Dissertation Abstract Writing: Useful Phrases & Basic Guide

When it comes to writing a dissertation abstract, you must put your creative skills to good use. This is because it performs the function of ushering readers into your work. Here you’ll find the best ways to write an abstract section for your dissertation.

What is a dissertation abstract?

A dissertation abstract is a summary of your dissertation. The abstract performs more functions than the introduction. First, it exposes the goals of the project and further explains how you hope to achieve them. The dissertation abstract tells your readers the primary key points contained in your dissertation. This is such that the reader gets a clear view of what you have prepared for them.

Dissertation abstract length

A dissertation abstract length often depends on your department’s criteria. It is important to note that it should not be too long or too short. Usually, it will be around one page or enough words to cover your dissertation topic. The most important thing is being able to input all the necessary details without being generic or redundant. An abstract of a Ph.D. dissertation will generally be around 350 words.

How to write a dissertation abstract

  1. Plan your dissertation outline

The main components of a dissertation abstract are the outline of your paper. This includes your research methodology, reviews, data analysis, and results. It is hence important that you plan the outline of your paper and check all the boxes before you begin your abstract. This trick will help you accomplish a flawlessly written dissertation abstract.

  1. Include keywords

There is no way you can write your abstract without including the necessary keywords. Many students fail to include the terms or phrases that provide a background for their paper. Citations should be left out of your abstract.

  1. Mention your goals and highlight the research problems

What is the primary aim of your paper? Why have you decided to go through the process of writing a dissertation? What fact do you aim to prove or disprove? You should never forget to discuss the topic and the questions that your paper aims to answer.

  1. Never mistake your abstract for your introduction

Sometimes, students leave out important details from their abstract because they look forward to writing an introduction. While the introduction and abstract share many similarities, they are two different sections of your paper. It is okay to rewrite your goals already mentioned in the abstract when you write the introduction of your paper.

  1. Use the right language and style

A perfectly written abstract does not only sound beautiful to your hearing. A well-written abstract meets the guidelines for writing set up by the necessary authority. Before you start writing your abstract, ensure that you are well informed of the rules guiding your research project.

  1. Summarize your project

When it comes to summarizing your project in an abstract, it means talking about the whole project in about 350 words. The abstract poses a problem for researchers because they do not know how to creatively include every important detail concisely. Each word counts when writing your abstract.

  1. Tell your readers your method of research

Your abstract is incomplete without talking about the method you will be applying to answer your questions. Research methodology is important because it validates the data and information that you present to your readers. For instance, whether you’ll be using lab experiments, fieldwork, or visiting archives should be mentioned in your dissertation abstract.

  1. Edit and proofread

You should update your abstract as often as the research method used to achieve your goal changes. You must understand that your abstract must tally with the body of your work. This includes your data collection pattern, results, findings, as well as the conclusion of your paper.

Useful phrases for writing a dissertation abstract

A good dissertation abstract sample will help you craft the best abstract for your dissertation. It is however of extreme importance that you originally prepare your abstract from scratch. This is because every research topic will have its unique features. Be that as it may, the following phrases are useful when writing a dissertation abstract:

  • When writing project goals; (The aim of this project is…)
  • Including your research methodology; (The method used in analyzing data collected are)
  • Mentioning data collected; (The outcome of our findings…)
  • Discussing results from data analysis; (From this point, we analyzed…)


Writing an abstract for dissertation takes time and effort. To write the perfect abstract for your paper, follow the tips that have been discussed here.