How to Write Chapter 3 of the Dissertation

How to Write Chapter 3 of the Dissertation

The third chapter of the dissertation is usually dedicated to methodology. It has to describe the methods, which have been used to conduct the study. Different methods are used for different purposes, and if the methods are selected properly, it can help an experienced writer to replicate the study or to complete a similar one. To address the main question of your study, the methods and measures of the assignment should work together. It means that the third chapter should start with the explanation on the purpose of your study. 


Information presented in chapter 3 lets the reader know what scientific methods and steps have been taken and utilized in order to make the study reliable and valid. Just like any other chapter of the dissertation, it should start with a short introduction. Give a small overview of the chapter and restate the purpose of your dissertation. The introductory part shouldn’t be more than three paragraphs and shouldn’t have a separate title – “Introduction”.

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It is not always necessary to include this section. However, some educational institutions make it obligatory. In case your educational institution requires you to have the “appropriateness” section included, you should use it to specify whether the research is quantitative, qualitative, experimental, correlational, causal-comparative, quasi-experimental or other. Don’t just list the methods, but explain why they are appropriate to your study more than other methods.

Research design

This section should include the investigation of the problem, as well as the study’s theoretical framework and purpose. Recommendations on how to answer the questions connected with the core of the research should also be given in the ‘research design’ section. The main goal of this section is to convince your audience that there are no better methods for your research, than those that you have selected. Another important goal of the research design section is to institute a sequence of events in the research process.

When working on the research design section, make sure to explicate the research design that you’re using – phenomenological, correlational, or historical, and demonstrate the necessary steps to finish the research design. The description of dependent and independent variables should also be included in this section. Also, make sure to have these three elements in the research design section: 

  • Mention the appropriateness and rationale of your research method (quantitative, qualitative, or mixed). Explain why you prefer one method to the other. Why are they more appropriate?
  • Explain why this exact research design has been chosen (for instance non-experimental or experimental). List different types of designs and explain why the one that you have chosen will work better than others.
  • Explain how the accomplishment of your study’s goals will be fostered by the selection of your research design.

The last part of section 3, dedicated to the methodologies that you’re using, should summarize the  content of the whole section. In order for the dissertation to run smoothly, the last sentence should provide a clear transition to the dissertation’s next chapter.

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