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How to Write a Great Thesis Conclusion: 5 Tips for Masters


This article was contributed by Karen McLaurin who works as a writer at Edusson.com

So you’ve written a comprehensive thesis paper with all the relevant information, arguments, and citations. Now, you have to finish it all off in a way that is engaging and leaves an impression on the reader. This portion of the text is known as the conclusion, and writing conclusions is one of the most difficult things students have to face.

But why is it so difficult? One reason is that your thesis conclusion needs to be relevant to everything you’ve talked about in your paper. This wouldn’t be so difficult if it wasn’t supposed to be short and sweet. Because your conclusion should be short and concise, it becomes important to ensure that you talk about very specific points that help the reader leave your paper with a clear understanding of the subject. Let’s talk about some tips to help you write great thesis conclusions.

How Long Should Your Conclusion be?

The general rule of thumb is that a conclusion should be around 5-7% of the total word count. It really depends on the kind of paper you’re writing, however. For a scientific study, you might need to write a very short conclusion in which you include the final results of your research. In a sociopolitical paper, you would need a longer conclusion to reiterate the main points of your report and to tie everything together for the reader.

Restate the Thesis

One of the strongest ways to begin your conclusion is to restate your original thesis. Instead of simply copying it, you should reword it so it doesn’t sound repetitive. You will notice this happening even if you use an essay conclusion maker that automatically generates a conclusion based on the text of your dissertation. Such a tool is great for getting your work done quickly when you’re in a hurry. Just be sure to edit it to your liking so that the reader knows what your main statement is and that they’ve reached the end of your research paper.

Analyze your Key Ideas

woman girl student studying at desk with pc

Your thesis conclusion should highlight the main ideas you’ve presented in your dissertation. Talk about how these are linked to each other and why they are relevant to your primary argument. You may also add any important quotations that you’ve added in your main body. However, keep in mind not to overdo it. Remember that this portion is about your own thoughts and ideas. Even though citations are crucial in a dissertation text, they shouldn’t be a part of your conclusion. So, include as little of such content as possible.

Make Future Recommendations

When writing a conclusion, you should also include recommendations based on your research and thesis statement. Considering all the implications of your findings is a good idea to turn this final section into food for thought. Always remember not to undermine your own work here. Your argument should feel complete on its own and your recommendations shouldn’t need any other studies to feel strong enough to be considered.

You should also make sure not to exaggerate the weight of your recommendations. Do not make promises and do not talk about your ideas as “musts”. Finding the balance between confidence in your work and ideas and giving the reader room to explore alternatives while considering yours is the way to go.

Polishing your Conclusion – and your Paper

Once you have successfully completed your conclusion, go over it very carefully and make adjustments where needed. Try not to start a sentence with phrases like, “in conclusion” or “as a result of my research”. Be as clear as possible. The clearer your text, the better chance it has of sticking with the reader for a longer time.

Your thesis conclusion may also lead to a more polished overall paper. Once you read it, you might come up with a new idea or a better way to explain something in your main body. A good idea is to take a strong sentence or phrase from this portion and use it as your title or subtitle for a more cohesive effect. And before calling it a day, run your text through a grammar checker to make sure there aren’t any typos or punctuation errors in it.

Kinds of Ineffective Conclusions

It is as important to recognize ineffective closing statements as it is to understand how to write good ones. Be sure that you don’t take anything away from the main content of your paper by adding a weak closing section. Here are things you should avoid:

  • Only Reiterating the Thesis Statement: It is good to restate your thesis, but not if that’s the only thing you do. You need to build upon this statement, explain why you stand by it and how your research showcases it, and what can be done in the future based on it. If you simply copy and paste your original statement here without any further content, you might as well write “thank you” in this section.
  • Mentioning the Thesis for the First Time: Many students don’t talk about their main thesis throughout their paper and save it for the end, presumably for a “wow” effect. However, not only does this ruin their concluding statements but it also turns their overall paper very weak and often pointless.
  • Playing on the Reader’s Emotions: Don’t rely on emotion to make your point stronger. You might have very strong feelings about what you’re writing but your reader might not feel the same way. Instead of playing on emotions, rely on strong facts and analysis.
  • Including Additional Information: A lot of writers like to add new information to their conclusions. This is not a good idea because this portion of the text needs to tie into everything you’ve talked about before. Throwing in random new facts that you haven’t even mentioned before makes no sense here. Stick to what you’ve talked about in your main body and give your concluding thoughts and ideas based on that.

To Sum Up

There is a lot to keep in mind when writing a conclusion for your thesis or dissertation. This might be one of the shortest parts of your whole paper but it is one of the most important. Just as the introduction of any paper is the first impression a reader gets about what to expect, the concluding statement is what they will leave with and ponder on.

If it is unrelated to the main text, does not offer any new ideas for the future, or doesn’t talk about the implications and usefulness of your research, it is likely to be forgotten as soon as the reader takes their eyes off of your work. So, keep it short, make it relevant to the main text, and express your recommendations in it if you want to end on a strong note.

About the author

Karen McLaurin works as a writer at Edusson.com. She writes excellent research papers and student essays. She enjoys researching many different sources and trying to find the most useful content. She currently works as a lecturer and writes academic essays. She has been successful in these endeavors.

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