The thesis is the culminating moment of the university course. It is the last obstacle before seeing years of study and effort rewarded and perhaps the moment in which we put ourselves for the first time to the test in the writing of a text or in the elaboration of a research. We will try on our website to put together some tips on how to best write a thesis. In particular we will address the following topics:
- How to do the cover of the degree thesis, the title page and the index
- How to write the introduction of the thesis
- How to do the thesis pagination
- How to divide the thesis into chapters, paragraphs and subparagraphs
- How to write the conclusions of the thesis
- How to write a bibliography for the thesis
- How to report notes and citations in a degree thesis
But before discussing these aspects specifically, let’s see briefly what are the preliminary steps in writing a degree thesis.
Because it is important to write a good thesis
The degree thesis represents an important moment in the training of a person for various reasons. The thesis is probably the “first work” that qualifies us as experts in a given topic. It acquires a certain importance also during the job interview because it can be a means to let the employer know how we operate at a professional level, for example if we are able to carry out a research or a statistical analysis or if we are sensitive or we have a predisposition for a certain theme (social, cultural, economic etc.). But how to decide the topic of the thesis? What can the criteria be?
How to choose the subject and the topic of the thesis
A good strategy to decide how to choose “what in” and “with whom” to make the thesis is to prefer a teaching that has aroused our interest during the university career. It is important to remember that some professors “accept” theses only if it is an exam in which we have taken a high mark (usually 30). However, it may happen that some professors do not take this aspect and “accept the thesis” even with lower grades.
Once material and professor have been identified, it is usually customary to make an appointment with the latter for an interview, so as to explain the reasons that led us in that direction. A tip: it may be appropriate to arrive at this meeting with already in mind some possible titles or areas that you want to deepen in the thesis. However, it may happen that the professor already has a topic in mind for his thesis students to study. In this case the student will have to decide whether to accept the assigned topic or fall back on another subject and consequently another professor.
Where to start to write the thesis: the index and the bibliography
Once you’ve chosen the topic, it’s time to start thinking about how to structure your work. To do this, the best way is to sketch an index that includes:
- The introduction
- Two or more chapters
- The conclusions
A suggestion to draw up the index is to imagine it as a guided tour of the elaborate that gradually provides the reader, who knows nothing of that topic, all the elements to finally be persuaded of our “thesis”. Beginning to write the contents of each chapter, sketching the titles of the paragraphs, will facilitate us later the work of writing the thesis.
But don’t worry! The initial one is only a draft index, there will be time for the final version.
At this point the professor could ask you for an example of initial bibliography. Nothing could be easier! With your newly compiled index, you can begin to address individual topics by searching for texts, magazines or sectorial encyclopedias. To do this it is advisable to attend a library for a few days, but Google can also be of help in the initial phase. It is important to remember that the texts of the bibliography will provide the basis for the work, but never, ever copying is allowed. Because the thesis must be the fruit of our work. Copying does not pay, under any circumstances.
How long should the thesis be?
As regards the length of the thesis, there are other factors to be taken into consideration. Usually, but these are only general indications, we are between 50 and 90 pages for a three-year thesis and between 90 and 160 for a master’s thesis. This is because, after the two-year course of study, the master’s thesis work will have to be more in-depth and structured. In any case the word of the rapporteur (the Professor to whom we asked the thesis) is to be considered the most important opinion. If you have any doubts, do not hesitate to ask him for an appointment and tell him your difficulties.