The purpose of writing a thesis (alternatively known as a dissertation) is to show that you have thoroughly
researched a topic that may make a difference in a particular field. The thesis needs to clearly outline the students' research
At Crown University, students have the opportunity to write a thesis in their final years
when undertaking a Masters or Doctorate program.
A thesis defense differs from a typical examination in several respects. The biggest difference is that the
candidate often knows more about the topic than the examiners ("the committee," or the "jury"), having researched
the topic extensively, typically over a number of years. The purpose of the thesis defense is to test the
candidate's knowledge of and thinking in related areas, and to test the candidate's
knowledge of and ability to explain his or her thesis.
It's your thesis! Only you will be required to defend it. You are trying to show:
- Development of understanding of the main issues in your field.
- An understanding of your own research - it's strength's and weaknesses.
- How your research fits into developments in the field over the period of your studies.
Introduction and Discussion:
Build and argument. Structure is important!
Data / Problem Solving / Approaches that failed / Recognition of the unsolvable.
Q/H - Research Question or Hypothesis.
S - Strategy.
ED - Experimental design. Not a repeat of the methods section.
R - Results and Discussion.
I/C - Interpretation or Conclusion.
Remember, a strong thesis is specific and justifies discussion.
For new students, a lecture will be given to explain how successful thesis writing can be carried out.