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WHAT IS A DISSERTATION?

AADYA AGRAWAL M.ARCH (RECREATIONAL ARCH.) SEMESTER-2 FACULTY OF ARCHITECTURE & EKISTICS JAMIA MILLIA ISLAMIA

ABSTRACT This paper is written in context to find out the meaning of dissertation and the purpose of doing dissertation by a researcher or student. Many articles are reviewed for getting good knowledge about the dissertation meaning. Dissertation has different meanings for different purposes. It is something based on hypothesis, a live problem which is analyzed and through data collection inferences are concluded in end with quantifying some solutions.

Dissertations are academic work that is produced to check the individuals ability of understanding or perceiving the knowledge related to his field or task. There are several expectations of doing dissertation. At the core, a dissertation is a demonstration. They demonstrate the ability to build theory, test ideas, and/or discover new knowledge.1 Dissertation, firstly, is an in-depth study of problem. Its an addition to existing knowledge with new ideas or knowledge through investigation of several resources. Secondly, it tells the ability of a researchers skills of handling his own field in future. It tests the artistic/technical skills that a researcher possesses.2 Dissertation involves an invention of new knowledge with new facts and figures. So, third expectation will be improvement in existing knowledge with original investigation. It may include the study of available data, collection of data and then re-analyzing it for further investigation. It involves several research processes as data collection from libraries, journals, books, articles etc; analysis of data and fieldwork like questionnaires, surveys, interviews or combination of all.3

1 Kerchner, Charles T., Dissertation craftsmanship, Unpublished manuscript, Spring, 1994, Claremont Graduate School, Claremont, CA., pp. 1 2 Kerchner, Charles T., Dissertation craftsmanship, Unpublished manuscript, Spring, 1994, Claremont Graduate School, Claremont, CA., pp.2 3 Dissertation Guidelines, 2010, University of Warwick, pp.3

Dissertation is also a subject or topic chosen by student for further investigations which gives proof of students mastery of scholarly methods.4 In Dissertation, selection of topic is very important because the investigation and data collection process move around the topic and dissertation is a document carried out by student for further explorations of new ideas and knowledge.5 Dissertation should be Original and Significant i.e. something new and useful should be added to the existing knowledge otherwise its of no use of doing research.6 NEED OF DISSERTATION7: The dissertation is carried out for demonstrating the students ability to Define problems Data collection Literature review Data analysis Research methodology Summary/ findings Thinking and writing skills.

The capability and skills of a student is checked through dissertation that how a student is going to perform in future in his respective field.

4 What is dissertation, www.rlf.org.uk 5 Kerchner, Charles T., Dissertation craftsmanship, Unpublished manuscript, Spring, 1994, Claremont Graduate School, Claremont, CA., pp.2 6 Writing thesis or dissertation http://www.yale.edu/graduateschool/writing/forms/Writing%20Theses%20and%20Dis sertations.pdf, pp.2 7 Writing thesis or dissertation http://www.yale.edu/graduateschool/writing/forms/Writing%20Theses%20and%20Dis sertations.pdf, pp.1

DISSERTATION STRUCTURE: The outline of dissertation varies from professor to professor, topic to topic, and sometimes moment to moment.8 Basically, dissertation can be sequenced in following order1. CHAPTER 1: PROBLEM FORMULATION i) Introduction of topic ii) Need of study iii) Background of study iv) Scope and limitations 2. CHAPTER 2: LITERATURE REVIEW i) Existing knowledge study ii) Collection of data 3. CHAPTER 3: RESEARCH METHODS i) Data collection from libraries, journals, books etc. ii) Questionnaires iii) Surveys/interviews iv) Data analysis procedure 4. CHAPTER 4: RESULTS & ANALYSIS i) Inferences(table/graph format) ii) Problems/issues iii) Findings 5. CHAPTER 5: SUMMARY i) Conclusions ii) Solutions iii) Recommendations Appendices (optional) Questionnaire samples and used instrument samples.

8 Dissertation Manual, 2004, International university of professional studies, pp.6-15