Abstract and Introduction
Abstract (approx. 250 words)
The abstract should include the following elements:
Introduction and Background
The purpose of this section is to give the reader an insight into the topic area you are researching.
Start by providing the background to the research question to provide some context. Clearly identify the research ‘problem’. Make sure you use current referencing to support your discussion.
NOTE: Don’t try to include everything (the introduction will be expanded in the literature review) – the reader just needs to get a broad idea of the topic and in particular the research ‘problem’. It is however, the first thing the reader reads, so it needs to be to the point, engaging and interesting!
Here you need to justify the importance of your research question and the significance of your research to the field.
Research Aim and Objectives
The project has an overall aim (which should ‘mirror’ the title). This should be no more than 2/3 sentences long.
Example: What is the impact of consumers’ behaviour on social media channels on their purchase behaviour?
The objectives show the research steps you took to addressing the aim. There should be around 4/5 research objectives written in bullet proof format. Make sure each objective starts with an ‘active’ verb, e.g. to identify; assess; evaluate; investigate, etc. Remember these objectives have to be met, you can’t just mention them and ignore them!
These should reflect the research process from reading the literature, collecting and analysing the data through to the conclusion/recommendation.
Background to the research ‘problem’ and aim and objectives of the research are contained in Chapter 1. A review and analysis of the theoretical framework and empirical literature in relation to……….is described in Chapter 2. The design and methods used for investigating the research problem and ethical considerations are included in Chapter 3. The outcomes of the research are presented in the final two chapters: Chapter 4 presents the results, followed by an interpretation of the findings, and in Chapter 5, discusses conclusions drawn from the study allowing the researcher to make recommendations for further research.
Where marks are lost:
Background not focused on the research problem.
Research ‘problem’ not identified or poorly articulated
No focused aim and research objectives
Aim and Objectives not written to expected criteria
Lack of referencing