How Long Is A Dissertation - an In-Depth Analysis?

Every university wants their students to write a dissertation as part of their program. No matter how big or small the program is, this is an important part in a student academic journey. Also, first-year students find writing a dissertation upsetting because it is the most important work they will ever do and they may have a lot of questions about this project, especially the length of a dissertation. However, it depends on the field of study, the type of analysis, and the area of research you are working on. If you are also seeking the question of how long is a dissertation then this blog will be a good resource for you.

Definition And Dissertation Purpose

A dissertation is a long piece of writing based on a study that aims to give a new perspective on a certain topic. It's like a PhD thesis in some ways, but in terms of the education system, it's a bigger study project that students usually do after college to try to get a higher degree. Its goal is to show that you can plan and carry out a study while showing that your ideas are accurate and new. Very few students do new research, but it is a great way to show your point of view and approach. On the other hand, you also pick the topic, decide how to do the study, choose the group to study, decide what to prove, etc. You will have to add something of your own, and the more unique it is, the better your chances are of impressing the audience, making useful connections, and adding variety to your future academic collection.

Types Of Dissertation

Three main dissertation types include qualitative, quantitative, or mixed. So, in more detail, let's discuss the different types of dissertations by talking about how they are alike and different.

Quantitative Dissertation

When some students read or hear the words "quantitative" or "types of methodology in the dissertation," they want to know more about them. In this case, the word "quantitative" does not mean that the whole dissertation should use a quantitative research method or statistical analysis. It instead talks about the hypotheses, study questions, or both. This kind of study helps to connect the research strategy, conclude from the results, and draw conclusions.

Qualitative Dissertation

The second kind of dissertation that uses qualitative study methods is this one. Interviews, focus groups, and individual observations that are not planned are used to judge these methods. Some students use research methods that aren't used in quantitative papers, but you can't choose between research methods for qualitative research. If you need to learn how to write your dissertation approach, talk to someone who does. On the other hand, the research process is done uniquely by coming up with research questions, creating and using academic methods, and much more.

Mixed Methods Dissertation

This is the third and final type of mixed-methods dissertation. For many reasons, students need to use a mix of methods in their theses and dissertations, along with different types of study dissertations.

Qualitative and quantitative study methods are used in this type of dissertation. There is more and more support for these kinds of papers, and all their parts must be properly discussed.

How Long Is A Dissertation?

There are many answers to how long a dissertation is. However, most dissertations run between 100 and 200 pages. Some may argue for 146 pages, while others favour a shorter document of 90 pages. Someone else would argue that there should be 200 pages instead. The length of this crucial academic paper is determined by the writer's chosen topic, writing approach, and intended outcomes.

Dissertations are mandatory for earning a master's or doctoral degree at most universities. In these respectable educational institutions, this paper is an essential curriculum component. Most first-year college students are concerned about the length of this paper because of its significance to their education. How long a dissertation should be is a common topic of debate, and there are some helpful guidelines to follow.

How Long Is the Average Dissertation?

The length of a PhD dissertation can vary widely depending on several factors. However, students should be at most 80,000-100,000-word mark when composing their papers. This paper should have about 204 pages. But, the typical length of a PhD thesis also depends on the university and the specific subject.

A dissertation's criteria, particularly its duration, are mostly determined by the institution requiring it. However, about 100,000 words are the sweet spot for most academic institutions. According to the literature, the average length of a dissertation in a STEM field is 159 pages. However, the average dissertation length in a field outside of STEM is roughly 223 pages. Thus, there is a large disparity in length between STEM and non-STEM dissertations.

How Long Is A Dissertation Chapter Length?

How long is a dissertation chapter? This is another question that many students ask. This change is because each chapter is its piece that should talk about a different subject. Your end paper should be the right length if you include the right information clearly and concisely. How long is each part of a paper, then?


In this part of the paper, you should explain why the subject is important. It should also include facts about the subject that are important. The main point of the introduction is to explain why you chose the topic or problem you did and why it is important. Generally, the beginning should be around 10 to 15 pages long. This size is great because it lets you say everything in a short amount of space. Focus on getting people interested without giving away or showing too much. The beginning of your paper should be more interesting.

Literature Review

This is where you look at the sources you picked that are relevant to your paper. Only sources that can be used to write the dissertation should be in it. In this part, you look at your chosen sources and list their pros and cons. It should be twenty to twenty-five pages long for the literature study.


This part of a paper is usually between 10 and 15 pages long. It's mostly about the ways the study was done. Here, you talk about the exact method and how the data were chosen. This part also has ways to connect with the sample community and the collected data. Also, the problems that were met can be added.

The Results

This section of your paper should be at most 10 pages. It has a list of the results and more information about them. The research results are clearly stated next to the theories. For example, you should say whether they were proven wrong or right. It is also important that this part has a conclusion for everything done in your investigation.


This part should be between 15 and 20 pages long. In this section, you talk about what your study means. Giving a current and broader view of your study is important. Also, add to the variety of information already available on the subject. Further, it would help if you made suggestions while recognising the limitations. So, how long is a part of a dissertation? Simply put, it depends on the subject, the school, and the study's goals. The length of each section depends on the type of study that was done and the data that was collected.

How Long Should A Proposal for A Dissertation Be?

We've already told you the answer to your question about the requirements of a dissertation. You may want to know how long the proposal is. Well, this paper doesn't have a set length. But it would help if you considered it a long, formal lecture. Most schools say that you should write between 15 and 20 pages. But the length of a proposal should rely on things like the problem that needs to be solved, why it needs to be solved, where the answers will come from, and why you will go to certain sources. This paper should persuade your school's thesis committee that you have an interesting research question. In other words, you need to give your professors a document that makes them want to let you continue with the dissertation writing project.

How Long Should the Abstract of a Dissertation Be?

Last but not least, you should know how long the abstract part of your dissertation should be. This is a different page from the rest of the text. It's an outline of the paper. It talks about the research's results and goals. By reading the introduction, people should have a good idea of your paper. This part should be put at the end because of this. It should list the problem, the study questions, the methods, the main results, and the conclusion. The abstract of a paper is usually 150 to 300 words long. But, just like with the main parts of a dissertation, there is a tight limit on how many words can be used.

Benefits of A Long Dissertation

There are lots of benefits to writing a long dissertation. Some of the benefits include:

  • More detailed study: If your dissertation is longer, you can do more detailed research on your subject. This will help you make a more unique and useful results.
  • Stronger argument: If your dissertation is longer, you have more room to build your case. This could make your case stronger and more effective.
  • More in-depth analysis: Writing a long dissertation can help you learn more about your subject. This could help your job in the future
  • More understanding: Writing a long dissertation can help you learn more about your subject. This could help your job in the future.
  • Better writing skills: Writing a long paper can help you get better at writing. This could help you in both your home and professional life.

Along with these perks, writing a long dissertation can also help you learn useful skills like:

  • Thinking Critically: When studying and writing a dissertation, you must think critically about your topic. This can help you get better at judging things based on the knowledge you have.
  • Fixing Problems: A lot of the time, writing a dissertation means fixing problems. Doing this can help you better think outside the box and solve tough problems.
  • Communication: You have to be able to explain your thoughts easily and effectively when you're writing a dissertation. This can help you improve at writing, talking, and giving talks.

Writing a long dissertation can be a useful experience that can help you in school and your personal life.

Dissertation Completion Time

A student's area of study, the difficulty of the research project, the availability of resources, and their work ethic and time management skills are just some of the things that affect dissertation completion time. On the other hand, most students finish their papers in three to six years.

Here is a list of how long a dissertation usually takes to finish:

Year 1: Most graduate students go to classes, write reviews of books, and work on their dissertation papers during their first year.

Years 2 and 3: Students collect and analyse data, write rough draughts of their dissertations, and get feedback from their tutors.

In years 4 through 6, students finish writing their dissertations, get ready for their exams, and make changes based on what their committee members say.

Final Thoughts

No set number of words or pages tells you how long a dissertation is. Because of this, you should check with your university, faculty, or journal to find out the exact length standards for your dissertation.

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