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Learning the Dissertation Format: Standards That Every Student Should Know

Writing a dissertation is one of the most daunting tasks in academic career of a student. The focus is not to only to gather good research data but also to compile them together in a meaningful way. All dissertations and research papers follow a certain format. Usually every student should follow one of the two major formatting styles in the world. Different universities and professors have their own preferences for the formatting styles. Some institutes will prefer a paper in APA style while others may ask you to follow the MLA format for a dissertation.

If you are supposed to write a dissertation then you must also format it. For the formatting, you will have one of the three situations

  1. Depends on the subject under concern

    The American Psychological Association has set a standard formatting style “APA” for papers in psychology and other social sciences. Students who study psychology follow this standard style for their papers across the world. The choice of the format greatly depends upon the subject under concern. A dissertation in math will follow the MLA style.

  2. Depends on the professor

    Some professors are comfortable with one kind of format. They keep assigning the same format to students of each session. This makes it easy for them to track changes and compare different papers. If your professor needs you to follow a certain format then you should follow their instructions. If you fail to follow the requirements by your teacher then you will lose some points.

  3. Student choice

    If you are writing a dissertation about a subject that may follow any of the two styles according to the standards, and your professor told you to choose one on your own then you are free to choose any method. Ideally, you should follow a format you are already familiar with. Dissertation is not the first academic assignments you are going to format research papers also need formatting. You can choose to follow a format that you already used for the research paper writing.

Both the styles have their own specifications and need to be very well composed. The best way to follow a format is to take notes on a separate paper and track them on a MS word document. This will help you save a lot of time and stay on the right track for your dissertation.

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