Guias Para Tesis por Capitulo (English)

New Directions in Graduate Research and Programs

Guidelines for a Thesis by chapter

Interamerican University- Aguadilla Campus (Graduate Research Center) Johnathan A. Reece

What is this guideline for? It is meant to assist you in understanding what goes where in your thesis and in which chapter it goes in. This will cover all five chapters of a thesis, but your professor may only have you create the first two chapters. I hope this guideline helps you view each chapter more clearly.

This is a GUIDE and should not be taken literally as the ultimate guide is your professor. The number of pages that I have stated are just used as a reference (your professor is the one who will give you the set amounts). I have included a table at the end so you can see each section in the chapters as well as the amount of pages that are most commonly asked for.

NOTE* For a thesis proposal you should write everything in FUTURE tense (the purpose of this study is to or will be to). For a thesis the chapters are changed to reflect PAST tense (the purpose of this study was to)


Chapter 1- Introduction

  • This chapter is where you present the entire idea of what you are studying or researching (thesis proposal OR thesis). The main issues that you discuss can be your variables
  • Include why the study is taking place (the reason for the study)

Breakdown and sections of Chapter 1:

Introduction– this is where you introduce the main idea of the study. Explain the reason for the study in the introduction and a brief overview

Problem Background – This is where the main issue of the study would be addressed (all the background literature related to the problem you are presenting (ask your professor for specific dates as some graduate programs only allow you to go back a specific amount of time). You should be able to explain the current situation to what you are investigating based on Specific findings (previous research, reports, articles, etc…).

Problem Statement– Here you will state the problem (or the focus of your research). The population that is affected and how the study you are doing will help solve (or answer) a problem. A well written Problem statement will begin very broad (large picture) and work until it narrows down the specific problem that you are researching. You should be able to transition

into the purpose of the study with a statement such as “It is not known how” or “It is not known to what degree”

Variables– Make sure you include your independent and dependent variables (Experimental study) or your continuous and discrete (descriptive study).

Limitations of the Study- Include any factor or circumstance that will prevent you (the researcher) from achieving all the objectives (could be time,

Scope of the study- This is not always placed in a thesis but some professors might request it. This sections answers the question:

  1. Is the study limited to a specific geographical area or people?

Justification of the Problem- should demonstrate the importance and relevance of the study. An investigation is justified when little or no study has been done on the specific topic.

Research Question(s)- when writing your research questions be clear and specific. State the focus of investigation in the research and make sure the questions cannot be answered with a “yes” or “no”.

Conceptual Framework – This may be called “theoretical framework” by some professors. Here you will present the ideas in a model or illustration of what you intend to investigate and some theories related to it. The research problem is a part of the conceptual framework that you will build based on the existing theories and research. Remember that you must research theories that are already existent and proven. It t provides an outline of how you plan to conduct the research for your thesis. It is developed based on Review of Literature of existing studies on the topic you are researching

Sections of Chapter 1

Page amount (length)


1-2 pages

Problem Background

3-5 pages

Problem Statement

½ to 1 page

Limitations of study

½ page or less

Justification of the Problem

With research questions below

½ to 2 pages

Conceptual Framework

Depends on the theories and information ascertained