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Master thesis writing manual

Anyone who is asked to write a master's thesis knows that this is a particularly challenging assignment. It is not an overnight activity and usually all the work in a master’s degree will take up to two years. It is most important that the student preparing the thesis must know how to research, write and present their work in the manner of a scholar. Whatever else the content of the thesis is, it must be original; it must be the work of the student.

Getting the formula right is vital. Of course the person or persons evaluating the master’s thesis will look for any number of points in grading the work. But they will not be impressed if the educational institution has laid down the formula by which the thesis is to be presented and the student has failed to stick to this formula. You almost need to spend as much time studying the requirements and the layout of your thesis as you do on its actual writing.

Start with the proper foundation

Finding a thesis supervisor who agrees to work with you on your project is the ideal first step. Remember that the choice of topic, no matter how good you may think it may be, must have official approval. Before you write your thesis, your topic needs to be approved by the thesis supervisor at your college or university.

Of course before you present the topic you will spend some time researching, looking for that topic and then discussing this with your supervisor. It might be a topic about which you feel quite deeply but unless it is a topic which allows you to seriously assess the subject -- remember a thesis can be up to 100 pages in length -- then an alternative topic should be sought. And just as important as the topic is, so too is the deadline. Before you start you need to know when you will finish. And with the deadline date firmly marked in your diary and known to the collage, you are then in a position to create your plan, your timetable.

This is a major undertaking. Liken it to a journey over several months. You need all the provisions, maps and instructions before you leave home. The same scenario applies when writing a master’s thesis. Know your end date, have your thesis topic approved and make sure you plan extremely well before you commit the first word to paper.