Key Differences between Master’s And Undergraduate Dissertations

Undergraduate Dissertations

Whether you are enrolled in a master’s or an undergraduate degree, writing a dissertation is compulsory. You cannot get the degree without submitting an effective and perfect dissertation. The reason is the master’s and undergraduate dissertations are meant to test your learning. So, you cannot escape it. Well, there are some obvious differences between an undergraduate and a master’s dissertation. With your presence in this article, it is easy to guess that you are here to learn about those differences.

Do not worry at all; you have just come to the right place. Today’s article will examine the top differences between a master’s and undergraduate dissertation. However, before that, let’s define the term dissertation.

What Is A Dissertation?

A dissertation is a lengthy academic document completed as part of a higher studies degree. It is primarily assigned to check the knowledge of students about their field. It does not matter whether you are an undergraduate degree student or a master’s degree student. You must submit a dissertation as part of your coursework and higher studies. A dissertation has five chapters, i.e., introduction, literature review, methodology, results and discussion, and conclusion. Hence, this is what a dissertation is.

Key Differences Between Master’s And Undergraduate Dissertations

One dissertation is not like the other because it can have a different dissertation format and structure. So how can a dissertation written by an undergraduate student be the same as a dissertation written by a master’s student? Definitely, master’s and undergraduate dissertations are not similar. There are some big differences between both kinds of academic work. Do you know about those differences? No. Hence, a brief description of the key differences is as follows:

The Difference In The Word Count

The first difference that exists between an undergraduate and a master’s dissertation is the word count difference. A master’s dissertation is very long. The chapters in it contain tons of information about the topic. The normal word count of a master’s dissertation is 15000 to 20000. On the other hand, being a dissertation that is written at a level lower than the master’s, an undergraduate dissertation has fewer words. The normal word count of an undergraduate dissertation is 8000 to 10000.

The Difference In Originality

There is a huge difference between the originality of the ideas in masters and undergraduate dissertations. The master’s dissertation is designed to check the student’s knowledge about the field and what he has learned about his subject. Therefore, this dissertation demands the inclusion of high-quality original ideas. In contrast, an undergraduate dissertation is very centric on measuring your ability to follow the procedures. The teachers do not pay much attention to the ideas in this academic document.

The Difference In Intensity

Another difference that makes a big difference is the difference between the intensity of the dissertation writing time. A master’s dissertation is a lengthy writing project, and this time is very tense for most students. The road to writing a master’s dissertation is lonelier. However, the road to writing an undergraduate dissertation is pretty easy. There are many students who can accompany you on this road.

The Difference In Sources

The difference no. 4 between these two dissertations is of sources. Sources mean the data sources from where the researcher can collect data. As a master’s dissertation is supposed to be composed of original ideas and thoughts, the sources of this dissertation are journals, authentic databases, and digital libraries. In contrast, the undergraduate dissertation is not very strict in terms of the originality of ideas and thoughts. Therefore, taking data from sources other than journals is also acceptable.

The Difference In The Level

The dissertation level is another factor that makes a difference between masters and undergraduate dissertations. Achieving the level of a master’s dissertation is far more different than achieving the level of an undergraduate dissertation. The reason is that a master’s dissertation is very research-thirsty. As the writer, you need to include tons of information relevant to your topic. On the other hand, the level of an undergraduate dissertation is a bit low. To write this dissertation, you will have much time and need to conduct less search on the topic. This is why it is an easy academic writing project for many students.

Master’s VS Undergraduate Dissertations

Aspect Master’s Dissertation Undergraduate Dissertation
Purpose Research-based project Research-based project
Length Around 15,000 – 25,000 words Around 6,000 – 12,000 words
Depth of analysis In-depth analysis of a specific topic with original research Analysis of a specific topic with some original research
Originality Expected to make a significant and original contribution to the field Expected to contribute to the field with new insights or perspectives
Supervision More independent work, with some guidance from a supervisor More guidance from a supervisor, with less independence in the research process
Methodology More advanced research methodology Less advanced research methodology
Academic level Higher academic level with more advanced reading, writing, and critical thinking Lower academic level with developing reading, writing, and critical thinking
Research experience Usually requires some previous research experience May or may not require previous research experience
Timeframe Takes a longer time to complete (several months or even a year) Can be completed in a shorter timeframe (within a few months)
Assessment Assessed more rigorously and to higher standards Assessed to lower standards with less emphasis on originality
Career prospects Often a requirement for entry-level jobs in academia or research Not necessarily a requirement for entry-level jobs in academia or research

Final Thoughts

In this guidepost, we have discussed the key differences between master’s and undergraduate dissertations. Hopefully, this article has shed some light on the primary differences. This article aims to inform you of the differences between these two dissertations. From the discussion above, it can be inferred that a master’s degree is a step up. So, read the abovementioned differences and work on these writing projects accordingly.

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