The dissertation methodology structure is a very important part of your thesis. In the methodology this section you have to explain to your reader why you employed the research methodology that you did to arrive at your conclusion. You also have to explain how you arrived at your findings and how they resolve the questions you were seeking out to explain. There are various sections to discuss in this part of your paper.
- Research Methodology
- Research Design
- Data Collection and Analysis Methods
- Ethics, Reliability, Validity, Generalizability and Limitation
In this part of your methodology you have to make it clear which research philosophy you employed. There are three main research philosophies that are very common in academia: positivism, interpretivism and post-positivism. Each one has its own research methodology and you will know which one you have employed during the course of your research.
Positivism aims to conform to the scientific method during the course of the research. Interpretivism aims to study people and is the most widely used in social sciences. Post-positivism is similar to positivism but takes a relativistic approach.
This section is the main part of explaining your research. You will have to write why you chose the research that you did and what restrictions you faced doing it. This section is mainly concerned with answer the questions of how, why, when, what and where? The so-called W questions.
The main decision you will have to make for your methodology is whether or not it is qualitative or quantitative. Quantitative data is concerned with collecting numbers and analyzing them, whereas qualitative data and research is to do with broad research focusing on people’s feelings and perceptions, and basing theories around your findings.
This a very important section when writing a methodology for a dissertation. Here you will explain how you collected your data and reason why you chose that method of collection. You will have to answer questions such as how did you choose your sample size and explain how you feel your choice of respondents, as part of your research, best reflected a fair approach. Here you will also need to explain any downsides to the methods you chose to undertake, and it is best to be honest. Don’t claim that you could see no disadvantage to your research design, as this will likely mark you down.
This section will deal with explaining to your reader how your data was collected and what methods you used to analyze the data. For example you may have collected data by surveying people and analyzed it using computer software. You have to explain all of this in detail including why your methods are reliable.
The final section of your methodology should discuss these five points pertaining to your paper. Ethic is about discussing the ethical side of your research. Reliability discusses how reliable your research is. Validity is about how valid your research is. Generalizability discusses to what extent your results could apply to other population and limitation discusses the drawbacks to your research.
We hope that this simple guide will show you how to write a methodology for a dissertation in easy steps. As you can see it is split into small sections which will be easy for you to understand and write basing your methodology on the outline as discussed on this page.