The abstract thesis, present in all the three-year or master degree theses, is the first part of the thesis that is read and precedes the actual deepening of the subject.
It is nothing more than a brief summary of the content you have chosen, in which in a few brief points you will have the opportunity to present your work to the reader.
It is therefore of fundamental importance that it be clear, well written and that it contains all the necessary information.
The three functions of a thesis abstract
1. Abstract thesis: Explain the title of the thesis
Its first function is to explain the thesis title, triennial or magisterial. A well written abstract (summary) can arouse the reader’s interest and encourage him to continue reading.
2. Abstract thesis: Synthesize the key points
Secondly, the abstract can be very useful for all those readers who do not have the time to read the complete three-year or master’s thesis. Often, managers and scientists only read the abstract, to get an idea of the themes it addresses.
3. Abstract thesis: Offer an overview of the thesis
Finally, the abstract has the task of providing the reader with an overview of the work, so that he already knows what to expect from reading and that he can contextualise the thesis material without difficulty. A well-written abstract will allow you to better understand even the most complex parts of the paper.
Length, position and tenses of the abstract thesis
The abstract thesis should never be more than 5% of the entire three-year or master’s thesis (about 250 words); It is important that it is short, because it may need to be read quickly.
It should be inserted after the preface and before the table of contents. The most suitable tense to use is the present or the recent past.
Example of abstracts thesis on the present or near past
Example of abstracts present thesis: The study shows that most participants prefer to watch a film in the cinema rather than on television at home.
Example of an abstract in the near past: The study showed that most participants prefer to watch a film in the cinema rather than on television at home.
How is a thesis abstract structured?
Make each paragraph answer the following questions:
- What is the main theme? Indicate the subject, topic and questions of your thesis. If you have also formulated hypotheses, argument here.
- What has been done? Briefly explain the method and approach you have chosen to use for your research.
- What did you find out? Make a summary of the most important results obtained and formulate a conclusion.
Use of acronyms
Since the reader must be able to read and understand the abstract without having to consult other parts of the thesis, if you choose to use acronyms remember to briefly explain their meaning.
As in the rest of your three-year or master degree dissertation, it is also necessary to include references in the abstract when using external sources. However, in this type of work the use of sources is less frequent, often being studies and research of a personal nature.
- Thesis abstract checklist
- The abstract is as long as an A4 sheet.
- The abstract is inserted immediately after the preface and before the table of contents.
- The abstract is written in the present.
- The object is shown.
- The problem is explained.
- The questions or hypotheses are explained.
- The methodology and approach to research are briefly explained.
- An overview of the most important results is provided.
- The conclusion (the answer to your question / problem) is illustrated.
- The results are discussed and explained (discussion).
- Suggestions for future research are presented.
- The recommendations are discussed concisely.
- The abstract explains what the thesis deals with (even to those without previous knowledge of the subject).