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Tips for Writing a Dissertation or Thesis | DLA Editors & Proofers

Dissertations and theses often mark the summit of your higher education. As such, they are both exciting and stressful, and a thoughtful approach can help keep them from becoming more stress than excitement. Here are a few tips to make your dissertation writing go more smoothly before you submit your work to a dissertation editing service:

  • Wait to revise until after writing. If you stop and reread sections as you write, the result will often be that the stopping and starting will appear in your writing and disrupt the flow of your dissertation/thesis. Instead, give yourself permission simply to write without being concerned whether you are making mistakes, then aim to polish and revise after you finish. Also keep in mind you can always use a dissertation editing service to guide you in what needs to be revised, and they can also help with following the details of a particular style like APA.

  • Instead of trying to approach your dissertation/thesis as a whole, look at it as layers. Start with main ideas, fill in supporting elements, and finally add citations and other necessary details.  If you are not confident in applying the rules of a particular style guide, leave notes to yourself to go back to check them once you are finished.

  • Begin with pre-writing.  Focus on getting down what you already know, then research to fill in the areas that are weak. Taking this approach will allow you more easily to see areas of your dissertation/thesis that are weak and then to strengthen them.

  • Pace yourself. Instead of aiming for 100 pages in a weekend, go for a page a day. This not only means you are consistently working on your dissertation/thesis and keeping the work fresh in your mind, but it also means the quality of your writing will be higher throughout.
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