General guidelines for dissertation
Word count is excluding cover page, references, bibliography, table of contents and appendices.
• Single sided word processed
• Font should by Times New Roman or Arial (point 12)
• Line spacing should be 1.5 or double
• Written in the 3rd person (avoid “I”, “you” etc)
• Written in an acad\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\emic style (avoid journalistic/sales type of speech/slogans/slang etc)
• Written with enough clarity that someone OTHER than your Project Supervisor will be able to follow the work
you have done
• Spell checked & grammar checked
• Sections and pages should be numbered
• Listing References: You should use the Harvard convention and arrange alphabetically
Typical Structure
This may have slight variations depending on the type of dissertation. However, the following is a general
• Cover Page: include Module name and code; Title of your project; Your name and student ID; Word count
• Abstract (200 words, +/-10%): this should briefly describe the scope of your dissertation, the question being
asked and conclusions reached.
• Contents Page: include Table of Contents, List of Figures (not included in word count)
• Introduction: Brief description of the background, aim(s) & objectives of the dissertation and a clear statement
of the question(s) that you analyse and the methodology you are using. The objectives and methods should be
justified in the main body of the dissertation under ‘methodology’.
• Main body of the dissertation: each part (Literature Review, Methodology, Data Analysis/discussions) should
be numbered with section headings and subheadings, as necessary (this would be expected to represent the
largest part of the dissertation ie at least 2800 words in a 4,000 word dissertation).
• Conclusion/Recommendations: this needs to be linked to the preceding analysis highlighting key findings and
any limitations.
• List of References: Using Harvard convention and alphabetically ordered (not included in word count)

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