Supporting you with your dissertation Supporting you with your dissertation

‘The series of seminars was full of interesting and thought-provoking material; I'll make good use of it all as I move from the 'thinking' stage to the dissertation proper.’ [UEA MA student, 2015]

Workshops are open to undergraduate and Masters students from all disciplines. No booking is required, but places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.

We also offer one-to-one drop-ins and tutorial appointments and a range of writing resources including study guides on dissertation writing.

Workshop programme Workshop programme

Dissertation workshops: spring 2018

Session title




Getting started Wednesday 16 May 2:30pm-4:30pm Students Union room 6
Managing your time Wednesday 23 May 2pm-4pm Students Union room 6
Getting started (repeat) Wednesday 6 June 2pm-4pm Students Union room 6
The literature review Wednesday 13 June 2pm-4pm Students Union room 6
The literature review (repeat) Wednesday 20 June 2pm-4pm Students Union room 6
Editing and proofreading Wednesday 27 June 2pm-4pm Students Union room 6
Editing and proofreading (repeat) Wednesday 4 July 2pm-4pm Students Union room 6


Your dissertation: getting started

In order to make a good start on your dissertation it is essential to have a clear idea of the structure and direction your writing will take. This workshop aims to help you to:

  • Reflect on the stages of the dissertation writing process.
  • Gain an understanding of where you are in the process and the steps you need to take to make progress.
  • Consider how to select an appropriate topic and develop it into a question.
  • Identify common dissertation structures and the function of different sections and chapters.
  • Understand the function of the Literature Review and issues to bear in mind before beginning to write one.
  • Discuss any potential problems which might prevent you from progressing through the dissertation writing process.

Workshop slides (2016) pdf [781 KB]

Your dissertation: managing your time

Making effective use of your time is an essential aspect of successful, stress-free research. This workshop will introduce a variety of time management strategies that you can adapt to your own needs and working style. In particular you will consider the following:

  • how you spend your time
  • how to break down the dissertation into manageable tasks
  • how to plan and prioritise your work
  • how to maintain steady progress with your dissertation.

Workshop slides (2016) pdf [88KB]
Handout (2013) pdf [33KB]

Your dissertation: the literature review

Having an understanding of the existing literature in your area of research is a key part of every dissertation, and is often one of the first pieces of dissertation research you will undertake. This session aims to help you to:

  • Understand the purpose of a literature review and the role it plays in your dissertation
  • Take a critical, analytical approach to the literature
  • Organise and structure the literature review

Workshop slides (2014) pdf [144 KB]

Activity pdf [31 KB]
Handout (2013) pdf [42KB]

Your dissertation: editing and proofreading

All the research you've done needs, of course, to result in a final product: your dissertation. This workshop aims to help you manage the final stages of your research journey by suggesting strategies and techniques to enable you to:

  • bring together the sections of your work
  • put distance between yourself and your work so you can look at it critically
  • proofread your work effectively.

Please bring a piece of your dissertation writing to this session.

Workshop slides (2012) pdf [26 KB]


Further resources
Proofreading, referencing and bibliographies slides (from 2011) pdf [73KB]
Exercise - Proofreading (2013) pdf [411KB]
Exercise with errors highlighted - Proofreading (2013) pdf [416KB]
Exercise answers - Proofreading (2013) pdf [455KB]
Proofreading for language problems (2011) pdf [88KB]
Playing cards (2011) pdf [56 KB]