What to watch out for when editing a Master’s dissertation

Alice Borretton 28 June 2022
Student working on their dissertation

Editing your Master’s dissertation is as important a stage as the writing itself and here’s a short list of things to watch out for.

Leave enough time 

The first, and most important, thing to avoid is underestimating the time required. Editing your work will take just as long, if not longer. You need to make sure you leave at least a few days between finishing writing and submitting to allow yourself enough time to give your work a thorough edit.

Check the submission guidelines

Your university is likely to have guidelines on formatting, referencing, and submitting a dissertation. And it’s important to make sure that you check these and are hitting their requirements. Follow those guidelines when editing and proofreading your work. Not doing so could affect your final mark.

Consider the academic tone

It's important to make sure your tone and language are appropriate. Poor academic tone will affect how your tutors interpret what you're saying. Academic writing is mostly in a more formal register, so pay attention to any good examples you're shown. It will also help ensure your dissertation effectively communicates the intended meaning.

Consider the referencing style used

It is also important to make sure that you have used the same style and system of referencing throughout, as any mismatched references not only look unprofessional but could lose you marks. Also, make sure that all of your citations and references match!

Review your work as a whole and in chunks

It is important to make sure that your writing is coherent and clear both as a whole picture and within chapters and paragraphs themselves. Try reading it paragraph by paragraph, starting from the end and working backwards. This will help you figure out whether your dissertation is cohesive and tells a strong narrative. 

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Alice Borretton 28 June 2022