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How to Write a Dissertation Conclusion for a PhD Thesis?

By summarising the outcomes of your thesis and providing major theoretical and practical implications, the conclusion of your PhD thesis is one of its most crucial parts. To help you write a great conclusion for your dissertation, we have prepared a short guide.

1. Keep It Simple

If you’re wondering how to write a dissertation conclusion, the best approach is to keep things simple and manageable. With the page count of some PhDs being in triple digits, it’s crucial to stay on track. A great way of achieving this is re-reading your thesis and selecting 2 or 3 key points relevant to your research objectives or questions. Your summary of the findings should exclusively reflect these key arguments. If you’re experiencing difficulties, searching university websites for dissertation conclusion examples may help.

2. Avoid Introducing New Ideas

In its most basic form, the conclusion section is a rehash of the ideas that you have gradually introduced throughout your thesis. There’s no single answer to the question of how to compose a decent concluding chapter. However, one suggestion is to avoid anything new.  A good PhD has already identified all research gaps and directions for interpreting the findings in the previous chapters. Rephrasing your findings and highlighting how these outcomes have achieved the research objectives should be sufficient when starting to write your dissertation conclusion. You should always write your conclusion last.

3. Don’t Be Afraid to Be Concise

One idea prevalent in dissertation conclusions examples is avoiding giving a clear opinion on your findings. Many authors use words such as “arguably”, “potentially” etc. as a fail-safe mechanism against possible academic criticism. At the PhD level, however, you need to make a strong and visible contribution to existing knowledge. A good conclusion should unambiguously state what your findings are and how these have been interpreted by the dissertation.

4. Clearly Illustrate the Contribution of the Thesis

One suggestion on how to write a dissertation conclusion is to dedicate a separate sub-section highlighting the contribution made by your thesis. Go through your thesis and search for any instances in which your PhD refers to notable research gaps or a lack of empirical knowledge. A good conclusion for a dissertation should re-visit these major arguments and detail how each of these gaps has been addressed by the findings. 

5. Provide Clear and Measurable Recommendations

PhDs are not limited to their theoretical contributions. Depending on the focus of your project, a good dissertation conclusion example would also include a fairly large sub-section detailing practical recommendations. One tip is to provide each recommendation with suggestions on how exactly its results could be measured. Another approach to writing this part is to consider the costs and limitations of each recommendation and weigh these caveats against the proposed benefits. To avoid introducing anything new, you would need to explicitly link each recommendation to your findings or major works in your topic area.

The concluding section is one of the key determinants of how a PhD thesis is perceived by supervisors and academic peers. Use our professional help to finalise your doctoral project and impress the academic field with unique and valuable findings.