doctoral or master’s thesis, you should leverage all the tools at your disposal.
In this article, we’ll review the most useful tools to make your writing process much more efficient. But first, let’s discuss the importance of outlines.
Thesis and dissertation outline
A thesis or dissertation outline is a critical component of your writing process. It offers a roadmap to follow during the writing itself. It gives your piece structure and determines your research process.
A typical outline will contain the key information on the final draft:
- Chapters and topics including research methods, literature review, and means of future research
Having a solid outline brings many benefits:
- Tracking your writing progress
- Ensuring there are no repeat points
- Making data collection easier
Of course, you can add more information than mentioned above, depending on the specifics of your dissertation. Let’s discover how to create an outline that meets your needs.
How to create a thesis or dissertation outline that works for you
To give you an idea of what your outline should contain, let’s discuss its main components, chapters, and subsections.
First of all, your outline should have the following structure:
- Literature Review
- Qualitative Research
- Methods of Quantitative Research
- Combined Methodology Analysis
- Research Results (organized by research questions or hypotheses)
You can find detailed outline templates that break the structure down further.
The first thing you should do when writing the outline is to choose a good dissertation topic or research project. Graduate students sometimes go with a topic for which there’s insufficient research or means of data analysis. This can be a serious issue that can waste too much time.
To avoid this problem, it’s best to have a research proposal with an appendix and relevant notes. You can then discuss your thesis with your professor. Focus on your thesis statement, argumentation, and methodology.
Of course, before you present your outline to the professor, ensure it goes through thorough proofreading. Pay special attention to the table of contents, citations, and headings (which should follow the APA style).
Tips for staying on track while writing your thesis or dissertation
1. Plan the writing process
The last thing you want to do with your dissertation is wing it. This is bound to result in errors and prolong the dissertation writing.
Before you start, make sure you have all the tools you need. These include:
- Microsoft Word
- Journal articles you’ll use for research
- Plagiarism checker
In addition, you’ll need a capable proofreading tool. If you want to think outside the box, you should try a text to speech tool. TTS tools like Speechify can turn your text into high-quality audio you can listen to and ensure there aren’t many errors. It’s a much better way to proofread than actual reading, as you’re more likely to notice a mistake when you hear it on a piece of audio. That way, you can drastically shorten the revising process.
2. Schedule writing time (and protect it)
If you’re a crammer, now’s the perfect time to change your ways. To write a solid thesis or dissertation, you’ll need to take your time and channel your energy sensibly.
Don’t write in bursts; have a specific time you can write each day and stick to it. You’ll surely encounter some distractions along the way, so do everything you can to eliminate them.
3. Don’t forget about the details
As you get carried away by the writing, you might forget small things that can make a big difference. To prevent this from occurring, make a list of the details you’ll need to check:
- Title page structure
- Page numbers
- Citation styles
To be more efficient, you don’t need to get too caught up in these details during the thesis writing process. Note them down instead. That way, you won’t forget to check them during proofreading and revision.
Common mistakes to avoid when writing your thesis or dissertation
During the writing process, students often make time-consuming mistakes. Here are some common errors:
- Using too much technical terminology – While your writing should be sophisticated, it shouldn’t be hard to understand.
- Not interpreting tables – Those who read your dissertation shouldn’t try to make sense of tables on their own. Summarize your key findings and data.
- Being rigid with your dissertation question – As you write your thesis or dissertation, your main question might evolve with your findings; don’t hesitate to change it.
- Doing it on your own – Don’t overwhelm yourself with work if someone can help.
- Choosing a topic you have no interest in – You’ll spend months on your dissertation, so don’t torture yourself with a topic you don’t like.
Tips on maximizing your graduate degree using text to speech technology with Speechify
As mentioned, Speechify is a capable TTS tool that can supercharge your learning process. But how can you take advantage of it?
First of all, listening to your materials can be far more enjoyable than reading. Not to mention it will also prevent eye fatigue. Use Speechify to turn your documents and papers into easy-to-digest audio.
Another thing you should do is leverage Speechify’s multi-platform support. You can use a Chrome extension or online version if you prefer to listen to content on your PC or Mac. If you want to take your materials with you, use the iOS or Android app. Instead of carrying multiple documents, you’ll only have to bring your phone.
Finally, you can make learning more fun by choosing between dozens of different voices. If you’re studying in a foreign language, you can also benefit from Speechify’s support for over 20 languages.
Which tool is best for making a thesis?
Other than Speechify, you can try BibMe, Google Scholar, and Docear.
How do you write an outline for a dissertation?
Think about your dissertation question, choose the right topic, and use templates to create a detailed outline.
Can I use Grammarly for a dissertation?
Yes, Grammarly is an excellent tool for eliminating typos. It also has a plagiarism checker you’ll find useful.
How do you outline a dissertation chapter?
Depending on what the chapter will cover, you can outline it by adding short paragraphs describing what each will discuss.
What is the best way to outline a dissertation?
You can use various examples and outline templates that will make the outlining process easier.
What is the difference between a thesis and a dissertation?
Master’s students write a thesis, while doctoral students write a dissertation.
How do I use a thesaurus?
Choose a word and find it in the alphabetic arrangement, and then look at the words next to it to find a replacement.