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Dissertation Discussion Chapter: Do’s & Don’ts To Write One In 12 Easy Steps

Date published July 11 2020 by Stella Carter

  • Chapter 1: Introduction
  • Chapter 2: Literature Review
  • Chapter 3: Methodology
  • Chapter 4: Result

You might think that the hardest part of writing the dissertation is completed, right?

  • Chapter 5: Discussion

Not really.

Discussion is the most important chapter in your dissertation. It allows students to take a fresh perspective of their dissertation results and gives them a chance to provide new and original information to the world. In short, dissertation discussion chapter example is that of a heart.
This is the chapter that can either make or break your dissertation, but somehow students fail to fully explore the findings of their dissertation and give the chapter credit it deserves. This is the reason why we have compiled 12 easy steps that you can follow to write the perfect discussion for your dissertation. [ 1 ] [ 2 ] [ 3 ]

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Table of Contents

The Do’s And Don’ts Of Writing Discussions Chapter

Don’ts Do’s
Leaving your chapter unstructured Structuring your discussion
Starting directly Linking and reiterating to the research question
Inconsistency in tone Consistency in tone
Not linking your results Establish your results
Discussing only the correct result Give attention to all parts of your results
Not giving insight to your results Explaining the result to your audience
Not making your answers credible enough Defending your answer
Leaving the unexpected findings Identifying conflicting data and unexpected findings
Not discussing the limitations of your research Identifying potential limitations and weaknesses
Leaving out recommendations Providing implications and recommendations
Not establishing significance Establishing significance
Elongating unnecessarily Keeping everything brief, specific and concise

Examples 1:

  • Incorrect: Starting by being too specific to the result.
  • Correct: Going from general to specific
  1. Linking findings to literature
  2. Then to theory
  3. Then to practice


Whether it is a masters’ thesis discussion chapter or a PhD discussion chapter. The first and the foremost thing you need to do is structure your discussion chapter properly. The discussion should follow a funnel structure. Everything should taper down to your results.

Examples 2:

  • Incorrect: Starting directly without stating research question
  • Correct: Starting by reiterating on the research question

To give the chapter coherence, re-state the research question or the hypothesis that you wished to answer or verify through this dissertation.

Examples 3:

  • Incorrect: Tone not being consistent with the tone of dissertation
  • Correct: Narrative style and tone same as the one used throughout dissertation

Make sure that the flow of your dissertation is not deviated.

Examples 4:

  • Incorrect: Stating the results plainly
  • Correct: Establish why your dissertation results are accurate and acceptable

Link your results to your literature review, further explain how they are consistent with previously published knowledge. Do not forget to use relevant and appropriate citations.

Examples 5:

dissertation do and dont graph
  • Incorrect: The graph shows a perfectly linear relationship
  • Correct: The graph shows an almost perfectly linear relationship with an anomaly in the middle, due to an external factors

Examples 6:

  • Incorrect: Posting pictures and tables of your result without explaining them
  • Correct: Providing clear and detailed explanation for every aspect of your result
Things you need to explain are:
  • Any patterns that you noticed should be pointed out
  • Principles that were followed
  • Relationship shown in the result. Can the result be represented as a mathematical equation?
  • What was the dependent variable and what were the independent variables?
  • Which independent variables seemed to have the most influence on the result?
Everything should be put in perspective.
The correct sequencing of this information is very important.
i. Declare your answer
ii. Support your answer with the relevant results that you obtained
iii. Back all of it by citing previous works from credible sources

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    Examples 7:

    • Incorrect: Leaving your answer without proving their credibility
    • Correct: Providing adequate proves for the authenticity of your answers

    You can defend your answer in two possible ways.

    i. By proving the validity of your results and answer

    ii. By showing the flaws and shortcoming of answers that may have confliction with yours.

    By giving both side of the arguments, you will have a better chance of making your point of viewmore convincing.

    Examples 8:

    T =
    T = -A, T= +A

    • Incorrect: Leaving out the unexpected findings without explaining them i.e. explaining only T= +A as it is corresponds with the result
    • Correct: Explaining both the expected T= +A and possible explanation of T= -A

    The conflicting data (if any) in your dissertation results should be identified. These should then be evaluated and discussed.
    Just like conflicting data, unexpected findings should also be identified and discussed. The proper way to do this is by firstly stating the finding and then describing it. This is a great way to showcase your knowledge as you can also give a possible explanation of what might have caused these unexpected and faulty data.

    This practice is considered as a sign of good discussion and an effective way to win over your audience.

    Examples 9:

    • Incorrect: Not discussing the limitations that may have hampered the result
    • Correct: Identifying potential limitations and weaknesses
    Moreover, you can also state that how these limitations might have affected your results. And the ways through which these limitations and weaknesses can be reduced.

    Examples 10:

    • Incorrect: Not providing recommendation for future research
    • Correct: Making sure to that you state what your results implicate. And also leave a recommendation for future researchers of how they can carry this one forward

    Examples 11:

    • Incorrect: Not establishing significance of your results properly
    • Correct: Establishing the significance of your study and your findings. Explain how your results have filled the previously present void. And its contribution in the field

    Examples 12:

    • Incorrect: Elongating unnecessarily, providing information that is not relevant
    • Correct: Being brief, specific and concise
    Everything should be direct and to the point.

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    Remember, never slack off in the discussion chapter as it is the highlight your dissertation. Use these 12 points to write the best discussion chapter. And share this blog with others, you never know who might need it.

    Lastly if you are facing problem and want dissertating writing help in other areas, come visit our website. We do provide other services e.g. consultancy, dissertation proposal service, etc.