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The dissertation is the final stage of the Masters degree and provides you with the opportunity to show that you have gained the necessary skills and knowledge in order to organise and conduct a research project.

The Masters level dissertation is usually distinguished from other forms of writing by its attempt to analyse situations in terms of the ‘bigger picture’. The most successful dissertations are those which are specific and focused.

There are a number of resources and workshops available to support you throughout the dissertation process.

Resources

Academic skills for masters students 

Information, data and media literacies

Critical thinking and reading

SAGE Research Methods Online

Discover Library Resources

Dissertation writing

Referencing and academic integrity

1-2-1 Research Support

Referencing Health Check: What is your referencing style?

APA

Great! You can find out more information about this style in our referencing guide.

Harvard

Great! You can find out more information about this style in our referencing guide.

Chicago

Great! You can find out more information about this style in our referencing guide.

MHRA

Great! You can find out more information about this style in our referencing guide.

MLA

Great! You can find out more information about this style in our referencing guide.

OSCOLA

Great! You can find out more information about this style in our referencing guide.

Numerical

Great! You can find out more information about this style in our referencing guide.

RSC

Great! You can find out more information about this style in our referencing guide.

Vancouver

Great! You can find out more information about this style in our referencing guide.

Something else

OK! There are many referencing styles available. Make sure you have an up to date guide for the style you are using. And check out this guidance from schools or get in touch with your school office or supervisor to confirm it’s OK to use your chosen style.

I'm not sure

Not a problem! You’ll need to find out so you can correctly format any citations you include in your dissertation. Check out this guidance from schools and get in touch with your school office or supervisor if it is not clear.

How many citations will you be including in your dissertation?

0-20

Citation practices vary from subject to subject, but it is essential that you offer evidence to support your arguments. Whenever you directly copy the words of another author (quoting) or put their ideas into your own words (paraphrasing) you must acknowledge that you have done so. There is more information available in the referencing section

21-50

There is no ‘right’ number of citations and practices vary from subject to subject. Whenever you directly copy the words of another author (quoting) or put their ideas into your own words (paraphrasing) you must acknowledge that you have done so. There is more information available in the referencing section

51-100

There is no ‘right’ number of citations and practices vary from subject to subject. Whenever you directly copy the words of another author (quoting) or put their ideas into your own words (paraphrasing) you must acknowledge that you have done so. There is more information available in the referencing section

100+

There is no ‘right’ number of citations and practices vary from subject to subject. If you are referencing a lot of materials, make sure you think about how you organise that citation data so that it is available to you when you need it. There is more information available in the referencing section

Are you using any reference management tools?

Yes- and I love them!

Great news! We’ve got some online guides that might be useful for you, and don’t forget to synchronise your library or back up the citation data to avoid any last minute panics.

Yes- but I might be doing it wrong!

Don’t worry- we can help! We’ve got some online guides that might be useful for you or you can book for some 1-2-1 support.

No- I’m happy doing it manually!

That’s great! Make sure you keep an organised record of everything you’re going to be citing, and check out the guidelines for your referencing style so your references are consistent.

No- I don’t know where to start!

Don’t worry! We’ve got some online guides that might be useful for you, or you can come and chat to us in the Library. Learning a new system does require a bit of effort, so it’s worth thinking about the best use of your time if your deadline is coming up.

I have no idea what this is!

There are some tools that can help automate the process of gathering and formatting citation data. This can save a lot of time, but equally learning a new system requires a bit of effort. We’ve got some online guides that might be useful for you, or you can come and chat to us in the Library.

Do you need any help with referencing?

No- I’ve got this!

Excellent- good luck with your project and don’t forget you can use the Library’s instant chat service for speedy answers to any weird referencing questions that crop up

Not sure – I might later on!

OK! If you can’t find the answers you need through our online guidance, use the Library’s instant chat service  for speedy answers to any weird referencing questions that crop up. 

Yes – definitely!

Don’t panic. Spend a little bit of time looking through our online guidance and book a 1-2-1 if you’re still battling with your references.

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