It's probably the most important piece of research and writing you will undertake during your undergraduate career – so the thought of writing your dissertation can be daunting. Starting out with a robust plan will focus your research, use your time efficiently and keep the task manageable.
Select your field of interest
First things first: what topics have you most enjoyed on your course? Investigating a subject you genuinely enjoy will make dissertation research less overwhelming.
Do as much preliminary reading around the subject area as you can to make sure there is plenty of literature out there to support your initial ideas.
Take a good look at the most recent writings in your areas of interest. They will help you to identify the best angle to take and could highlight the gaps in current inquiry that you can address.
Choose an approach and a title
What will your line of inquiry be? You may, for example, wish to extend a study that has already been carried out, apply a theory to some practical experience and critique how successful it is, or closely analyse an idea or object using a particular approach.
Your approach will inform your title. The title should clearly present the line of inquiry your dissertation will take. If you're unsure, make up a working title. You could even compose a few different titles each with a slightly different emphasis, and keep them all in mind as you do your research.
Remember to run your title by your dissertation tutor. They will be able to give you advice, help you refine any grey areas and suggest reading for research.
Make an outline plan
The general essay structure is as follows:
• Introduction – say what you are going to say
• Main body – say it
• Conclusion – say what you've said
You can break down each of these three areas further. In the introduction, your subheadings could include:
• What you are examining
• How are you going to do it (concepts/theories/studies)
The main body might break down into:
• Definitions, setting out areas of research, anticipating problems
• Main argument or theme
• Alternative argument or theme
And your conclusion would include:
• Summary of your findings
• Is there a solution?
• What remains unresolved?
• What future research could illuminate the issue further?
Start a list of sources
When you're planning your sections, include the full names of books and page numbers wherever you can to help you retrieve information quickly as you write your draft. It is also useful to begin to compile you bibliography during the planning stage.
Review and adjust your plan as you go
Even the best laid plans go astray – so don't worry! As you read and research around your key areas, the structure and direction of your initial plan may shift. This is the beauty of having a plan. As a potential new focus arises, you can adjust your title, section headings and content notes to encompass your new ideas before your draft writing begins. A good plan means you will not lose focus on the end result.
• Next in this three-part series: How to write your dissertation.
Thanks to Goldsmiths University for supplying this content.
List Of The Most Impressive Town Planning Dissertation Ideas
Town planning, better known as “urban planning,” is a field of study and practice that involves using land and designing urban environments, including transportation, infrastructure, networks of distribution, and other parameter. It’s a multidisciplinary field incorporating architecture, public policy, and urban design. Many students pursue a PhD in this useful and potentially lucrative field, and the final step to obtaining a doctorate is your dissertation.
Creating a Town Planning Dissertation
When you plan your thesis paper, you will select a topic for intensive, concentrated study. You will then conduct independent research into this topic, synthesizing diverse data and information through your research to arrive at a thesis. Your thesis is the central argument or idea of your dissertation paper. Your topic should be relevant to your curriculum and study program, and should be relevant to a particular subfield within urban planning, like architectural design or social policy. You will then use your investigative and analytical skills to arrive at an original conclusion.
Here is the rough structure that your thesis will take:
- A general discussion of the existing body of theories and data that you will take into consideration.
- An explanation of the nature and parameters of your topic.
- The potential contribution that your research can make to your field.
- Your methodological approach and main research questions.
- An argument to prove or disprove an established hypothesis, or support a new proposition of your own.
- A summary to synthesize and conclude your findings.
You will nearly always have a thesis advisor to guide you through the long, exhaustive process of constructing your argument and conducting your research.
A List of Impressive Urban Planning Dissertation Ideas
Here are a few ideas for topic areas within the field of urban planning, which you can use as a basis to choose a research question for your graduate thesis.
- Environmental planning in modern cities
- Impact of electrical infrastructure on city organization
- Impact of globalization on urban areas
- Impact of environmental change
- Flood risk, flood resistance, and urban layouts
- Impact of business interests on spatial urban organization and zoning policy
- Reducing carbon emissions in cities
- Incorporating new energy technologies into urban areas
- Using policy and planning to enact innovative urban change
- Protecting wildlife near urban areas
These are just a few potential general topics, which you can take into consideration when forming your thesis and conducting research. The key to your dissertation is to create an original claim or statement, and conduct original research to support or refute a hypothesis.
Our experts will be more than happy to assist you with the preparation of your dissertation proposal, editing your thesis or helping you with the research methodology.