What does a 'Chapter 1' look like?!?


Happy new year all!
I've been advised to start writing 'Chapter 1', which is a little daunting at this early stage, but I have no idea what it is supposed to contain or what it should look like. I'd love to hear from those who are ahead of me.
Thanks, Mog


Hello! As far as I'm aware it's usually an introduction to your work- well, mine is!


Do they mean chapter one, as in the first one of your thesis, or just chapter one, that is the first one you are going to write? If it is the latter you choose!!:-) if its the former, ask them if you are not sure!!:$


My two pennyworth... chapter one comes last... when you know what the thesis is about. :-) Usually it wil contain a brief overview of the problem your research question seeks to answer (problem statement)... possibly some background to who you are as a researcher and how that relates to your interest in the question (depends what discipline you're in) and then a summary of chapters... think of it as kind of setting the scene. Speaking as one, now thankfully close to final submission, and having written that darned first chapter at least six times... well, you get the picture. Best of luck. :-)


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1. Introduction
Set the scene and problem statement. Introduce structure of thesis, state contributions (3-5).
2. Background
Demonstrate wider appreciation (context). Provide motivation. The problem statement and the motivation state how you want the PhD to be judged - as engineering, scientific method, theory, philosophy, &c.
3. Related Work
Survey and critical assessment. Relation to own work.

4-6. Analysis, design, implementation and interpretation of results
7. Critical assessment of own work
State hypothesis, and demonstrate precision, thoroughness, contribution, and comparison with closest rival.

8. Further Work
9. Summary Conclusions
Restate contribution


Avatar for sneaks

my chapter 1 is about 4 pages long and basically a statement of the problem backed up with some statistics demographic stats (my PhD is about a certain section of the population). It then has the outline (2 lines each) of my studies.


Hi Mog

My first chapter basically introduces some key concepts/definitions etc used throughout the thesis, and then explains what I've done in each chapter (i.e. a thesis outline). I've also included a section called 'motivation' explaining why I've worked on my particular problem.