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Dissertations: Wrapping Up

Wrapping up your dissertation

Wrapping up a dissertation can be a daunting task, so you should make use of the resources available to help you, and remember that you can do it!

Here are some activities that can help you wrap up your dissertations:

  • Setting a realistic deadline helps to stay focused and motivated.
  • Creating a timeline for completing each stage of the dissertation helps to break down the project into manageable chunks.
  • Setting aside time each day to work on the dissertation helps to make progress and avoid procrastination. Even if it's for an hour or half an hour.
  • Reward yourself when you complete a milestone can help you to stay motivated and on track.
  • Getting help when you need it. If you are struggling, you should not be afraid to ask for help from your advisor, a tutor, or a friend.
  • Proofreading your work carefully before submitting the dissertation helps to identify any errors in grammar, spelling, or punctuation.
  • Getting it done! The most important thing is to just get it done. Don't let perfectionism get in the way of finishing the dissertation.


Proofreading and editing are two distinct stages in the final phase of a dissertation

  • It helps to break the process of editing and proofreading into several stages.
  • When editing, you need to step back from your work and approach it like a stranger – look at it with a fresh pair of eyes.
  • Read your work out loud or use a screen reader so that you can listen to what you have written.
  • Proofreading is likely to be more effective if you can stop thinking about the content.

Proof Reading & Editing

Editing looks in more depth at what is being said and how – clarity, structure, flow, connection between points (coherence).

General Editing Checklist
  • Upgrade to stronger verbs (replace ‘look at’ with ‘examine’)
  • Cut unnecessary words
  • Avoid repetition
  • Use one word in place of several
  • Replace clichés
  • Within a paragraph, are sentences in the best order?
  • Between paragraphs, are paragraphs in the right order?
  • Is it clear who or what ‘they’ or ‘it’ refer to?
Dissertations Editing Checklist 
  •  Is it clear to the reader that you are doing what has been asked?
  •  Have you used the language of the question where appropriate?
  •  Is it clear what each paragraph is about? - the topic and the point
  •  Are your points convincing (do you need more / better evidence)?
  •  Are your points convincing (is your argument strong)?
  •  Is it clear who is saying what (when you are quoting)?

Proof reading focuses on the surface presentation – spelling, punctuation, grammar.

Here are a few common errors, but you may wish to add your own.

  • Spelling errors
  • Missing words
  • Singular / plural agreement (‘this study’ / ‘these studies’) 
  • Full stops and capital letters
  • Complete sentences
  • Homonyms (e.g. ‘meat’ and ‘meet’, ‘there’ and ‘their’)
  • Avoid contractions in academic work (don’t, won’t, they’re)

Journal of Suffolk Student Research

The Journal of Suffolk Student Research is an online academic journal, dedicated to the publication of high-quality undergraduate and postgraduate student research undertaken by University of Suffolk students. The journal will showcase the most outstanding student research undertaken at the University of Suffolk. It aims to promote and recognise this outstanding student research by offering valuable early experience of academic publishing and the peer review process. 

Find out more here