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  • Dissertation
  • Plan de dissertation

Plan de dissertation : méthodologie et exemples

Publié le 27 novembre 2018 par Justine Debret . Mis à jour le 14 février 2022.

Le plan d’une dissertation est la structure ou le “squelette” de votre dissertation.

Table des matières

Combien de parties pour un plan de dissertation , plan de dissertation : apparent ou pas , les types de plan pour une dissertation, exemple de plan pour une dissertation (de philosophie), le plan d’une dissertation juridique, le plan d’une dissertation de philosophie.

Nous conseillons de faire un plan en trois parties (et deux sous-parties) pour les dissertations en général.

Toutefois, ce n’est pas obligatoire et vous pouvez le faire en deux parties (et trois sous-parties).

C’est différent pour les dissertations de droit ! Pour les dissertations juridiques, le plan doit contenir deux parties (et pas trois).

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Le plan d’une dissertation peut être apparent ou non, tout dépend du type de dissertation rédigé.

Les dissertations de philosophie n’ont en général pas de plan apparent. Les titres apparaissent dans une phrase introductive.

Attention ! Pour les dissertations juridiques, les titres doivent être apparents et ils ne doivent pas comporter des verbes conjugués.

Il en existe plusieurs et chaque type de plan de dissertation a ses spécificités.

1. Le plan d’une dissertation dialectique

Le plan dialectique (ou critique) est un plan « thèse, antithèse et synthèse ». Il est utilisé lorsque l’opinion exprimée dans le sujet de dissertation est discutable et qu’il est possible d’envisager l’opinion inverse.

Le plan d’une dissertation dialectique suit le modèle suivant :

I. Exposé argumenté d’une thèse. II. Exposé argumenté de la thèse adverse. II. Synthèse (dépassement de la contradiction)

2. Le plan de dissertation analytique

Le plan analytique permet d’analyser un problème qui mérite une réflexion approfondie. Vous devez décrire la situation, analyser les causes et envisager les conséquences. Il est possible de faire un plan « explication / illustration / commentaire ».

Le plan d’une dissertation analytique suit généralement le modèle suivant :

I. Description/explication d’une situation II. Analyse des causes/illustration III. Analyse des conséquences/commentaire

3. Le plan de dissertation thématique

Le plan thématique est utilisé dans le cadre de questions générales, celles qui exigent une réflexion progressive.

I. Thème 1 II. Thème 2 III.Thème 3

4. Le plan de dissertation chronologique

Le plan chronologique est utilisé dans le cas d’une question sur un thème dont la compréhension évolue à travers l’histoire.

I. Temporalité 1 II. Temporalité 2 III. Temporalité 3

Voici un exemple de plan analytique pour une dissertation sur le thème «  l’Homme est-il un animal social ? « .

1. La nature en nous 1.1. L’être humain, un animal parmi les autres ? 1.2. Les pulsions humaines comme rappel de notre archaïsme ? 2. La personne humaine : un être de nature ou de culture ? 2.1. La société comme impératif de survie : l’Homme est un loup pour l’Homme 2.2. La perfectibilité de l’Homme l’extrait de la nature 3. Plus qu’un animal social, un animal politique 3.1. L’Homme, un être rationnel au profit du bien commun 3.2. La coexistence humaine et participation politique du citoyen

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Les dissertations juridiques sont construites en deux parties et ont un plan apparent.

Le plan a une forme binaire  : deux parties (I et II), deux sous-parties (A et B) et parfois deux sous-sous-parties (1 et 2). Votre plan de dissertation doit reposer sur quatre idées principales.

Plus d’informations sur le plan d’une dissertation juridique

Les dissertations de philosophie sont construites en trois parties (en général) et n’ont pas de plan apparent.

Chaque partie est introduite avec une phrase d’introduction.

Plus d’informations sur le plan d’une dissertation de philosophie

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Debret, J. (2022, 14 février). Plan de dissertation : méthodologie et exemples. Scribbr. Consulté le 30 mai 2024, de https://www.scribbr.fr/dissertation-fr/plan-de-dissertation/

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  • Dissertation

How to Write a Dissertation | A Guide to Structure & Content

A dissertation or thesis is a long piece of academic writing based on original research, submitted as part of an undergraduate or postgraduate degree.

The structure of a dissertation depends on your field, but it is usually divided into at least four or five chapters (including an introduction and conclusion chapter).

The most common dissertation structure in the sciences and social sciences includes:

  • An introduction to your topic
  • A literature review that surveys relevant sources
  • An explanation of your methodology
  • An overview of the results of your research
  • A discussion of the results and their implications
  • A conclusion that shows what your research has contributed

Dissertations in the humanities are often structured more like a long essay , building an argument by analysing primary and secondary sources . Instead of the standard structure outlined here, you might organise your chapters around different themes or case studies.

Other important elements of the dissertation include the title page , abstract , and reference list . If in doubt about how your dissertation should be structured, always check your department’s guidelines and consult with your supervisor.

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Table of contents

Acknowledgements, table of contents, list of figures and tables, list of abbreviations, introduction, literature review / theoretical framework, methodology, reference list.

The very first page of your document contains your dissertation’s title, your name, department, institution, degree program, and submission date. Sometimes it also includes your student number, your supervisor’s name, and the university’s logo. Many programs have strict requirements for formatting the dissertation title page .

The title page is often used as cover when printing and binding your dissertation .

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The acknowledgements section is usually optional, and gives space for you to thank everyone who helped you in writing your dissertation. This might include your supervisors, participants in your research, and friends or family who supported you.

The abstract is a short summary of your dissertation, usually about 150-300 words long. You should write it at the very end, when you’ve completed the rest of the dissertation. In the abstract, make sure to:

  • State the main topic and aims of your research
  • Describe the methods you used
  • Summarise the main results
  • State your conclusions

Although the abstract is very short, it’s the first part (and sometimes the only part) of your dissertation that people will read, so it’s important that you get it right. If you’re struggling to write a strong abstract, read our guide on how to write an abstract .

In the table of contents, list all of your chapters and subheadings and their page numbers. The dissertation contents page gives the reader an overview of your structure and helps easily navigate the document.

All parts of your dissertation should be included in the table of contents, including the appendices. You can generate a table of contents automatically in Word.

If you have used a lot of tables and figures in your dissertation, you should itemise them in a numbered list . You can automatically generate this list using the Insert Caption feature in Word.

If you have used a lot of abbreviations in your dissertation, you can include them in an alphabetised list of abbreviations so that the reader can easily look up their meanings.

If you have used a lot of highly specialised terms that will not be familiar to your reader, it might be a good idea to include a glossary . List the terms alphabetically and explain each term with a brief description or definition.

In the introduction, you set up your dissertation’s topic, purpose, and relevance, and tell the reader what to expect in the rest of the dissertation. The introduction should:

  • Establish your research topic , giving necessary background information to contextualise your work
  • Narrow down the focus and define the scope of the research
  • Discuss the state of existing research on the topic, showing your work’s relevance to a broader problem or debate
  • Clearly state your objectives and research questions , and indicate how you will answer them
  • Give an overview of your dissertation’s structure

Everything in the introduction should be clear, engaging, and relevant to your research. By the end, the reader should understand the what , why and how of your research. Not sure how? Read our guide on how to write a dissertation introduction .

Before you start on your research, you should have conducted a literature review to gain a thorough understanding of the academic work that already exists on your topic. This means:

  • Collecting sources (e.g. books and journal articles) and selecting the most relevant ones
  • Critically evaluating and analysing each source
  • Drawing connections between them (e.g. themes, patterns, conflicts, gaps) to make an overall point

In the dissertation literature review chapter or section, you shouldn’t just summarise existing studies, but develop a coherent structure and argument that leads to a clear basis or justification for your own research. For example, it might aim to show how your research:

  • Addresses a gap in the literature
  • Takes a new theoretical or methodological approach to the topic
  • Proposes a solution to an unresolved problem
  • Advances a theoretical debate
  • Builds on and strengthens existing knowledge with new data

The literature review often becomes the basis for a theoretical framework , in which you define and analyse the key theories, concepts and models that frame your research. In this section you can answer descriptive research questions about the relationship between concepts or variables.

The methodology chapter or section describes how you conducted your research, allowing your reader to assess its validity. You should generally include:

  • The overall approach and type of research (e.g. qualitative, quantitative, experimental, ethnographic)
  • Your methods of collecting data (e.g. interviews, surveys, archives)
  • Details of where, when, and with whom the research took place
  • Your methods of analysing data (e.g. statistical analysis, discourse analysis)
  • Tools and materials you used (e.g. computer programs, lab equipment)
  • A discussion of any obstacles you faced in conducting the research and how you overcame them
  • An evaluation or justification of your methods

Your aim in the methodology is to accurately report what you did, as well as convincing the reader that this was the best approach to answering your research questions or objectives.

Next, you report the results of your research . You can structure this section around sub-questions, hypotheses, or topics. Only report results that are relevant to your objectives and research questions. In some disciplines, the results section is strictly separated from the discussion, while in others the two are combined.

For example, for qualitative methods like in-depth interviews, the presentation of the data will often be woven together with discussion and analysis, while in quantitative and experimental research, the results should be presented separately before you discuss their meaning. If you’re unsure, consult with your supervisor and look at sample dissertations to find out the best structure for your research.

In the results section it can often be helpful to include tables, graphs and charts. Think carefully about how best to present your data, and don’t include tables or figures that just repeat what you have written  –  they should provide extra information or usefully visualise the results in a way that adds value to your text.

Full versions of your data (such as interview transcripts) can be included as an appendix .

The discussion  is where you explore the meaning and implications of your results in relation to your research questions. Here you should interpret the results in detail, discussing whether they met your expectations and how well they fit with the framework that you built in earlier chapters. If any of the results were unexpected, offer explanations for why this might be. It’s a good idea to consider alternative interpretations of your data and discuss any limitations that might have influenced the results.

The discussion should reference other scholarly work to show how your results fit with existing knowledge. You can also make recommendations for future research or practical action.

The dissertation conclusion should concisely answer the main research question, leaving the reader with a clear understanding of your central argument. Wrap up your dissertation with a final reflection on what you did and how you did it. The conclusion often also includes recommendations for research or practice.

In this section, it’s important to show how your findings contribute to knowledge in the field and why your research matters. What have you added to what was already known?

You must include full details of all sources that you have cited in a reference list (sometimes also called a works cited list or bibliography). It’s important to follow a consistent reference style . Each style has strict and specific requirements for how to format your sources in the reference list.

The most common styles used in UK universities are Harvard referencing and Vancouver referencing . Your department will often specify which referencing style you should use – for example, psychology students tend to use APA style , humanities students often use MHRA , and law students always use OSCOLA . M ake sure to check the requirements, and ask your supervisor if you’re unsure.

To save time creating the reference list and make sure your citations are correctly and consistently formatted, you can use our free APA Citation Generator .

Your dissertation itself should contain only essential information that directly contributes to answering your research question. Documents you have used that do not fit into the main body of your dissertation (such as interview transcripts, survey questions or tables with full figures) can be added as appendices .

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The 7 Types of Dissertations Explained: Which One is Right for You?

Your dissertation is a pretty big deal and likely represents years of hard slog studying your subject of expertise.

But did you know there are 7 different types of dissertation ?

The 7 types of dissertation explained

The purpose of this article is to demystify the various types of dissertations you might encounter or choose to undertake during your advanced studies. Armed with this knowledge, you can select the most appropriate methodology and framework for your research interests and academic requirements.

Each type of dissertation serves a different academic purpose and requires a unique approach and structure. In this article, we’ll take a look at these differences in detail, providing clear explanations and examples from a range of academic disciplines. By the end of this article, you should have a thorough understanding of the options available for your dissertation and be better prepared to select a path that aligns with your research goals and academic ambitions.

Remember, regardless of what type of dissertation you ultimately decide to pursue, best dissertation proofreading can make all the difference between a pass and a fail.

7 Types of Dissertation

Empirical dissertations.

So, let’s dive right in with empirical dissertations—arguably the most hands-on type of dissertation out there. If you’re studying a field like psychology, biology, or social sciences, you’re probably going to become very familiar with this approach.

What exactly is an empirical dissertation?

It’s all about gathering data. You’ll be conducting your own experiments, surveys, or observations, making this type extremely engaging (and a bit daunting). Essentially, you’re collecting new data from the world or from people, rather than relying on existing data from other studies.

The structure of an empirical dissertation is pretty straightforward but involves rigorous methodology. Typically, it will include an introduction to set up your SMART research question , a literature review to justify why this question needs answering, a methodology section that details how you’ve gone about your data collection, a results chapter presenting your findings, and a discussion that ties everything back to your research question and explores the implications.

This type of dissertation not only tests your ability to conduct research and analyze data but also challenges you to apply theoretical knowledge in practical scenarios. By the end of an empirical dissertation, you should not only have answers to your original questions but also a solid chunk of real-world experience under your belt.

Best suited to: Students who are ready to roll up their sleeves and get their hands dirty.

Theoretical Dissertations

Now, shifting gears, let’s talk about theoretical dissertations. If the empirical dissertation is the hands-on, muddy boots kind of research, the theoretical dissertation is its more contemplative, indoor cousin. Perfect for those of you in fields like philosophy, literature, or certain branches of sociology and psychology, where concrete data might not be the main focus.

What’s the deal with theoretical dissertations? They revolve around developing, exploring, or expanding on existing theories. Instead of collecting new data, you invest your time and effort studying existing research and theoretical frameworks to build an argument or propose a new theory or perspective on an old one.

The structure of a theoretical dissertation generally includes a comprehensive introduction where you lay out your thesis or theory, followed by a detailed literature review that supports and provides the foundation for your thesis. After this, you’ll move into a discussion or analysis section, where you critically analyze your thesis in the light of existing theories and literature. The aim here is to offer a fresh or refined perspective that contributes to the existing body of knowledge.

This type of dissertation is a test of your analytical skills and your ability to synthesize complex ideas into a coherent argument. It’s less about creating new paths and more about mapping the ones already laid out in new ways.

Best suited to: Students who love theory and thrive on crafting arguments.

Case Study Dissertations

Next up, it’s case study dissertations. This type of dissertation is especially attractive if you’re someone who loves storytelling with a purpose or is drawn to in-depth analysis of specific events, individuals, or organizations. It’s a favorite in disciplines like business, education, psychology, and social sciences, where a single case can lead to the development of new theories and concepts.

A case study dissertation involves an intensive investigation of a particular individual, group, organization, or event. You’ll get to the nitty gritty of the specifics, examining various aspects of the case to understand its implications and applications. This method allows you to apply theoretical concepts in a real-world context, providing rich insights that aren’t always accessible through broader surveys or experiments.

The structure of a case study dissertation usually starts with an introduction to the chosen case, followed by a literature review that sets the theoretical framework. You then proceed to a detailed methodology section explaining how you collected and analyzed your data. The core of your dissertation will likely be the case analysis chapter, where you dissect the case in relation to your research question. Finally, you’ll conclude with a discussion of how the case impacts the wider field and what new understandings it brings to the fore.

Best suited to: Those who are meticulous and have a keen eye for detail, a case study dissertation allows you to explore the intricacies of a specific example while contributing to broader academic debates.

Comparative Dissertations

Next up is the comparative dissertation. This type is tailor-made for the analytically minded who love drawing connections and distinctions between different elements. It’s particularly prevalent in fields like law, education, political science, and international relations, where understanding differences and similarities across cases, laws, or educational methods can provide critical insights.

Essentially, a comparative dissertation involves systematically comparing and contrasting two or more entities. These could be policies, theories, populations, or even historical periods, depending on your study area. The goal is to identify patterns or discrepancies that reveal underlying principles or suggest new interpretations of data.

The structure of a dissertation of this nature typically includes a dissertation abstract followed by an introduction that defines the entities being compared and poses your research question. This is followed by a literature review that frames the theoretical bases for comparison. The methodology section should clearly outline the criteria and methods for comparison, ensuring transparency and replicability. The subsequent chapters will then detail the comparative analysis, discussing each entity individually before bringing them together for a comprehensive comparison. Finally, the conclusion synthesizes the findings, highlighting the significance of the differences and similarities discovered.

Best suited to: Those who can juggle multiple themes and variables without losing sight of the overarching question, a comparative dissertation challenges you to remain objective and balanced in your analysis.

Project-Based Dissertations

Project-based dissertations are more practical in nature. This type of dissertation is particularly appealing if you’re inclined towards applying your theoretical knowledge to create something tangible or solve a real-world problem. It’s a common choice in fields like engineering, computer science, and applied arts, where the end product can be a piece of software, an engineering prototype, or a design project.

What makes a project-based dissertation stand out? It centers around a project that you will plan, execute, and manage through the duration of your dissertation process. This could involve designing a new gadget, developing a software program, or creating a marketing plan for a startup. The focus is on applying the skills and knowledge you’ve acquired through your studies to produce a project that has practical and theoretical implications.

The structure of a project-based dissertation generally includes an introduction to the project, its objectives, and its relevance to your field. Following this, you’ll provide a literature review that supports the theories and methodologies you intend to use. The methodology section should detail your project plan, resources, and the processes you will follow. The main body of the dissertation will describe the project development and implementation phases in detail. Finally, the conclusion will evaluate the project’s success, its impact, and potential future developments or applications.

Best suited to: The innovative and the practical, a project-based dissertation allows you to showcase your ability to deliver a concrete outcome that demonstrates your professional capabilities.

Narrative Dissertations

If you’re drawn to writing and storytelling, a narrative dissertation might be right up your alley. This type is particularly popular in fields such as creative arts, literature, and education, where personal narratives or creative elements can be used to explore and communicate complex ideas.

What does a narrative dissertation involve? It’s about crafting a dissertation that primarily uses narrative techniques to convey research findings or explore scholarly questions. This could mean writing in a first-person perspective, incorporating fictional elements, or structuring the dissertation like a series of interconnected stories or essays.

The structure of a narrative dissertation often deviates from the traditional format. It begins with an introduction that sets the stage for the narrative journey. The literature review might be woven into the narrative itself, providing contextual background as the story unfolds. The methodology section explains how narrative methods will be used to explore the research question. The main body is where the narrative takes center stage, presenting research through personal reflections, storytelling, or hypothetical scenarios. The conclusion then ties all narrative threads together, reflecting on the insights gained and their broader implications.

Best suited to: those who think and express themselves best through stories, a narrative dissertation allows you to engage with your topic in a deeply personal and creative way.

Systematic Review Dissertations

Systematic review dissertations are perfect if you’re keen on synthesizing existing research to draw comprehensive conclusions about a specific topic. This type is particularly valuable in fields like healthcare, psychology, and social sciences, where summarizing and evaluating existing studies can provide powerful insights and inform practice and policy.

A systematic review dissertation involves a rigorous and structured approach to reviewing literature. You’ll gather all relevant data from previously published studies to answer a specific research question. The focus is on transparency and reproducibility, employing predefined methods to minimize bias and provide reliable results.

The structure of a systematic review dissertation typically begins with an introduction that outlines the research question and its significance. This is followed by a methodologically detailed section that explains the criteria for selecting studies, the search strategy used, and the methods for data extraction and synthesis. The results section then presents a detailed analysis of the studies included in the review, often using quantitative methods like meta-analysis. The discussion interprets these findings, considering their implications for the field and any limitations. The conclusion suggests areas for further research and summarizes the contributions made by the review.

Best suited to: Those with a keen eye for detail and a systematic approach to research, a systematic review dissertation can significantly impact by clarifying and summarizing existing knowledge.

Methodological Considerations

Choosing the right type of dissertation is an important decision in your academic journey, and several factors should guide your selection. This section aims to help you navigate these choices, ensuring that the methodology and framework you choose align perfectly with your research goals, available resources, and time constraints.

First, consider your discipline’s requirements and norms. Different fields favor different types of dissertations, so understanding what is expected and respected in your area of study is crucial. Next, think about your own strengths and interests. Choose a dissertation type that not only meets academic criteria but also excites you and plays to your strengths, whether they lie in empirical research, theoretical exploration, practical application, or creative expression.

Resource availability is another critical factor. Some types of dissertations, like empirical and project-based, may require access to specific equipment, software, or locations, which can be a deciding factor. Time constraints are also essential to consider; some dissertations, particularly those involving extensive data collection and analysis, may require more time than others.

Finally, discuss your ideas with your advisor or mentor. They can provide valuable insights and feedback that can help you refine your choice and ensure that you are prepared to tackle the challenges ahead. With the right preparation and understanding of what each type of dissertation entails, you can make an informed decision that sets the stage for a successful and rewarding research endeavor.

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Dissertation Structure & Layout 101: How to structure your dissertation, thesis or research project.

By: Derek Jansen (MBA) Reviewed By: David Phair (PhD) | July 2019

So, you’ve got a decent understanding of what a dissertation is , you’ve chosen your topic and hopefully you’ve received approval for your research proposal . Awesome! Now its time to start the actual dissertation or thesis writing journey.

To craft a high-quality document, the very first thing you need to understand is dissertation structure . In this post, we’ll walk you through the generic dissertation structure and layout, step by step. We’ll start with the big picture, and then zoom into each chapter to briefly discuss the core contents. If you’re just starting out on your research journey, you should start with this post, which covers the big-picture process of how to write a dissertation or thesis .

Dissertation structure and layout - the basics

*The Caveat *

In this post, we’ll be discussing a traditional dissertation/thesis structure and layout, which is generally used for social science research across universities, whether in the US, UK, Europe or Australia. However, some universities may have small variations on this structure (extra chapters, merged chapters, slightly different ordering, etc).

So, always check with your university if they have a prescribed structure or layout that they expect you to work with. If not, it’s safe to assume the structure we’ll discuss here is suitable. And even if they do have a prescribed structure, you’ll still get value from this post as we’ll explain the core contents of each section.  

Overview: S tructuring a dissertation or thesis

  • Acknowledgements page
  • Abstract (or executive summary)
  • Table of contents , list of figures and tables
  • Chapter 1: Introduction
  • Chapter 2: Literature review
  • Chapter 3: Methodology
  • Chapter 4: Results
  • Chapter 5: Discussion
  • Chapter 6: Conclusion
  • Reference list

As I mentioned, some universities will have slight variations on this structure. For example, they want an additional “personal reflection chapter”, or they might prefer the results and discussion chapter to be merged into one. Regardless, the overarching flow will always be the same, as this flow reflects the research process , which we discussed here – i.e.:

  • The introduction chapter presents the core research question and aims .
  • The literature review chapter assesses what the current research says about this question.
  • The methodology, results and discussion chapters go about undertaking new research about this question.
  • The conclusion chapter (attempts to) answer the core research question .

In other words, the dissertation structure and layout reflect the research process of asking a well-defined question(s), investigating, and then answering the question – see below.

A dissertation's structure reflect the research process

To restate that – the structure and layout of a dissertation reflect the flow of the overall research process . This is essential to understand, as each chapter will make a lot more sense if you “get” this concept. If you’re not familiar with the research process, read this post before going further.

Right. Now that we’ve covered the big picture, let’s dive a little deeper into the details of each section and chapter. Oh and by the way, you can also grab our free dissertation/thesis template here to help speed things up.

The title page of your dissertation is the very first impression the marker will get of your work, so it pays to invest some time thinking about your title. But what makes for a good title? A strong title needs to be 3 things:

  • Succinct (not overly lengthy or verbose)
  • Specific (not vague or ambiguous)
  • Representative of the research you’re undertaking (clearly linked to your research questions)

Typically, a good title includes mention of the following:

  • The broader area of the research (i.e. the overarching topic)
  • The specific focus of your research (i.e. your specific context)
  • Indication of research design (e.g. quantitative , qualitative , or  mixed methods ).

For example:

A quantitative investigation [research design] into the antecedents of organisational trust [broader area] in the UK retail forex trading market [specific context/area of focus].

Again, some universities may have specific requirements regarding the format and structure of the title, so it’s worth double-checking expectations with your institution (if there’s no mention in the brief or study material).

Dissertations stacked up

Acknowledgements

This page provides you with an opportunity to say thank you to those who helped you along your research journey. Generally, it’s optional (and won’t count towards your marks), but it is academic best practice to include this.

So, who do you say thanks to? Well, there’s no prescribed requirements, but it’s common to mention the following people:

  • Your dissertation supervisor or committee.
  • Any professors, lecturers or academics that helped you understand the topic or methodologies.
  • Any tutors, mentors or advisors.
  • Your family and friends, especially spouse (for adult learners studying part-time).

There’s no need for lengthy rambling. Just state who you’re thankful to and for what (e.g. thank you to my supervisor, John Doe, for his endless patience and attentiveness) – be sincere. In terms of length, you should keep this to a page or less.

Abstract or executive summary

The dissertation abstract (or executive summary for some degrees) serves to provide the first-time reader (and marker or moderator) with a big-picture view of your research project. It should give them an understanding of the key insights and findings from the research, without them needing to read the rest of the report – in other words, it should be able to stand alone .

For it to stand alone, your abstract should cover the following key points (at a minimum):

  • Your research questions and aims – what key question(s) did your research aim to answer?
  • Your methodology – how did you go about investigating the topic and finding answers to your research question(s)?
  • Your findings – following your own research, what did do you discover?
  • Your conclusions – based on your findings, what conclusions did you draw? What answers did you find to your research question(s)?

So, in much the same way the dissertation structure mimics the research process, your abstract or executive summary should reflect the research process, from the initial stage of asking the original question to the final stage of answering that question.

In practical terms, it’s a good idea to write this section up last , once all your core chapters are complete. Otherwise, you’ll end up writing and rewriting this section multiple times (just wasting time). For a step by step guide on how to write a strong executive summary, check out this post .

Need a helping hand?

type de question dissertation

Table of contents

This section is straightforward. You’ll typically present your table of contents (TOC) first, followed by the two lists – figures and tables. I recommend that you use Microsoft Word’s automatic table of contents generator to generate your TOC. If you’re not familiar with this functionality, the video below explains it simply:

If you find that your table of contents is overly lengthy, consider removing one level of depth. Oftentimes, this can be done without detracting from the usefulness of the TOC.

Right, now that the “admin” sections are out of the way, its time to move on to your core chapters. These chapters are the heart of your dissertation and are where you’ll earn the marks. The first chapter is the introduction chapter – as you would expect, this is the time to introduce your research…

It’s important to understand that even though you’ve provided an overview of your research in your abstract, your introduction needs to be written as if the reader has not read that (remember, the abstract is essentially a standalone document). So, your introduction chapter needs to start from the very beginning, and should address the following questions:

  • What will you be investigating (in plain-language, big picture-level)?
  • Why is that worth investigating? How is it important to academia or business? How is it sufficiently original?
  • What are your research aims and research question(s)? Note that the research questions can sometimes be presented at the end of the literature review (next chapter).
  • What is the scope of your study? In other words, what will and won’t you cover ?
  • How will you approach your research? In other words, what methodology will you adopt?
  • How will you structure your dissertation? What are the core chapters and what will you do in each of them?

These are just the bare basic requirements for your intro chapter. Some universities will want additional bells and whistles in the intro chapter, so be sure to carefully read your brief or consult your research supervisor.

If done right, your introduction chapter will set a clear direction for the rest of your dissertation. Specifically, it will make it clear to the reader (and marker) exactly what you’ll be investigating, why that’s important, and how you’ll be going about the investigation. Conversely, if your introduction chapter leaves a first-time reader wondering what exactly you’ll be researching, you’ve still got some work to do.

Now that you’ve set a clear direction with your introduction chapter, the next step is the literature review . In this section, you will analyse the existing research (typically academic journal articles and high-quality industry publications), with a view to understanding the following questions:

  • What does the literature currently say about the topic you’re investigating?
  • Is the literature lacking or well established? Is it divided or in disagreement?
  • How does your research fit into the bigger picture?
  • How does your research contribute something original?
  • How does the methodology of previous studies help you develop your own?

Depending on the nature of your study, you may also present a conceptual framework towards the end of your literature review, which you will then test in your actual research.

Again, some universities will want you to focus on some of these areas more than others, some will have additional or fewer requirements, and so on. Therefore, as always, its important to review your brief and/or discuss with your supervisor, so that you know exactly what’s expected of your literature review chapter.

Dissertation writing

Now that you’ve investigated the current state of knowledge in your literature review chapter and are familiar with the existing key theories, models and frameworks, its time to design your own research. Enter the methodology chapter – the most “science-ey” of the chapters…

In this chapter, you need to address two critical questions:

  • Exactly HOW will you carry out your research (i.e. what is your intended research design)?
  • Exactly WHY have you chosen to do things this way (i.e. how do you justify your design)?

Remember, the dissertation part of your degree is first and foremost about developing and demonstrating research skills . Therefore, the markers want to see that you know which methods to use, can clearly articulate why you’ve chosen then, and know how to deploy them effectively.

Importantly, this chapter requires detail – don’t hold back on the specifics. State exactly what you’ll be doing, with who, when, for how long, etc. Moreover, for every design choice you make, make sure you justify it.

In practice, you will likely end up coming back to this chapter once you’ve undertaken all your data collection and analysis, and revise it based on changes you made during the analysis phase. This is perfectly fine. Its natural for you to add an additional analysis technique, scrap an old one, etc based on where your data lead you. Of course, I’m talking about small changes here – not a fundamental switch from qualitative to quantitative, which will likely send your supervisor in a spin!

You’ve now collected your data and undertaken your analysis, whether qualitative, quantitative or mixed methods. In this chapter, you’ll present the raw results of your analysis . For example, in the case of a quant study, you’ll present the demographic data, descriptive statistics, inferential statistics , etc.

Typically, Chapter 4 is simply a presentation and description of the data, not a discussion of the meaning of the data. In other words, it’s descriptive, rather than analytical – the meaning is discussed in Chapter 5. However, some universities will want you to combine chapters 4 and 5, so that you both present and interpret the meaning of the data at the same time. Check with your institution what their preference is.

Now that you’ve presented the data analysis results, its time to interpret and analyse them. In other words, its time to discuss what they mean, especially in relation to your research question(s).

What you discuss here will depend largely on your chosen methodology. For example, if you’ve gone the quantitative route, you might discuss the relationships between variables . If you’ve gone the qualitative route, you might discuss key themes and the meanings thereof. It all depends on what your research design choices were.

Most importantly, you need to discuss your results in relation to your research questions and aims, as well as the existing literature. What do the results tell you about your research questions? Are they aligned with the existing research or at odds? If so, why might this be? Dig deep into your findings and explain what the findings suggest, in plain English.

The final chapter – you’ve made it! Now that you’ve discussed your interpretation of the results, its time to bring it back to the beginning with the conclusion chapter . In other words, its time to (attempt to) answer your original research question s (from way back in chapter 1). Clearly state what your conclusions are in terms of your research questions. This might feel a bit repetitive, as you would have touched on this in the previous chapter, but its important to bring the discussion full circle and explicitly state your answer(s) to the research question(s).

Dissertation and thesis prep

Next, you’ll typically discuss the implications of your findings . In other words, you’ve answered your research questions – but what does this mean for the real world (or even for academia)? What should now be done differently, given the new insight you’ve generated?

Lastly, you should discuss the limitations of your research, as well as what this means for future research in the area. No study is perfect, especially not a Masters-level. Discuss the shortcomings of your research. Perhaps your methodology was limited, perhaps your sample size was small or not representative, etc, etc. Don’t be afraid to critique your work – the markers want to see that you can identify the limitations of your work. This is a strength, not a weakness. Be brutal!

This marks the end of your core chapters – woohoo! From here on out, it’s pretty smooth sailing.

The reference list is straightforward. It should contain a list of all resources cited in your dissertation, in the required format, e.g. APA , Harvard, etc.

It’s essential that you use reference management software for your dissertation. Do NOT try handle your referencing manually – its far too error prone. On a reference list of multiple pages, you’re going to make mistake. To this end, I suggest considering either Mendeley or Zotero. Both are free and provide a very straightforward interface to ensure that your referencing is 100% on point. I’ve included a simple how-to video for the Mendeley software (my personal favourite) below:

Some universities may ask you to include a bibliography, as opposed to a reference list. These two things are not the same . A bibliography is similar to a reference list, except that it also includes resources which informed your thinking but were not directly cited in your dissertation. So, double-check your brief and make sure you use the right one.

The very last piece of the puzzle is the appendix or set of appendices. This is where you’ll include any supporting data and evidence. Importantly, supporting is the keyword here.

Your appendices should provide additional “nice to know”, depth-adding information, which is not critical to the core analysis. Appendices should not be used as a way to cut down word count (see this post which covers how to reduce word count ). In other words, don’t place content that is critical to the core analysis here, just to save word count. You will not earn marks on any content in the appendices, so don’t try to play the system!

Time to recap…

And there you have it – the traditional dissertation structure and layout, from A-Z. To recap, the core structure for a dissertation or thesis is (typically) as follows:

  • Acknowledgments page

Most importantly, the core chapters should reflect the research process (asking, investigating and answering your research question). Moreover, the research question(s) should form the golden thread throughout your dissertation structure. Everything should revolve around the research questions, and as you’ve seen, they should form both the start point (i.e. introduction chapter) and the endpoint (i.e. conclusion chapter).

I hope this post has provided you with clarity about the traditional dissertation/thesis structure and layout. If you have any questions or comments, please leave a comment below, or feel free to get in touch with us. Also, be sure to check out the rest of the  Grad Coach Blog .

type de question dissertation

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The acknowledgements section of a thesis/dissertation

36 Comments

ARUN kumar SHARMA

many thanks i found it very useful

Derek Jansen

Glad to hear that, Arun. Good luck writing your dissertation.

Sue

Such clear practical logical advice. I very much needed to read this to keep me focused in stead of fretting.. Perfect now ready to start my research!

hayder

what about scientific fields like computer or engineering thesis what is the difference in the structure? thank you very much

Tim

Thanks so much this helped me a lot!

Ade Adeniyi

Very helpful and accessible. What I like most is how practical the advice is along with helpful tools/ links.

Thanks Ade!

Aswathi

Thank you so much sir.. It was really helpful..

You’re welcome!

Jp Raimundo

Hi! How many words maximum should contain the abstract?

Karmelia Renatee

Thank you so much 😊 Find this at the right moment

You’re most welcome. Good luck with your dissertation.

moha

best ever benefit i got on right time thank you

Krishnan iyer

Many times Clarity and vision of destination of dissertation is what makes the difference between good ,average and great researchers the same way a great automobile driver is fast with clarity of address and Clear weather conditions .

I guess Great researcher = great ideas + knowledge + great and fast data collection and modeling + great writing + high clarity on all these

You have given immense clarity from start to end.

Alwyn Malan

Morning. Where will I write the definitions of what I’m referring to in my report?

Rose

Thank you so much Derek, I was almost lost! Thanks a tonnnn! Have a great day!

yemi Amos

Thanks ! so concise and valuable

Kgomotso Siwelane

This was very helpful. Clear and concise. I know exactly what to do now.

dauda sesay

Thank you for allowing me to go through briefly. I hope to find time to continue.

Patrick Mwathi

Really useful to me. Thanks a thousand times

Adao Bundi

Very interesting! It will definitely set me and many more for success. highly recommended.

SAIKUMAR NALUMASU

Thank you soo much sir, for the opportunity to express my skills

mwepu Ilunga

Usefull, thanks a lot. Really clear

Rami

Very nice and easy to understand. Thank you .

Chrisogonas Odhiambo

That was incredibly useful. Thanks Grad Coach Crew!

Luke

My stress level just dropped at least 15 points after watching this. Just starting my thesis for my grad program and I feel a lot more capable now! Thanks for such a clear and helpful video, Emma and the GradCoach team!

Judy

Do we need to mention the number of words the dissertation contains in the main document?

It depends on your university’s requirements, so it would be best to check with them 🙂

Christine

Such a helpful post to help me get started with structuring my masters dissertation, thank you!

Simon Le

Great video; I appreciate that helpful information

Brhane Kidane

It is so necessary or avital course

johnson

This blog is very informative for my research. Thank you

avc

Doctoral students are required to fill out the National Research Council’s Survey of Earned Doctorates

Emmanuel Manjolo

wow this is an amazing gain in my life

Paul I Thoronka

This is so good

Tesfay haftu

How can i arrange my specific objectives in my dissertation?

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Dissertations & projects: Research questions

  • Research questions
  • The process of reviewing
  • Project management
  • Literature-based projects

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“The central question that you ask or hypothesis you frame drives your research: it defines your purpose.” Bryan Greetham, How to Write Your Undergraduate Dissertation

This page gives some help and guidance in developing a realistic research question. It also considers the role of sub-questions and how these can influence your methodological choices. 

Choosing your research topic

You may have been provided with a list of potential topics or even specific questions to choose from. It is more common for you to have to come up with your own ideas and then refine them with the help of your tutor. This is a crucial decision as you will be immersing yourself in it for a long time.

Some students struggle to find a topic that is sufficiently significant and yet researchable within the limitations of an undergraduate project. You may feel overwhelmed by the freedom to choose your own topic but you could get ideas by considering the following:

Choose a topic that you find interesting . This may seem obvious but a lot of students go for what they think will be easy over what they think will be interesting - and regret it when they realise nothing is particularly easy and they are bored by the work. Think back over your lectures or talks from visiting speakers - was there anything you really enjoyed? Was there anything that left you with questions?

Choose something distinct . Whilst at undergraduate level you do not have to find something completely unique, if you find something a bit different you have more opportunity to come to some interesting conclusions. Have you some unique experiences that you can bring: personal biography, placements, study abroad etc?

Don't make your topic too wide . If your topic is too wide, it will be harder to develop research questions that you can actually answer in the context of a small research project.

Don't make your work too narrow . If your topic is too narrow, you will not be able to expand on the ideas sufficiently and make useful conclusions. You may also struggle to find enough literature to support it.

Scope out the field before deciding your topic . This is especially important if you have a few different options and are not sure which to pick. Spend a little time researching each one to get a feel for the amount of literature that exists and any particular avenues that could be worth exploring.

Think about your future . Some topics may fit better than others with your future plans, be they for further study or employment. Becoming more expert in something that you may have to be interviewed about is never a bad thing!

Once you have an idea (or even a few), speak to your tutor. They will advise on whether it is the right sort of topic for a dissertation or independent study. They have a lot of experience and will know if it is too much to take on, has enough material to build on etc.

Developing a research question or hypothesis

Research question vs hypothesis.

First, it may be useful to explain the difference between a research question and a hypothesis. A research question is simply a question that your research will address and hopefully answer (or give an explanation of why you couldn't answer it). A hypothesis is a statement that suggests how you expect something to function or behave (and which you would test to see if it actually happens or not).

Research question examples

  • How significant is league table position when students choose their university?
  • What impact can a diagnosis of depression have on physical health?

Note that these are open questions - i.e. they cannot be answered with a simple 'yes' or 'no'. This is the best form of question.

Hypotheses examples

  • Students primarily choose their university based on league table position.
  • A diagnosis of depression can impact physical health.

Note that these are things that you can test to see if they are true or false. This makes them more definite then research questions - but you can still answer them more fully than 'no they don't' or 'yes it does'. For example, in the above examples you would look to see how relevant other factors were when choosing universities and in what ways physical health may be impacted.

For more examples of the same topic formulated as hypotheses, research questions and paper titles see those given at the bottom of this document from Oakland University: Formulation of Research Hypothesis

Which do you need?

Generally, research questions are more common in the humanities, social sciences and business, whereas hypotheses are more common in the sciences. This is not a hard rule though, talk things through with your supervisor to see which they are expecting or which they think fits best with your topic.

What makes a good research question or hypothesis?

Unless you are undertaking a systematic review as your research method, you will develop your research question  as a result of reviewing the literature on your broader topic. After all, it is only by seeing what research has already been done (or not) that you can justify the need for your question or your approach to answering it. At the end of that process, you should be able to come up with a question or hypothesis that is:

  • Clear (easily understandable)
  • Focused (specific not vague or huge)
  • Answerable (the data is available and analysable in the time frame)
  • Relevant (to your area of study)
  • Significant (it is worth answering)

You can try a few out, using a table like this (yours would all be in the same discipline):

A similar, though different table is available from the University of California: What makes a good research topic?   The completed table has some supervisor comments which may also be helpful.

Ultimately, your final research question will be mutually agreed between yourself and your supervisor - but you should always bring your own ideas to the conversation.

The role of sub-questions

Your main research question will probably still be too big to answer easily. This is where sub-questions come in. They are specific, narrower questions that you can answer directly from your data.

So, looking at the question " How much do online users know and care about how their self-images can be used by Apple, Google, Microsoft and Facebook? " from the table above, the sub-questions could be:

  • What rights do the terms and conditions of signing up for Apple, Google, Microsoft and Facebook accounts give those companies regarding the use of self-images?
  • What proportion of users read the terms and conditions when creating accounts with these companies?
  • How aware are users of the rights they are giving away regarding their self-images when creating accounts with these companies?
  • How comfortable are users with giving away these rights?

The main research question is the overarching question with the subquestions filling in the blanks

Together, the answers to your sub-questions should enable you to answer the overarching research question.

How do you answer your sub-questions?

Depending on the type of dissertation/project your are undertaking, some (or all) the questions may be answered with information collected from the literature and some (or none) may be answered by analysing data directly collected as part of your primary empirical research .

In the above example, the first question would be answered by documentary analysis of the relevant terms and conditions, the second by a mixture of reviewing the literature and analysing survey responses from participants and the last two also by analysing survey responses. Different projects will require different approaches.

Some sub-questions could be answered from the literature review and others from empirical study

Some sub-questions could be answered by reviewing the literature and others from empirical study.

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  • GETTING STARTED
  • Introduction
  • FUNDAMENTALS

Choosing between types

There are a number of reasons why you may choose one type of dissertation over another. Some are more academic in nature, whilst others tend to be more personal or practical . Academic justifications are important because the person marking your dissertation will expect to see such academic justifications in your final product. Personal and practical justifications are similarly important, not because these are something that a marker is looking for, but because the dissertation process can be tough. As a result, many of the decisions you make throughout the dissertation process (e.g., the choice of sampling strategy or data analysis techniques) will be influenced by factors such as cost, ease, convenience, and what skills you have or can learn in time. We briefly discuss these considerations below, and explain how they may influence the particular choice of dissertation type; after all, the academic, personal and practical justifications for a quantitative dissertation are different for qualitative or mixed methods dissertations.

Academic justifications

You'll almost always been able to find an academic justification for your choice of dissertation, whether qualitative, quantitative or mixed methods. These academic justifications include factors that are generally philosophical or theoretical , or which refer to a particular research problem or idea .

The reasons that act as a justification for your dissertation will often become clear when you decide on the route you will follow within one of these three types of dissertation (i.e., a qualitative, quantitative or mixed methods dissertation). We have chosen not to go into any more detail about such academic justifications now because they are so specific to the route that you choose. However, you'll learn about these justifications in detail in the Quantitative Dissertations part of Lærd Dissertation, where you can choose between one of three routes (i.e., Route #1: Replication-based dissertations , Route #2: Data-driven dissertations , and Route #3: Theory-driven dissertations ).

Personal or practical justifications

One of the major challenges of doing a dissertation, especially if you are an undergraduate, is uncertainty : Can I plan out the dissertation process from the start? Will I be able to finish on time? Can I get my head around the research paradigms and research designs that guide my choice of dissertation (i.e., qualitative, quantitative or mixed methods)? Do I have the right skills to analyse qualitative or quantitative data? What software packages will I have to learn to do this, if any?

Dissertations are often worth a good proportion of your final year mark, if not the grade of your entire degree, so how tolerant you are to uncertainty matters. On this basis, think about the following:

Am I a bit of a planning freak?

If you are, you may prefer to take on a quantitative dissertation rather than qualitative dissertation . One of the broad advantages of quantitative dissertations is that they tend to be more sequential in nature, such that you can often set out, right from the start of the dissertation process, the various stages you will need to go through in order to answer your research questions or hypotheses. This is because in quantitative dissertations, it is far less common to change major components of the research process (e.g., your research questions or hypotheses, or research design), after you've decided what these are going to be, which you typically do at the very start of the dissertation process. Not only does this make it possible to plan what you will be doing from month-to-month, but it also reduces the uncertainty through the dissertation process. You'll see in the Quantitative Dissertations section how we have been able to provide comprehensive, step-by-step guides to walk you through the dissertation process, as well as chapter-by-chapter guides to show you how to write up.

By contrast, qualitative dissertations are not sequential, but reflexive and emergent in nature, which means that what you planned to do at the start of the dissertation process is more likely to have to be modified. Such modification takes place because one of the tenets of qualitative research is flexibility to allow for things that are learnt during the research process to be integrated (e.g., initial interviews may suggest that you need to add or omit a particular research question). Whilst such changes may only happen a few times, and may be minor in many cases, they do add an element of uncertainty. At a basic level, imagine the difference between knowing how many participants you need to have to fill in your questionnaire, and therefore, roughly how long this will take (i.e., a quantitative dissertation ), as opposed to being quite uncertain how many interviews you need to arrange to collect sufficient data to answer your research questions (i.e., a qualitative dissertation ). Whilst these might sound like small points, it can mean having to put aside another month to collect sufficient interview data in a qualitative dissertation compared with a quantitative one.

What are my strong points?

Whilst qualitative and quantitative dissertations are more than just the use of qualitative or qualitative research methods and data, there is no escaping the fact that qualitative dissertations use qualitative research methods and collect qualitative data (i.e., from unstructured interviews, focus groups, participant observation, etc.), and quantitative dissertations use quantitative research methods, collecting quantitative data (i.e., from data sets, surveys, structured interviews, structured observation, etc.). If you've spent your degree working with quantitative research designs (e.g., randomized control trials, pre- and post-test designs, relationship-based designs, etc.), as well as quantitative research methods and data, the logical choice might be to take on a quantitative dissertation . The same can be said for qualitative dissertations , since in both cases, the learning curve will be a lot higher if you're completely unaccustomed to the components that make up these different types of dissertation.

What am I interested in?

At the end of the day, the dissertation process is a long one, lasting around 6 months (in most cases). If you're not interested in experimental research, you prefer working with more unstructured research methods (e.g., depth interviews, unstructured observation, etc.), or you hate quantitative data analysis (i.e., any form of statistics), taking on a quantitative dissertation may not be a good idea. The same can be said for qualitative dissertations , which require a lot of perseverance and dedication, especially during the data collection process, which can be time consuming and requires a lot of toeing-and-froing. Choose a type of dissertation that is going to keep you interested, and which you will not find boring or demoralizing.

If you're taking on a qualitative dissertation , we wish you good luck (although you will still be able to learn a little about appropriate research methods and sampling techniques in the Fundamentals section of Lærd Dissertation). However, if you're taking on a quantitative dissertation (or a mixed methods dissertation that is mainly quantitative in its focus), go to the Quantitative Dissertations part of Lærd Dissertation now. We have extensive guides to help you through the process.

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Completing Your Qualitative Dissertation: A Road Map from Beginning to End

Student resources, 101 qualitative dissertation questions.

These questions and answers correlate to pages in Completing Your Qualitative Dissertation: A Road Map from Beginning to End, Third Edition , which you have purchased.

As teachers of qualitative research and advisors of doctoral students, we have witnessed and experienced many of the frustrations of students confronted with the academic challenge of writing a dissertation. The questions below have been raised time and again in conversations with students and research colleagues. The intent of including these questions in the companion website for Completing Your Qualitative Dissertation: A Road Map From Beginning to End is that they will hopefully stimulate critical thinking, reflection, and dialogue, thereby motivating doctoral students or prospective doctoral students to seek and consult additional relevant texts and resources in order to delve deeper into the many issues raised. These questions might also be used to prompt discussion between doctoral students and their advisors.

One caveat in compiling this list of questions is to demystify the dissertation process but not to sacrifice intellectual rigor for the sake of simplification. Completing a qualitative dissertation indeed is a rigorous and demanding process, and understanding the process means grasping many complex and interrelated issues.  As a second caveat, one must remember that while most institutions will approach the dissertation in common ways, at the same time there are differences in terms of the organization and presentation, as well as distinct differences in terms of what and how qualitative language and terminology are used. This book presents information as guidelines that are meant to be flexible per institutional expectations and requirements, and subject to modification depending on your institution, department, and program. As such, students should always consult with their advisors and committee members to ascertain specific or particular institutional or departmental requirements.

The questions and answers correspond to the book’s structure and are divided into eight parts:

Parts 1–2 cover conceptual information; that is, the thinking and planning aspects of the dissertation. Parts 3–6 cover the practical aspects involved in preparing to actually write the dissertation. Part 7 includes the detailed requirements related to each of the chapters that compose the dissertation. Part 8 provides the information that one needs regarding the various activities that occur after writing the dissertation. 

  • Part 1: Planning and Gearing Up
  • Part 2: Choosing an Appropriate Qualitative Approach
  • Part 3: Preparing and Writing the Proposal

Part 4: Conducting the Research: Data Collection

Part 5: conducting the research: data analysis, part 6: conducting the research: interpretation and synthesis.

  • Part 7: Writing Up and Presenting the Research

Part 8: Planning for the Dissertation Defense and Beyond

Part 9: preparing for the defense, part 1: planning and gearing up.

1. How does qualitative research and quantitative research differ, and what are the defining features of qualitative research? 

Rather than determine cause and effect, or predict or describe the distribution of an attribute among a population, qualitative researchers are interested in understanding how people interpret their experiences and how they construct their worlds. The two paradigms or orientations that inform qualitative research, namely Interpretivism and Critical Theory, place emphasis on seeking understanding of the meanings of human actions and experiences, and on generating accounts of meaning from the viewpoints of those involved. Both paradigms assume that reality is socially constructed and that there is no single observable reality, but rather multiple realities or interpretations. For more information regarding the key defining features of qualitative research, see pages 37–44; 53–55 .

2. What is implied by “rigor” in qualitative research, and what does it mean to conduct a “rigorous” qualitative study?

Sound research requires a systematic and rigorous approach to the design and implementation of the study, the collection and analysis of data, and the interpretation and reporting of findings. Central to the rigor of qualitative research is whether participants’ perspectives have been authentically represented in the research process, and whether the findings are coherent in the sense that they “fit” the data and social context from which they were derived. Because rigor is about being very transparent, evaluating the quality of qualitative research includes criteria that are concerned with good practice in the conduct of the research (methodological rigor), as well as criteria related to the trustworthiness of interpretations made (interpretive rigor). For more information regarding rigor vis-à-vis qualitative research, refer to pages 162–164; 240–242 .

3. Writing a qualitative dissertation is a long and iterative process. What exactly is this “process,” and what should a student expect?

Writing a dissertation is a process but not one that is neat and linear. This work is intellectually rigorous—requiring intensive thinking, preparation, and planning—and is very much a matter of having tenacity, perseverance, and patience. For most people, conducting research and writing a document such as this is a first-time endeavor, an undertaking for which there is little experience. For a broad overview of the qualitative dissertation process, see page 3 .

4. How does one manage data in the most efficient and practical manner throughout the dissertation process?

As you proceed with your research, you will begin to gather and accumulate a diverse array of material that has potential relevance. You certainly do not want to lose any of your material, nor do you want to drown in it. Organizing and managing dissertation-related “stuff” right from the beginning is essential to getting on track and staying focused. For more information regarding data management strategies, see pages 19–20; 65–66 .

5. How can I start thinking about planning my time and resources?

The ability to focus, problem-solve, and make informed decisions at every step of the way will bring your study to completion. Because the time commitment required is substantial, you will need to pace yourself from the beginning. For some practical strategies, suggestions, and tips, see pages 20–23.

6. What would be a realistic timeline in which to complete my dissertation, and how can I remain practical about this?

If you work on your dissertation only when you feel like it, the project will most likely never be completed. Scheduling your time allows you to develop a plan for writing, and also helps reduce the pressure associated with deadlines, as well as the tendency to procrastinate. Moreover, setting a schedule also helps integrate your writing into the rest of your life. There are some basic principles for developing an effective writing schedule, and these can be found on pages 35–36.

7. Journaling is said to be an integral aspect of the qualitative dissertation process. Why is this necessary?   Aside from keeping track of information, you also need to keep track of your thinking. One way to ensure that you preserve your reasoning and thinking and are able to spell out the development of your ideas, is to keep a research journal. The rationale for recording your thinking is explained on page 23.  

8. What is the actual starting point of any qualitative dissertation?

The starting point for any research project, and indeed the first major challenge in conducting research, involves identifying and developing a sound topic. How to go about selecting a worthy and researchable topic and considering potential options is described on page 24.

 9. Does my selected topic need to be original or unique?

A dissertation should be an original piece of research and should make a significant contribution to the field. However, it is important to remember that making an original contribution does not imply that there need be an enormous “breakthrough.” In social science research, the discovery of new facts is rarely an important or even challenging criterion. Rather, research is a process of searching or re-searching for new insights; it is about advancing knowledge or understanding of a practice or phenomenon. More information on going about selecting a topic is provided on page 27.

10.  Once I have decided on an area of interest, how do I go about developing and refining a researchable topic? 

Once you have identified a general area of interest, you will need to begin narrowing your topic. The process of developing a researchable topic is a process of idea generation—the movement from a general interest “out there” toward a more clearly refined idea around a researchable problem. More about this “narrowing” process is discussed on pages 28–30.

Part 2: Choosing an Appropriate Qualitative Approach 

11. What are the most common traditions or genres of qualitative research, and what are the key differences between them? 

There are numerous qualitative traditions or genres, each of which has ways of defining a research topic, critically engaging the literature on that topic, identifying significant research problems, designing the study, and collecting, analyzing, and presenting the data so that it will be most relevant and meaningful. Understanding the logic behind a research approach allows your study to be appropriately positioned within an inquiry tradition and also lays the foundation for supporting your study’s findings. Pages 44–45 offer a descriptive and critical overview of some of the most current qualitative traditions.  

12. What are the key characteristics of Case Study methodology, and how do I conduct a case study?

As a form of qualitative research methodology, case study is an intensive description and analysis of a bounded social phenomenon (or multiple bounded phenomena)—be this a social unit or a system such as a program, institution, process, event, or concept. Case study is at the same time both a methodology (a type of design in qualitative inquiry) and an object of study. Case study is an exploratory form of inquiry that affords significant interaction with research participants, providing an in-depth picture of the unit of study. More information can be found on pages 46–47.

13. What is Ethnography and how is an ethnographic study conducted?

Ethnography, as both a method and a product, has multiple intellectual traditions located in diverse disciplines. The researcher studies a cultural or social group in its natural setting, closely examining customs and ways of life, with the aim of describing and interpreting cultural patterns of behavior, values, and practices. Rooted in cultural anthropology, ethnography involves extended observations of the group, most often through the researcher as a participant observer becoming immersed in the day-to-day lives of the participants. More information can be found on pages 47–48.

14. What is Phenomenology, and what are the characteristics of a phenomenological study?

Phenomenology is both a philosophy and a method, the purpose of which is to investigate the meaning of the lived experience of people to identify the core essence of human experience or phenomena as described by research participants. Phenomenology does not endeavor to develop a theory to explain the world; rather, the aim is to facilitate deeper insight to help us maintain greater contact within the world. Phenomenologists focus on describing what all participants have in common, the basic purpose of research being to reduce individual experiences with a phenomenon to a description of the universal essence. More information can be found on pages 48–49.

15. What is Grounded Theory, and what does a grounded theory study look like?

The purpose of grounded theory is to inductively generate theory that is grounded in, or emerges from, the data. A core component of grounded theory is to move beyond description and to have the researcher generate or discover a theory that is “grounded” in data from the field—especially in actions, interactions, and social processes. Research involves multiple recurrent stages of data collection and the refinement of abstract categories of information. More information can be found on pages 49–50.

16. What is Narrative Inquiry, and how does one go about conducting this type of research?

Narrative research has many forms, incorporates a variety of practices and applications, and is rooted in different social disciplines. As a method, narrative research begins with the experiences as expressed in lived and told stories of individuals or cultures. In this form of research, the researcher studies the lives of one or more individuals through the telling of stories, including poetry, play, or performance. Paramount to all narrative work is the centrality of relationship in the research process and recognition of the sacredness of the stories that participants share and trust within the research environment. Uncertainty and tension guide the work, and rather than produce conclusive findings, the process is intended to offer understanding and meaning. More information can be found on pages 50–51.

17. What is Action Research, and what is an action research study?

Action research is a systematic orientation toward inquiry that seeks effective solutions to complex problems that people confront in their communities and organizations. Especially valuable to those involved in professional, organizational, and community research, action research focuses on specific situations that people encounter by engaging them in collaborative relationships and working on developing localized solutions. Action research, being about collaborative and democratic practices, makes it essentially political because it aims to influence processes of change. Action research is an intervention because it promotes actual change. More information can be found on pages 51–52.

18. What are Postmodernism, Poststructuralism, and Critical Theory Research?

In the past two decades, a critical turn has taken place in the social sciences, humanities, and applied fields, with scholars challenging the historical assumptions of neutrality in inquiry, asserting that all research is fundamentally political. It is increasingly argued that research involves issues of power and that traditionally conducted social science research has silenced, marginalized, and oppressed groups in society by making them the passive objects of inquiry. Postmodernism views the world as complex and reality as transitional. In recognition of the socially constructed nature of the world, meaning rather than knowledge is sought because knowledge is seen as constrained by the discourses that were developed to protect powerful interests. Poststructuralism, with its emphasis on language, forms a subset of postmodernism. More information on these genres can be found on pages 52–53.

19. With all the different options available, how do I go about choosing an appropriate qualitative research approach for my study?

The choice of research approach is directly tied to one’s research problem and purpose. A research problem should not be modified to fit a particular research approach; nor can you assume a particular qualitative approach regardless of your research problem. Having decided on a qualitative research approach, you will proceed to appropriately design your study within the framework of one of the traditions or genres of qualitative inquiry. Thus, the components of the design process (e.g., the theoretical framework, research purpose, and methods of data collection and data analysis) reflect the principles and features that characterize that tradition. More information can be found on pages 55–56.

Part 3: Preparing and Writing the Proposal 

20. What exactly is the dissertation proposal, and what is its function and purpose?

The proposal is an integral and very distinct segment of the dissertation process. It is a well-thought-out written action plan that identifies a narrowly defined problem; a purpose that describes how the problem will be addressed; research questions that are tied to the purpose and, when answered, will shed light on the problem; a review of the literature and relevant research to determine what is already known about the topic; and data collection and data analysis methods. More information regarding the content and process of the dissertation proposal can be found on pages 61–62.

21. How do I go about developing my proposal, and what are the key components of a qualitative dissertation proposal?

As mentioned at the outset of this book, and as you will be reminded throughout, while most institutions approach the proposal and dissertation in common ways, at the same time there are differences in terms of the organization and presentation, and distinct differences in terms of what and how qualitative language and terminology are used. This book presents information as guidelines that are meant to be flexible per institutional expectations and requirements, and subject to modification depending on your institution, department, and program. You will no doubt have to attend carefully to the variations that reflect the expectations and requirements of your particular institution. More information pertaining to the core elements of a qualitative proposal (introduction, literature review, and methodology) can be found on pages 63–65.

22. What are some additional elements that I should be aware of when preparing my proposal?

In addition to the three key parts of the proposal (introduction, literature review, methodology), there are some other elements that you will need to address, and information regarding these elements can be found on pages 65–66.

23. What is an elevator speech?

You may have heard the term "elevator speech." This refers to your ability to clearly and concisely answer the question "what is your study about?" A few points about an elevator speech and its relationship vis-a-vis your proposal are presented on page 66.

24. The idea of a “literature review” really scares me! There seems to be so much that is required! How do I even begin to think about it? 

Literature review is a distinct form of academic writing, a skill that doctoral candidates must master to demonstrate knowledge of the literature landscape that surrounds any given dissertation research problem. Right from the beginning, the literature review is an essential, integral, and ongoing part of the research process. Producing good reviews is a test of your ability to manage the relevant texts and materials, analytically interpret ideas, and integrate and synthesize ideas and data with existing knowledge. Guidelines and suggestions regarding undertaking, managing, and operationalizing literature reviews are provided on pages 105–108.

25. What are some of the most important guidelines regarding academic writing?

A dissertation demonstrates your ability to write a coherent volume of intellectually demanding work. It involves the combination of performing research and writing about your research to describe and explain it. As a researcher/writer, knowing how to best express your ideas in written form to convey them to the reader becomes an essential skill. The dissertation requires a high level of scholarly writing, and as such you will have to get into the mode of writing for a particular audience, that is, the academic community. Further information regarding academic writing requirements is presented on pages 66–68.

26. What are the general format and style requirements for a qualitative dissertation?

A research report must consistently follow a selected system for format and style. Format refers to the general pattern of organization and arrangement of the report. Style refers to appropriate writing conventions and includes rules of grammar, spelling, capitalization, and punctuation to be followed in preparing the report. Most colleges and universities require the use of a specific style—either their own or that in a published style manual. You will need to make inquiries regarding your particular department’s recommended style preference. Regardless of which style manual you use, you are expected to adhere to its rules meticulously. Further information regarding format and style is presented on pages 68–70.

27. What are some of the most important aspects of academic integrity, and what constitutes plagiarism?

The strength of your writing rests on your ability to refer to and incorporate the work of others. It is imperative, however, that you attribute recognition to all and any sources of information that you use. Integrity matters! There are few intellectual offenses more serious than plagiarism in academic and professional contexts. A charge of plagiarism can have severe consequences, including expulsion from a university or loss of a job, not to mention a writer’s loss of credibility and professional standing. Further information regarding academic integrity and strategies for avoiding plagiarism is presented on pages 71–73.

28. What is Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval, and why is it necessary?

Any research designed to research human subjects, interact with human subjects, provide interventions for human subjects, obtain identifiable information about living subjects, or observe and record private behavior of human subjects, must come under the jurisdiction of the governing board of Institutional Research. Institutional Review Boards (IRBs) have emerged in accredited academic institutions of higher education as bureaucratic entities responsible for the regulation, governance, and enforcement of significant research ethics. While there are some variations across disciplines and national boundaries, IRB approval is a stamp of credibility backed by a legitimate academic institution. This credibility is valuable both for the researcher and for the research participants. Further information regarding application for IRB approval is discussed on pages 74–75.

29. What are the differences between “methodology” and “research methods”?

Methodology determines how the researcher thinks about a study, how decisions about the study are made, and how researchers position themselves to engage firstly with participants and then with the data that are generated. The term methods commonly denote specific techniques, procedures, or tools used by the researcher to generate and analyze data. The methods that a qualitative researcher chooses are informed by both the research design and the research methodology so that there is a conceptual fit across all levels. More about methodology and methods, and the interrelationship between them, can be found on page 157 .

30. What is meant by “methodological congruence”?

As the researcher, you actively create the link among problem, purpose, and approach through a process of reflecting on problem and purpose, focusing on researchable questions and considering how to best address these questions. Thinking along these lines affords a research study “methodological congruence.” In essence, the position of the researcher is the bridge between philosophy, methodology, and the application of methods. Thus, the alignment between the research question, chosen methodology and personal philosophy, and the ability of the researcher to be reflexive in relation to the research is critical to ensure congruence in the study that will be manifested in the products of the research. More information regarding the notion of methodological congruence can be found on pages 153–154.

31. What are the most commonly used methods of data collection in qualitative research?

Based on the research questions, specific data collection methods are chosen to gather the required information in the most appropriate and meaningful way. A solid rationale for the choice of methods used is crucial, as this indicates methodological congruence, and illustrates that the choice of methods is grounded in the study’s overall research design. Details pertaining to some of the most commonly used methods of data collection (e.g., interviews, focus groups, observation, critical incidents, surveys, and document review) can be found on pages 154–157.

32. What is meant by “triangulation” of methods, and how important is this?

Triangulation enhances the quality of data from multiple sources (e.g., people, events) in multiple ways (e.g., interviews, observations, document review) with the idea that this will illuminate different facets of situations and experiences, and help portray them in their entirety and complexity. More about triangulation strategies and the significance thereof in qualitative research can be found on page 154.

33. What are some of the most important considerations when writing up the methods section?

To show that you have done a critical reading of the literature, and to acknowledge that data collection methods are not without some advantages, your discussion should be sufficiently detailed. More information pertaining to these necessary details is presented on page 158.

34. The idea of “researcher as instrument” is often portrayed as problematic. How do I best understand this phenomenon, and how can I go about defending this perspective to those who see qualitative research as limited and subjective?

“Researcher as instrument” raises important ethical, accountability, and social justice issues, including inter-subjectivity, power, positioning, and voice. Importantly, the reflexive researcher understands that all research is value-bound and that a reflective stance is therefore imperative; that is, reflexivity implies the explicit self-consciousness on the part of the researcher, including social, political, and value positions. Reflexivity is defined as the researcher’s conscious awareness of her or his cognitive and emotional filters comprising their experiences, world-views, and biases that may influence their interpretation of participants’ perceptions. More information on this key qualitative research issue can be found on pages 54–55; 242–243.

35. What is qualitative data analysis really all about?  

Qualitative data analysis is the process of bringing order, structure, and meaning to the masses of data you have collected. Although there are stages dedicated to formal analysis, analysis is an inherent and ongoing part of the research and writing process. Many students become overwhelmed at this point of the dissertation process, having completed or still being immersed in data collection and faced with mounds and mounds of “stuff” and unsure about what needs to be done first. Indeed, there can be a really vast amount of data that need to be transcribed, organized, and reduced. More on qualitative data analysis can be found on pages 187–189.

36. What advice is there for student researchers to best prepare themselves for the huge task of data analysis?

The data generated by qualitative methods are voluminous, and the sheer quantity of raw data can indeed be quite daunting. The best piece of advice I can offer is that if data are to be thoroughly analyzed, they must be well organized . Attention to detail in managing data is important at every stage of the research process. This notion becomes all too clear when it is time to write up the research. Strategies regarding data management in preparation for data analysis are presented on pages 189–190.

37. What does it mean to develop an “analytic mindset”?

Qualitative research does not purport to be objective nor is this a goal of qualitative research. However, to be rigorous, qualitative research does strive to be transparent, and to openly and clearly document and communicate all decisions taken throughout the research process. This must become an integral part of your thinking and mindset. More about ways of maintaining transparency, and hence ensuring the rigor of your study, is discussed on pages 158–159; 188–189.

38. There are many different ways to go about doing qualitative data analysis. How do I decide on the best approach for my specific study?

Different qualitative research traditions or genres promote specific strategies for data analysis. Whatever approach you choose to use should be suited to the research tradition that you have adopted. In addition, the preference of your advisor and your department will of course need to be taken into consideration. Different analytic strategies are discussed on pages 190–193.

39. What are “codes,” and what are their role and function in the qualitative data analysis process?

Much is made about coding as a fundamental skill for qualitative analysis. Although there is really nothing that mysterious about it, the literature on data analysis and coding in particular is voluminous, and the vast amount of information can certainly be overwhelming. Details pertaining to codes and the overall coding process are provided on pages 197–199.

40. What is the procedure for coding data?

The reason you have spent so much time and energy talking to participants is to find out what their experience is and to endeavor to understand it from their perspective. You, as the researcher, will be exercising judgment as to what you think is significant in each interview transcript. Some passages may stand out because they are striking to you in some way. Others may stand out because they are contradictory and seem inconsistent with your conceptual framework. In this regard, you must be vigilant in not only seeking material that supports your own opinions but also remaining open to the unexpected. All of the aspects of coding your material are presented on pages 201–202.

41. What do you do once you have coded your data?

Once you have coded your material, you are ready to categorize your units of information. What is imperative is that your coding scheme and conceptual framework continue to remain flexible. All aspects of the process of assigning your codes to categories are presented on pages 202–204.

42. What is content analysis, and how does it differ from coding?

In traditional content analysis studies, counting the number of times a particular set of codes occurs is an important measure in assessing the frequency of items or phenomena. However, in the qualitative analysis process, frequency of occurrence is not necessarily an indicator of significance. The analytic approaches for most coding methods do not ask you to count; they ask you to ponder, speculate, assess, integrate, and synthesize. Qualitative analysis therefore goes way beyond simply counting . See pages 199–200 for further discussion on this distinction.

43. There is a lot of talk around computer software analysis programs? What types are available, and are these preferable than conducting a manual “old fashioned” analysis of my data?

If you choose to make use of computer aided software, then searching for the most appropriate program is important so that it directly supports and is usable in terms of your study’s research design and methodology. Information regarding the most common software currently in use, including benefits and limitations, is provided on pages 205–207.

44. How does “data analysis” differ from “interpretation of findings”?

By way of data analysis , you are forming a record of frequently occurring phenomena or patterns of behavior. Once you have established patterns, these patterns need to be explained.  This is where interpretation of findings comes into play. Whereas the chapter of data analysis presents the findings of your research by organizing data from various sources into categories to produce a readable narrative, the purpose of the chapter dealing with interpretation of findings is to provide interpretative insights into your study’s findings. You now have an opportunity to communicate to others what you think your findings mean and integrate your findings with literature, research, and practice. More about this is discussed on pages 233–236.

45. What essentially is “interpretation” in qualitative research? How do I go about interpreting what I have found?

Qualitative research begins with questions, and its ultimate purpose is learning. To inform the questions, the researcher collects data . Data are like building blocks that, when grouped into patterns, become information , which in turn, when applied or used, becomes knowledge . The challenge of qualitative analysis lies in making sense of large amounts of data—reducing raw data, identifying what is significant, and constructing a framework for communicating the meaning of your findings. This is discussed on pages 240–243.

46.  How and in what ways does analysis of findings differ among the various qualitative research traditions?

Analytical approaches are linked to particular forms of data collection and are underpinned by specific conceptual and philosophical traditions. These differences are discussed on page 238.

47. How and in what ways does interpretation of findings differ among the various qualitative research traditions?

Just as there are clear analytic distinctions among traditions or genres demanding that the researcher will have to think about data analysis in a particular way, so are interpretation and representation strategies specific to each tradition. These differences are discussed on page 241.

48. How do I prepare myself for analysis and interpretation?

You might ask yourself what the chapter on interpretation of findings is really all about and what it should constitute. Since findings are not to be taken at face value, how does one go about seeking the deeper meanings behind the findings? What is really involved? And how does one get started? How to begin thinking about your analysis and interpretation is presented on page 236.

 49. How do I begin to go about analyzing and interpreting my findings? 

You are most likely asking yourself what the chapter on analysis of findings is really all about and what it should constitute. How does one get started, and what is really involved? You may want to structure your thinking according to three interrelated activities: (a) Seeking significant patterns and themes among the findings, (b) making use of description and interpretation, and (c) providing some sort of synthesis or integration. More about these activities and how to go about “peeling back” the many layers in order to explain the meaning behind your findings is provided on pages 236–244.

50. What are the limitations of my credibility in the analytic and interpretive process? After all, I bring my own perspectives and experiences, and hence assumptions, subjectivity and biases!

Whereas in quantitative research the role of the researcher is detached with the aim of being as objective as possible, in qualitative research, the researcher is personally involved, believing that research is always value-bound. Factors that enhance the credibility of a qualitative study are discussed on page 244.

51. A lot is made about the notion of “synthesis.” What are the implications of synthesizing findings in qualitative research?

Qualitative research involves moving from a holistic perspective to individual parts (analysis) and then back to a holistic look at the data (synthesis). Whereas the findings chapter splits apart and separates out pieces and chunks of data to tell the “story of the research,” the analysis chapter is an attempt to reconstruct a holistic understanding of your study. Analysis is intended to ultimately depict an integrated picture. More details are presented on pages 243–244.

Part 7: Writing Up and Presenting the Research 

You will notice that the questions in Part 7 below are organized around particular standard dissertation chapters. Please be aware that different institutions have different expectations and requirements with regard to the structure and flow of dissertation chapters. Students will need to consult with their advisors in this regard. 

7.1 Introduction to the Study 

52. What is the overall purpose of Chapter One (the study’s Introduction), and what are the key components of this chapter?

The first chapter of your dissertation is the most critical, and everything that follows hinges on how well this chapter is constructed. The introductory chapter therefore sets the stage for the study; it also makes a case for the significance of the problem, contextualizes the study, and provides an introduction to its basic components—most specifically, directing the reader to the research problem, research purpose, and research questions. This first chapter of the dissertation also forms part of the proposal. The various elements that comprise this chapter are discussed on pages 9–10; 85.

53. How do I move from identifying a research topic to developing and articulating a viable research problem?

The sooner you can begin to narrow your research interests (topic) and identify and develop a topical focus (research problem), the better.  Beginning researchers often confuse a topic with a research problem. A topic refers to a general area of interest. A research problem is more specific; it seeks to understand some aspect of the general topic. More on how to begin narrowing down a research topic and developing a clear research problem is discussed on pages 86–88.

54. What is the research problem, and how does this inform the development of research purpose and research questions?

At the heart of a dissertation is the articulation of the research problem. This is the place where most committee members go first to understand and assess the merits of a proposal or a dissertation. More on the research problem and how it informs the research questions is discussed on pages 88–91.

55. How do I go about developing and honing my research problem statement?

The problem statement serves a foundational role in that it communicates what is the formal reason for engaging in the dissertation in the first place. The problem statement is the discrepancy between what we already know and what we want to know. The problem statement also illustrates why we care; that is, why your study should be conducted. More details about what constitute a viable problem statement, and how to go about assessing viability, is discussed on pages 87–89.

56. What is the purpose statement, and how do I articulate this?

Once you have identified your own narrowly defined topic and concise problem statement, you are ready to formulate your purpose statement. The purpose statement is the major objective or intent of the study ; it enables the reader to understand the central thrust of the research.  More about the purpose statement and how to go about developing this is discussed on pages 88–90.

57. How do I develop and articulate effective and relevant research questions?

The research questions are directly tied to the research purpose. Answering the questions must accomplish the study’s purpose and contribute to shedding light on and addressing the problem. One must be able to trace all the ideas in the research questions back through the purpose statement to the problem statement; this underscores that you must ask relevant and effective questions. Details regarding how to craft research questions are included in pages 90–92.

58. What are some other additional elements that need to be included in the introductory chapter?

The first chapter of your dissertation (and of your proposal) introduces and describes the critical components that set in place a research study: problem, purpose, and research questions. In addition, there are some other associated elements or subsections. It should be noted that there may be some variations in required subheadings depending on individual programs and/or universities, and you should be sure to check for this. An outline of typical subheadings that compose Chapter One is presented on pages 92–94.

7.2 The Literature Review Chapter

59. What is the function and purpose of the literature review chapter in the qualitative dissertation?

The literature review is a sophisticated form of research in its own right that requires a great deal of research skill and insight. You are expected to identify appropriate topics or issues, justify why these are the appropriate choice for addressing the research problem, search for and retrieve the appropriate literature, analyze and critique the literature, create new understandings of the topic through synthesis, and develop a conceptual framework that will provide the underlying structure for your study. More on the function and purpose of the literature review chapter is presented on pages 104–105.

60. What is the scope of the literature review chapter in the dissertation? In other words, how extensive is the review meant to be?

The major purpose of reviewing the literature is to determine what has already been done that relates to your topic. This knowledge not only prevents you from unintentionally duplicating research that has already been conducted, but it also affords you the understanding and insight needed to situate your topic within an existing framework. Therefore, a thorough search and reading of related literature is, in a very real sense, part of your own academic development—part of becoming an “expert” in your chosen field of inquiry. Given all of this, you might be asking, “What is the scope of a literature review, and how extensive will this review need to be?” These questions are responded to on pages 105–108.

61. How do I start preparing for the literature review?  

Thinking about the entire literature review may be overwhelming and intimidating. Instead of viewing it as one big whole, try to think of it as a series of steps—and steps within those steps—and prepare to tackle each topic one by one, setting small achievable goals within each topic area. The different stages of the literature review process, and all the key elements involved in digesting scholarly sources, are discussed on pages 108–118.

62. What is the idea of “synthesis” vis-à-vis the literature review? And how is synthesis different from summary?

Synthesis and summary are strategies that are used in reading, review, and research. Both are important skills or techniques in making sense of what one is reading, and each one plays an important role in the qualitative research process. However, they are very different activities. Each has a different purpose, process, and outcome. This is discussed on pages 121–122.

63. What should I know about and be aware of with regard web/online resources?

Although not always scholarly, the Internet will more than likely be your initial starting point for topic ideas and information. However, anyone anywhere can put information on the web, so any information from the Internet should be cited with caution. Remember that using the Internet to find academic information takes a lot of hard work to carefully evaluate and determine if a web resource is a reliable, authoritative, or even a scholarly information resource. Criteria for evaluating the credibility, accuracy, currency, and legitimacy of web resources are discussed on pages 113–114.

64. How do I present my literature review in the dissertation?

Qualitative researchers use existing literature to guide their studies in various ways depending on the type of study being conducted. There are also differences regarding the purpose and process for presenting the review of the literature with respect to each of the research traditions. Guidelines for presenting a literature review are discussed on pages 122–124.

65. So much is made of the conceptual framework. What is it, and how can I start thinking about this?

Graduate students often lack a clear understanding of the nature of the conceptual framework; what it is, its purpose, where it is derived from, how it is developed, how it is used, and what effect it has on research. Thus, they find themselves at a loss in the process of developing a conceptual framework. Moreover, oftentimes experienced researchers and advisors encounter challenges in guiding candidates as to what constitutes a rigorous and meaningful conceptual framework. As such, the structure and function of a conceptual framework continues to mystify and frustrate. More information on this is presented on pages 124–127.

66. What are the role, function, and application of the conceptual framework in the dissertation?

The conceptual framework plays a central role throughout the entire research process, and, most important, in the final analysis. A well-conceived conceptual framework is influenced by and at the same time influences the research process at all levels and at all stages. There are a set of distinct roles and functions of the conceptual framework in a qualitative dissertation, and these are discussed on pages 127–128.

67. What is the essential value of the dissertation’s conceptual framework? And are there any limitations associated with a conceptual framework?

The conceptual or theoretical framework strengthens your study in many ways, and there are also some caveats to be aware of. The value and limitations are explained on pages 128–130.

68. How do I go about developing and presenting my study’s conceptual framework? Does this have to be an elaborate diagram?

In acknowledging the conceptual framework as an integral element of the research process, as a qualitative researcher, you need to know how to develop and create a conceptual or theoretical framework and where to introduce this in the dissertation. The term is somewhat an abstract notion, conjuring up a “model” or “diagram” of some sort. Moreover, there is no uniform and consistent definition, and discussions in the literature around conceptual frameworks are not clear or precise. Strategies for developing the conceptual framework and ideas for presenting it in the dissertation are discussed on pages 130–132. 

7.3 The Methodology Chapter

69. What is the purpose of the Methodology chapter?

The Methodology chapter of the dissertation presents the research design and the specific procedures used in conducting your study. In this chapter, you will show the reader that you understand the methodological implications of the choices you have made and, in particular, that you have thought carefully about the linkages between your study’s purpose and research questions, and the research approach and research methods that you have selected. More details regarding the purpose of this chapter are presented on pages 143–145.

70. What are the key components of the Methodology chapter?

The dissertation’s methodology chapter covers a lot of ground. In this chapter, you will document each step that you have taken in designing and conducting the study. This chapter situates the study within a particular methodological tradition and provides a detailed description of all aspects of the design and procedures of the study. While your headings and subheadings in this chapter are contingent on your particular university’s requirements, make sure your sections are in a logical sequence and what you write is comprehensive, clear, precise, and sufficiently detailed. An overview of the elements that would constitute a comprehensive and sound methodology chapter is presented on pages 11–12; 146–147.

71. What is the research sample, and how is this different from the research population?

The research sample is a subset of the population. Identifying your research sample, and the method you used to select that sample, provides the reader with some sense of the scope of your study. In addition, your study’s credibility relies on the quality of procedures you have used to select the research participants. Further information regarding qualitative research samples is provided on page 147.

72. How do I go about selecting my research sample, and how large does it need to be?

In qualitative research, selection of the research sample is purposeful . The logic of purposeful sampling lies in selecting information-rich cases, with the objective of yielding insight and understanding of the phenomenon under investigation. This method is in contrast to the random sampling procedures that characterize quantitative research, which is based on statistical probability theory. Further information regarding purposeful sampling and sample size is discussed on pages 148–149.

73. What kinds of information am I going to need from the research site and research sample?

Four areas of information are typically needed for most qualitative studies: contextual, perceptual, demographic, and theoretical. Additional details regarding the types of information needed, and how to go about collecting that information, are discussed on pages 149–151.

74. What is “research design,” and what are the implications of the choice of research design for my study?

Engaging in research involves choosing a study design that corresponds with your study’s problem, purpose, research questions, choice of site, and research sample. This calls to the fore the concept of methodological congruence, whereby all the study’s components are interconnected and interrelated so that the study itself is a cohesive whole rather than the sum of fragmented or isolated parts. You will also need to consider whether the design is a comfortable match with your worldview and your skills. How to go about developing the research design of your study and the criteria to take into consideration in doing so are presented on pages 151–152.

75. What are the key ethical considerations in conducting qualitative research?

In any research study, ethical issues relating to the protection of the participants are of vital concern. As researchers, we are morally bound to conduct our research in a manner that minimizes potential harm to those involved in the study. For the most part, issues of ethics focus on establishing safeguards that will protect the rights of participants and include informed consent, on protecting participants from harm, and on ensuring confidentiality. As a qualitative researcher, you need to remain attentive throughout your study to the researcher–participant relationship, which is determined by roles, status, and cultural norms. Central issues with regard to ethics in qualitative research are discussed on pages 161–162.

76.  How do I best understand issues of “trustworthiness” or “legitimation” regarding qualitative research?

Qualitative research is based to a large degree on reflection and interpretation. The researcher as instrument brings her or his experience and perspective to the table. Qualitative research does not purport to be objective, nor is this a goal of qualitative research. However, to be rigorous, qualitative research does strive to be transparent and to openly, legitimately, and clearly document and communicate all decisions taken throughout the research process. Issues of trustworthiness in qualitative research (credibility, dependability, and confirmability) and how these compare with quantitative research criteria are discussed on pages 162–163.

77. How can I better understand conflicting reports about the generalizability of qualitative research?

Although generalizability is not the intended goal of qualitative research, what must be addressed is the issue of transferability ; that is, the ways in which your reader determines whether and to what extent some of the elements of your study can be used as a way to understand similar elements of another context. Exactly what transferability implies and how to account for transferability in your qualitative study are discussed on page 164.

78. What is meant by “limitations” and “delimitations” in a qualitative research study, and what is the difference between these two concepts?

Limitations of the study are the characteristics of design or methodology that expose the conditions that may weaken the study. Delimitations refer to the initial choices made about the broader, overall design of your study and are those characteristics that define and clarify the conceptual boundaries of your research . More about limitations and delimitations and how to account for these in your study is discussed on pages 164–166.

7.4. Analyzing Data and Reporting Findings 

79. What constitutes the dissertation’s findings analysis chapter?

In this chapter, you present the analysis of your raw data, which are your findings. You have now moved beyond data to information . The challenge of qualitative analysis lies in making sense of large amounts of data, identifying what is significant, and constructing a framework for communicating the essence of what the data reveal. This chapter lays the foundation for the analysis, conclusions, and recommendations that will appear in subsequent chapters. Factors to take into consideration when preparing and writing this chapter, as well as a suggested outline, are provided on pages 13; 187–189.

80. What is the procedure involved in qualitative data analysis, and what is the role of the conceptual framework?

Data analysis demands a heightened awareness of the data and an open mind to recurring and common threads, some of which may be subtle. The process can be repetitious, tedious, and time consuming. While there is a somewhat systematic and stepwise procedure to prepare and analyze the data, the interrelationship among these steps is not necessarily linear. The phases involved in data analysis and the integral function of your conceptual framework are presented on pages 193–197.

81. How are research findings to be presented in a qualitative dissertation?

As the researcher, your goal is to tell a story that should be vivid and interesting, while also accurate and credible. In your report, the events, the people, and their words and actions are made explicit so that readers can experience the situation in a similar way to the researcher, as well as experience the world of the research participants.

Qualitative analysis is a creative and ongoing process that requires thoughtful judgments about what is significant and meaningful in the data. General guidelines for presenting this chapter are presented on pages 207–208.

82. What does this mean to present findings by way of quotation categories, and how do I go about doing this?

In qualitative research, interviewing is usually the major source of the data needed for understanding the phenomenon under study. The findings of qualitative research are typically reported in a narrative manner. Reports of qualitative studies usually include extensive samples of quotations from participants, and these provide the detail and substantiate the story that you are telling. An overwhelming question facing any researcher embarking on the write-up of the research report is, “Where do I begin to tell my story?” The various steps involved in this process are discussed on pages 208–212.

83. What is meant by thematic presentation of findings?

While the standard form of presenting quotes in qualitative research is to weave the quotes into your narrative, this is not the only form. Quotes can also be presented within charts, tables, or figures, with the overall goal to convey the story-line of your research according to the most predominant themes. More about this way of presenting findings can be found on pages 212–213.

7.5 Analysis and Interpretation of Findings 

84. What is the role and function of the analysis and synthesis chapter?

The previous chapter of the dissertation involved the analysis of data to produce the study’s findings. Organizing, preparing, and presenting the findings of your research is a somewhat objective exercise; the researcher is, in this instance, a reporter of information. This chapter involves the analysis, interpretation, and synthesis of those findings . Both chapters involve analytic decisions, and these two chapters together should convince a reader that you, the researcher, are sufficiently knowledgeable about the interlocking analytic processes that constitute qualitative research. Further details pertaining to this chapter’s place in the dissertation are provided in pages 13–14; 233–236.

85. What does it mean to seek patterns and themes?

Qualitative analysis is essentially about searching for patterns and themes; that is, the trends that you see emerging from among your findings. Now again, when you are analyzing your findings, you look for themes once again—this time not in raw data but in the findings that have emerged. Bear in mind that analytical approaches are linked to particular forms of data collection and are underpinned by specific conceptual and philosophical traditions. Each tradition provides a perspective on reality that is specific to that tradition. More on this is discussed on pages 238–240.

86. Once I have established patterns and themes, how do I go on to describe and interpret my study’s findings?

A qualitative dissertation should not only provide sufficient description to allow the reader to understand the basis for an interpretation but also provide meaningful interpretation to allow the reader to appreciate the description. An interpretive reading of your data involves constructing a version of what you think the findings mean or represent or what you think you can infer from the findings . Interpretation, in effect, moves the whole analytic process to a higher level. Guidelines for interpreting your material are presented on pages 240–243.

7.6 Conclusions and Recommendations Chapter

87. Formulating the study’s conclusions and recommendations constitute the final chapter of the dissertation. What should I be aware of regarding this chapter?

The final chapter of the dissertation presents a set of concluding statements and recommendations. By way of the conclusions, the story of your research is wrapped up , bringing it to its logical finale. Recommendations are the application of those conclusions. Writing conclusions and providing recommendations will draw on your ability to be a critical and, at the same time, creative thinker. Characteristics of worthy conclusions and recommendations are presented on pages 15; 269–270.

 88. How do I begin thinking about developing trustworthy conclusions?

When you were developing the study’s key findings, you engaged in critical thinking and reflection about all the potential deeper meanings behind these findings. As such, you were able to brainstorm a number of possible interpretations that explained your findings. In generating conclusions, you now need to go back to your findings and interpretations. A process to stimulate thinking about developing conclusions and making sure that your findings, interpretations, and conclusions are all aligned is presented on pages 270–271.

89. How do I write up my study’s conclusions?

As a general rule of thumb, you should provide at least one conclusion for each finding. However, the process is not altogether linear, and so it is possible that one conclusion can (but does not always) cut across more than one finding. It is important to bear in mind when thinking about and formulating each of your conclusions that they must be logically tied to one another . More about writing conclusions, as well as a tool for generating conclusions, is presented on pages 271–272.

90. How can I go about I developing actionable recommendations?

Recommendations follow your findings and conclusions. They are the application of those conclusions. A tool for generating the study’s recommendations is presented on pages 272–273.

91. How do I write up my recommendations?

You make recommendations based on your own experiences in conducting the research, as well as in any other professional capacity. Recommendations can have implications for policy and practice, as well as for further research. Further details pertaining to providing recommendations are presented on page 273.

92.     Will I have an opportunity to reflect on my research and findings?

Most certainly! As you near the end of your study, you may want to pause and reflect on the long qualitative journey you have undertaken. You may include this reflection in the last chapter, following your conclusions and recommendations. Suggestions about this piece of the dissertation are provided on pages 273–274.

93. Why is alignment such an important component to consider, and why should this be revisited as I near completion of the dissertation?  

You will have known throughout your research about the importance of alignment among the first three core critical elements: problem, purpose, and research questions. As you reach the final stages of writing your dissertation, it is crucial that you once again make certain that all the necessary elements that constitute your dissertation are aligned with one another. This will ensure that your study is tight and that you have taken an important step in ensuring methodological integrity ; this is extremely important for the defense when, among other things, the methodological integrity of your research is finely scrutinized. More about alignment is presented on pages 283–284.

 94. How do I craft my study’s title?

The title of your dissertation should catch the readers’ attention while at the same time properly informing them of the main focus of your study. Crafting an effective title is an iterative and ongoing exercise. A title has many uses. Most important, it should accurately reflect your work. More details about the title are provided on pages 284–285.

95. How do I prepare an Abstract?

Writing a good abstract requires that you explain what you did and what you found in simple, direct language. The abstract needs to be dense with information but also readable, well organized, concise and specific, focused, and coherent.  Abstracts can differ in terms of style and word count. It is suggested that you consult with your advisor, departmental regulations, and the relevant style manual regarding abstract requirements. More about the abstract is provided on pages 285–289.

96. What is the essential purpose of the dissertation defense?

The defense, in effect, moves your dissertation from the private domain into the arena of public discourse, providing you with some sense of closure. Actual procedures for conducting the meeting and the formalities involved are discussed on pages 302–303.

97. What is the process for selecting a defense committee?

Be aware that each university or college has a different system regarding dissertation committee structure and the process of preparing for that structure. Each institution has its own way of going about setting up the defense meeting, and it is recommended that you consult with your institution’s office of doctoral studies with regard to the correct procedures and protocol. Some general guidelines are provided on pages 300–301.

98. How can I best prepare myself for this milestone event, and what are some beneficial pre-defense strategies that I should know about?

Because this is the culminating aspect of a rigorous, traditional, and long-standing ritual, you are likely to approach the defense with some sense of anxiety. This is certainly understandable! Therefore, the more you can frame the defense as an opportunity to present your research publicly and the more you take a proactive position, the better the experience is likely to be. Guidelines toward this end are provided on pages 302–306.

99. Following the defense and all necessary revisions to my dissertation, what opportunities can I pursue regarding publishing my research?  

The dissertation process comes to a definitive end when the final document is submitted and the doctoral degree is awarded. At this juncture, you might consider looking beyond the dissertation and think of how you can share what you have researched with a broader audience than the academic community. Publishing your findings is a way to contribute to the ongoing knowledge base and work toward advancing your professional career. Details regarding publishing your research are provided on pages 308–309.

100. Following the defense and all necessary revisions to my dissertation, what opportunities can I pursue regarding presenting my research?

In addition to publications, completion of the dissertation provides you with  opportunities to present your study in other academic settings and research forums, such as graduate seminars and professional associations. Details regarding presenting your research are provided on page 310.

101. It is sometimes said that “the best dissertation is a DONE dissertation.”  However, how does one actually evaluate the quality of a qualitative dissertation?

I have no doubt that you will ask yourself whether there are key criteria or pointers that can help you determine the quality of your work as you navigate this long and intense journey. The short answer to this question is yes!  Once you have some idea of the core elements that are required for the various sections of your dissertation, an evaluation rubric is included for your convenience on pages 316–325 . Please be sure to use this rubric as a broad set of guidelines only in checking your work at different points along the way and in assessing or evaluating the quality of your work overall once completed. Hopefully this tool will be useful to you in determining where limitations may lie and where improvements can be made. 

Comment faire un plan de dissertation ?

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plan de dissertation

Trouver le plan de sa dissertation est l’une des étapes fondamentales de la méthode de la dissertation .

Tes professeurs évoquent souvent les différents types de plans – dialectique, thématique, analytique – et autres appellations barbares.

Mais que signifient réellement ces termes ? Et comment choisir le plan de dissertation qui se prête à ton sujet ?

Voici un tour d’horizon des plans de dissertation pour faire le bon choix.

Il existe trois types de plan de dissertation.

Il existe trois types de plan de dissertation, mais pour le bac de français, tu n’as besoin de ne maîtriser que les deux premiers : le plan dialectique et le plan thématique.

Chacun type de plan de dissertation correspond à un type de sujet . Tu ne peux donc pas choisir n’importe quel plan pour n’importe quel sujet.

C’est comme un jeu d’association : tu dois marier ton sujet avec le plan de dissertation qui lui correspond.

Il existe un test imparable : celui de la question ouverte ou fermée qui te permet de savoir si tu dois t’orienter vers un plan thématique ou dialectique.

Je t’explique tout :

Plan de dissertation n°1 : Le plan dialectique

Le plan dialectique se résume souvent par la formule : thèse / antithèse / synthèse.

Mais attention : le plan dialectique ne fonctionne pas pour tous les sujets de dissertation littéraire !

Le plan dialectique est pertinent lorsque le sujet de dissertation invite au débat, à la confrontation.

Ton sujet de dissertation doit donc poser une question fermée , c’est à dire une question à laquelle tu peux répondre par oui ou par non.

Astuce : Deux personnes pourraient-elles se crêper le chignon parce qu’elles n’ont pas le même avis sur la question posée par votre dissertation ? Si oui, votre sujet de dissertation se prête à une discussion et donc à un plan dialectique .

Sujets de dissertation se prêtant à un plan dialectique :

  • On emploie parfois l’expression « créer un personnage » au sujet d’un acteur qui endosse le rôle pour la première fois. Selon vous, peut-on dire que c’est l’acteur qui crée le personnage ? ( annales du bac de français 2009, série L)

→ On peut très bien imaginer deux camps distincts prêts à se crêper le chignon sur la question : ceux qui croient que l’acteur crée le personnage, ceux qui croient que l’acteur ne crée pas le personnage.

On peut donc recourir à un plan dialectique .

  • Au théâtre, la dénonciation passe-t-elle uniquement par la violence de la parole ?

→ Ce sujet se prête à une discussion , à un échange de deux points de vue opposés : d’une part, ceux qui pensent que la dénonciation au théâtre passe uniquement par la violence de la parole, d’autre part ceux qui pensent que ce n’est pas le cas.

Un plan dialectique va alors permettre d’examiner ces points de vue antagonistes.

Mais attention : le plan dialectique n’est pas si simple qu’il y paraît !

Tu dois apprendre à l’utiliser avec subtilité, comme je te le montre dans ma méthode détaillée du plan dialectique .

Plan de dissertation n°2 : Le plan thématique

Les sujets de dissertation ne correspondent pas toujours à des questions fermées, auxquelles on peut répondre par oui ou par non.

Le libellé du sujet appelle parfois à une réponse ouverte .

Par exemple, si je te demande « Quelles sont les fonctions de la poésie ? », il t’est impossible de répondre par oui ou par non.

La question est donc une question ouverte qui appelle un plan thématique (ou plan notionnel ).

Dans un plan thématique, les grandes parties de ton plan correspondent à des réponses possibles, à des arguments.

C’est donc le plan de dissertation le plus difficile car sa réussite repose entièrement sur tes connaissances et tes idées sur le sujet.

Tu peux trouver ici ma méthode détaillée du plan thématique .

Sujet de dissertation se prêtant à un plan thématique:

  • Comment l’évocation de situations difficiles peut-elle amener le lecteur à une réflexion sur l’homme ?

→ Il n’est pas possible de répondre par oui ou par non à cette question. Ce sujet n’invite donc pas à une discussion. Il s’agit d’une question ouverte appelant à un plan thématique.

L’enjeu va donc être d’explorer les différents moyens dont dispose la littérature pour faire réfléchir et argumenter.

  • En quoi la poésie permet-elle de porter un regard renouvelé sur le monde ?

→ La question est ouverte et n’invite pas à une prise de position, à une confrontation. Ce sujet de dissertation se prête donc à un plan thématique.

L’enjeu ici est d’ examiner la thèse de la question (« la poésie permet de porter un regard renouvelé sur le monde ») et d’ étayer cette thèse avec des arguments et des exemples.

Plan de dissertation n°3 : Le plan analytique (pour les autres matières que le français)

Le plan analytique n’est pas un plan qui sert en littérature. Tu n’en as donc pas besoin au bac de français .

Je l’évoque toutefois ici car le plan analytique est utile dans d’autres matières, comme l’ économie, l’histoire-géographie, la culture générale, le droit.

Le plan analytique vise à examiner un problème en profondeur. Il explore les différents aspects d’un sujet, décrit un problème, en suivant souvent la structure «  Problèmes – causes- conséquences ou solutions « .

Il ne s’agit donc plus de peser le pour ou le contre comme dans le plan dialectique ou d’explorer toutes les facettes d’une notions comme dans le plan thématique.

Exemple de sujet (non littéraire) amenant à un plan analytique :

  • La puissance des Etats-Unis

→ Un tel sujet t’invite à examiner les différents aspects de la puissance des Etas-Unis (puissance économique, culturelle, politique…)

Saurais-tu trouver le bon plan de dissertation littéraire ?

Teste-toi facilement avec mon quiz spécial plan de dissertation .

Pour aller plus loin :

♦ Analyser un sujet de dissertation (méthode en 5 étapes) ♦ L’introduction de la dissertation ♦ Comment faire une conclusion de dissertation ♦ Exemple de dissertation

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Amélie Vioux

Je suis professeur particulier spécialisée dans la préparation du bac de français (2nde et 1re).

Sur mon site, tu trouveras des analyses, cours et conseils simples, directs, et facilement applicables pour augmenter tes notes en 2-3 semaines.

Je crée des formations en ligne sur commentairecompose.fr depuis 12 ans.

Tu peux également retrouver mes conseils dans mon livre Réussis ton bac de français 2024 aux éditions Hachette.

J'ai également publié une version de ce livre pour les séries technologiques ici.

94 commentaires

Peut on avoir des consignes qui peuvent nous aider à cerner un plan dialectique du plan analytique ? Par exemple : commentez et discutez ; montrer ; justifier,…

Bonjour, Amélie,

Merci pour ces cours et quizz de qualité qui m’ont enfin permise de comprendre la différence entre plan analytique et thématique !

Bonne continuation,

Bonjour, en classe on nous parle du plan concessif. Est ce que c’est un 4èm plan ? Merci d’avance

Bonjour j’ai besoin d’aide s’il vous plaît , je ne sais pas quelle plan ( dialectique,thématique ou analitique) utiliser pour mon sujet ,j’ai fait plusieurs recherches mais je ne trouve toujours pas.Voila la consigne : Michel Tournier a dit, à propos du personnage de Robinson Crusoé, lors d’un entretien radiophonique : « C’est ça qui est incroyable, dans le personnage de Robinson, c’est qu’il parle à tous les hommes, quel que soit le point de vue sous lequel on l’observe : il y a le technicien et l’administrateur, il y a le colonisateur puis le poète, l’homme de l’île déserte, le philosophe de la solitude et il y a le lecteur de la Bible. » Après avoir commenté cette citation de Michel Tournier, vous direz si selon vous Michel Tournier a réussi à parler à tous les hommes à travers son personnage de Robinson.

Le plan analytique

Bonjour qu’est ce que le « dépassement de la question » dans le plan analytique ?

Bonjour ! J’ai une question sur la méthode de la dissertation. Est-ce que dans chaque sous-partie, il ne doit y avoir qu’un seul exemple ou on peut en faire figurer par exemple 2 qui sont tous les 2 en rapport avec l’idée de la sous-partie ? Merci d’avance ! Et bravo pour votre site, il est extrement utile pour le bac de français.

Bonjour, j’ai une dissertation avec la problématique suivante : Dans qu’elle mesure le statut de l’écrivain lui permet-il de jouer un rôle spécifique dans la défense d’une cause. Cependant le terme « dans qu’elle mesure » me pose des problèmes sur le choix de mon plan. Pourriez-vous m’aider. Cordialement

Coucou Victoria, j’ai moi aussi une dissertation avec cette problématique: « Pensez-vous que le statut de l’écrivain lui permet de dire le monde ». Mais moi, je ne comprends pas ce qu’est le statut de l’écrivain (romancier, poète, dramaturge ou influence sur le peuple ?)

Bonjour Lisa, Il faut t’aider d’un dictionnaire pour définir les mots que tu ne comprends pas. C’est un impératif pour réussir une dissertation. Le statut d’une personne, c’est la position d’une personne dans la société. Ensuite, « l’écrivain » est la personne qui écrit des ouvrages littéraires. Il n ‘y a aucune raison de vouloir distinguer le type d’œuvres (poésie, théâtre, roman). Pars de la définition que tu trouves dans le dictionnaire.

Bonjour, j’ai une petite question : peut-on faire référence à des oeuvres artistiques dans une dissertation si elles ont un lien avec le sujet ou doit-on prendre seulement comme exemple des oeuvres littéraires ? Merci d’avance !

Bonjour Camille, Tu peux faire référence à des œuvres artistiques uniquement si elles sont en lien avec le sujet . Ce ne sera pas le cas lorsque le sujet vous impose de vous référer à un genre précis (par exemple la poésie, le roman ou le théâtre).

Sujet: pourquoi refuse-t-on là conscience à l’animal?

Svp ce sujet nous conduit à quel genre de plan?

Bonjour, j’aurais besoin de votre aide, en effet je suis en première et je fais une prépa tremplin pour pouvoir me préparer au concours science po. J’ai une dissertation à rédiger et le sujet est: « Le monde de l’hyper communication est un monde séduisant mais dangereux, dans lequel la communication entre les Hommes est réduite à presque rien. » C’est une citation de François Bayrou. J’ai choisis comme problématique: » Dans quelle mesure l’hypercommunication est-elle paradoxale? ». Ma problématique semble-t-elle intéressante? Quel plan dois-je suivre? Merci d’avance!

slt, je prépare un concours d’intégration pour les grandes écoles de France. Et parmi les épreuves à affronter il y a bien évidemment et comme toujours la dissertation. Ainsi je sollicite votre aide pour un meilleur apprentissage des techniques de dissertation. je vous remercie d’avance

Bonsoir Amelie, je doit réaliser une dissertation sur le sujet : « dites en quoi certaines productions artistiques ont pus changer votre vie ? » je n’y arrive pas trop car c’est la première que je fais pourriez vous m’aidez à trouver le thermes du sujet et le plans ? Merci d’avance

Je ne peux pas faire d’aide aux devoirs dans les commentaires de mon site. Mes articles sont là pour vous aider et vous montrer comment faire, mais si tu as besoin d’un accompagnement de A à Z sur un sujet, il faut te tourner vers un professeur particulier.

Bonsoir Amélie, j’ai fait une dissertation sur le sujet : “En quoi la littérature peut nous aider à mieux connaitre l’homme ?“. J’ai donc choisit un plan thématique mais d’autres élèves ont choisit un plan dialectique. Les deux étaient donc possible ?

Un plan thématique est plus approprié pour cette question.

Bonjour pouvez vous me rééxpliquer le plan analytique? Je ne l’ai pas compris.

Bonsoir Amélie comment connait-on qu’un sujet qui m’est donné demande un plan analitique ou c’est un autre

olalala trop utile cest trop super génial grace a vous jai eu 19,5 au bac de français merci beaucoup je recommande ce site pour toutes personnes en difficulté

Je suis désolée de poser autant de question ! Je passe le bac de français cette année et c’est la 1ere fois que je fais une dissertation; L’an dernier nous n’en avons fait aucune.

Mais est ce qu’on ne pourrait pas écrire en grand un : les écrivains qui réfléchissent à la question de l’Homme se réfèrent souvent à une nature originelle ? Et en grand deux : les écrivains qui réfléchissent à la question de l’Homme se réfèrent également à une nature inaccessible ?

Bonsoir Amélie, Vous m’avez dit qu’il faut que, pour ma dissertation j’utilise un plan thématique, pourrais-je savoir la raison ? Car si un jour je retombe sur un sujet comme celui là, je saurais ce qu’il faudra faire, je connaîtrais la méthode 🙂

Je n’ai fait qu’appliquer la méthode que j’explique dans cet article. Ta question est une question ouverte (on ne peut pas y répondre par oui ou non) et aucun plan n’est suggéré dans la formulation. Chaque partie de ta dissertation correspond donc à un argument que tu dois trouver seul : tu suis donc un plan thématique.

D’accord merci !

S’il vous plaît j’ai VRAIMENT besoin d’aide !!

Bonjour Amélie ! Vos vidéos m’aident beaucoup dans mes révisions depuis que j’ai découvert le site ! Heureusement que vous avez crée ce blog

J’aurai également besoin d’aide svp !!! J’ai une dissertation a faire et j’y ai passé beaucoup de temps dessus, seulement je ne sais pas si le plan que j’ai est correcte. Voici le sujet : « Montrez que les écrivains qui réfléchissent à la question de l’Homme se réfèrent souvent à une nature originelle et inaccessible. Vous pouvez vous reporter à Montaigne mais aussi à d’autres auteurs, poètes, philosophes, romancier, … » Au départ, je pensais qu’il fallait utiliser un plan thématique, après, comme le sujet commence par « Montrez que » je pense qu’il faut plutôt utiliser un plan analytique sauf que je n’en suis pas süre. Pouvez vous me dire si je suis sur la bonne voie en voulant utiliser un plan analytique svp ?

Ta question invite à un plan thématique : organise ta dissertation autour de 2 à 3 arguments permettant de démontrer la pertinence de la thèse qu’on te demande de défendre. Bon courage !

Bonjour j’ai besoin d’aide c’est urgent s’il vous plaît ! J’ai une dissertation à faire pour demain mais je n’arrive pas à trouver le plan qui correspond au sujet… Je suppose que c’est un plan thématique ? Voilà mon sujet: « Pour interpréter la société, pour éveiller la conscience humaine, que gagne l’écrivain à s’exprimer dans une forme poétique ? » Ce sujet est accompagné de trois textes différents. Je suis en 1ere S. En vous remerciant.

Ton sujet invite bien à un plan thématique. Mais tu t’y prends tard si tu dois le rendre demain. Analyse le sujet, revois l’objet d’étude poésie, réfléchis à ce que peut apporter le choix d’écrire dans une forme poétique (par rapport à d’autres formes d’écriture).

Merci beaucoup

bonsoirs pourrais tu mettre la méthode de la question sur corpus merci

Bonjour Amélie! J’ai une petite question pour toi. Une formule qui nous interroge directement (du type « Pensez-vous » « Selon vous » « Attendez-vous »), implique-t-elle de répondre avec un plan analytique? Merci d’avance.

Bonjour ! mon professeur nous a donné un sujet de dissertation sur le film Into the wild pour lequel je n’arrive pas à choisir de plan … le voici : « admettre que la vie humaine peut-être gouvernée par la raison, c’est détruire toute possibilté de vie ». En quoi selon vous, cette citation, tirée du roman Guerre et paix de Léon Tolstoï, et figurant dans la première partie du film, peut-elle se rapporter au parcours de Christopher MacCandless ? pourriez-vous m’aider ?

Bonjour, je viens de lire tout l’article mais la clairement je sèche: la question : Pensez-vous que la poésie permette le dépassement d’une épreuve ? On a en texte Victor Hugo les contemplations IV, Dany Laferrière paris 1983, et Louis Aragon Elsa « un homme pense sous sa fenêtre et chante ». Pouvez vous m’éclaire afin de trouver un plan merci

Bonjour Amélie Je viens de tomber sur votre site qui est très sympathique !

Alors je ne suis pas étudiante je prépare le concours d’aide soignante, je dois faire un exposé sur une image qui représente le ventre d’une femme entouré de ses mains et où il est écrit  » Mon corps , Mon droit  » cela m’a tout de suite fait penser à lavortement mais quel plan choisir ? Merci de votre aide

Bonjour j’ai une dissertation à fair mais j’ai peur de me tromper dans le plan. A l’ère de l’Internet et de la communication virtuelle dans un monde envahi d’image diffusée sur des écrans multiples quel plaisir peut il y avoir encore à lire ? C’est un plan analytique ?

Il faut t’orienter vers un plan thématique . Bon courage !

salut mme amélie je voulais te demander si tu pouvais m’aider à trouver une problematique pour une dissertation à faire sur Bel Ami mais le sujet est les Femmes de Georges Duroy

Bonjour Amélie! Je voulais tout d’abord que j’adore ton site, il est clair beau et tes exemples sont parlant et illustrés. Après avoir lu ton articles sur les plans, je voudrais savoir si j’ai bien tout compris. Si ma question est  » En quoi les œuvres littéraires permettent-elles de construire une réflexion sur la condition de l’homme » c’est un plan analytique( on peut par répondre par oui ou par non) mais je n’arrive pas à trouver un plan… Ce serait: I- Les oeuvres littéraires construisent une réflexion II- Les oeuvres littéraires contruisent la condition humaine? Désolé de t’embêter mais c’est ma toute première dissertation et le prof nous a pas fait de méthode…

Bonjour Anna, Ta questions suggère plutôt un plan thématique (plan n°3) : il s’agit d’une question ouverte mais le plan n’est pas suggéré dans la question (il n’est pas judicieux de séparer le terme « réflexion » de celui de « condition humaine »). C’est à toi de trouver des réponses à cette question puis de les organiser de la plus simple à la plus complexe (pour faire deux ou trois parties).

Bonjour , je ne sais pas si ce site est toujours occupé , je suis en 1èreL et on m’a donné comme question « dans quelle mesure l’écrivain ou l’artiste qui critique son époque et la société de son temps peut-il faire réfléchir le lecteur sur la question de l’homme en général? » j’en déduis que la question appelle à un plan analytique mais je n’ai aucune idée de la façon dont je dois présenter mon plan, aucune idée de parties..

Je dois participer à une épreuve écrite de réflexion à partir d’un document pour une entrée en formation..Cela signifie-t-il que je dois faire mon plan uniquement à travers ce document ou aussi à partir de mes connaissances personnelles ? Aussi est-ce obligatoire de faire 3 parties ?

Bonjour, j’aimerai savoir si le dépassement est obligatoire dans une dissertation de type dialectique puisque mon professeur nous a expliqué que si la conclusion comprenait un début de dépassement cela suffisait. Merci de votre réponse

Bonjour, mon sujet de dissertation est : Comment le théâtre représente t il la complexité des relations amoureuses? C’est donc un plan analytique, ainsi j’ai répondu de la manière suivante:

I- Le théâtre rend l’intériorité des personnages visibles A) Les règles du théâtre classiques du 17ème B) Les paroles des personnages C) Les didascalies

II- Le théâtre représente les sentiments amoureux pour rendre l’homme meilleur A) miroir du monde B) identification C) corriger l’homme

Pouvez-vous me dire ce qu’il y a à refaire, je voulais mettre dans le grand I- le « comment? » et dans le grand II- le « pourquoi? » mais du coup cela sépare les outils des thèmes..Comment pourrais-je l’arranger?

Slu je voudrais quel est le theme et la problematique de CE sujet:Demain le travail a la carte ?

Bonsoir Amélie

Tout d’abord merci beaucoup pour votre site, vos leçons ! J’aimerais savoir si la problématique « Qu’apportent, selon vous, au texte théâtral, le jeu des personnages et les choix de mise en scène ?  » amène bien à un plan thématique car il faudrait énoncer les apports de la représentation théâtrale par rapport au texte théâtral, ou si le « selon vous » amène à la discussion, au quel cas il faut utiliser un plan dialectique ? Je ne sais pas si je suis très claire… En tout cas encore une fois merci, bonne soirée !

Je suis membre depuis quelques heures seulement et j’ai beaucoup aimé votre blogue ! 🙂 Néanmoins j’ai un soucis dans les dissertations au sujet de la troisième partie : le dépassement de la question. Je ne sais pas en faire, si vous pouviez y remédier cela serait formidable !

Coucou . 🙂 Il me semble que tu as confondu le mot « dialectique » et analytique en parlant du plan Analytique car tu as dis  » Vous ne pouvez donc pas penser le pour et le contre AVEC un plan DIALECTIQUE! » Ou peut etre que c’est moi qui n’est rien compris au cours.. Lol ^^’ Sa m’a induit en erreur du coup :$ En tout cas je suis contente d’avoir tes cours à disposition pour réviser mon bac! 🙂

C’est une étourderie de ma part, qui est corrigée.

Bonjour ! Je m’interroge à propos de la question de dissertation suivante : Dans quelle mesure la forme littéraire peut-elle rendre une argumentation plus efficace ?

Doit-on citer les éléments qui font que la forme littéraire rend une argumentation efficace ou faut il faire un plan du type : I) la forme littéraire rend une argu efficace II) D’autres formes d’art rendent une argu efficace

Merci beaucoup !

Bonjour Amélie, Je voulais savoir s’il faut toujours faire un dépassement du sujet quelque soit le type de plan. Aussi, aurais-tu un conseil pour vite trouver un dépassement de sujet ? Je te remercie d’avance. M9ne

Bonjour Amélie, ton site m’a beaucoup aidé, je t’en remercie, j’ai juste une dernière question pour la dissertation ; Est-il possible d’utiliser des exemples d’auteurs qui ne sont pas français ? Par exemple, les Poétesses de Kaboul.

Je te remercie d’avance

Bonjour chere Amélie , j’ai juste une question concernant la dissertation en même temps le commentaire composé , ça va paraitre bête mais je veux savoir si pendant uue dissertation au bac, on écrit les titres sur sur sa copie , du genre Introduction, I)….. 1)…… A)…. a) … conclusion, mentionner les grands titres aussi commen on le voit dans les explication, je demande parceque je compose en candidat libre cette année apres des années a l’etranger et des amis avec qui j’ai revisé une fois m’ont mit ce doute si non personnellement je contente simplement de paragraphes espacés en fonction des parties , je serai tres heureux que vous m’enleviez ce doute avant les epreuves dans quelques jours merci

Bonjour chere Amélie , j’ai juste une question concernant la dissertation en même temps le commentaire composé , ça va paraitre bête mais je veux savoir si pendant uue dissertation au bac, on écrit les titres sur sur sa copie , du genre Introduction, I)….. 1)…… A)…. a) … conclusion, je demande parceque je compose en candidat libre cette année apres des années a l’etranger et des amis avec qui j’ai revisé une fois m’ont mit ce doute si non personnellement je contente simplement de paragraphes espacés en fonction des parties , je serai tres heureux que vous m’enleviez ce doute avant les epreuves dans quelques jours merci

Bonjours, voilà , j’ai beaucoup de mal avec mes corpus. Je me demandais si vous pourriez faire des tutoriels sur cela, car grâce à vous je comprend mieux le commentaire… Merci pour toute vos vidéos.

Bonjour Amélie! Tout d’abord je viens de découvrir ton site, à 1mois et demi du bac de français et je suis très contente! Tes explications sont très claires et aident beaucoup. Alors voila, j’ai une dissertation à faire avec pour sujet : « L’argumentation indirecte est-elle un moyen plus efficace pour traiter la question de l’homme? ». J’ai étudié en cours que des textes sur les sauvages, le cannibalisme, l’esclavagisme etc.. J’en ai dégagé un plan, qu’en penses-tu? I-Certes, l’argumentation indirecte est un moyen efficace pour traiter la question de l’homme II-Cependant, il en existe des limites III-Mais, il existe d’autres moyens aussi très compétents.

Merci d’avance, et bonne continuation.

( comment je peut te parler en priver ? )

ah d’accord merci ; sinon j’ai retravailler le sujet et je peut te reproposer un autre plan (mais détaillé ) cette fois mais en privé . Et j’ai une autre question , est ce que je doit parler de la catharsis dans ma dissertation ( ps je n’ai pas compris vraiment ce qu’est la catharsis) ;

merci d’avance

bonjour amelie j’ai cette dissertation : Aristote dit que le heros tragique doit susciter en nous la crainte et la pitié , dans la mesure ou il est à la fois victime et coupable . En quoi cette définition peut s’appliquer à Meursault ? J’ai fait ce plan : I) Effets sur le lecteur a) crainte b) pitié II) Absurdité du personnage a) victime b) coupable

Qu’est ce que tu en pense ?

( Meursault personnage de l’etranger de camus )

Merci d’avance 🙂

Ton plan répond mal à la question car tu n’as pas questionné le sujet. En effet, crainte/coupable et pitié/victimes sont des expressions qui vont de pair, il n’est donc pas cohérent de les séparer dans des parties différentes car tu répètes deux fois la même chose. Ensuite, il faudrait creuser ta réflexion pour proposer un dépassement en 3ème partie (ou si tu n’y arrives pas, uniquement en conclusion).

je doit parler dans ma dissertation de la catharsis?

Bonjour Amélie, je dois disserter sur cette citation : 《La vraie générosité envers l’avenir consiste à tout donner au présent .》Albert CAMUS l’homme révolté Voici le sujet : En quoi cette phrase résume t elle l’idée d’engagement ? Dissertez par un développement structuré qui s appuiera sur les textes vus en cours et vos connaissances personnelles. J ai compris la citation mais je ne sais pas quel plan utiliser analytique ou thématique et suivant le plan quelles parties utilisee Merci de me repondre au plus vite .

Il s’agit d’un sujet qui invite à un plan thématique puisque la question n’est pas fermée.

Bonsoir, j’ai une dissertation à faire et le sujet est : Les gens ne s’intéressent pas aux héros heureux. Il leur faut du tragique, du mythique, du monstrueux, du terrifiant. constante J. Lacarrière. Expliquez et discutez ce propos. Je pensais faire une partie sur l’explication de la phrase et une deuxième partie sur mon avis (plan que mon professeur de français nous a conseillé) mais je ne suis pas certaine que ce plan tienne la route… Je voulais avoir votre avis car je suis vos conseils depuis un certain temps et ils m’aident vraiment! Merci d’avance!

Bonjour Mel, Je te conseille de suivre le plan que vous conseille votre professeur et qui correspond bien à la consigne (Expliquez (I) et discutez (II). Bon courage !

Bonsoir Amélie et merci pour ces précieux conseils ! Puis-je t’en demander un autre ? (^_^’) Voila j’ai une dissertation à faire et le sujet est le suivant : Le véritable voyage est celui qui permet celon Rousseau de « secouer le joug de l’opinion « . Dans quelle mesure la littérature de voyage au sens large permet-elle de remettre en cause les idées reçue ?

J’ai tout d’abord (grâce à ton aide) choisis un plan thématique puisqu’il s’agit d’une question ouverte, en simplifiant le sujet cela donne : Jusqu’où la littérature de voyage peut-elle de changer les idées reçuts ?

Je voulais donc te demander si ce plan convient : La littérature de voyage permet de changer les idées reçut (I) cependant son action reste limité (II)

merci ( ^o ^) !!

Bonjour Eid, Tu as fait un plan dialectique mais il convient quand même pour ta question.

Bonsoir moi c’est une citation de Elsa Triolet « l’écriture est la plus noble conquête de l’homme.le roman l’intermédiaire entre l’homme et la vie. » J’ai choisi un plan analytique mais je ne suis pas trop sur

Bonjour J’ai une dissertation à faire et le sujet est :  » pensez-vous que pour argumenter , il soit préférable d’avoir recours à des textes typiquement argumentatifs ou à des formes plus littéraires ?  » je pense qu’il faut un plan thématique mais je ne suis pas sûr ! :$ pouvez vous m’aider svp ?

Bonsoir Alex, Ton sujet se prête à un plan analytique : le plan de ta dissertation est en réalité suggéré dans la question (tout au moins les deux premières parties qu’il faudrait ensuite dépasser dans une synthèse).

Bonjour, Dans le plan de type analytique, il est question d’un « dépassement de la question » en troisième partie. Pourriez-vous s’il vous plait expliciter ce point ? Qu’est ce qu’un dépassement de la question, et comment en rédiger un qui soit convenable ? Merci d’avance (et bravo pour ce blog !)

Bonjour Aïda, Dans ma formation gratuite en 10 leçons vidéo, j’explicite davantage ce point. Si tu n’es pas encore inscrite, tu peux le faire en cliquant ici . A bientôt.

Bonjour, j’ai un plan de dissertation a faire le sujet est le suivant « la littérature doit-elle se mêler de la politique ou de la religion » .Selon moi c’est le plan analytique qui convient le mieux mais je ne réussi pas à composé ce plan . Pouvez vous m’aider? Merci d’avance pour votre réponse .

Bonjour Naoufel,

Pour réussir ta dissertation, questionne le sujet : pourquoi le libellé emploie-t-il le verbe devoir (« doit-il ») ? Cela fait-il référence à une obligation, à un devoir ? Pourquoi opposer politique et religion ? Le sujet doit t’étonner : généralement on considère plutôt que la littérature n’a rien à voir avec la politique et la religion…Ainsi quels sont les présupposés de ton sujet ? Ce long travail de questionnement du sujet est primordial : sans lui, impossible de trouver un plan.

Bonjour Amélie ,merci pour votre réponse et je reviens vers vous car je pensais que je pouvais dans mon plan analytique (si c’est le bon plan?)parler de religieux et de politique puisqu’il me semble selon les œuvre que je connais (les juste de Albert Camus ,le père Goriot ,les misérable de Victor Hugo traitent de politique et que Pantagruel ch8 de Rabelais et « sur les cannibale »de Montaigne traitent eux de religion)c’est sur ces axes que j’ai composé mon plan. Bravo pour tout votre travaille et merci d’avance pour les explications que vous pourrez m’apporter .Naoufel

Bonjour Naoufel, Les œuvres que tu cites peuvent constituer de bons exemples. S’agissant de ta dissertation, tu dois opter plutôt pour un plan thématique : en effet, les parties de ta dissertation ne sont pas suggérées dans le libellé (il ne faut surtout par faire une partie sur la politique et une partie sur la religion car ça ne répond pas à la question). Comme je te l’ai expliqué, tu dois questionner le sujet, comprendre ses présupposés pour construire une réponse qui se tienne.

Salut, j’ai besoin d’aide! Je voudrais savoir quel plan choisir pour ma dissertation, ma citation est  » J’ai peur que la grande télévision ne tue la petite qu’il y a en chacun de nous, celle de l’imaginaire » de Devos. Merci

Bonjour Bever, Ta citation n’est-elle pas accompagnée d’une consigne ?

Dans ce cas, tu peux considérer que la consigne implicite de ton sujet est : « Pensez-vous comme Devos que la télévision tue l’imaginaire ? ». Cette question te mène vers un plan dialectique : c’est une question fermée (on peut y répondre par oui ou non) qui prête à discussion.

bonjour est-ce que je pourrais avoir la fiche de lecture de albert camus et l’education sentimentale de Gustave Flaubert et ce que l’auteur defend merci ce site est interresant

Bonjour, Je n’ai fait aucune fiche de lecture sur L’Education sentimentale de Flaubert. Tu peux toutefois trouver des informations sur Camus dans cet article sur l’absurde . A bientôt,

Bonjour amelie , ton site est excellent et jai besoin d’un peu d’aide Voila j ai une problématique pour une dissertation qui est de quel manière le maitre et le valet sont-ils inséparable sur scène mais également complémentaire et oppose ? On m’a demander de la reformuler la problématique cependant je n’arrive pas a la reformuler et a trouver un plan Pouvez-vous m’aider ?

Bonjour Roxane, Je ne peux pas vous aider de façon personnalisée pour faire vos devoirs. Tu as du mal à reformuler ta problématique car tu n’as pas trouvé de plan. Il faut travailler davantage ta dissertation et ton plan afin de mieux formuler tes idées.

Bonjour je voudrais savoir si le sujet est sur le theatre est ce que je peux utiliser en exemple une piece de theatre vu durant l’année (c’est a dire une représentation de theâtre)

Il est nécessaire d’avoir de nombreuses références riches et variés pour réussir la dissertation. Ainsi, citer et analyser des textes de votre connaissance n’est pas seulement une possibilité mais une obligation en dissertation.

Bonsoir, Alors j’ai voulu me faire un quiz en essayant d’identifier les plans dans différent sujet de dissertation mais j’ai un doute pour un sujet,qui est le suivant : » « La poésie n’a pas d’autre but qu’Elle-même. » écrit Beaudelaire. Vous vous interrogerez sur cette déclaration et vous vous demanderez si elle correspond à votre définition de la poésie. » Je pense que c’est un plan thématique mais je ne suis pas sur, qu’en pensez-vous ?

Bonjour Marjorie, C’est bien cela : ta question invite à un plan thématique dans lequel tu vas t’interroger sur les différents buts possibles de la poésie.

Tes méthodes sont vraiment bien, dommage que je t’ai pas comme prof de français parce que tout semble si facile dans tes explications.

très utile franchement merci 🙂

Waou, moi qui sèche sur ma dissert à rendre pour lundi, c’est exactement ce qu’il me fallait, j’avais pas compris les choses aussi clairement avant 🙂 ça va m’aidé pour faire mon plan de dissertation ce week-end, merci !

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Home » Dissertation – Format, Example and Template

Dissertation – Format, Example and Template

Table of Contents

Dissertation

Dissertation

Definition:

Dissertation is a lengthy and detailed academic document that presents the results of original research on a specific topic or question. It is usually required as a final project for a doctoral degree or a master’s degree.

Dissertation Meaning in Research

In Research , a dissertation refers to a substantial research project that students undertake in order to obtain an advanced degree such as a Ph.D. or a Master’s degree.

Dissertation typically involves the exploration of a particular research question or topic in-depth, and it requires students to conduct original research, analyze data, and present their findings in a scholarly manner. It is often the culmination of years of study and represents a significant contribution to the academic field.

Types of Dissertation

Types of Dissertation are as follows:

Empirical Dissertation

An empirical dissertation is a research study that uses primary data collected through surveys, experiments, or observations. It typically follows a quantitative research approach and uses statistical methods to analyze the data.

Non-Empirical Dissertation

A non-empirical dissertation is based on secondary sources, such as books, articles, and online resources. It typically follows a qualitative research approach and uses methods such as content analysis or discourse analysis.

Narrative Dissertation

A narrative dissertation is a personal account of the researcher’s experience or journey. It typically follows a qualitative research approach and uses methods such as interviews, focus groups, or ethnography.

Systematic Literature Review

A systematic literature review is a comprehensive analysis of existing research on a specific topic. It typically follows a qualitative research approach and uses methods such as meta-analysis or thematic analysis.

Case Study Dissertation

A case study dissertation is an in-depth analysis of a specific individual, group, or organization. It typically follows a qualitative research approach and uses methods such as interviews, observations, or document analysis.

Mixed-Methods Dissertation

A mixed-methods dissertation combines both quantitative and qualitative research approaches to gather and analyze data. It typically uses methods such as surveys, interviews, and focus groups, as well as statistical analysis.

How to Write a Dissertation

Here are some general steps to help guide you through the process of writing a dissertation:

  • Choose a topic : Select a topic that you are passionate about and that is relevant to your field of study. It should be specific enough to allow for in-depth research but broad enough to be interesting and engaging.
  • Conduct research : Conduct thorough research on your chosen topic, utilizing a variety of sources, including books, academic journals, and online databases. Take detailed notes and organize your information in a way that makes sense to you.
  • Create an outline : Develop an outline that will serve as a roadmap for your dissertation. The outline should include the introduction, literature review, methodology, results, discussion, and conclusion.
  • Write the introduction: The introduction should provide a brief overview of your topic, the research questions, and the significance of the study. It should also include a clear thesis statement that states your main argument.
  • Write the literature review: The literature review should provide a comprehensive analysis of existing research on your topic. It should identify gaps in the research and explain how your study will fill those gaps.
  • Write the methodology: The methodology section should explain the research methods you used to collect and analyze data. It should also include a discussion of any limitations or weaknesses in your approach.
  • Write the results: The results section should present the findings of your research in a clear and organized manner. Use charts, graphs, and tables to help illustrate your data.
  • Write the discussion: The discussion section should interpret your results and explain their significance. It should also address any limitations of the study and suggest areas for future research.
  • Write the conclusion: The conclusion should summarize your main findings and restate your thesis statement. It should also provide recommendations for future research.
  • Edit and revise: Once you have completed a draft of your dissertation, review it carefully to ensure that it is well-organized, clear, and free of errors. Make any necessary revisions and edits before submitting it to your advisor for review.

Dissertation Format

The format of a dissertation may vary depending on the institution and field of study, but generally, it follows a similar structure:

  • Title Page: This includes the title of the dissertation, the author’s name, and the date of submission.
  • Abstract : A brief summary of the dissertation’s purpose, methods, and findings.
  • Table of Contents: A list of the main sections and subsections of the dissertation, along with their page numbers.
  • Introduction : A statement of the problem or research question, a brief overview of the literature, and an explanation of the significance of the study.
  • Literature Review : A comprehensive review of the literature relevant to the research question or problem.
  • Methodology : A description of the methods used to conduct the research, including data collection and analysis procedures.
  • Results : A presentation of the findings of the research, including tables, charts, and graphs.
  • Discussion : A discussion of the implications of the findings, their significance in the context of the literature, and limitations of the study.
  • Conclusion : A summary of the main points of the study and their implications for future research.
  • References : A list of all sources cited in the dissertation.
  • Appendices : Additional materials that support the research, such as data tables, charts, or transcripts.

Dissertation Outline

Dissertation Outline is as follows:

Title Page:

  • Title of dissertation
  • Author name
  • Institutional affiliation
  • Date of submission
  • Brief summary of the dissertation’s research problem, objectives, methods, findings, and implications
  • Usually around 250-300 words

Table of Contents:

  • List of chapters and sections in the dissertation, with page numbers for each

I. Introduction

  • Background and context of the research
  • Research problem and objectives
  • Significance of the research

II. Literature Review

  • Overview of existing literature on the research topic
  • Identification of gaps in the literature
  • Theoretical framework and concepts

III. Methodology

  • Research design and methods used
  • Data collection and analysis techniques
  • Ethical considerations

IV. Results

  • Presentation and analysis of data collected
  • Findings and outcomes of the research
  • Interpretation of the results

V. Discussion

  • Discussion of the results in relation to the research problem and objectives
  • Evaluation of the research outcomes and implications
  • Suggestions for future research

VI. Conclusion

  • Summary of the research findings and outcomes
  • Implications for the research topic and field
  • Limitations and recommendations for future research

VII. References

  • List of sources cited in the dissertation

VIII. Appendices

  • Additional materials that support the research, such as tables, figures, or questionnaires.

Example of Dissertation

Here is an example Dissertation for students:

Title : Exploring the Effects of Mindfulness Meditation on Academic Achievement and Well-being among College Students

This dissertation aims to investigate the impact of mindfulness meditation on the academic achievement and well-being of college students. Mindfulness meditation has gained popularity as a technique for reducing stress and enhancing mental health, but its effects on academic performance have not been extensively studied. Using a randomized controlled trial design, the study will compare the academic performance and well-being of college students who practice mindfulness meditation with those who do not. The study will also examine the moderating role of personality traits and demographic factors on the effects of mindfulness meditation.

Chapter Outline:

Chapter 1: Introduction

  • Background and rationale for the study
  • Research questions and objectives
  • Significance of the study
  • Overview of the dissertation structure

Chapter 2: Literature Review

  • Definition and conceptualization of mindfulness meditation
  • Theoretical framework of mindfulness meditation
  • Empirical research on mindfulness meditation and academic achievement
  • Empirical research on mindfulness meditation and well-being
  • The role of personality and demographic factors in the effects of mindfulness meditation

Chapter 3: Methodology

  • Research design and hypothesis
  • Participants and sampling method
  • Intervention and procedure
  • Measures and instruments
  • Data analysis method

Chapter 4: Results

  • Descriptive statistics and data screening
  • Analysis of main effects
  • Analysis of moderating effects
  • Post-hoc analyses and sensitivity tests

Chapter 5: Discussion

  • Summary of findings
  • Implications for theory and practice
  • Limitations and directions for future research
  • Conclusion and contribution to the literature

Chapter 6: Conclusion

  • Recap of the research questions and objectives
  • Summary of the key findings
  • Contribution to the literature and practice
  • Implications for policy and practice
  • Final thoughts and recommendations.

References :

List of all the sources cited in the dissertation

Appendices :

Additional materials such as the survey questionnaire, interview guide, and consent forms.

Note : This is just an example and the structure of a dissertation may vary depending on the specific requirements and guidelines provided by the institution or the supervisor.

How Long is a Dissertation

The length of a dissertation can vary depending on the field of study, the level of degree being pursued, and the specific requirements of the institution. Generally, a dissertation for a doctoral degree can range from 80,000 to 100,000 words, while a dissertation for a master’s degree may be shorter, typically ranging from 20,000 to 50,000 words. However, it is important to note that these are general guidelines and the actual length of a dissertation can vary widely depending on the specific requirements of the program and the research topic being studied. It is always best to consult with your academic advisor or the guidelines provided by your institution for more specific information on dissertation length.

Applications of Dissertation

Here are some applications of a dissertation:

  • Advancing the Field: Dissertations often include new research or a new perspective on existing research, which can help to advance the field. The results of a dissertation can be used by other researchers to build upon or challenge existing knowledge, leading to further advancements in the field.
  • Career Advancement: Completing a dissertation demonstrates a high level of expertise in a particular field, which can lead to career advancement opportunities. For example, having a PhD can open doors to higher-paying jobs in academia, research institutions, or the private sector.
  • Publishing Opportunities: Dissertations can be published as books or journal articles, which can help to increase the visibility and credibility of the author’s research.
  • Personal Growth: The process of writing a dissertation involves a significant amount of research, analysis, and critical thinking. This can help students to develop important skills, such as time management, problem-solving, and communication, which can be valuable in both their personal and professional lives.
  • Policy Implications: The findings of a dissertation can have policy implications, particularly in fields such as public health, education, and social sciences. Policymakers can use the research to inform decision-making and improve outcomes for the population.

When to Write a Dissertation

Here are some situations where writing a dissertation may be necessary:

  • Pursuing a Doctoral Degree: Writing a dissertation is usually a requirement for earning a doctoral degree, so if you are interested in pursuing a doctorate, you will likely need to write a dissertation.
  • Conducting Original Research : Dissertations require students to conduct original research on a specific topic. If you are interested in conducting original research on a topic, writing a dissertation may be the best way to do so.
  • Advancing Your Career: Some professions, such as academia and research, may require individuals to have a doctoral degree. Writing a dissertation can help you advance your career by demonstrating your expertise in a particular area.
  • Contributing to Knowledge: Dissertations are often based on original research that can contribute to the knowledge base of a field. If you are passionate about advancing knowledge in a particular area, writing a dissertation can help you achieve that goal.
  • Meeting Academic Requirements : If you are a graduate student, writing a dissertation may be a requirement for completing your program. Be sure to check with your academic advisor to determine if this is the case for you.

Purpose of Dissertation

some common purposes of a dissertation include:

  • To contribute to the knowledge in a particular field : A dissertation is often the culmination of years of research and study, and it should make a significant contribution to the existing body of knowledge in a particular field.
  • To demonstrate mastery of a subject: A dissertation requires extensive research, analysis, and writing, and completing one demonstrates a student’s mastery of their subject area.
  • To develop critical thinking and research skills : A dissertation requires students to think critically about their research question, analyze data, and draw conclusions based on evidence. These skills are valuable not only in academia but also in many professional fields.
  • To demonstrate academic integrity: A dissertation must be conducted and written in accordance with rigorous academic standards, including ethical considerations such as obtaining informed consent, protecting the privacy of participants, and avoiding plagiarism.
  • To prepare for an academic career: Completing a dissertation is often a requirement for obtaining a PhD and pursuing a career in academia. It can demonstrate to potential employers that the student has the necessary skills and experience to conduct original research and make meaningful contributions to their field.
  • To develop writing and communication skills: A dissertation requires a significant amount of writing and communication skills to convey complex ideas and research findings in a clear and concise manner. This skill set can be valuable in various professional fields.
  • To demonstrate independence and initiative: A dissertation requires students to work independently and take initiative in developing their research question, designing their study, collecting and analyzing data, and drawing conclusions. This demonstrates to potential employers or academic institutions that the student is capable of independent research and taking initiative in their work.
  • To contribute to policy or practice: Some dissertations may have a practical application, such as informing policy decisions or improving practices in a particular field. These dissertations can have a significant impact on society, and their findings may be used to improve the lives of individuals or communities.
  • To pursue personal interests: Some students may choose to pursue a dissertation topic that aligns with their personal interests or passions, providing them with the opportunity to delve deeper into a topic that they find personally meaningful.

Advantage of Dissertation

Some advantages of writing a dissertation include:

  • Developing research and analytical skills: The process of writing a dissertation involves conducting extensive research, analyzing data, and presenting findings in a clear and coherent manner. This process can help students develop important research and analytical skills that can be useful in their future careers.
  • Demonstrating expertise in a subject: Writing a dissertation allows students to demonstrate their expertise in a particular subject area. It can help establish their credibility as a knowledgeable and competent professional in their field.
  • Contributing to the academic community: A well-written dissertation can contribute new knowledge to the academic community and potentially inform future research in the field.
  • Improving writing and communication skills : Writing a dissertation requires students to write and present their research in a clear and concise manner. This can help improve their writing and communication skills, which are essential for success in many professions.
  • Increasing job opportunities: Completing a dissertation can increase job opportunities in certain fields, particularly in academia and research-based positions.

About the author

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Muhammad Hassan

Researcher, Academic Writer, Web developer

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Les sujets de dissertation

I. le sujet « x est-il y  », ii. le sujet « peut-on…  », iii. le sujet « doit-on…  », iv. le sujet « faut-il…  », le sujet en question ouverte, dans la pratique….

La dissertation pour l'écrit du bac de français

Méthode et conseils, texte officiel, analyser le sujet, rechercher les arguments et élaborer le plan, rédiger la dissertation.

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La Classe du Littéraire

Explications de textes, biographies d'auteurs, méthodologie, grammaire … Tout pour le Bac de Français et les études littéraires.

La Méthode de la Dissertation pour le Bac de Français

En suivant la bonne méthode, il est tout à fait possible d’ avoir une excellente note à l’épreuve de la dissertation du Bac de Français .

Ceci étant dit, c’est une épreuve complexe, dense, et qui implique de nombreuses compétences. Il est donc nécessaire de la préparer sérieusement tout au long de l’année.

Mais pourquoi travailler toute l’année une épreuve quand on sait qu’on aura le choix entre deux sujets à la fin ?

Pour rappel, l’épreuve écrite du Bac de Français laisse le choix aux candidats entre le commentaire littéraire ou la dissertation sur une oeuvre .

La majorité des élèves choisit le commentaire. Pourtant, une dissertation bien menée permet à certains candidats de tirer leur épingle du jeu et d’avoir une note excellente en se démarquant des autres.

De plus, il est possible de tomber sur un texte très difficile au commentaire … dans ce cas, heureux celui qui sera capable de traiter le sujet de dissertation.

Dans cet article, vous apprendrez les étapes pour rédiger une bonne dissertation littéraire .

À travers cette méthodologie de la dissertation en français , vous découvrirez les bases comme les différents types de sujets , les éléments de l’introduction ou encore la présentation du développement .

Je vous partagerai également des astuces pour éviter d’être en panne d’idées , pour toujours trouver des arguments et, in fine , être capable de rendre une bonne copie à coup sûr !

La Méthode de la Dissertation pour le Bac de Français

Méthode Bac Français : Les objectifs de la dissertation

Avant d’entrer dans le détail de cette méthodologie, commençons par comprendre le but de l’épreuve.

Il s’agit de l’une des deux modalités proposées par le ministère pour évaluer les acquis des élèves à l’issue du tronc commun de français.

En d’autres termes, la dissertation littéraire doit permettre au correcteur d’apprécier les compétences développées par le candidat depuis qu’il étudie la littérature française (la grammaire étant évaluée à l’oral).

Mais quelles sont donc ces compétences que tout élève est censé avoir acquis à l’issue de sa scolarité ?

Eh bien tout d’abord, la culture littéraire . En effet, le correcteur s’intéressera aux références mobilisées par le candidat. Après des années à étudier des textes littéraires, il convient au Bac d’être capable de les faire dialoguer.

Ensuite, la dissertation évalue l’élève en tant que lecteur . Dans quelle mesure le candidat s’est-il approprié l’oeuvre au programme ? Est-il capable de faire référence à des passages précis ? Connait-il bien les personnages, les enjeux, le contexte littéraire, l’auteur ?

Enfin, de manière générale, cette épreuve évalue la capacité du candidat a développer une réflexion construite et argumentée . Pour cela, il doit puiser dans différentes compétences comme l’orthographe , la culture et l’esprit de synthèse .

Comprendre et prendre en compte ces objectifs est fondamental pour réussir une bonne dissertation en français.

La Méthode de la Dissertation pour le Bac de Français

Donner au correcteur ce qu’il attend, c’est s’assurer une bonne note.

C’est pourquoi il est primordial de comprendre ce qui est attendu d’un exercice avant de chercher à travailler sa méthodologie.

Méthode Bac Français : Les textes officiels sur la dissertation

Plongeons maintenant dans les textes officiels qui nous apprennent en détails ce qui est attendu des élèves lors de la dissertation au bac de français.

Qu’est-ce qu’une dissertation de français ?

La dissertation en français est un exercice argumentatif amenant le candidat à répondre à une question ou à discuter un point de vue en mobilisant sa culture littéraire. La dissertation littéraire peut porter sur une oeuvre ou sur une question littéraire générale.

Dans le cadre des nouveaux programme du Bac, la dissertation en français porte sur l’une des oeuvres au programme et sur le parcours associé.

Comment se passe la dissertation au bac de français ?

La dissertation en français fait l’objet d’une épreuve de 4h se déroulant vers la mi-juin. Les élèves la passent en fin de 1ère. Lors de l’épreuve, ils ont le choix entre plusieurs sujets : un commentaire littéraire ou une dissertation sur l’oeuvre du programme qu’ils ont étudiée.

Comment rédiger une bonne dissertation littéraire ?

Pour rédiger une bonne dissertation littéraire lors du bac de français, il faut développer un raisonnement construit, argumenté, étayé par des références littéraires concrètes liées à l’oeuvre et au parcours étudiés en classe. Le sujet doit être analysé, problématisé et discuté.

Voyons donc d’un peu plus près ce que disent exactement les textes.

La dissertation consiste à conduire une réflexion personnelle organisée sur une question littéraire portant sur l’une des œuvres et sur le parcours associé figurant dans le programme d’œuvres. Le candidat choisit l’un des trois sujets de dissertation, chacun étant en rapport avec l’une des œuvres du programme et son parcours associé. Pour développer son argumentation, le candidat s’appuie sur sa connaissance de l’œuvre et des textes étudiés dans le cadre de l’objet d’étude concerné, ainsi que sur ses lectures et sa culture personnelles. Cette production écrite est notée sur 20. Extrait de la note de service n° 2019-042 du 18 avril 2019

On lit ici clairement une attente forte en termes de culture et de restitution. Le candidat doit mobiliser le fruit de son travail de l’année, mais également des connaissances personnelles.

Des références à des lectures variées ainsi que d’autres types d’oeuvres d’art sont attendues.

Voici les 4 objectifs principaux tels qu’ils sont synthétisés sur éduscol :

  • La compréhension du sens et des enjeux du sujet proposé ;
  • Un développement pertinent et cohérent, organisé en plusieurs parties, proposant un traitement progressif et argumenté du sujet ;
  • Une connaissance suffisamment précise de l’œuvre et de ses contextes pour permettre de justifier et d’exemplifier le propos ;
  • Une expression correcte et juste, au service de la réflexion sur la question posée.

On voit que la méthodologie attendue est assez libre. Le développement doit cependant rester “organisé en plusieurs parties” et “cohérent”.

Ainsi, nous travaillerons sur une méthodologie rigoureuse permettant de répondre à chacun des attendus et de guider l’élève dans sa composition.

Pour en savoir plus sur les attendus de correction, vous pouvez consulter le document mis à disposition des professeurs pour le travail de la dissertation .

Méthode Dissertation Français : Le travail préparatoire

Mais assez préambulé ! Il est temps de voir concrètement comment réussir la dissertation du bac de français .

Identifier le type de sujet

Une fois le sujet distribué, vous allez vous retrouver face à une feuille qui ressemblera à ça :

La Méthode de la Dissertation pour le Bac de Français

La première chose à faire est de trouver le sujet qui correspond à l’oeuvre que vous avez travaillée.

Pour chaque objet d’étude, il y a 3 oeuvres au choix du professeur. Vous choisirez donc le sujet qui correspond à l’oeuvre étudiée entre les sujets A, B et C.

Une fois le bon sujet trouvé, il s’agit de déterminer s’il porte sur une citation (c’est le cas des sujets A et C) ou sur une question seule.

On regardera également si la question du sujet est ouverte ou fermée. Si on peut répondre par oui / non, la question est fermée, si on ne peut pas, elle est ouverte.

Exemple de question fermée :

La Méthode de la Dissertation pour le Bac de Français

Cette première étape d’identification du type de sujet va permettre d’adapter votre plan aux attentes du correcteur.

En effet, dans le cadre d’une question fermée, on adoptera plutôt un plan dialectique alors que pour une question ouverte on choisira un plan thématique.

Voir la section “trouver un plan” ci-dessous pour plus de détails sur les types de plans.

De plus, si le sujet porte sur une citation, il sera nécessaire, si possible, de recontextualiser cette citation, sinon, à minima, de l’analyser en profondeur et de la reformuler.

Exemples de sujets

Pour découvrir davantage d’exemples de sujets, je vous invite à vous rendre sur ce site qui recense toutes les annales de l’épreuve

Analyser le sujet

Une fois le sujet bien lu et bien compris, il va falloir l’analyser. C’est à dire suivre trois étapes importantes :

type de question dissertation

Éclaircir les références

Le sujet cherche peut-être à activer des connaissances littéraires vues en cours. Il faut trouver lesquelles. Commencez par observer la citation s’il y en a une et demandez-vous si vous l’avez déjà lue.

Si oui, dans quel livre ? Quel passage du livre ? Que voulait dire l’auteur ? À quel contexte historique ou littéraire se référait-il ?

Si vous ne connaissez pas la citation (ce n’est pas grave !), demandez-vous pourquoi elle vous est proposée. Dans l’exemple ci-dessus sur Manon Lescaut, qui est Tiberge ? Quel est son rôle dans le roman ? Qu’a-t-il à voir avec l’idée d’immoralité au centre de la question ?

Définir les mots importants

Un sujet va toujours centrer le questionnement autour d’une idée. Il n’est pas possible de tout dire sur l’oeuvre, et ce n’est pas ce qui est demandé.

Il faut donc identifier les mots qui vous semblent les plus importants, et en noter une définition. Cette étape est importante pour éviter l’écueil du hors-sujet.

Identifier les cas de polysémie

Dans certains sujets, un mot peut avoir plusieurs sens. Identifier cette polysémie permet d’emblée de donner de la consistance à votre réflexion.

Aussi, il ne faut pas chercher à fuir la polysémie, mais au contraire à l’interroger : le mot a plusieurs sens ? Questionnez ce choix sémantique et le lien entre les différents sens et l’oeuvre au programme. Cela vous donnera peut-être des idées d’axes.

Prenons l’exemple du mot “immoralité” dans le sujet sur Manon Lescaut.

Quel est le sens actuel de ce mot ? a-t-il évolué depuis la parution du roman ? les personnages de l’oeuvre se sentent-ils immoraux ? si l’immoralité fait le plaisir de la lecture, l’oeuvre est-elle dessinée à un public de lecteurs sans morale ?

Vous voyez les pistes qui peuvent s’ouvrir à partir d’un seul mot …

Formuler une problématique

Comme dans tout travail argumenté, il est nécessaire de problématiser une dissertation. C’est à dire d’extraire le questionnement contenu dans le sujet.

Cependant, il ne s’agit pas d’une simple reformulation du sujet, mais d’une explicitation du questionnement.

Si le sujet est une citation, il faut reformuler la citation, puis l’exprimer sous la forme d’une question. Il faut envisager dans la problématique l’antithèse, qui n’est pas toujours exprimée dans le sujet.

Par exemple, pour le sujet « l’art doit il rejeter toute forme d’utilité ? » on pourrait imaginer une problématique comme : L’idée d’utilité est-elle obligatoirement en conflit avec l’art ? L’art perd-il son statut dès lors qu’il devient un moyen et non une fin en soi ? etc.

Toujours sur notre sujet sur Manon Lescaut , on pourrait imaginer la problématique suivante :

Dans Manon Lescaut , le personnage de Tiberge incarne la morale et cherche sans cesse à ramener Des Grieux dans le droit chemin en l’éloignant de Manon. C’est ainsi que Musset, dans son poème “Namouna”, en fait un personnage ennuyeux.

Aussi, on peut se demander si ce personnage droit est condamné à la platitude. En d’autres termes, la saveur du personnage de Manon et de la lecture du roman tient-elle à l’immoralité qui y est mise en scène ?

Trouver un plan

Une fois le sujet problématisé, il faut trouver le plan.

Ici, retour à l’analyse du sujet.

En effet, le type de plan choisit dépend du type de sujet proposé.

Il existe 2 types de plan principaux pour la dissertation littéraire.

Le plan dialectique 

Il sert à envisager les deux opinions d’un sujet, puis il les dépasse, ou synthétise, afin d’arriver à une réponse finale construite. 

Il faut essayer de rester fin, la deuxième partie ne doit pas entièrement infirmer la première, il ne s’agit pas de vous contredire, mais de faire avancer le raisonnement.

Enfin, le slogan « thèse, antithèse, synthèse » ne fonctionne pas réellement. Il ne s’agit pas de dire oui, non, un peu oui et un peu non en même temps , mais bien de construire un raisonnement, d’envisager les limites d’une thèse et de les dépasser. 

Il est utilisé pour un sujet qui vous demande d’envisager les deux opinions, ex : le sujet sur Manon Lescaut

  • Oui, parce-que …………..
  • En revanche il faut garder à l’esprit que ………….
  • Finalement, on comprend que l’un n’exclut pas l’autre et que ……………

Le plan thématique

Il permet de décliner différents thèmes pour répondre à un sujet. 

Ce type de plan suppose tout de même une progressivité, on cherche à aller du thème le plus simple et évident au plus complexe.

Il est utilisé dans le cas d’un sujet qui demande d’étayer une thèse et non de la discuter, ex : Le sujet A sur Gargantua

  • Parce que …………..

Une fois que l’on a trouvé de quel plan on va avoir besoin, il reste encore à le remplir.

Comment trouver des arguments pour une dissertation ?

Pour trouver des arguments pour une dissertation, on commence par créer un tableau avec les grands axes du plan, puis on cherche les exemples vus en cours et appartenant à notre culture personnelle qui peuvent s’intégrer aux différents axes. Ensuite, on affine et on discute ces exemples.

En d’autres termes, il faut faire feu de tout bois.

type de question dissertation

C’est à dire noter au brouillon tout ce qu’on se souvient avoir étudié qui peut avoir à voir de près ou de loin à l’oeuvre sur laquelle porte le sujet.

On note ensuite l’ensemble des éléments trouvés sur une feuille, puis on les redistribue aux différents axes du plan.

Normalement, vous travaillez pendant l’année sur un parcours thématique lié à l’oeuvre du programme choisie. Ainsi, tout ce que vous voyez en classe peut être mobilisé pour la dissertation au bac.

Vous verrez qu’une fois vos souvenirs bien creusés, il ne vous reste que peu de trous dans le plan.

C’est à ce moment que vous devez procéder en sens inverse : de quoi ai-je besoin pour remplir cette partie ? Qu’est-ce que je connais qui pourrait répondre à la question ?

Pour trouver des idées, il ne faut pas reculer face aux questions difficiles.

Faites dialoguer les textes, les films, les séries, les tableaux ou les autres oeuvres que vous connaissez. Par exemple, le personnage de Manon Lescaut est immoral, à l’instar du personnage de Georges Duroy dans Bel-Ami de Maupassant.

Leurs différences peuvent être étudiées pour apporter de la profondeur à votre raisonnement.

Un dernier point important : la dissertation vise à vous évaluer, montrez donc tout ce que vous savez, ne vous limitez pas et envisagez tous les aspects de la question qui vous est posée.

Méthode Dissertation Français : La rédaction

Une fois le travail préalable effectué au brouillon, vous avez fait le plus difficile.

Il vous reste à développer vos arguments à l’écrit et à rédiger l’ensemble du devoir en suivant une structure rigoureuse qui reflète votre raisonnement.

Quelle est la structure de la dissertation ?

La structure de la dissertation comprend une introduction en un paragraphe suivie d’au moins 6 paragraphes représentant chacun une sous-partie (3 axes avec 2 sous-parties ou 2 axes avec 3 sous-parties). À la fin vient la conclusion, elle aussi composée d’un seul paragraphe.

Ça vous dit quelque chose ?

C’est normal : c’est la même chose que pour le commentaire littéraire .

Voyons tout cela de plus près :

Chaque paragraphe commence par un alinéa 

  • Introduction  :

1 paragraphe (retours à la ligne possibles, mais pas de sauts de ligne)

  • Phrase d’accroche
  • Citation du sujet
  • Analyse des mots clés
  • Problématique
  • Annonce du plan

Le tout doit être le plus fluide possible, chaque point de l’introduction doit découler du précédent, pour ne pas paraître trop mécanique. 

  • Développement  :

Vous rédigez le contenu de votre plan détaillé, attention, il ne faut pas écrire le titre des parties et sous-parties . Seule la construction du devoir et la clarté du découpage en paragraphes des sous-parties permet de reconstituer le plan. 

La fin d’une sous-partie sert de transition à la suivante, en une ou deux phrases pour amener la suite de manière fluide. 

  • 1 paragraphe par sous-partie
  • 1 ligne entre chaque sous-partie 
  • 2 lignes entre chaque grande partie
  • Conclusion  :
  • Résumé du raisonnement
  • Réponse à la problématique
  • Éventuellement une ouverture

Pour vous aider à mémoriser, voici un schéma représentant la structure d’une dissertation :

Méthode dissertation bac (la structure du devoir)

Dernier point important concernant la rédaction d’une dissertation : comme pour le commentaire littéraire, on évite le “je” et on lui préfère la forme impersonnelle : “il” / “on” et éventuellement “nous”.

Méthode : L’introduction de la dissertation en français

L’introduction de votre devoir est la première chose que lira le correcteur.

Certains disent que c’est la partie la plus importante.

Quoi qu’il en soit, il importe d’y apporter un soin particulier, c’est-à-dire de respecter scrupuleusement ses différentes étapes et de soigner votre rédaction et votre style.

  • La phrase d’accroche permet situer le sujet dans un contexte plus large (Histoire, chronologie, étymologie, actualité, etc.)
  • La citation du sujet permet de faire le pont entre votre accroche générale et la problématique précise à laquelle vous allez répondre
  • L’analyse des mots clés du sujet vous permet de lancer la réflexion et de montrer que vous êtes capable d’en proposer une lecture fine
  • La problématique va guider tout le reste de votre devoir et montre que le sujet fait sens pour vous et que vous êtes capable de le reformuler
  • L’annonce du plan permet à votre correcteur d’avoir une première idée du sens que va prendre votre réflexion

Attention, toutes les étapes de l’introduction doivent s’enchaîner de la manière la plus naturelle possible. Il n’est pas possible d’écrire dans un format prise de notes comme dans l’exemple ci-dessous :

Problématique : l’immoralité de Manon Lescaut fait-elle le plaisir du lecteur ? Plan : I. Oui parce que … II. Non parce que … À ne pas reproduire !

Pour aller plus loin, consultez mon article sur l’introduction de la dissertation en français .

Méthode : Le développement de la dissertation en français

Pour le développement, vous serez évalué sur votre capacité à présenter vos arguments de manière construite et logique.

Chaque idée doit être étayée par un exemple précis, cité, dans la mesure du possible, avec ses sources (auteur, oeuvre, date).

Dans le cadre d’un exemple faisant référence à un passage entier d’une oeuvre, pas besoin de citer mot pour mot le texte, simplement de présenter la situation.

En revanche, quelques citations précises sont attendues.

Quand vous rédigez, gardez bien en tête la structure suivante : Argument – Exemple – Justification

Vous la reproduirez plusieurs fois dans chaque partie, et pouvez par conséquent y apporter des modifications : Argument principal – Exemple 1 – Justification – Exemple 2 – Argument 2 – Justification comparant les 2 exemples .

Une fois encore, tout est question de nuance. Il n’y a qu’en vous exerçant que vous arriverez à développer vos compétences rédactionnelles et logiques !

Méthode : La conclusion de la dissertation en français

Comme dans la plupart des exercices argumentés, la conclusion se compose de 2 étapes nécessaires et d’une étape facultative.

  • Le résumé du développement permet de rappeler à la mémoire du correcteur (et à la vôtre après plus de trois heures de travail) les différents arguments mobilisés.
  • La réponse à la question permet de faire la synthèse de ces argument pour dégager une réponse claire à la problématique posée en introduction.
  • L’ouverture consiste à élargir le raisonnement et le questionnement vers de nouveaux horizons. Vous pouvez vous en servir pour mentionner une autre oeuvre à laquelle le sujet vous fait penser, un sujet d’actualité ou une question proche qui vous semble pertinente.

Ne pas oublier la relecture !

La relecture est primordiale dans tout travail rédigé long.

Gardez au moins 20 minutes en fin d’épreuve pour relire attentivement votre copie.

Procédez en plusieurs relectures : visez d’abord les fautes d’accord, puis les fautes de conjugaison, et enfin les fautes d’orthographe, par exemple.

Vous pouvez aussi accorder une relecture à la syntaxe et à la qualité de l’expression. Vérifiez que vos phrases ne sont pas trop longues, qu’elles sont bien claires et qu’elles n’ont pas de double-sens fortuit.

Enfin, profitez-en pour vous assurer que vous avez bien souligné les titres d’oeuvres et mis les citations entre guillemets.

Quelle que soit la méthode choisie, l’important est de vous relire. Après 3h30 de rédaction, vous pouvez être sûr qu’il reste d’énormes erreurs dans votre travail, même si vous avez une orthographe irréprochable. Alors prenez votre courage à deux mains et traquez ces dernières fautes !

Fiche Méthode Dissertation Français en PDF

J’ai cherché à présenter dans cet article une méthode générale pour la dissertation en français .

Aussi, l’article peut-il sembler long et touffu aux élèves qui débutent dans l’exercice.

C’est pourquoi je vais m’attacher à résumer les étapes importantes ci-dessous, puis les proposer dans une fiche méthode PDF en bas de page.

Résumé de la Méthode de la Dissertation en Français

Voici la méthode de la dissertation pour le bac de français en 9 étapes simples :

  • Lire le sujet et entourer les mots importants
  • Déterminer si le sujet appelle un plan dialectique (question fermée) ou thématique (question ouverte)
  • Reformuler le sujet sous la forme d’une question qui sera la problématique du devoir
  • Trouver un plan et l’alimenter avec des idées et exemples issus de vos cours et de votre culture personnelle
  • Rédiger l’introduction au brouillon de manière fluide et naturelle (accroche, sujet, définitions, problématique et plan)
  • Rédiger au propre le développement (minimum 6 paragraphes au total)
  • Rédiger la conclusion (résumé, réponse à la problématique, ouverture)
  • Vérifier la structure du devoir (sauts de lignes, alinéas)
  • Relire l’ensemble du devoir (orthographe et syntaxe)

Besoin d’une aide personnalisée ?

Je propose également des cours particuliers pour tous niveaux :

  • Préparation d’examens
  • Stages méthodologiques
  • Révisions culture littéraire
  • Grammaire et orthographe
  • Et bien d’autres possibilités

Le tout en 100% distanciel (par WebCam) à partir de 50 euros / heure .

N’hésitez pas à me contacter ( [email protected] ) pour davantage de renseignements, et pour réserver votre premier cours !

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COMMENTS

  1. Plan de dissertation : méthodologie et exemples

    Le plan d'une dissertation dialectique suit le modèle suivant : I. Exposé argumenté d'une thèse. II. Exposé argumenté de la thèse adverse. II. Synthèse (dépassement de la contradiction) 2. Le plan de dissertation analytique. Le plan analytique permet d'analyser un problème qui mérite une réflexion approfondie.

  2. Developing a Good Research Question

    Be Robust. A research question that is robust has the capacity to generate complex results. Your question should have the capacity to produce multiple insights about various aspects of the theoretical construct you are exploring. It should not be a question to which the answer is "yes" or "no" because such an answer is not a complex result.

  3. How To Write A Dissertation Or Thesis

    Craft a convincing dissertation or thesis research proposal. Write a clear, compelling introduction chapter. Undertake a thorough review of the existing research and write up a literature review. Undertake your own research. Present and interpret your findings. Draw a conclusion and discuss the implications.

  4. What Is a Dissertation?

    A dissertation is a long-form piece of academic writing based on original research conducted by you. It is usually submitted as the final step in order to finish a PhD program. Your dissertation is probably the longest piece of writing you've ever completed. It requires solid research, writing, and analysis skills, and it can be intimidating ...

  5. Developing the Research Question for a Thesis, Dissertation, or

    All studies are guided by one or more research questions, regardless of whether they are quantitative, qualitative, or mixed methods. Fewer research questions are better than many. In most cases, studies are addressing one primary research question (and likely never more than 2 or 3). The research question provides focus of the study.

  6. 10 Research Question Examples to Guide your Research Project

    10 Research Question Examples to Guide your Research Project. Published on October 30, 2022 by Shona McCombes.Revised on October 19, 2023. The research question is one of the most important parts of your research paper, thesis or dissertation.It's important to spend some time assessing and refining your question before you get started.

  7. Writing Strong Research Questions

    A good research question is essential to guide your research paper, dissertation, or thesis. All research questions should be: Focused on a single problem or issue. Researchable using primary and/or secondary sources. Feasible to answer within the timeframe and practical constraints. Specific enough to answer thoroughly.

  8. What Is a Dissertation?

    Revised on 5 May 2022. A dissertation is a large research project undertaken at the end of a degree. It involves in-depth consideration of a problem or question chosen by the student. It is usually the largest (and final) piece of written work produced during a degree. The length and structure of a dissertation vary widely depending on the ...

  9. How to Write a Dissertation

    Discuss the state of existing research on the topic, showing your work's relevance to a broader problem or debate. Clearly state your objectives and research questions, and indicate how you will answer them. Give an overview of your dissertation's structure. Everything in the introduction should be clear, engaging, and relevant to your ...

  10. Different Types of Dissertations

    Why dissertation type matters to you: The implications for you about the type of dissertation you use appear in the method you use to explore your research question and in the structure of the dissertation document, itself. While the three types vary from one another in method, the problem solving approach also varies from the other two in ...

  11. Exemple de dissertation : brille au bac de français

    Si tu envisages la dissertation au bac de français, tu es au bon endroit.. Tu trouveras sur cette page : Des exemples de sujets de dissertation sur chaque œuvre au programme.; Un exemple de dissertation entièrement rédigée selon les exigences du bac de français.; Pour bien traiter ces sujets, aide-toi de ma méthode de la dissertation qui te montre comment organiser tes idées et ...

  12. The 7 Types of Dissertations Explained: Which One is Right for You?

    In-depth study of a particular case. Business, Education, Psychology, Social Sciences. Detailed analysis of a specific instance. Comparative. Compares and contrasts two or more entities. Law, Education, Political Science, International Relations. Identifying patterns or discrepancies. Project-Based.

  13. Dissertation Structure & Layout 101 (+ Examples)

    Time to recap…. And there you have it - the traditional dissertation structure and layout, from A-Z. To recap, the core structure for a dissertation or thesis is (typically) as follows: Title page. Acknowledgments page. Abstract (or executive summary) Table of contents, list of figures and tables.

  14. How to Choose a Dissertation Topic

    Step 3: Look for books and articles. Step 4: Find a niche. Step 5: Consider the type of research. Step 6: Determine the relevance. Step 7: Make sure it's plausible. Step 8: Get your topic approved. Other interesting articles. Frequently asked questions about dissertation topics.

  15. Dissertations & projects: Research questions

    First, it may be useful to explain the difference between a research question and a hypothesis. A research question is simply a question that your research will address and hopefully answer (or give an explanation of why you couldn't answer it). A hypothesis is a statement that suggests how you expect something to function or behave (and which ...

  16. Choosing between the different types of dissertation

    However, you'll learn about these justifications in detail in the Quantitative Dissertations part of Lærd Dissertation, where you can choose between one of three routes (i.e., Route #1: Replication-based dissertations, Route #2: Data-driven dissertations, and Route #3: Theory-driven dissertations ).

  17. 101 Qualitative Dissertation Questions

    Part 8 provides the information that one needs regarding the various activities that occur after writing the dissertation. Part 1: Planning and Gearing Up. Part 2: Choosing an Appropriate Qualitative Approach. Part 3: Preparing and Writing the Proposal. Part 4: Conducting the Research: Data Collection.

  18. Plan de dissertation : la méthode pour le bac de français

    Il existe trois types de plan de dissertation, mais pour le bac de français, tu n'as besoin de ne maîtriser que les deux premiers : le plan dialectique et le plan thématique. Chacun type de plan de dissertation correspond à un type de sujet. Tu ne peux donc pas choisir n'importe quel plan pour n'importe quel sujet.

  19. Dissertation

    Dissertation typically involves the exploration of a particular research question or topic in-depth, and it requires students to conduct original research, analyze data, and present their findings in a scholarly manner. It is often the culmination of years of study and represents a significant contribution to the academic field. Types of ...

  20. Les sujets de dissertation

    Les sujets de dissertation. Le sujet de dissertation s'exprime sous forme de question. Cette question doit être problématisée : il faut comprendre ce qui y est interrogé, ce qui rend la réponse complexe. Bien repérer le type de sujet permet de situer selon quel axe de réflexion le raisonnement doit être mené. I. Le sujet « X est-il Y ?

  21. La dissertation pour l'écrit du bac de français

    La dissertation consiste à conduire une réflexion personnelle organisée sur une question littéraire portant sur l'une des œuvres et sur le parcours associé figurant dans le programme d'œuvres. Le candidat choisit l'un des trois sujets de dissertation, chacun étant en rapport avec l'une des œuvres du programme et son parcours associés. Pour développer son argumentation, le candidat s ...

  22. La Méthode de la Dissertation pour le Bac de Français

    Voici la méthode de la dissertation pour le bac de français en 9 étapes simples : Lire le sujet et entourer les mots importants. Déterminer si le sujet appelle un plan dialectique (question fermée) ou thématique (question ouverte) Reformuler le sujet sous la forme d'une question qui sera la problématique du devoir.