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How To Do a Proper Thesis Defense Using the Right PowerPoint Presentation

thesis presentation summary

Writing a thesis is stressful, but preparing an oral defense can be even more painful. But it doesn’t have to be; with proper preparation and a good presentation, you will be able to better equip yourself comes time to present your thesis defense.

But what makes a good thesis defense?

A proper presentation helps you with your thesis defense because it helps you capture the panels’ attention and gives you cues and reminders on what to say as well.

It also helps keep your data organized while visually looking good and provides a flow structure for the rest of your presentation.

In today’s article, we will be giving you The Right PowerPoint Templates for Your Thesis Defense and a powerful outline composed of best practices and layouts specifically designed to help you defend your thesis in both written and oral presentations.

In the next segments of this article, we’ll walk you through the most feasible process on how to ace this kind of presentation.

Let’s dive into the outline of what makes a great thesis defense.

Thesis Defense Overview


  • Type of Degree

Thesis and Dissertation Distinction Varies on Location

Three most common thesis defense myths, how to use chatgpt to structure your thesis.

  • Introduction
  • Literature Review
  • Methodology
  • Acknowledgements
  • Questions and Answers
  • Contact Information
  • Tips During Your Oral Defense
  • More Quick Tips on How to Present

A thesis defense is composed of two parts – a thesis and a defense.

The thesis, according to Grad School Hub , represents a student’s collective understanding of his or her program and major.

Universities often include a thesis in every course as one of the final requirements to earn a particular graduate or postgraduate degree.

The thesis, however, isn’t just a mere requirement.

It helps the students to grow out of their shell from their respective discipline and give them the opportunity to present all the findings of their study.

Moreover, some people think a thesis is just a long essay, but it’s not. Unlike an essay, a thesis needs to assert something.

This can be considered one of the most crucial research documents that a student makes during their academic schooling .

On the other hand, defense is the presentation of the pieces of evidence to support and prove your research.

It’s the most essential part of the thesis process.

Your presentation has to be prepared to answer questions from members of the committee and any other panel present, and it’s your job to convince them and defend your thesis with ample proof.

Prior to presenting, you have to carefully determine what appropriate evidence should be presented before the panel, depending on what thesis you have to defend.

thesis presentation summary

Thesis and Dissertation Distinguished

A thesis or dissertation is usually required to complete a particular graduate degree. These two words are often used interchangeably by most students when referring to research studies.

But while being almost similar in format or structure, it’s worth noting that they have significant differences that set them apart from each other.

The very reason why thesis and dissertation are treated the same is that these two are both extensive papers. Not just merely long essays like what others are claiming.

Both of these papers are extensive. This is why students are given ample time, usually the entire last semester of the last year of study, to complete all the requirements and finally acquire their degree.

With regards to structure, both papers are very similar with few differences.

Differences Between Thesis and Dissertation

One of the significant differences between the two is to whom the paper is assigned. A thesis is usually required for those students earning a bachelor’s or master’s degree. While a dissertation is for those, who want to obtain a doctorate degree.

However, not all students taking a master’s degree are required to make a thesis. Prior to their enrollment, they have been given a choice of whether they’ll go for a non-thesis program or with a thesis.

Those who have a plan to escalate their degree to a doctorate eventually should take the path of a thesis. This is to prepare themselves for a more extensive dissertation requirement as doctorate students. Otherwise, they will be only limited to earning a master’s degree.

paths to degrees diagram

But above all, the most significant difference between the two papers is the purpose for which it is written.

A thesis, like what has been mentioned above, is being done by students obtaining a bachelor’s or master’s degree and has the purpose of testing their understanding of the discipline they’re engaged with.

A thesis is focused on obtaining technical expertise.

On the other hand, a dissertation is made for students to come up with an original study that other researchers haven’t already studied.

Path to a Doctoral Degree

USA: In the United States of America, they consider a thesis shorter than a dissertation. In fact, aside from being a requirement to graduate in college, a thesis is now also inculcated in master’s degree programs. And since the dissertation is more extensive, the thesis is treated as preliminary in gaining a doctorate degree.

Europe: The distinction between the two papers is almost opposite to that of the USA. In Europe, a dissertation is only a broader research study from a post-graduate program and not the making of original research. Instead, educational systems in the said continent treat the doctoral thesis as a more elaborate paper writing.

PPT Template Thesis vs Dissertation

The difference between a thesis and a dissertation might not seem that big, but it’s important that we know what makes them different.

If your upcoming defense gives you pressure and uneasiness, it could be cause you are not sure what to expect. Today we will dispel three common thesis defense myths that will help you be more confident in your presentation.

“Answer all the questions correctly. Otherwise, your thesis won’t get approved.”

You are expected to have a focus on your research.

That being said, you have to study each part of your thesis, every detail, and even your sources.

You have to study and practice how to effectively deliver your presentation.

But don’t overthink to the extent that you’re stressing yourself to know everything perfectly.

Don’t overstress if you can’t answer one of the questions, this doesn’t necessarily mean the committee won’t approve your thesis.

You should know that research is a continuous study.

So you should expect that your committee will always be able to find a gap in your study to fill in future related research .

So in times you don’t exactly know the answer, admit it, and you’ll learn as they give their sides or suggestions.

Making up an answer will only displease your committee, so it’s to be upfront, honest, and transparent.

“The committee is just there to find holes in your study. They don’t care about you.”

One of the typical descriptions students have of the committee is that they are just there to poke holes in your thesis.

Going in with this perspective makes standing before them a nerve-wracking experience.

They’re not your enemy.

In fact, they are there to help you polish your study.

They might challenge you with difficult suggestions and tricky questions.

In the end, they will walk you through the process to come up with better results that won’t only benefit you but also your research.

They care about you and your study, and they’re ultimately there to make your thesis and the research better.  Separate yourself from your work look at it objectively, and don’t take their comments personally .

“If your thesis defense isn’t successful, you have to start your thesis all over again”

An unsuccessful defense is one of the worst-case fears most students have.

One thing that you should be aware of is when you aren’t able to please your committee, you don’t need to start a new thesis again or go back to square one with your existing paper.

It’s unusual that your committee will ask you to change your topic and start from scratch again.

The fact that you’ve been permitted to defend your study means your research is almost complete.

They might suggest further details or ask you for minor revisions, and that’s normal.

But overall, you need to go into this defense thinking that your presentation will be successful. Otherwise, you are already setting yourself up for failure with the wrong mindset.

Remember that positive thoughts attract positive results.

Thesis Defense Presentation Structure and Slides Content

We can use language learning models like ChatGPT to help us curate the structure of our thesis presentation. Let’s see a step-by-step solution on how to apply this.

Step 1: Define the thesis topic and research questions

You can set the environment for ChatGPT to work by explaining what your thesis is going to cover and which specific questions you aim to address through the course of that document. This gives ChatGPT the context from which it shall formulate the structure. A prompt can be written like this:

“Take the role of an academic professional who shall help me to write my thesis. This thesis is going to cover the topic of (insert topic), and through its course, I want to answer these questions: Question 1 – Question 2 – Question 3 – Consider this information as the starting point for this chat.”

Step 2: Ask for an outline

With the previously provided information, ask ChatGPT to generate an outline for your presentation. If some of the points listed in the output don’t convince you, then chat with the interface until you reach a final outline. Then, ask to elaborate on each specific point for information or cues you may have overlooked.

Step 3: Ask ChatGPT which content should you place per slide

Instead of debating how are you going to trim your thesis into a presentation format, ask ChatGPT to do the decision process for you. You can be as specific as asking how many words per slide, how many slides should the presentation have, if you need any visual element, etc.

N.B.: We don’t recommend using ChatGPT to retrieve academic references as, in some cases, it can provide faulty results. You can ask if any facts on this presentation need to be checked or similar questions. ChatGPT is a powerful tool, but it shouldn’t be considered a bible, so be extra cautious about grabbing content directly from its outputs.

1. Title Page

This slide should contain the information that is provided on the title page of your hard copy . Here is an example of title page or cover slide for your title defense or thesis presentation.

PPT Template Thesis Title - title defense example - Example of Title Slide in a Thesis Defense Presentation

  • The title of your research paper
  • Where you are studying
  • Name and details of your course
  • Name of Adviser

2. Introduction Slide

Your introduction slide should provide the committee with an idea of the following:

PPT Template Introduction Slide - Example of Introduction Slide in a Thesis Defense

  • What is the topic area that you are investigating ?
  • What are the specific research questions that you set out to answer?
  • Why is this question important to answer?
  • What were the objectives of your research?

3. Literature Review Slide

It’s not necessary to cover everything that’s currently understood in the available literature. You may want to present the following content under a Literature Review slide:

Literature Review Thesis PPT Template

  • Relevant current research that is close to your topic
  • Different theories that may apply to your specific area of research
  • Areas of weakness that are currently highlighted

4. Methodology Slide

Make sure to touch the factors below within your process, and include the following in the Methodology slide:

PPT Template Methodology Slide - Example of Methodology Slide in a Thesis Defense

  • The type of study you have conducted: qualitative, quantitative, or mixed
  • The methods that you chose and why
  • Details of the population, sampling methods, and other information
  • Provide information regarding how you have analyzed the data that you have collected

5. Results Slide

This part should give the committee/audience a good understanding of what you’ve discovered during your research. The statistics & results slide could include the final results of your analysis, here is an example:

Thesis Results PPT Template Slide

  • An overall description of the data that you collected during your research
  • The results of the analysis that you have done on that data
  • What were the most significant findings from your data

6. Discussion Slide

Highlight here the meaning of the findings in relation to your discipline program and the research that you have done:

Thesis Discussion PPT Template Slide - Example of Discussion Slide for a Thesis Defense presentation

  • What are the major findings, and what do they mean with regard to your research
  • How do these findings relate to what others have found in the past
  • How can you explain any unusual or surprising result

7. Conclusions Slide

You have to end your presentation with a conclusion summarizing all that you have found within your research. Here is an example of a Conclusion slide in a Thesis presentation:

Conclusions Thesis PowerPoint Template

  • Restate your research questions
  • Show how your results answer these questions
  • Show what contribution you have made
  • State any limitations to the work you have done
  • Suggest future research
  • Make any recommendations

See Also: How to Create a Great Investors Pitch Deck and Close the Deal

8. Acknowledgements Slide

Express gratitude to your advisor, committee members, peers, and others who supported your research journey. This slide provides a moment to acknowledge the collaborative nature of academic work.

9. Questions and Answers Slide

Dedicate a slide for audience questions at the end of your presentation.

Encourage engagement by inviting questions from the audience.

Be prepared to provide clear and concise responses to inquiries.

10. References Slide

Include a slide listing your cited sources throughout your presentation.

Use a consistent citation style (APA, MLA, Chicago, etc.).

The References slide demonstrates your thorough engagement with existing literature.

11. Contact Information Slide

If you’re open to further inquiries or collaborations, consider adding your contact information.

Include your email address or relevant professional social media handles.

Tips During Your Oral Defense!

Review your materials.

Even if you already feel confident with your upcoming presentation, you still need to review your materials.

You can bring the hard copy of your thesis with you during the defense, but you don’t want to get lost in your presentation when you forget some specific details and have to scan your papers.

You should know your paper in and out.

Rehearse Your Presentation

It’s not wrong if it sounds like a script when you speak in your oral defense. It’s expected and understandable.

You need to practice your presentation, especially when there’s a time restriction given to every presenter.

You only need to prepare enough slides that would fit your time limit. A hundred slides aren’t suitable for a 15 to 20-minute presentation, nor 10 slides for an hour of defense.

Your rehearsal will be more effective if you practice it in front of an audience.

Note: You will experience complete silence in the defense room. You might feel awkward because, most of the time, you’re the only one speaking out loud.  This is completely fine, and it’s something you should practice in rehearsal should you be afraid.

Narrow the Presentation of Ideas

Regarding your slides, you don’t have to include everything that’s in your paper. You should narrow down your ideas to the main points and the most important details, such as the statistics and findings.

If the members of your committee think you lack details or they want to hear a further explanation, they won’t hesitate to ask you.

Prepare for the Unexpected Questions

The panel tends to challenge the presenters, usually through some hard questions.

Its aim is how well do you you have done your research and how prepared you are.

But as long as you know the ins and outs of your paper, you shouldn’t lose your confidence regardless of which questions they ask.

Just keep in mind that what you’re saying in your oral defense is not in conflict with what is written on the hard copy you provided them.

What To Do When You Don’t Know the Answer

If the committee asks you a question and you don’t know the answer, don’t make up a baseless answer.

Baseless means out-of-context answers or something without proof or backup.

How To Deal With The Nervousness

The committee expects you to be nervous. Of course, it’s normal.

However, one effect of being nervous is the changes in your behavior.

There’s a tendency for you’ll talk fast, which will make it hard for the committee to understand you.

It might also cause you to have a mental block.

So try to slow down. Take a deep breath.

Inhale, exhale.  Remember to breathe!

It’s OK to pause, and it’s OK to take your time; it’s more important that the committee clearly understands what you are trying to articulate.

More Quick Tips on How to Present!

  • Introduce yourself at the beginning
  • Introduce the title of the presentation
  • Don’t read your notes if possible
  • Don’t speak too fast
  • Put an emphasis on what you’re saying so you don’t sound monotonous
  • Look at your adviser once in a while for possible signs
  • Stand on the right of the white screen if you are right-handed so you can easily refer to the slide without giving your back to the committee
  • Face the audience when you talk
  • Keep an eye contact
  • Make sure to keep attention to the reactions of the committee and don’t forget to react in turn

We hope you enjoyed this article on how to do a proper thesis defense and how to best prepare for one using proven tips and techniques to help you get through this.  Hopefully, after your defense, you will be set as the one in your class to deliver an inspiring graduation speech for your peers. If you have value, please remember to share this article. We also recommend you read these Thesis Statement Examples for inspiration to create your own professionally.

1. MasterDoc PowerPoint Template

Cover Image for MasterDoc PowerPoint templates

Creating a Thesis presentation should be a straight forward task; based on your thesis document and following the tips described above you have a high level structure already outlined. The MasterDoc PowerPoint template provides professional layouts with texts and image placeholders; so you can create document like slides using your thesis defense as your content. This template is ideal for a highly detailed documents, where visuals and words unite to illustrate one concept per page. The result is an asset that can be read and digested more quickly than either your thesis document or a presentation created for assisting a speech. A document created with the MasterDoc PowerPoint templates is meant to be printed or distributed, read on screen without the accompaniment of a presenter or used in an e-learning platform as pure learning content.

Use This Template

2. Thesis Presentation PowerPoint Template

thesis presentation summary

You had invested a considerable time researching, testing hypothesis and confirming your thesis. Craft your thesis presentation with the same level of detail you applied in your work. Using the Thesis Presentation PowerPoint Template you will focus only in your content and your message. The layouts, images,design and structure will be taken care by the template.

3. Master Thesis PowerPoint Template

thesis presentation summary

The Master Thesis PowerPoint Template is a professional document designed for postgraduate degrees presentations. It provides simple sections that follow  the structure and best practices of traditional research thesis presentations. Starting with the introduction to the theory and state of the art scenario; following with hypothesis research and its findings and concluding with the confirmation or negation of the initial thesis statement.

4. Essay Outline PowerPoint Template

thesis presentation summary

Your thesis defense can be accompanied by an essay, that states your thesis and argues about it using several supporting paragraphs. This kind of document is ideal to be an intermediate step between reading assisting to the thesis presentation and reading the complete thesis documentation. It has more information that your thesis defense abstract, but does summarizes the supporting evidence and examples that allows the argument of each idea behind the thesis. You can use the Essay Outline Template to present your Essay outline and create an essay linked to your thesis defense documentation.

thesis presentation summary

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36 Responses to “How To Do a Proper Thesis Defense Using the Right PowerPoint Presentation”

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thesis presentation summary

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  • Presentation Tips

How to Start a Thesis Defense Presentation

How to Start a Thesis Defense Presentation | Quick Tips & Tutorial for your presentations

After months and years of hard work, the moment to wrap things all up is finally here—your thesis defense presentation.

Whether you’re pursuing a master’s degree or doctorate, it’s the final step to that much-deserved achievement. 

A thesis defense requires a lot of prior research and preparation. And as important as its content is, so is how you present it because a stunning design with clear data and text hierarchy plays an immense role in comprehension.

In this article, we’ll explore how you make your thesis defense .

The organization is the key to success. Establishing some previous steps before any project or work is essential for the result to be very positive. And the defense of a thesis could not be less. 

Below, we will develop all the necessary steps to make a thesis defense presentation and we will give you some tips on how to carry them out.

How to Make an Amazing Presentation

Defining the concept of your thesis presentation, structuring your thesis defense presentation, how do you welcome the audience, tell them why you did this thesis, go into the content by explaining your thesis part by part, how to end the defense of the thesis.

After a long time of research and study, the content of your thesis is ready. Now, you have to find the best way to reflect all that effort behind your work. The information comes across more clearly if you use a visual format, as it attracts the attention of the audience. To present your thesis information in a clear, concise, and ultimately amazing way, you can use one of our unique thesis defense templates , available at Slidesgo.

As an example, in this article, we are going to use the Ecology Thesis template . With it, we will show you what to include in your presentation and how to make an attractive design.

After choosing the Google Slides and PowerPoint template that best suits the needs and subject matter of your thesis, it is time to define an overarching concept.

This is the main theme on which your designs are based. It must be relevant to your thesis as its purpose is to guide your selection of colors, typography, images, style, etc. 

These must be portrayed in a way that supports the main message of your slides and should be aligned with your concept both visually and sociologically.

Once you have defined the concept, you will have to move on to the next step: structuring the content of your thesis. A good structure will show that there is a good organization behind the work, but most importantly: it will highlight your content.

In this article, we are going to show you a structure that could be a good example of how to structure a thesis, but you can adapt it to what your specific content requires.

Before you begin your thesis defense, you should welcome your audience. A good presentation will make you connect with your audience, which will result in more general interest in your work.

Use an appropriate language register (avoid informal language), but be approachable and natural.

"Welcome to the thesis defense on [the title of your thesis]". Next, introduce yourself with your name and give a short description of your background and occupation.

Don't forget to say “thank you for attending!”

To continue establishing that connection with your audience, explain the reasons that led you to do this thesis. Tell the professional reasons, and you can even say some personal ones, which will denote closeness, and your audience will appreciate it.

Now it's time to go into the content of the thesis ! After these preliminary steps, which are just as important as the thesis itself, it is time to explain part by part the structure (which you had previously established). We are going to propose a structure for your project, but the final decision is always yours!

thesis presentation summary

First impressions are very important. Because your title page is the very first thing viewers see, it must be striking and impactful. It also sets the stage for the rest of your slides.

In one glance, the following should be established:

  • Thesis defense topic
  • Design style

For instance, the ecology thesis’s title page uses illustrations of a natural landscape to represent the topic of nature and a striking shade of blue to set the tone.

The sans serif font used depicts clean-cut typography and style and the thesis topic is written in large and bold typography, which draws attention to it immediately.

thesis presentation summary

Right after your title page, include an introduction slide to provide more details about your topic. 

This means explaining what you hope to answer with your research, its importance to your field, and why you chose it.

Continue to incorporate design elements relevant to your concept. This example has done just that by using a different natural landscape and including animals. For coherence, stick to the same typography and style throughout your presentation.

thesis presentation summary

The aim of the literature review slide is to illustrate your knowledge of your thesis topic and any relevant theories.

Walls of text kill a design. For clarity, we recommend presenting this with bullet points. Each one should be short and sweet and only touch on the basics; you can elaborate on them in your speech. 

Don’t forget to be consistent with your design. In our example, we’ve maintained the tone of blue chosen and added illustrations of leaves in the far corners of the slide. 

Also, address similar research that has been done. This is to showcase your topic’s originality and, if relevant, how it’s different and/or an improvement from previously done research. 

thesis presentation summary

This is one of the most important parts of a thesis defense presentation.

It allows your viewers to assess the rationality and validity of your approach and consequently, the accuracy of your results.

A great methodology slide explains the what , how, and why :

  • What method did you use for your research
  • Why did you choose it
  • How did you conduct it

Because this part of your thesis will be rather technical, the most effective way to aid understanding is by using graphics like charts and tables. 

thesis presentation summary

Keep text to a minimum to avoid drawing attention away from the graphics. If there is a text that must absolutely be included, consider using bullet points and keep them short.

Don’t forget to maintain color, style, and typography coherence.

thesis presentation summary

The results slides are easily the most quantitative part of a thesis defense. 

Here, your aim is to simply introduce your findings. Select the most impactful data and highlight them here.

Just as with methodology, use graphics like charts, tables, and graphs to portray the data in a clear way. And, once again, try not to write too much text. Let the visual content do the talking .

thesis presentation summary

After you’ve introduced your data, the next step would be to help your audience make sense of it. That means understanding what it means in the context of your thesis research topic and your discipline. 

Simply put, you should answer the question: What do the numbers mean?

The best way to approach this would be to do it as if you were creating an infographic . 

Illustrations like icons are a quick and simple way to represent your message. It also reduces the amount of text on your slide, which makes the information much more digestible. 

For a balanced thesis presentation, you should also address any outliers and anomalies.

To quote bestselling author Robin Sharma, “Starting strong is good. Finishing strong is epic.”

That’s exactly what to aim for in your conclusion.

Provide an overview of your thesis topic and remind your audience what you set out to answer with your research. In our example, we’ve used three icons accompanied by a short title and text. 

thesis presentation summary

Following that, reiterate the important points of your research results you want your audience to take away from your thesis defense presentation. 

You can do so by expanding the next slide to have more icons and points, for example.

thesis presentation summary

Don’t forget to address any shortcomings and limitations in your approach and extra points for suggesting possible improvements for future research.

We are going to give you a little tip to make your thesis defense a success. You can combine your defense with good public speaking techniques. Take a look at our article "How to become a great speaker" .

We hope this article has been of great help, have you already seen our templates to make the presentation of your thesis ? Choose the one that best suits your needs, we are sure that one of them will go perfectly with your thesis presentation! 

Good luck from Slidesgo.

thesis presentation summary

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How to make a good thesis presentation.

Asako Maruoka's picture

A strong thesis defense is crucial for any doctorate or graduate student. Although researching and writing about your thesis topic can be a Herculean effort, the work doesn't end there. The thesis presentation is a crucial part of the dissertation defense in many academic programs.

How to Make a Good Thesis Presentation

Your impressive presentation will show the depth of research in your thesis clearly and compellingly. Your presentation gives your committee an excellent visual to validate the thesis. Impress your jury with impactful PowerPoint presentations.

What is a thesis presentation?

A thesis is an accumulation of all your research on paper. A thesis presentation can be a digital summary of your research, focusing on the core knowledge in your thesis. It's short and concise. Each slide should have a purpose, as this presentation provides a detailed insight into your thesis research and conclusions.

https://thesisgeek.com/ allows you to display the narrative progression of your thesis. The process begins by asking questions, researching the topic, creating the study, and evaluating it. By using this, you will be able to create the wow-worthy presentation.

You must pass your thesis presentation to be awarded your degree.

The Structure of Your Thesis Presentation

You can use this structure to help you align your slides to help you maintain consistency in your narrative by guiding the flow of design. 

* Problem Statement * Literature Review * The Purpose of the Study * Research Questions * Instruments * Data collection * Research findings * Implications * Recommendations * You can also read about it here * Acknowledgements * Questions

Are you unsure of how to create a memorable and perfect thesis presentation? SlideModel provides unique thesis presentation templates that will impress your committee.

8 Tips for a stunning thesis presentation

How to Make a Good Thesis Presentation

1. Decluttered Slides

When the thesis presentation is structured smoothly, it will have the greatest impact. Overloaded slides will confuse both you and the panel. Each slide should be focused on a single topic, and contain minimal information.

Create a title slide that will grab the audience's attention. Keep your thesis presentation simple and concise to echo your topic.

2. Compelling Templates

Remember that the committee reviewing your thesis presentation is likely to have seen countless slideshows throughout their life. How can you impress them with something different? 

Using eye-catching, customized templates adds a new dimension to the information you have collected. The fact that the templates are 100% editable allows you to save time and create a beautiful presentation in minutes. Templates also have a carefully chosen and attractive color scheme that will make your job easier.

3. Design Consistency

Each slide of your thesis presentation should be visually synchronized. Consistency in design creates a pleasing aesthetic. This consistency also makes your presentation look logical and smooth. Your committee might be distracted by sudden changes in style and lose the thread of your argument.

Choose a color scheme that corresponds to your topic, and then incorporate it into a thesis template. Stick to the color scheme and avoid changing themes drastically. Remember the primary and secondary colors of your slides. Dark-colored text should be placed on a lighter background, and light-colored text on a darker one. Keep in mind accessibility issues when choosing colors and backgrounds.

4. Engaging Visuals

Humans tend to remember more when presented with visually appealing information. Include multimedia that is relevant to your topic in your thesis defense presentation. This allows your audience to quickly glance at information.

Use HD images, audio clips, and videos to enhance your thesis presentation. Focusing on visual hierarchy is a tip you should keep in mind. You should place your content on your slides in the order you would like your audience to view it. This can be achieved by either highlighting text or increasing the slide content proportionally.

5. Data Visualizations

Data visualizations are the best way to present your research and analysis. Textual numbers and conclusions are not recommended. These slides are from a past era. Visualizations are always a great way to spice up your slide topics, whether it's about blended models or data on hybrid learning.

You can create top-notch data visualisations using a variety of templates, including charts, graphs, and trend lines. The combination of comprehensive analysis and data visualizations has a double effect of uniqueness and information digestability. 

6. Attractive Infographics

Infographics can be used to draw your audience in and help you defend your thesis. Instantly, they make your information look more lively and attractive. You can create vibrant infographics using a variety of presentation templates (see above).

Use infographics to show the uniqueness of your thesis topic. You can also use it to show comparisons or improvements made in previous research on your thesis topic. These infographics are able to visualize nearly every topic, from research analysis and implications.

7. Typography

You will not get very far if you fill your slides with text. It is better to write one-liners and points instead of long paragraphs. We can assure you that your committee will not be interested in large paragraphs. Your visuals and verbal content will be the focus of their attention.

Save the rest of the information for your speech. Choose functional fonts for your slides to make the text legible. Fancy fonts can give your slides a amateur appearance and confuse your audience. 

8. Include Storytelling

When presented as a story, any information or thesis becomes more engaging than a simple speech. Create a story that will help you move your presentation forward. Your audience will be captivated and want more.

Storytelling, when skillfully integrated into a thesis defense, offers several benefits. Firstly, it humanizes the research. Behind every dataset and analysis lies a researcher who embarked on a quest to unravel mysteries and contribute to knowledge. By sharing the personal journey and struggles encountered during the research, a narrative is created that resonates with the audience on a human level. This connection fosters empathy, making the defense not just a presentation of facts, but a shared experience.

Moreover, storytelling facilitates comprehension. Complex theories and intricate methodologies can be difficult for non-experts to grasp. Through storytelling, these concepts can be simplified and contextualized, making them accessible to a wider audience. Analogies, anecdotes, and relatable examples become tools to bridge the gap between specialized knowledge and general understanding.

How to Make a Good Thesis Presentation

The story you tell in your thesis presentation slide must be engaging and captivating from the beginning. Bestselling author Robin Sharma believes that starting strong can be beneficial. Finishing strong is more impressive.

To achieve this, you should design your title slide and final slides in a striking way. Practice before the final and practice the narration. Create a stunning slideshow to defend your thesis. Use the tips above...you'll be glad you did!


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How to prepare an excellent thesis defense

Thesis defence

What is a thesis defense?

How long is a thesis defense, what happens at a thesis defense, your presentation, questions from the committee, 6 tips to help you prepare for your thesis defense, 1. anticipate questions and prepare for them, 2. dress for success, 3. ask for help, as needed, 4. have a backup plan, 5. prepare for the possibility that you might not know an answer, 6. de-stress before, during, and after, frequently asked questions about preparing an excellent thesis defense, related articles.

If you're about to complete, or have ever completed a graduate degree, you have most likely come across the term "thesis defense." In many countries, to finish a graduate degree, you have to write a thesis .

A thesis is a large paper, or multi-chapter work, based on a topic relating to your field of study.

Once you hand in your thesis, you will be assigned a date to defend your work. Your thesis defense meeting usually consists of you and a committee of two or more professors working in your program. It may also include other people, like professionals from other colleges or those who are working in your field.

During your thesis defense, you will be asked questions about your work. The main purpose of your thesis defense is for the committee to make sure that you actually understand your field and focus area.

The questions are usually open-ended and require the student to think critically about their work. By the time of your thesis defense, your paper has already been evaluated. The questions asked are not designed so that you actually have to aggressively "defend" your work; often, your thesis defense is more of a formality required so that you can get your degree.

  • Check with your department about requirements and timing.
  • Re-read your thesis.
  • Anticipate questions and prepare for them.
  • Create a back-up plan to deal with technology hiccups.
  • Plan de-stressing activities both before, and after, your defense.

How long your oral thesis defense is depends largely on the institution and requirements of your degree. It is best to consult your department or institution about this. In general, a thesis defense may take only 20 minutes, but it may also take two hours or more. The length also depends on how much time is allocated to the presentation and questioning part.

Tip: Check with your department or institution as soon as possible to determine the approved length for a thesis defense.

First of all, be aware that a thesis defense varies from country to country. This is just a general overview, but a thesis defense can take many different formats. Some are closed, others are public defenses. Some take place with two committee members, some with more examiners.

The same goes for the length of your thesis defense, as mentioned above. The most important first step for you is to clarify with your department what the structure of your thesis defense will look like. In general, your thesis defense will include:

  • your presentation of around 20-30 minutes
  • questions from the committee
  • questions from the audience (if the defense is public and the department allows it)

You might have to give a presentation, often with Powerpoint, Google slides, or Keynote slides. Make sure to prepare an appropriate amount of slides. A general rule is to use about 10 slides for a 20-minute presentation.

But that also depends on your specific topic and the way you present. The good news is that there will be plenty of time ahead of your thesis defense to prepare your slides and practice your presentation alone and in front of friends or family.

Tip: Practice delivering your thesis presentation in front of family, friends, or colleagues.

You can prepare your slides by using information from your thesis' first chapter (the overview of your thesis) as a framework or outline. Substantive information in your thesis should correspond with your slides.

Make sure your slides are of good quality— both in terms of the integrity of the information and the appearance. If you need more help with how to prepare your presentation slides, both the ASQ Higher Education Brief and James Hayton have good guidelines on the topic.

The committee will ask questions about your work after you finish your presentation. The questions will most likely be about the core content of your thesis, such as what you learned from the study you conducted. They may also ask you to summarize certain findings and to discuss how your work will contribute to the existing body of knowledge.

Tip: Read your entire thesis in preparation of the questions, so you have a refreshed perspective on your work.

While you are preparing, you can create a list of possible questions and try to answer them. You can foresee many of the questions you will get by simply spending some time rereading your thesis.

Here are a few tips on how to prepare for your thesis defense:

You can absolutely prepare for most of the questions you will be asked. Read through your thesis and while you're reading it, create a list of possible questions. In addition, since you will know who will be on the committee, look at the academic expertise of the committee members. In what areas would they most likely be focused?

If possible, sit at other thesis defenses with these committee members to get a feel for how they ask and what they ask. As a graduate student, you should generally be adept at anticipating test questions, so use this advantage to gather as much information as possible before your thesis defense meeting.

Your thesis defense is a formal event, often the entire department or university is invited to participate. It signals a critical rite of passage for graduate students and faculty who have supported them throughout a long and challenging process.

While most universities don't have specific rules on how to dress for that event, do regard it with dignity and respect. This one might be a no-brainer, but know that you should dress as if you were on a job interview or delivering a paper at a conference.

It might help you deal with your stress before your thesis defense to entrust someone with the smaller but important responsibilities of your defense well ahead of schedule. This trusted person could be responsible for:

  • preparing the room of the day of defense
  • setting up equipment for the presentation
  • preparing and distributing handouts

Technology is unpredictable. Life is too. There are no guarantees that your Powerpoint presentation will work at all or look the way it is supposed to on the big screen. We've all been there. Make sure to have a plan B for these situations. Handouts can help when technology fails, and an additional clean shirt can save the day if you have a spill.

One of the scariest aspects of the defense is the possibility of being asked a question you can't answer. While you can prepare for some questions, you can never know exactly what the committee will ask.

There will always be gaps in your knowledge. But your thesis defense is not about being perfect and knowing everything, it's about how you deal with challenging situations. You are not expected to know everything.

James Hayton writes on his blog that examiners will sometimes even ask questions they don't know the answer to, out of curiosity, or because they want to see how you think. While it is ok sometimes to just say "I don't know", he advises to try something like "I don't know, but I would think [...] because of x and y, but you would need to do [...] in order to find out.” This shows that you have the ability to think as an academic.

You will be nervous. But your examiners will expect you to be nervous. Being well prepared can help minimize your stress, but do know that your examiners have seen this many times before and are willing to help, by repeating questions, for example. Dora Farkas at finishyourthesis.com notes that it’s a myth that thesis committees are out to get you.

Two common symptoms of being nervous are talking really fast and nervous laughs. Try to slow yourself down and take a deep breath. Remember what feels like hours to you are just a few seconds in real life.

  • Try meditational breathing right before your defense.
  • Get plenty of exercise and sleep in the weeks prior to your defense.
  • Have your clothes or other items you need ready to go the night before.
  • During your defense, allow yourself to process each question before answering.
  • Go to dinner with friends and family, or to a fun activity like mini-golf, after your defense.

Allow yourself to process each question, respond to it, and stop talking once you have responded. While a smile can often help dissolve a difficult situation, remember that nervous laughs can be irritating for your audience.

We all make mistakes and your thesis defense will not be perfect. However, careful preparation, mindfulness, and confidence can help you feel less stressful both before, and during, your defense.

Finally, consider planning something fun that you can look forward to after your defense.

It is completely normal to be nervous. Being well prepared can help minimize your stress, but do know that your examiners have seen this many times before and are willing to help, by repeating questions for example if needed. Slow yourself down, and take a deep breath.

Your thesis defense is not about being perfect and knowing everything, it's about how you deal with challenging situations. James Hayton writes on his blog that it is ok sometimes to just say "I don't know", but he advises to try something like "I don't know, but I would think [...] because of x and y, you would need to do [...] in order to find out".

Your Powerpoint presentation can get stuck or not look the way it is supposed to do on the big screen. It can happen and your supervisors know it. In general, handouts can always save the day when technology fails.

  • Dress for success.
  • Ask for help setting up.
  • Have a backup plan (in case technology fails you).
  • Deal with your nerves.

thesis presentation summary


PhD Dissertation Defense Slides Design: Start

  • Tips for designing the slides
  • Presentation checklist
  • Example slides
  • Additional Resources

Purpose of the Guide

This guide was created to help ph.d. students in engineering fields to design dissertation defense presentations. the guide provides 1) tips on how to effectively communicate research, and 2) full presentation examples from ph.d. graduates. the tips on designing effective slides are not restricted to dissertation defense presentations; they can be used in designing other types of presentations such as conference talks, qualification and proposal exams, and technical seminars., the tips and examples are used to help students to design effective presentation. the technical contents in all examples are subject to copyright, please do not replicate. , if you need help in designing your presentation, please contact julie chen ([email protected]) for individual consultation. .

  • Example Slides Repository
  • Defense slides examples Link to examples dissertation defense slides.

Useful Links

  • CIT Thesis and dissertation standards
  • Dissertations and Theses @ Carnegie Mellon This link opens in a new window Covers 1920-present. Full text of some dissertations may be available 1997-present. Citations and abstracts of dissertations and theses CMU graduate students have published through UMI Dissertation Publishing. In addition to citations and abstracts, the service provides free access to 24 page previews and the full text in PDF format, when available. In most cases, this will be works published in 1997 forward.
  • Communicate your research data Data visualization is very important in communicating your data effectively. Check out these do's and don'ts for designing figures.

Power Point Template and other Resources

  • CEE Powerpoint Slide Presentation Template 1
  • CEE Powerpoint Slide Presentation Template 2

Source: CEE Department Resources https://www.cmu.edu/cee/resources/index.html

  • CMU Powerpoint Slide Template

Source: CMU Marketing and Communications


  • Use of CMU logos, marks, and Unitmarks

Email me for questions and schedule an appointment

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Top 7 tips for your defense presentation

1. show why your study is important, remember, your audience is your committee members, researchers in other fields, and even the general public. you want to convince all of them why you deserve a ph.d. degree. you need to talk about why your study is important to the world. in the engineering field, you also need to talk about how your study is useful. try to discuss why current practice is problematic or not good enough, what needs to be solved, and what the potential benefits will be. , see how dr. posen and dr. malings explained the importance of their studies..

  • Carl Malings Defense Slides with Notes
  • I. Daniel Posen Defense Slides with Notes

2. Emphasize YOUR contribution 

Having a ph.d. means that you have made some novel contributions to the grand field. this is about you and your research. you need to keep emphasizing your contributions throughout your presentation. after talking about what needs to be solved, try to focus on emphasizing the novelty of your work. what problems can be solved using your research outcomes what breakthroughs have you made to the field why are your methods and outcomes outstanding you need to incorporate answers to these questions in your presentation. , be clear what your contributions are in the introduction section; separate what was done by others and what was done by you. , 3. connect your projects into a whole piece of work, you might have been doing multiple projects that are not strongly connected. to figure out how to connect them into a whole piece, use visualizations such as flow charts to convince your audience. the two slides below are two examples. in the first slide, which was presented in the introduction section, the presenter used a flow diagram to show the connection between the three projects. in the second slide, the presenter used key figures and a unique color for each project to show the connection..

thesis presentation summary

  • Xiaoju Chen Defense Slides with Notes

4. Tell a good story 

The committee members do not necessarily have the same background knowledge as you. plus, there could be researchers from other fields and even the general public in the room. you want to make sure all of your audience can understand as much as possible. focus on the big picture rather than technical details; make sure you use simple language to explain your methods and results. your committee has read your dissertation before your defense, but others have not. , dr. cook and dr. velibeyoglu did a good job explaining their research to everyone. the introduction sessions in their presentations are well designed for this purpose. .

  • Laren M. Cook Defense Slides with Notes
  • Irem Velibeyoglu Defense with Notes

5. Transition, transition, transition

Use transition slides to connect projects , it's a long presentation with different research projects. you want to use some sort of transition to remind your audience what you have been talking about and what is next. you may use a slide that is designed for this purpose throughout your presentation. , below are two examples. these slides were presented after the introduction section. the presenters used the same slides and highlighted the items for project one to indicate that they were moving on to the first project. throughout the presentation, they used these slides and highlighted different sections to indicate how these projects fit into the whole dissertation. .

thesis presentation summary

You can also use some other indications on your slides, but remember not to make your slides too busy.  Below are two examples. In the first example, the presenter used chapter numbers to indicate what he was talking about. In the second example, the presenter used a progress bar with keywords for each chapter as the indicator. 

thesis presentation summary

Use transition sentences to connect slides 

Remember transition sentences are also important; use them to summarize what you have said and tell your audience what they will expect next. if you keep forgetting the transition sentence, write a note on your presentation. you can either write down a full sentence of what you want to say or some keywords., 6. be brief, put details in backup slides , you won't have time to explain all of the details. if your defense presentation is scheduled for 45 minutes, you can only spend around 10 minutes for each project - that's shorter than a normal research conference presentation focus on the big picture and leave details behind. you can put the details in your backup slides, so you might find them useful when your committee (and other members of the audience) ask questions regarding these details., 7. show your presentation to your advisor and colleagues, make sure to ask your advisor(s) for their comments. they might have a different view on what should be emphasized and what should be elaborated. , you also want to practice at least once in front of your colleagues. they can be your lab mates, people who work in your research group, and/or your friends. they do not have to be experts in your field. ask them to give you some feedback - their comments can be extremely helpful to improve your presentation. , below are some other tips and resources to design your defense presentation. .

  • Tips for designing your defense presentation

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How to Pull Off Your Thesis Defense With a Great Presentation

thesis presentation summary

You’ve reached the home stretch in your journey toward your post-graduate degree. You’ve diligently studied, researched and performed for years, and all that’s left is your master thesis or doctorate dissertation. 

“ All that’s left,” however, might be the understatement of the century. There’s nothing simple about orally defending your thesis, and this final stage often means the difference between a degree and a program that remains incomplete.

Even after you’ve dedicated months filled with blood, sweat and tears defining your argument, researching your support and writing your defense, you aren’t ready to address the academic panel. You still have to design an effective visual presentation, and the slide deck can make or break your entire thesis.

Unsure how to design a stellar slide deck to visually present your thesis or dissertation? Check out the following tips to pull off your master thesis defense with a great presentation:

1.   Properly structure your slide deck

Every master thesis defense presentation is unique, but most effective slide decks will follow a similar structure, including:  

  • Title - Just like a research paper, your thesis presentation must include a title slide. This should include the same information as any other title page: the title, your name, your academic institution, course name and the name of the academic advisor to your thesis or dissertation. That doesn’t mean your title slide needs to look like the start of any other Frankendeck . Instead, add your text atop a relative image, and adjust the brightness to ensure your text pops.
  • Introduction - Your thesis presentation should also include an introduction slide, which details the topic of your thesis, the question your research will seek to answer and any additional objectives to your research, as well as the answer or solution you will be defending.
  • Literature review - Following your thesis introduction, design one or more slides that review the literature you researched. This shouldn’t be a full bibliography (although that should be included in the accompanying written account of your research), but instead, the slides should list your most relevant research sources. If the information is featured on a slide, make sure you include its source. 
  • Methodology - Your thesis presentation slide deck should also include a slide (or slides) detailing the methodology of your research and argument. Here you want to describe the type of study— whether it’s quantitative, qualitative or a combination of the two, as well as an explanation of why you chose the method or methods you used. If you conducted original research, you will want to detail the study population, sampling methods and other details pertinent to your studies, while you’ll also want to detail how you analyzed your data.
  • Results - No thesis presentation slide deck is complete without dedicating slides to illustrate the results of your research. Be sure to include a description of any data you collected through your research, as well as the results of your analysis of the data. What were your most significant findings?
  • Discussion - How do the results of your research support your overall thesis argument? Be sure to include slides that discuss your overall findings and how they relate to your original question.
  • Conclusion - Concluding slides should restate your original research questions, represent the results of your research, suggest future research and make any final recommendations.
  • Ending slide – Close your thesis presentation with a concluding slide that offers an interesting quote or trivia that makes your audience further ponder your topic, a GIF or animation that recaptures the audience’s attention or even a hypothetical question that opens additional discussion from the academic panel. This is your opportunity to make your presentation memorable.

thesis presentation summary

Thesis Presentation vs. Dissertation

Thesis presentation and dissertation are two terms often used in academic settings related to upper education. While they are related, there are distinct differences between the two, which is important to understand as you begin to structure your thesis defense.

‍ A thesis presentation typically refers to the final oral presentation that a student gives to defend their thesis or research project. It is a formal presentation to explain their findings, methodology, and conclusions to a panel of faculty members or experts in the field. The purpose of a thesis defense presentation is to demonstrate the student's knowledge and understanding of the subject matter and to defend the validity of their research.

On the other hand, a dissertation refers to a lengthy and comprehensive research project that is typically required for the completion of a doctoral degree. It involves in-depth research, analysis, and the development of original ideas in a particular field of study. A dissertation is usually written over an extended period and is expected to contribute new knowledge or insights to the field. Unlike a thesis presentation, a dissertation is submitted in written form and is typically evaluated by a committee of faculty members or experts in the field.

2.   Choose which ideas to illustrate

Unless you have an hour to fill with your master thesis defense or doctorate dissertation, you won’t be able to include every idea from your overall research documentation in your slide show. Choose the most important ideas to illustrate on slides, while also keeping in mind what aspects of your research you’ll be able to visually represent.

thesis presentation summary

3.   Define your presentation’s theme

A stellar thesis or dissertation presentation will be professional in appearance, and a cohesive design is an absolute must. Choose what types of typography and color schemes best support your topic. 

Instead of adjusting these settings on each individual slide— a tedious task at best— choose a PowerPoint-alternative presentation software like Beautiful.ai that allows you to customize a theme for your entire slide deck. Choose your fonts and other typography, your color palette, margins, footers, logos, transitions and more, and the cloud-based tool will automatically apply those design specifications to every slide you add to the master thesis defense presentation.

4.   Design simple and focused slides

You might have a lot of information to present, but when it comes to your thesis presentation— or almost any slide deck for that matter— less is more. Be sure every slide counts by focusing on your main points. 

Then, whatever you do, keep your slides simple. Not even an academic panel is going to dedicate much time deciphering a cluttered slide with all too many details. Try to avoid presenting more than one or two ideas on each slide.

5.   Include data visualizations

The whole point of your presentation is to illustrate the concepts included in your thesis. Humans are visual creatures and react strongly to imagery, and the panel evaluating your thesis or dissertation is no exception— regardless of how studious and formal the academics might seem. Illustrate the results of your research with colorful and engaging infographics . You don’t have to be a graphic designer to create them, either. 

Beautiful.ai users can choose from a host of smart slide templates with data visualizations — including favorites like bar graphs and pie charts , as well as less common options like scattergraphs , flow charts and pictograms . Just input your data and watch as our special brand of artificial intelligence creates the infographic for you.  

6.   Practice makes perfect

After spending months researching your thesis or dissertation, writing about your findings and designing a stellar master thesis defense presentation, you would hate to see all your hard work be for naught. That’s still a distinct possibility, however, if you don’t also practice your delivery. 

Practice, practice and practice some more until you know your master thesis defense like the back of your hand. No academic panel will be impressed by a graduate candidate who stumbles through their presentation or appears to be reading from their notes. Know the contents of every slide, as well as exactly what parts of your overall defense you want to deliver during its display. 

Things to keep in mind to help you nail your presentation

The golden rule of any presentation is to keep your audience engaged. You can ensure a more engaging presentation by maintaining eye contact, using appropriate gestures, and speaking clearly. You can also choose to include the audience in your presentation with interactive questions, polls, and slides.

To help boost audience retention, utilize storytelling. Studies show that when facts are presented in the form of a story, people are 22 times more likely to remember them. Talk about powerful.

Last but not least, plan for questions— and not simply by allowing time for them. Watch other thesis defenses delivered at your institution, and consider what types of questions the academic panel might ask, so you can prepare the best possible answer.

Extra credit:

Get started with our PhD Defense Thesis presentation template here .

Samantha Pratt Lile

Samantha Pratt Lile

Samantha is an independent journalist, editor, blogger and content manager. Examples of her published work can be found at sites including the Huffington Post, Thrive Global, and Buzzfeed.

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Thesis Defense PowerPoint: Presentation Structure and Slides Content

Last updated on September 15th, 2023

Writing a thesis is as important as defending it. The goal is not only to present one of the largest papers you ever worked on throughout the university years but also to build a strategy and create a presentation that answers all questions the audience might have.

Of course, today, this task is largely facilitated by modern technologies. PowerPoint and other programs let you create a perfect background for your defense. It helps you stay in control of the whole presentation and also includes all the important numbers and facts for the audience.

Thesis Defense PowerPoint: Presentation Structure and Slides Content

Creating a presentation for a thesis is not a piece of cake. Many students would say that they’d rather write a paper than work on a PowerPoint presentation. Since it’s academic, it also has its requirements and specifics. Of course, companies where you buy college essays can help you with pptx files as well. Yet, knowing all dos and don’ts to add your own voice to the presentation can help you ace your defense.

That’s why we decided to analyze a few structure and content tips to help you author your thesis defense presentation and make sure you get a high grade. But let’s discuss best presentation-making practices first.

What Should You Know About Presentation Making?

Before you start working on a presentation, you have to understand the level and the needs of your audience. If we talk about a thesis defense presentation , you will present your research paper to people knowledgeable in your field. There is no need to translate terminology in this case.

Remember that your presentations should be simple and easy to read. If you basically copy-paste the text from your thesis to the slides, you’ll create a wall of words. This brings zero value. Instead, you should make every slide look engaging. This can be achieved if you set to add only key facts there.

There is a golden rule for presentation making. Create no more than 10 slides, take no more than 20 min, and use a font size of no less than 30 points. If you follow it for every academic work you need a presentation for, you’ll most likely get a high grade.

thesis presentation summary

How to Structure Your Presentation and What Content to Include?

Here are some slide guidelines that you can consider for thesis defense presentations:

1. Title Slide

The title page starts the whole presentation. It gives the audience an idea about the thesis and the course. Make it simple but appealing to highlight your scientific goals while following best academic practices.

A regular title slide page includes the thesis title, your name, university, and course details. Sometimes, it’s recommended to mention your advisor’s name on the title page as well. A title slide for a thesis presentation typically fits in one single slide.

2. Introduction of the Presentation

There is no surprise that your presentation will repeat the structure of your thesis to a certain extent. That means you’ll have to include a proper introduction into your presentation as well.

On that slide, you’ll need to mention the topic once again to keep the audience focused. Also, you’ll be giving more details about the questions and goals of your research. Your audience has to understand the purpose of the paper that is in front of them. You have to make it clear for them what things you are investigating in particular.

3. Acknowledgements Slide

Say Thank you to your collaborators for their help in putting this presentation together. You would also like to thank the teachers and professors who have helped you during the preparation of the thesis. Here is the place to do it. The acknowledgments slide can be added at the beginning of your presentation, or at the end.

4. Literature Review Slide

This slide is not a requirement. However, if you want to render literature sources that you used for your research based on certain criteria, this is the right place to do it. You can provide your audience with a brief understanding of the resources you relied on.

First of all, you can specify the theories that you consider in your research. Secondly, you can highlight weaknesses that exist in current research. In certain cases, it can help you avoid some uncomfortable questions throughout your defense.

5. Methodology Slide

Every thesis paper is written with its own methodology. It’s better to define the tools and methods right away to add a framework to your paper.

This part helps you narrow down your thesis, actually. This is a good thing because you won’t be asked questions pertaining to methods and information not used within your research.

How many slides you need to dedicate for the Methods content? The total number of slides will depend on the case, but typically you can consider from one to three slides. Slide 1 for Study Design, Slide 2 for Measures and Slide 3 for the Sample.

6. Presentation of Results

A few slides that show results should be one of the most comprehensive parts of your presentation. We highly advise you to check this section for all relevant numbers and findings to make it informative.

The thing is that thesis papers crafted by companies where you can order cheap essay online may not include formulas or calculations for diagrams and charts. Nevertheless, you’ll have to include infographics in your presentation.

This is why you have to request these calculations and formulas from your writers or ask them to work on the presentation as well. The point is that you have to know the depth of your research before you start defending it. These details are a part of your grade.

7. Discussion

The discussion part of your thesis presentation should focus on major findings from your research with regard to the discipline program and the goals of this study. You need to explain why you believe these findings are relevant and that much significant. Also, you may provide a few ideas on how your findings relate to what others found in the past. In addition, this is the part where you explain outstanding data or unusual results.

Remember that you are not limited by the number of slides in this section. However, you should keep in mind that only the most important ideas should go into the presentation.

8. Conclusions

To finalize your presentation, you must end it with a proper conclusion. Again, the best practices of presentation making suggest that you should include only key ideas in your slide. You need to convey the rest in a verbal message. This is a bit hard to do when it comes to the conclusion.

However, the goal is to answer the questions you set at the beginning. If you can prove or debunk your thesis statement, consider you have fulfilled your research mission.

9. Future Works or Future Directions slide

In order to make the most of this thesis presentation, future work will involve a number of different people. Some of these people will be responsible for creating the slides and videos that are used in the presentation, while others will be responsible for making sure that all the materials are up-to-date and error-free.

A timeline for this future work can be included in a future work slide, but what to include on this slide will depends on a variety of factors. In this slide, you can present the audience how you envision the future work of your research, who will be doing it, what resources are required, and the different milestones. Typically, a timeline slide design can be used in this section, but you can also use a multi-step slide to describe a list of points. This can be a final slide of presentation unless you want to give space for questions and answer section (Q&A).

Building your thesis is already a tough task. Presentation is considered an add-on that has recently become a must. That is why you should take it seriously and make sure you follow the tips above to ace your defense and wow everyone with your research.

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thesis presentation summary

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Thesis Summary Examples

Thesis Summary Examples

Considering that you have finished writing your thesis, it is high time that you started working on your thesis summary or abstract as the last and final part of your research paper before submitting it to your instructor. Writing an abstract is actually the simplest way for your audience, the teachers and the panel of publishers (if you wish for it to be published) to know what your research paper is about without going through the bulk of your paper.

What is an Abstract?

According to an article found in the Simon Fraser University database, the abstract is deemed a critical part of your thesis and it is presented at the beginning of the thesis, as it is a summary of the whole thesis. The thesis summary is a substantive description of your work read by an external examiner by presenting all the major elements of your work in a highly condensed form.

Size and Structure

Normally, a thesis summary would only contain 120 or less (for undergraduate theses), 150 words (for Masters theses) and 350 words (for a doctoral dissertation).

  • For doctoral dissertations, it is best to limit it to only 280 words with a format of one double-spaced page, to preserve visual coherence.
  • The structure of the abstract should mirror the structure of the whole thesis, and should represent all its major elements.
  • For instance, if your thesis has five chapters (rationale, literature review, methodology, results, conclusion), limit each chapter to only a sentence or two for each chapter in order to maximize some parts that need more substantial backing.

Clearly Specify Your Research Questions

  • Research questions are important in making sure that the abstract is coherent and logically structured as they form the backbone to which other elements adhere; they should be presented near the beginning of the abstract.
  • Depending on the length of your research paper, there is only room for one to three questions. If there are more than three major research questions in your thesis, try to rearrange them by reducing some to subsidiary status.

Don’t Forget the Results

  • One of the most common mistakes in writing abstracts is the failure to indicate the results.
  • The primary function of your thesis (and by extension your abstract) is not to tell readers what you did, it is to tell them what you discovered. Other information, such as the account of your research methods, is needed mainly to back the claims you make about your results.
  • The final part of your thesis should be about summarizing your results as well as interpreting them.
  • Although it is sometimes not necessary, you can choose to add keywords below your abstract as the most important terms that can be found in the thesis.

Listed below are some thesis summary examples:

This study aimed to analyze and identify the most frequent news category and rhetoric of the three local English dailies as well as assess whether they align to the readers’ news preference. These factors served as the sources of the data gathered by the researchers: ninety tertiary students, each local publication’s respective editorial board, and banner stories. Findings indicated that even though the editors would usually select their stories based on impact, the banner story content however focused more on news like crime and politics which are mostly conflict-based issues, instead of human interest stories that readers prefer the most. In conclusion, the respective editorial boards of each publication are not presenting the readers with their main interests in the banner story. Keywords: banner stories, news values, news categories, gatekeeping/gatekeepers, and readers’ preference

An example of a summary format The aim or goal or purpose of this graduation thesis (title) is to … (analyse, characterize, compare, examine, illustrate, present, survey, design, reconstruct) … The graduation thesis is composed of five chapters, each of them dealing with different aspect of … Chapter 1 is introductory and (defines, describes, reviews, deals with) … The chapter is subdivided into two parts. Part 1 describes … and explains … . Part 2 deals with … Chapter 2 examines … . The chapter consists of three parts. Part 1 focuses on … . Part 2 investigates … . Part 3 addresses the issue of … . Chapter 3 is subdivided into two parts and provides an outline of relevant … Part 1 illustrates … . Part 2 looks at … . Chapter 4 concentrates on problems resulting from … Part 1 describes …. Part 2 recommends changes to be made in legislation … Conclusions are drawn in Chapter 5. The main aim of the graduation thesis has been reached. The author suggests that …………………… should be changed/introduced/applied.

The aim of this graduation thesis entitled Development of Yamakawa Technologies to Ascertain the Existence of Cheese on the Moon is to test the use of Yamakawa technologies in ascertaining the existence of cheese on the moon. Yamakawa technologies have been successfully used to test the existence of water in Wakanda, but to date no further applications are known. For this reason the author decided to test further applications, with the aim of describing the technology’s suitability for further development. This thesis first examines the testing procedures for the water in Wakanda experiment, and presents the results. In a second stage several adaptations to Yamakawa for the testing of the existence of cheese on the moon are undertaken. Finally the technology is applied to the question of cheese on the moon, within a six-week testing phase. At the end of each week the testing apparatus is fine tuned, and experiment results are charted every twenty-four hours. The results of the experiment show that Yamakawa technologies are well suited to ascertaining the presence of water in Wakanda, but were unable to be sufficiently modified for the purpose of ascertaining the existence of cheese on the moon. The author recommends further modification to the technology before any other uses are considered.

After writing the said abstract in your research paper, then congratulations! You are now ready to move to the next step of your thesis journey, defending it. Just remember this, always know your thesis by heart. Believe me, if you do, you will not have a hard time and eventually, you will learn to enjoy it too. Good luck!

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The image displays a PowerPoint slide titled "Thesis Presentation Outline," which is designed to structure a formal presentation of academic research. The outline is presented as a numbered list, indicating the order of sections typically included in a thesis presentation:

1. Title Slide - The starting point of the presentation that usually includes the thesis title, the author's name, and the institution.

2. Introduction - An opening section that sets the stage for the audience, outlining the background and the context of the research.

3. Purpose - This section specifies the research objectives or questions the thesis aims to address.

4. Methods - A detailed account of the research methodology, including how the research was conducted.

5. Statistical Analysis - An explanation of the statistical tools and processes used to analyze the collected data.

6. Results - Presentation of the findings of the research, typically supported by data visualizations such as graphs and tables.

7. Discussion - An interpretation of the results, discussing their implications, significance, and how they relate to existing research.

8. Conclusions - A summary of what has been learned, the importance of the findings, and potential future research directions.

9. Reference Slide - The final slide, listing the bibliographic details of the scholarly works cited throughout the presentation.

The slide uses a monochrome theme with a black-and-white image of open books in the background, symbolizing the academic nature of the content. The layout is clean and professional, designed to guide the presenter through the critical elements of their research in a logical sequence.

A thesis presentation outline is a structured framework for presenting detailed academic research, essential in various scholarly and professional contexts.

1. Academia

Use: Presenting research findings and methodologies.

Presenter: Graduate Students, Researchers.

Audience: Academic Peers, Professors.

2. Healthcare

Use: Discussing clinical research outcomes or medical trials.

Presenter: Medical Researchers, PhD Candidates.

Audience: Medical Professionals, Academics.

3. Engineering

Use: Explaining technical advancements or experimental results.

Presenter: Engineering Graduates, Research Scientists.

Audience: Engineers, Industry Experts.

4. Environmental Science

Use: Illustrating environmental studies and conservation efforts.

Presenter: Environmental Researchers.

Audience: Environmental Agencies, Non-profits.

5. Pharmaceutical

Use: Detailing drug development research and clinical trial results.

Presenter: Pharmaceutical Researchers.

Audience: Healthcare Professionals, Regulatory Bodies.

6. Education

Use: Outlining educational theories or teaching methodology research.

Presenter: Education Majors, Academic Researchers.

Audience: Educators, Policy Makers.

7. Economics

Use: Presenting economic models, market analysis, or fiscal policy studies.

Presenter: Economists, Financial Analysts.

Audience: Economists, Business Professionals.

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Thesis Summary: A Detailed Academic Writing Guide

thesis summary

A thesis summary is a highly condensed version of the longer paper. It highlights the main points that have been covered in the paper while concisely describing the content of the thesis. In most cases, the summary of a thesis and the abstract serve the same purpose. They provide an overview of all the major points of a thesis. Thus, a reader can quickly see the main content of your thesis when they read the summary. This enables them to determine whether they are interested in your work or not.

What is Included in a Thesis Summary?

When asked to summarize something, you’re simply required to condense the text to the main points. As such, a good summary of thesis research should include important elements only. It should capture the main idea in the paper and the supporting points that may be interwoven with content that is of lesser importance.

Many learners confuse a thesis statement summary with an analysis. An analysis is a discussion of the techniques, ideas, and meaning in the text. On the other hand, a summary does not entail responding or critiquing the ideas in the text. Analyzing a paper entails summarizing its content to establish the ideas that you will be analyzing. A summary does not substitute for analysis.

Here are some of the things that a Ph.D. or master thesis summary should include: A title that is similar to that of your thesis The main purpose of your thesis The main topic of your thesis The research methods used to gather the information The sub-sections of your thesis Recommendations, results, and conclusions

Essentially, a summary should present the points of the author in a straightforward structure. Therefore, read the thesis carefully to determine the major and minor components or points of the argument and summarize them in an organized manner.

A point that the author makes at the beginning and another one at the end should concisely be included in a summary of thesis to convey the main argument of the author. Thus, you should read, understand, and reconstruct the thesis into a more concise, shorter form.

How to Write an Executive Summary for Thesis

Perhaps, you have written a short thesis that is not longer than ten pages. In that case, follow these steps to write a summary thesis:

  • Summarize every paragraph in one sentence
  • Summarize the entire text in a single sentence
  • Write a single paragraph that starts with a sentence that summarizes the entire text followed by a paragraph of summary sentences
  • Rewrite and rearrange your paragraph to ensure that it’s concise and clear.
  • Eliminate relatively minor and repetitive points and include transitions.

Make sure that the final summary is complete, coherent, and unified.

How to Write Summary of Ph.D. Thesis and Longer Texts

A longer text like a Ph.D. requires time to summarize. That’s because you have to read and understand the document before you summarize it. Here’s how to write a summary thesis for longer papers.

  • Outline the thesis by breaking it down into different major sections. To do this, group the paragraphs that focus on a similar topic and then list down the supporting points for different sections.
  • Write a sentence or two that summarizes every section.
  • Create a single sentence that summarizes the entire text. Look for the topic sentence in the thesis to guide you.
  • Write one paragraph or several to start the overall summary sentence. Follow it with sentences that summarize different sections.
  • Rearrange and rewrite the paragraphs to make the text concise and clear while eliminating repetitious and relatively minor points. Also, include transitions in your summary.

The final summary should include the main supporting points of every idea. Make the final version coherent, unified, and complete.

When is the Summary of Findings in Thesis Necessary?

The summary and conclusion thesis serves the purpose of providing an overview of the paper. As such, students are required to write a summary in many instances. In some cases, an educator can assign learners to write a page or two after reading a paper or article. They can also be asked to come up with a summary of their text as part of their critique or response after reading a paper.

Students can also write article summaries as a part of their planning or note-taking process when writing a research paper. These summaries or their parts can be included in the final papers. When writing a research paper, an author can depend on the summary as their reference to source materials. A summary enables a writer to condense broad information so that they can explain and present the relevance of the sources that deal with a similar subject.

A paper can also be summarized in the introduction to present a precise and concise overview of the main ideas to be discussed in the rest of the text. The length of a summary should depend on the complexity and length of the paper. Additionally, the purpose of a summary should determine whether it will be a few sentences, a shorter paragraph, or even several paragraphs. You can even come across a thesis summary sample that looks like an entire paper.

Qualities of a Good Summary Thesis Sample

When learning how to write summary and conclusion in thesis, many students use samples as their guides. But, how do you know that you’re using a good thesis summary example? Here are the qualities to look for:

  • Comprehensiveness : A good summary should be comprehensive. All important points should be isolated from the original passage and noted down in a brief list. These are the ideas that should form the summary because they are indispensable to the development of the thesis.
  • Conciseness : An ideal summary should be free of repetitions. Do not repeat the same points even if they have been restated in the main document. The summary should be shorter while providing a brief overview of the paper. Therefore, avoid repetition of the main point and supporting ideas.
  • Coherence : A good summary makes sense. It’s not a piece that looks like it’s been taken from the main document. It should also not sound like a collection of disjointed sentences from the main document that is being summarized.
  • Independence : When writing a summary, your work is not to imitate the main text’s author. Instead, you are expected to showcase your style and voice in the summary. Thus, you should not just quote the main text’s author. Instead, express how you understand the document in your words. A summary should be based on your understanding and interpretation of the main ideas or points of the writer. Nevertheless, a good summary does not create distortion or misrepresentation through the introduction of criticisms or comments.

It’s also crucial to note that a good summary thesis example uses a structure that features an introduction, the body, and a conclusion. It presents the goal or purpose, results, and conclusion or recommendations. What’s more, it features logical connections of the included information without adding new information.

To write a great summary, work on this part after completing your thesis. Make sure that you’re guided by the main points of your thesis. What’s more, use a good executive summary for thesis sample to guide you. The length of your summary should depend on its purpose and the length of the main document. Once you have written the summary, read it carefully, and eliminate all errors when proofreading and editing it. Alternatively, ask our thesis editors to proofread the summary for you.

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30 Examples: How to Conclude a Presentation (Effective Closing Techniques)

By Status.net Editorial Team on March 4, 2024 — 9 minutes to read

Ending a presentation on a high note is a skill that can set you apart from the rest. It’s the final chance to leave an impact on your audience, ensuring they walk away with the key messages embedded in their minds. This moment is about driving your points home and making sure they resonate. Crafting a memorable closing isn’t just about summarizing key points, though that’s part of it, but also about providing value that sticks with your listeners long after they’ve left the room.

Crafting Your Core Message

To leave a lasting impression, your presentation’s conclusion should clearly reflect your core message. This is your chance to reinforce the takeaways and leave the audience thinking about your presentation long after it ends.

Identifying Key Points

Start by recognizing what you want your audience to remember. Think about the main ideas that shaped your talk. Make a list like this:

  • The problem your presentation addresses.
  • The evidence that supports your argument.
  • The solution you propose or the action you want the audience to take.

These key points become the pillars of your core message.

Contextualizing the Presentation

Provide context by briefly relating back to the content of the whole presentation. For example:

  • Reference a statistic you shared in the opening, and how it ties into the conclusion.
  • Mention a case study that underlines the importance of your message.

Connecting these elements gives your message cohesion and makes your conclusion resonate with the framework of your presentation.

30 Example Phrases: How to Conclude a Presentation

  • 1. “In summary, let’s revisit the key takeaways from today’s presentation.”
  • 2. “Thank you for your attention. Let’s move forward together.”
  • 3. “That brings us to the end. I’m open to any questions you may have.”
  • 4. “I’ll leave you with this final thought to ponder as we conclude.”
  • 5. “Let’s recap the main points before we wrap up.”
  • 6. “I appreciate your engagement. Now, let’s turn these ideas into action.”
  • 7. “We’ve covered a lot today. To conclude, remember these crucial points.”
  • 8. “As we reach the end, I’d like to emphasize our call to action.”
  • 9. “Before we close, let’s quickly review what we’ve learned.”
  • 10. “Thank you for joining me on this journey. I look forward to our next steps.”
  • 11. “In closing, I’d like to thank everyone for their participation.”
  • 12. “Let’s conclude with a reminder of the impact we can make together.”
  • 13. “To wrap up our session, here’s a brief summary of our discussion.”
  • 14. “I’m grateful for the opportunity to present to you. Any final thoughts?”
  • 15. “And that’s a wrap. I welcome any final questions or comments.”
  • 16. “As we conclude, let’s remember the objectives we’ve set today.”
  • 17. “Thank you for your time. Let’s apply these insights to achieve success.”
  • 18. “In conclusion, your feedback is valuable, and I’m here to listen.”
  • 19. “Before we part, let’s take a moment to reflect on our key messages.”
  • 20. “I’ll end with an invitation for all of us to take the next step.”
  • 21. “As we close, let’s commit to the goals we’ve outlined today.”
  • 22. “Thank you for your attention. Let’s keep the conversation going.”
  • 23. “In conclusion, let’s make a difference, starting now.”
  • 24. “I’ll leave you with these final words to consider as we end our time together.”
  • 25. “Before we conclude, remember that change starts with our actions today.”
  • 26. “Thank you for the lively discussion. Let’s continue to build on these ideas.”
  • 27. “As we wrap up, I encourage you to reach out with any further questions.”
  • 28. “In closing, I’d like to express my gratitude for your valuable input.”
  • 29. “Let’s conclude on a high note and take these learnings forward.”
  • 30. “Thank you for your time today. Let’s end with a commitment to progress.”

Summarizing the Main Points

When you reach the end of your presentation, summarizing the main points helps your audience retain the important information you’ve shared. Crafting a memorable summary enables your listeners to walk away with a clear understanding of your message.

Effective Methods of Summarization

To effectively summarize your presentation, you need to distill complex information into concise, digestible pieces. Start by revisiting the overarching theme of your talk and then narrow down to the core messages. Use plain language and imagery to make the enduring ideas stick. Here are some examples of how to do this:

  • Use analogies that relate to common experiences to recap complex concepts.
  • Incorporate visuals or gestures that reinforce your main arguments.

The Rule of Three

The Rule of Three is a classic writing and communication principle. It means presenting ideas in a trio, which is a pattern that’s easy for people to understand and remember. For instance, you might say, “Our plan will save time, cut costs, and improve quality.” This structure has a pleasing rhythm and makes the content more memorable. Some examples include:

  • “This software is fast, user-friendly, and secure.”
  • Pointing out a product’s “durability, affordability, and eco-friendliness.”

Reiterating the Main Points

Finally, you want to circle back to the key takeaways of your presentation. Rephrase your main points without introducing new information. This reinforcement supports your audience’s memory and understanding of the material. You might summarize key takeaways like this:

  • Mention the problem you addressed, the solution you propose, and the benefits of this solution.
  • Highlighting the outcomes of adopting your strategy: higher efficiency, greater satisfaction, and increased revenue.

Creating a Strong Conclusion

The final moments of your presentation are your chance to leave your audience with a powerful lasting impression. A strong conclusion is more than just summarizing—it’s your opportunity to invoke thought, inspire action, and make your message memorable.

Incorporating a Call to Action

A call to action is your parting request to your audience. You want to inspire them to take a specific action or think differently as a result of what they’ve heard. To do this effectively:

  • Be clear about what you’re asking.
  • Explain why their action is needed.
  • Make it as simple as possible for them to take the next steps.

Example Phrases:

  • “Start making a difference today by…”
  • “Join us in this effort by…”
  • “Take the leap and commit to…”

Leaving a Lasting Impression

End your presentation with something memorable. This can be a powerful quote, an inspirational statement, or a compelling story that underscores your main points. The goal here is to resonate with your audience on an emotional level so that your message sticks with them long after they leave.

  • “In the words of [Influential Person], ‘…'”
  • “Imagine a world where…”
  • “This is more than just [Topic]; it’s about…”

Enhancing Audience Engagement

To hold your audience’s attention and ensure they leave with a lasting impression of your presentation, fostering interaction is key.

Q&A Sessions

It’s important to integrate a Q&A session because it allows for direct communication between you and your audience. This interactive segment helps clarify any uncertainties and encourages active participation. Plan for this by designating a time slot towards the end of your presentation and invite questions that promote discussion.

  • “I’d love to hear your thoughts; what questions do you have?”
  • “Let’s dive into any questions you might have. Who would like to start?”
  • “Feel free to ask any questions, whether they’re clarifications or deeper inquiries about the topic.”

Encouraging Audience Participation

Getting your audience involved can transform a good presentation into a great one. Use open-ended questions that provoke thought and allow audience members to reflect on how your content relates to them. Additionally, inviting volunteers to participate in a demonstration or share their experiences keeps everyone engaged and adds a personal touch to your talk.

  • “Could someone give me an example of how you’ve encountered this in your work?”
  • “I’d appreciate a volunteer to help demonstrate this concept. Who’s interested?”
  • “How do you see this information impacting your daily tasks? Let’s discuss!”

Delivering a Persuasive Ending

At the end of your presentation, you have the power to leave a lasting impact on your audience. A persuasive ending can drive home your key message and encourage action.

Sales and Persuasion Tactics

When you’re concluding a presentation with the goal of selling a product or idea, employ carefully chosen sales and persuasion tactics. One method is to summarize the key benefits of your offering, reminding your audience why it’s important to act. For example, if you’ve just presented a new software tool, recap how it will save time and increase productivity. Another tactic is the ‘call to action’, which should be clear and direct, such as “Start your free trial today to experience the benefits first-hand!” Furthermore, using a touch of urgency, like “Offer expires soon!”, can nudge your audience to act promptly.

Final Impressions and Professionalism

Your closing statement is a chance to solidify your professional image and leave a positive impression. It’s important to display confidence and poise. Consider thanking your audience for their time and offering to answer any questions. Make sure to end on a high note by summarizing your message in a concise and memorable way. If your topic was on renewable energy, you might conclude by saying, “Let’s take a leap towards a greener future by adopting these solutions today.” This reinforces your main points and encourages your listeners to think or act differently when they leave.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some creative strategies for ending a presentation memorably.

To end your presentation in a memorable way, consider incorporating a call to action that engages your audience to take the next step. Another strategy is to finish with a thought-provoking question or a surprising fact that resonates with your listeners.

Can you suggest some powerful quotes suitable for concluding a presentation?

Yes, using a quote can be very effective. For example, Maya Angelou’s “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel,” can reinforce the emotional impact of your presentation.

What is an effective way to write a conclusion that summarizes a presentation?

An effective conclusion should recap the main points succinctly, highlighting what you want your audience to remember. A good way to conclude is by restating your thesis and then briefly summarizing the supporting points you made.

As a student, how can I leave a strong impression with my presentation’s closing remarks?

To leave a strong impression, consider sharing a personal anecdote related to your topic that demonstrates passion and conviction. This helps humanize your content and makes the message more relatable to your audience.

How can I appropriately thank my audience at the close of my presentation?

A simple and sincere expression of gratitude is always appropriate. You might say, “Thank you for your attention and engagement today,” to convey appreciation while also acknowledging their participation.

What are some examples of a compelling closing sentence in a presentation?

A compelling closing sentence could be something like, “Together, let’s take the leap towards a greener future,” if you’re presenting on sustainability. This sentence is impactful, calls for united action, and leaves your audience with a clear message.

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CS PhD student wins People's Choice award at Three Minute Thesis competition

Aaquib Tabrez, a 5th year PhD student in the Department of Computer Science advised by Assistant Professor Bradley Hayes, won the People's Choice award for the graduate school's Three Minute Thesis competition. The competition challenges students to describe their research within three minutes to a general audience after a few months of preparation. 

To celebrate Tabrez's accomplishments, let's learn more about his research and experience with the competition and graduate school at CU Boulder. 

Please briefly summarize your thesis:

I design novel algorithms that enable robots and autonomous systems to more effectively explain their decision-making processes to human collaborators. This enhances the ability of individuals to place appropriate levels of trust in these systems. The aim is to make these systems more transparent, trustworthy, and reliable across various human-robot team settings, including manufacturing, autonomous driving, and search and rescue operations. By improving human-machine communication and collaboration, we can significantly enhance the effectiveness of these teams.

Specifically, my work involves teaching robots how to teach or coach humans during collaborative efforts. Additionally, I investigate situations where people may over-trust or under-trust the recommendations and guidance provided by robots. My research explores various methods and techniques to mitigate these mismatches in trust by offering suitable explanations from the robots.

How does it feel to be recognized as the People’s Choice for the Three Minute Thesis competition?

It feels absolutely incredible. Public speaking hasn't always been my strong suit, particularly with my Indian accent. Competing in such a big competition has been a significant confidence booster. It’s truly rewarding to see people acknowledging my research and the hard work I’ve put in here at CU Boulder.

What inspired you to submit to the competition?

My advisor has always stressed the importance of being able to articulate our research to those outside our field. Plus, as an expert, I believe that I am best suited to explain what is happening within my field and my work to make sure people don’t misunderstand it. Participating in this competition seemed like the perfect opportunity to hone those communication skills.

Tell me a bit about yourself. How did you come to study at CU Boulder?

Before joining CU Boulder, I was working a typical 9-5 job. I did not like the monotony and the lack of learning opportunities. So, I wanted to try something different which would be intellectually challenging. I also like philosophy and was interested in figuring out how people think. So, I thought, why not try to do the same for robots? That basically motivated me to apply here, specializing in robotics. Plus, I was a big H.G. Wells fan when I was a kid, so that kinda motivated me to consider robotics.

What goals do you have for the future? 

Professionally, I would like to run my own research lab, working closely with those directly impacted by emerging technologies, such as healthcare workers and teachers. My goal is to explore how these advancements can bring about tangible improvements in their fields and their personal life. On a personal level, I love hiking, and I want to explore as many countries as possible and hiking trails around the world.

What advice would you give to a student considering graduate school?

One thing that has really helped me throughout my PhD is being physically active, whether it's going to the gym, running, or hiking. It gives me a sense of clarity and a rush of adrenaline that helps me think through any situation. Graduate school is both fun and challenging, filled with distractions, doubts, imposter syndrome, and deep bonding with the people around you. Surround yourself with supportive people who can help you overcome these challenges. Don't hesitate to ask for help when you're not in a good place; there are so many people ready to lend a hand when you ask for it.

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Chemistry and OEB Students Among Winners of the Three Minute Thesis

Thakshala Tissera, a doctoral student in the Department of English, won the winner of the 2024 Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition.

Thakshala Tissera , a doctoral student in the Department of English, has been named the winner of the 2024 Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition. Organized by the UMass Amherst Graduate School, the Three Minute Thesis challenges graduate students to describe their research in an engaging manner, using non-technical language, all in three minutes or less. 

Tissera’s presentation, “Elephant Tales: Stories for Coexistence,” was selected by the distinguished panel of judges as the winner in the live campus final, held March 1 in the Old Chapel.

Doctoral students Rehab Heikal, chemistry, and Seanne Clemente, organismic and evolutionary biology (OEB), were named 3MT runners up for their respective presentations, “Identification of the Cellular Garbage Truck for our Memory Protein” and “Pollinator Pharmacies in your Garden: Investigating bumble bee self-medication.” The audience also voted Clemente as the People’s Choice recipient.

A total of 10 finalists representing seven graduate programs competed in the campus final. As the UMass Amherst 3MT winner, Tissera will go on to compete in the regional 3MT in April, along with 3MT winners from over 25 graduate schools in the northeastern United States and Canada.

The 3MT Campus Final also included the “Images of Research” competition, featuring images submitted by graduate students and postdocs. Images were posted to Instagram , with winners named in multiple categories. The Instagram Favorite was from postdoctoral student  Grace Casselberry , environmental conservation. The Graduate School Favorite and People’s Choice winner was by doctoral student  Rozy Bathrick , organismic and evolutionary biology.

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5 takeaways from President Biden's State of the Union address

Deirdre Walsh, 2018

Deirdre Walsh

thesis presentation summary

President Biden delivers his State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress at the Capitol in Washington, D.C., on Thursday. J. Scott Applewhite/AP hide caption

President Biden delivers his State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress at the Capitol in Washington, D.C., on Thursday.

President Biden didn't waste any time in his prime-time State of the Union address drawing a sharp contrast with his likely 2024 presidential rival, former President Donald Trump.

Instead of a policy-heavy laundry list speech, the president leaned into politics, and at times, shouted and amped up Democrats with some fiery rhetoric.

Early in his speech he derided Trump, without mentioning his name, chastising those who failed to heed the threat from Russian President Vladimir Putin to Ukraine, and denouncing those who stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.

The atmosphere in the House chamber often seemed more like a political convention than the annual required speech assessing the state of the nation.

Here are five takeaways.

1. He took on Trump extensively on a wide range of policies

The president referred to policies or comments from "my predecessor" more than a dozen times, making it clear the high-stakes televised speech was his campaign roadmap for his rematch with Trump in November.

The president leaned into the issues that energize his base, like abortion and gun control and tax hikes on the wealthy. But he also attempted to challenge Republicans in the chamber, and Trump outside of it, on issues like the border and crime, areas where he faces skepticism from many independent and suburban voters.

Key moments from Biden's 2024 State of the Union address you may have missed

Key moments from Biden's 2024 State of the Union address you may have missed

The president, who is 81, had a bar to clear to alleviate concerns from some in his own party about his age and capacity to hold the demanding job as commander in chief for four more years.

He stuck mostly to his script, was energetic and appeared to fire up Democrats in the chamber, who occasionally chanted "Four more years!" and jumped to their feet cheering the president.

Biden also worked to flip the age issue against his opponent, who at one point he referred to as "some other people my age." Trump is 77.

2. Reproductive rights are front and center in 2024 campaign

With six justices of the U.S. Supreme Court sitting in the front rows, the president criticized the majority conservative court for overturning the landmark abortion case Roe v. Wade in 2022. As he warned that "history is watching" how the U.S. handles alliances abroad, and supports Ukraine, he warned about "another assault on freedom."

Referring to Trump, Biden maintained that the former president was responsible for overturning the law and said, "In fact, he brags about it." He warned that Republicans in the Congress were pushing for a national abortion ban.

Alluding to Trump, Biden calls out Republicans 'bragging' about abortion bans

Alluding to Trump, Biden calls out Republicans 'bragging' about abortion bans

He ticked through how a host of red states have restricted access to reproductive health services — warning about the latest law in Alabama that effectively banned in vitro fertilization. He mentioned Kate Cox, a guest sitting with the first lady . Cox suffered a fatal fetal condition during her pregnancy but was unable to obtain an abortion in Texas and sued the state .

Biden warned that the GOP underestimated the power of women to mobilize, referencing past wins when reproductive freedom was on the ballot and predicting a win again in 2024.

He also promised to restore Roe v. Wade as the law of the land — something he will need a Democratic House and Senate to achieve, which is not likely after the 2024 election, when Republicans are favored to flip control of the Senate.

The political symbolism of the power of women for Biden's campaign was also visibly on display in the chamber. Dozens of Democratic lawmakers donned white and sported buttons emblazoned with a slogan "fighting for reproductive freedom."

3. Biden made the case for why his economic policies are working

Congressional Democrats, especially those in swing seats , needed Biden to alleviate voters' concerns about his ability to do the job in this kickoff campaign speech. But they chiefly named the economy as the issue they wanted him to highlight.

He argued that the state of the country was far worse when Trump was in office, citing the pandemic that triggered job losses, millions of deaths and a "mental health crisis of isolation and loneliness."

He acknowledged what many Democrats concede, that some of the major bills that Democrats passed since 2021 aren't fully felt around the country.

"It doesn't make the news but in thousands of cities and towns, the American people are writing the greatest comeback story never told," he said.

Many Republicans in the chamber groaned and booed at Biden's description of Trump's record.

Biden touts economic 'comeback' in election-year pitch to skeptical voters

Biden touts economic 'comeback' in election-year pitch to skeptical voters

When Biden wasn't calling out Trump's record in the White House, he outlined his own. He pulled out statistics about real world projects that are funded through his top legislative accomplishments — a heath care and climate bill, which was passed without a single GOP vote, and the bipartisan infrastructure bill.

Biden took credit for lowering prescription drugs, and capping the cost of insulin for seniors on Medicare to $35 a month. He vowed in a second term to extend that cap for all who need insulin.

Biden used a familiar populist line from the stump about shifting more cost savings to those on the lower-income side, at the expense of the top 1%.

Biden cited Trump's 2017 tax cuts as the prime example of a president who was skewed toward helping the rich.

He looked into the cameras to those watching at home and asked the political question designed to relate to most Americans, "For folks at home, does anybody really think the tax code is fair?"

4. Border security provoked a GOP response, and blame game

Going into the State of the Union, the president and his advisers knew he needed to detail how he would address the situation at the U.S.-Mexico border and acknowledge the impact it is having, not just in red border states, but in blue cities across the country, where migrants are being bused and straining public resources.

Public opinion polls consistently show it's his weakest issue politically, and Trump and Republicans on Capitol Hill have made it their top priority. Before the president's speech on Thursday, the House approved a bill dubbed the "Laken Riley Act," a reference to the 22-year-old Georgia nursing student who was murdered recently by a migrant who entered the U.S. illegally in 2022. The move was a deliberate attempt to force Democrats to go on the record on a measure that requires the detention of any migrant with a record of theft, and 37 Democrats — chiefly from swing districts — backed it.

Biden spars with Republicans on border security during State of the Union

Biden spars with Republicans on border security during State of the Union

Republicans wore buttons that included Riley's name, and some chanted her name when President Biden called for Congress to pass the bipartisan Senate border security bill, which White House officials helped broker over several months. The Senate approved the legislation with a significant bipartisan vote, but House Speaker Mike Johnson said it was "dead on arrival" and declined to take it up.

Biden again didn't mention Trump by name, but blamed him for derailing it, "I'm told my predecessor called Republicans in Congress and demanded they block the bill. He feels it would be a political win for me and a political loser for him."

GOP rebuttals to Biden's State of the Union focus on the border and immigration

GOP rebuttals to Biden's State of the Union focus on the border and immigration

Biden repeated a challenge he issued in a recent trip to the southwest border for Trump to join him to help pass the bill. He mentioned he was looking at executive authority for policies to reduce the number of migrants — something that has split Democrats on Capitol Hill — but he also said he needed Congress to change the law to fund more enforcement personnel.

The blame game over which party is more serious about the situation at the border is expected to be a leading theme through the fall. Although Democrats are split on the president's embrace of some conservative policies, like altering who can be eligible to claim asylum, the strategy of trying to flip the script and put Republicans on defense for blocking a bipartisan plan is one candidates in competitive races are expected to replicate.

Latino Democrats launch 'Our Lucha' war room using Spanglish to combat GOP

Latino Democrats launch 'Our Lucha' war room using Spanglish to combat GOP

5. biden addressed critics on his mideast policy, stepped up criticism of israeli leaders.

President Biden made Israel's now five-month-long war against Hamas in Gaza a significant part of his speech, and he acknowledged families of those still being held hostage by Hamas in the chamber's visitors galleries.

His handling of the war has angered many progressives, and younger voters, who argue that the president isn't tough enough on the Israeli government. The fallout from his approach has cost him politically, and Democrats are concerned it could prompt some voters to stay home in the fall.

In Michigan, a significant bloc of Democrats upset about the president's handling of Israel's war in Gaza, sent a message in the primary last week, with more than 100,000 registering a vote for the "uncommitted" option on the ballot, instead of for Biden. A number of Super Tuesday states had similar efforts.

'Uncommitted' movement spreads to Super Tuesday states

'Uncommitted' movement spreads to Super Tuesday states

In Thursday's address, the president announced the U.S. military will build a temporary emergency pier to facilitate the delivery of aid to civilians desperate for food and medicine. But, he declared, "No U.S. boots will be on the ground."

The president stressed that his administration is working on a cease-fire so that hostages can be released and more humanitarian assistance can be delivered. He stressed his personal record over decades as a strong supporter of Israel and his visit during the early part of the war. But he also said, "As we look to the future, the only real solution is a two-state solution."

There is increasing pressure for an immediate cease-fire to materialize, and Biden, who recently predicted a temporary pause would be coming in a matter of days, faces calls from progressives in Congress to cut off military aid to Israel and concentrate on humanitarian assistance.

Biden may have largely united his own party on the need to continue supporting Ukraine. But the deep fissures when it comes to his approach to Israel, as the death toll of civilians mounts in Gaza, has been a regular flashpoint already in campaign stops and shows no sign of fading.

Correction March 8, 2024

An earlier version of this story mistakenly said Republicans are favored to flip control of the House. The GOP currently controls the House and could flip the Senate.

Watch CBS News

Key moments from Sen. Katie Britt's Republican response to 2024 State of the Union

By Melissa Quinn

Updated on: March 8, 2024 / 3:07 AM EST / CBS News

Washington — Alabama Sen. Katie Britt on Thursday delivered an impassioned criticism of President Biden and his administration's policies during the Republican response to his  2024 State of the Union address,  seeking to use her rebuttal to draw a contrast to the president heading into the November general election and distinguish the GOP as the party that is better positioned to lead the nation.

In remarks delivered from her kitchen table at her house in Montgomery, Alabama, Britt denounced Mr. Biden's remarks in his third State of the Union, and lambasted the president for his policies on immigration , economics, crime and foreign policy.

"What we saw was the performance of a permanent politician who has actually been in office for longer than I've been alive," she said. "One thing was quite clear though: President Biden just doesn't get it."

Britt sought to paint Mr. Biden as an out-of-touch politician who has little awareness of what the middle class is experiencing under his administration. She did not mention former President Donald Trump, who Britt has endorsed for the White House and who is expected to face-off against Mr. Biden in the November general election.

"Right now, the American dream has turned into a nightmare for so many families," Britt said. "The true, unvarnished state of our union begins and ends with this: Our families are hurting. Our country can do better."

The senator, who made history as the first woman elected to represent Alabama in the Senate, and youngest Republican woman ever elected to the upper chamber, attempted to appeal to families who are worried about crime in their communities and inflation.

"Just ask yourself, are you better off now than you were three years ago?" she said. "There's no doubt we're at a crossroads, and it doesn't have to be this way. We all feel it."

Britt characterized Republicans as the party of "hardworking parents and families" who are working to improve the nation's future for the next generation and "want families to grow." 

"It's why we strongly support continued nationwide access to in vitro fertilization," she said.

The Alabama senator's mention of IVF services comes as Republicans seek to quell concerns that access to fertility treatments could be at risk after the high court in Britt's home state found  frozen embryos can be considered children  under Alabama law. 

The Alabama Supreme Court's decision last month left the state mired in controversy after several clinics that provide in vitro fertilization services announced they would be halting or limiting treatments, and Republicans at the state and federal level have raced to express support for continued access to IVF services.

"We the people are in the driver's seat," Britt said. "We get to decide whether our future will grow brighter or whether we'll settle for an America in decline. Well, I know which choice our children deserve, and I know the choice the Republican Party is fighting for."

On immigration, Britt claimed that Mr. Biden created the current situation at the border with a slew of executive actions he issued in his first 100 days in office.

"This is the United States of America and it is past time, in my opinion, that we start acting like it," she said. "President Biden's border policies are a disgrace. This crisis is despicable and the truth is, it is almost entirely preventable."

Britt attempted to stoke fear by proclaiming that "innocent Americans are dying," and, to Mr. Biden said, "you only have yourself to blame." The Alabama Republican noted the murder of 22-year-old Laken Riley last month on the campus of the University of Georgia. The suspect in her death is a Venezuelan migrant, and Republicans have claimed her killing is a result of Mr. Biden's border policies.

"Fulfill your oath of office. Reverse your policies. End this crisis and stop the suffering," she said.

On the economy, Britt said that the American people are "scraping by," while the president touts the success of his economic policies, which the White House has dubbed "Bidenomics." And on foreign policy, the Alabama senator claimed that the U.S. has retreated on the world stage, allowing adversaries like Russia and Iran to act without repercussions. 

"We all recall when presidents faced national security threats with strength and resolve. That seems like ancient history," she said. "Right now, our commander-in-chief is not in command. The free world deserves better than a dithering and diminished leader. America deserves leaders who recognize that secure borders, stable prices, safe streets and a strong defense are actually the cornerstones of a great nation."

Britt claimed that Mr. Biden has failed the country, and she sought to motivate voters to tap into the nation's history and "stand up and prove ourselves worthy of the American dream."

"Get into the arena," she said. "Every generation has been called to do hard things. American greatness rests in the fact that we always answer that call. It's who we are."

Republican leaders announced last month that Britt would be delivering the GOP response to Mr. Biden's State of the Union address and indicated that she is well-suited to show the American people why the president, at 81, should be limited to a single term in the White House.

How do they choose who gives the State of the Union rebuttal?

The Republican selected to deliver the rebuttal is typically considered a rising star in the party, and someone who can draw a clear distinction from Mr. Biden and Democrats. The top leaders of the party that doesn't occupy the White House choose who will give the response.

In 2023, Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the nation's youngest governor, delivered the GOP response, and in 2022, Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds provided the rebuttal.

Given the focus on Mr. Biden's age heading into the November general election, which is poised to be a rematch of the 2020 race against Trump, GOP leaders selected the youngest Republican woman ever to serve in the upper chamber. Mr. Biden began his career in the Senate years before Britt was even born.

In fact, House Speaker Mike Johnson said in a statement last month that "the American people will tune in as the youngest Republican woman ever elected to the Senate turns the page on the oldest president in history."

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell praised Britt as an "an unapologetic optimist."

The GOP is working to convince voters that they are the better party to lead the country into the future and address key issues like immigration and the economy. McConnell said last month that Britt has become "a leading voice in the fight to secure a stronger American future and leave years of Washington Democrats' failures behind."

A look at Senator Katie Britt's political career

Britt was elected to the Senate in 2022 after defeating Rep. Mo Brooks in the GOP primary runoff. Trump initially endorsed Brooks, but the former president withdrew his support earlier in the race after polls showed Brooks struggling to gain support. Trump threw his weight behind Britt months later, after she received the most votes in the primary. She  advanced to a runoff against Brooks.

Brooks and Britt were vying to succeed longtime GOP Sen. Richard Shelby after he announced his retirement. Britt served as Shelby's chief of staff and as president of the Business Council of Alabama.

Before leading Shelby's office, Britt served as deputy campaign manager for his 2016 re-election bid and was a practicing attorney.

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Melissa Quinn is a politics reporter for CBSNews.com. She has written for outlets including the Washington Examiner, Daily Signal and Alexandria Times. Melissa covers U.S. politics, with a focus on the Supreme Court and federal courts.

More from CBS News

Who is Katie Britt, the senator who delivered the GOP State of the Union response?

Missed the State of the Union 2024? Replay videos and highlights here.

What time does Biden's State of the Union start and end tonight?

State of the Union highlights and key moments from Biden's 2024 address

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  • Dissertation & Thesis Outline | Example & Free Templates

Dissertation & Thesis Outline | Example & Free Templates

Published on June 7, 2022 by Tegan George . Revised on November 21, 2023.

A thesis or dissertation outline is one of the most critical early steps in your writing process . It helps you to lay out and organize your ideas and can provide you with a roadmap for deciding the specifics of your dissertation topic and showcasing its relevance to your field.

Generally, an outline contains information on the different sections included in your thesis or dissertation , such as:

  • Your anticipated title
  • Your abstract
  • Your chapters (sometimes subdivided into further topics like literature review, research methods, avenues for future research, etc.)

In the final product, you can also provide a chapter outline for your readers. This is a short paragraph at the end of your introduction to inform readers about the organizational structure of your thesis or dissertation. This chapter outline is also known as a reading guide or summary outline.

Table of contents

How to outline your thesis or dissertation, dissertation and thesis outline templates, chapter outline example, sample sentences for your chapter outline, sample verbs for variation in your chapter outline, other interesting articles, frequently asked questions about thesis and dissertation outlines.

While there are some inter-institutional differences, many outlines proceed in a fairly similar fashion.

  • Working Title
  • “Elevator pitch” of your work (often written last).
  • Introduce your area of study, sharing details about your research question, problem statement , and hypotheses . Situate your research within an existing paradigm or conceptual or theoretical framework .
  • Subdivide as you see fit into main topics and sub-topics.
  • Describe your research methods (e.g., your scope , population , and data collection ).
  • Present your research findings and share about your data analysis methods.
  • Answer the research question in a concise way.
  • Interpret your findings, discuss potential limitations of your own research and speculate about future implications or related opportunities.

For a more detailed overview of chapters and other elements, be sure to check out our article on the structure of a dissertation or download our template .

To help you get started, we’ve created a full thesis or dissertation template in Word or Google Docs format. It’s easy adapt it to your own requirements.

 Download Word template    Download Google Docs template

Chapter outline example American English

It can be easy to fall into a pattern of overusing the same words or sentence constructions, which can make your work monotonous and repetitive for your readers. Consider utilizing some of the alternative constructions presented below.

Example 1: Passive construction

The passive voice is a common choice for outlines and overviews because the context makes it clear who is carrying out the action (e.g., you are conducting the research ). However, overuse of the passive voice can make your text vague and imprecise.

Example 2: IS-AV construction

You can also present your information using the “IS-AV” (inanimate subject with an active verb ) construction.

A chapter is an inanimate object, so it is not capable of taking an action itself (e.g., presenting or discussing). However, the meaning of the sentence is still easily understandable, so the IS-AV construction can be a good way to add variety to your text.

Example 3: The “I” construction

Another option is to use the “I” construction, which is often recommended by style manuals (e.g., APA Style and Chicago style ). However, depending on your field of study, this construction is not always considered professional or academic. Ask your supervisor if you’re not sure.

Example 4: Mix-and-match

To truly make the most of these options, consider mixing and matching the passive voice , IS-AV construction , and “I” construction .This can help the flow of your argument and improve the readability of your text.

As you draft the chapter outline, you may also find yourself frequently repeating the same words, such as “discuss,” “present,” “prove,” or “show.” Consider branching out to add richness and nuance to your writing. Here are some examples of synonyms you can use.

If you want to know more about AI for academic writing, AI tools, or research bias, make sure to check out some of our other articles with explanations and examples or go directly to our tools!

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When you mention different chapters within your text, it’s considered best to use Roman numerals for most citation styles. However, the most important thing here is to remain consistent whenever using numbers in your dissertation .

The title page of your thesis or dissertation goes first, before all other content or lists that you may choose to include.

A thesis or dissertation outline is one of the most critical first steps in your writing process. It helps you to lay out and organize your ideas and can provide you with a roadmap for deciding what kind of research you’d like to undertake.

  • Your chapters (sometimes subdivided into further topics like literature review , research methods , avenues for future research, etc.)

Cite this Scribbr article

If you want to cite this source, you can copy and paste the citation or click the “Cite this Scribbr article” button to automatically add the citation to our free Citation Generator.

George, T. (2023, November 21). Dissertation & Thesis Outline | Example & Free Templates. Scribbr. Retrieved March 8, 2024, from https://www.scribbr.com/dissertation/dissertation-thesis-outline/

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Texas Fires Span Over 1.2 Million Acres. Here Is What We Know.

The largest fire, Smokehouse Creek, burned over one million acres but is now 74 percent contained.

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Mailboxes line a road with a burned grass field behind.

By Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs ,  Jacey Fortin and Anna Betts

The Smokehouse Creek fire, the largest on record in Texas, has burned more than one million acres in the state’s Panhandle and continues to pose challenges for firefighters, who have not yet been able to contain it fully.

The blaze is 74 percent contained, fire officials said on Thursday, meaning that they believe a majority of the fire’s perimeter is hemmed in and that the fire will no longer spread. Much of the fire had been put out, but firefighters were worried that strong winds could still fuel powerful flare-ups.

The fire is already one of the largest in U.S. history . It has devastated cattle ranches, killing thousands of cows and other animals, and it has killed at least two people as it has raced across dry grasslands and consumed homes.

On Thursday, Xcel Energy, a utility company, said that its power equipment appeared to have caused the fire. A lawsuit had claimed that one of the company’s utility poles, near Stinnett, Texas, had been blown over by strong winds and then sparked the initial blaze.

Firefighters are stretched across three active wildfires with a combined acreage of more than 1.2 million acres, according to the Texas A&M Forest Service. They have put out several smaller blazes.

Here is what we know so far.

When did it begin?

The Smokehouse Creek fire was ignited on Feb. 26, near Stinnett, a small town about an hour’s drive northeast of Amarillo.

The fire spread to the town of Canadian, a cattle-country community of about 2,200 people near the Oklahoma border, and, within a couple of days, spread further to vast swaths of ranchlands in the Panhandle.

Melanie Lee McQuiddy, a homeowner in Hemphill County, which includes Canadian, sued Xcel Energy, saying her home was burned in the blaze and Xcel was responsible.

While Xcel acknowledged being the most likely cause of the fire, it denied that it acted negligently in maintaining its equipment.

Where has the fire been spreading?

The fire has been burning across a sparsely populated area of Texas that is home to most of the state’s cattle: millions of cows, calves, steers and bulls. Its sprawling ranches are not always easily traversable by road.

Wildfires are nothing new for Panhandle ranchers, many of whom know how to transform their pickups into makeshift fire trucks to fight a blaze. But the scale of this fire is without precedent in Texas.

In addition to the ranchers, residents of the small communities that dot the landscape, like Fritch and Canadian, have seen their homes, cars and churches reduced to rubble.

Two deaths have been connected to the fires so far. Joyce Blankenship, an 83-year-old woman living on the outskirts of Stinnett, perished in her home when flames overtook her property on Feb. 27. Cindy Owen, 44, died from burns after flames surrounded her company truck the same day as she drove home to Amarillo from Oklahoma. She died at a hospital.

Gov. Greg Abbott said on Friday that early assessments suggested that about 400 to 500 structures in the region had been destroyed by the fire, and he cautioned that the number could rise as surveys continued. Officials also said that several firefighters and other emergency workers had been injured.

Is the blaze being contained?

The Smokehouse Creek fire was 74 percent contained as of Thursday afternoon, the authorities said.

The rugged terrain of the Canadian River Valley, where the fire started, has been a major obstacle for firefighters because fire trucks cannot navigate some of the area’s cliffs, valleys and steep hills.

Residents and firefighters are hoping for rain, but fire officials said on Thursday that high winds were expected to blow across dry grass and other vegetation, potentially powering wildfires.

“New ignitions may be resistant to firefighters’ suppression efforts,” the Texas A&M Forest Service warned.

What about the cattle?

The Panhandle is home to about 85 percent of the roughly 12 million cattle in Texas, the state agriculture commissioner, Sid Miller, said. But most of them are kept concentrated in feedlots and dairy farms, and those operations have been largely unaffected by the fires.

Still, wide swaths of the grassland that Texas cattle rely on for food have been charred. Thousands of cattle may have already died or been so injured in the blazes that they would have to be killed, Mr. Miller said.

Even those ranchers whose cattle had survived were left scrambling to find a place for their herds to eat. Scorched grazing land means their surviving cows may starve if left alone. Mr. Miller said a rancher he knew had 1,500 head of steer but “no grass and no water” and was in a desperate situation, adding that the rancher might have to move the cattle across state lines.

The fire and smoke could also cause health problems down the road or lead pregnant cows to give birth prematurely.

For many ranchers, the tasks ahead feel gargantuan. They face burying dead cattle, mending broken fences and distributing bales of hay trucked in from hundreds of miles away.

Starting over will not be easy, ranchers say, as cattle prices have shot up amid dry conditions in recent years and interest rates remain high, making loans less appealing, especially as many ranchers are facing a stack of bills this time of year as they prepare for spring.

Is this fire unusual?

In most of Texas, wildfires happen in the summer. But in the Panhandle, the fire risk is highest around March, when temperatures rise, strong winds blow over the flat landscape and dry grass can easily catch fire.

Climate change is most likely making fire season start earlier and last longer by increasing the number of days in a year with hot and dry weather conditions that enable wildfires, said John Nielsen-Gammon, the Texas state climatologist and a professor of atmospheric science at Texas A&M University.

Temperatures in Texas have risen by 0.61 degrees Fahrenheit per decade since 1975, according to a 2021 report by the state climatologist’s office. The relative humidity in the Panhandle region has been decreasing as well.

Reporting was contributed by Colbi Edmonds , Delger Erdenesanaa , Christopher Flavelle , J. David Goodman , Lucinda Holt and Miglena Sternadori .

Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs reports on national stories across the United States with a focus on criminal justice. He is from upstate New York. More about Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs

Jacey Fortin covers a wide range of subjects for the National desk of The Times, including extreme weather, court cases and state politics all across the country. More about Jacey Fortin

Anna Betts reports on national events, including politics, education, and natural or man-made disasters, among other things. More about Anna Betts


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