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Tips for Writing an Effective Title for Your Dissertation

Fred Holt

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Your dissertation’s title and abstract are very important. Why? If a researcher wants to find dissertation writing on a topic, he or she may use the Digital Dissertations database. To search this database by topic, the researcher would enter keyword search terms. The database then searches for these keywords in the title and abstract of the dissertations included in the Digital Dissertations database. Writing good titles and abstracts will allow researchers to locate your research and hopefully distribute it to a wider audience.

For example, when a researcher uses a database to find published research, the researcher enters search terms into the database. For example, a researcher trying to locate dissertations using qualitative methodology about how school administrators use technology, might enter the following into the Digital Dissertations Database. If an author’s dissertation has a title or abstract with either (computer OR technology) AND (principals OR superintendents) AND qualitative, the researcher would locate that author’s dissertation.

Writing a Title for Your Dissertation

1. Is title sufficiently specific?

APA calls for
• titles of 10-12 words
• titles that can stand alone
• don’t use the following words in a title, “ a study of” or “an experimental investigation of”
• don’t use abbreviations

2. Does the title the author supplied describe the nature of the research without describing the results?

3. Has the author avoided using a “yes-no” question as a title?

4. If there is a main title and subtitle, do both provide important information about the research?

5. Did the author include the primary variables in the title?

6. Did the author indicate what types of people participated in the study?

7. If the title conveys causality, does the method of research justify it?

8. Is the title the author provided free of jargon and acronyms that might be unknown to the audience for the research report?

9. If the study is strongly tied to a theory, is the name of the theory mentioned in the title?

10. Overall, is the title effective and appropriate? Does it tell the reader what the publication is about-think of it this way…if a buy dissertation is 150 pages long, the title should condense the 100 pages to 12 words (recommended by the APA style; however, other styles go as high as 26 words in a title) that accurately described the research purpose to the reader.

Fred Holt, M. A. (English) from University of New Jersey, specialized in teaching academic writing. He is skilled in MLA, APA, and Chicago manuals of style. His work included writing, thesis, term paper writing, dissertation writing, essay writing, buy essay, buy dissertation etc.


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