How to write your thesis


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This is a brief guide on how to write your thesis according to the university guidleines

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How to write your thesis

  1. 1. Towards best writing a thesis Prof Ahmed Zeeneldin Professor of Medical Oncology NCI, Cairo University 2014
  2. 2. Agenda Prof Topic Time Ahmed Zeeneldin Introduction 5’ Rabab Gaafar Review of literature Discussion 20’ Manar Monir Methods Results 20’ Ahmed Zeeneldin Other sections References Style 15’ Audience Questions and comments 10’
  3. 3. Thesis structure • Title Page • First few pages; numbered in letters (i, ii, iii,...) • CONTENTS with Arabic numbers (1, 2,......) 1. Introduction and Aim of the work 2. Review of Literature 3. Methods 4. Results 5. Discussion 6. Conclusions 7. Recommendations 8. English summary 9. References 10. Appendices (optional) 11. Arabic Summary • Arabic Title Page
  4. 4. Title Page English 1. Exactly as in the protocol 2. Full Title in CAPITAL letters with no abbreviations 3. The degree 4. The candidate and qualifications 5. The supervisors and their post 6. Faculty/Institute 7. University 8. Year Arabic .1‫اﻟﺑروﺗوﻛول‬ ‫ﻣﺛل‬ .2‫اﻟﺑﺣث‬ ‫ﻋﻧوان‬‫ﻛﺑﯾرة‬ ‫ﺑﺣروف‬ ‫ﻣﺧﺗﺻر‬ ‫ﻏﯾر‬ ‫ﻛﺎﻣﻼ‬ .3‫ﻟﮭﺎ‬ ‫اﻟﻣﻘدم‬ ‫اﻟﻌﻠﻣﯾﺔ‬ ‫اﻟدرﺟﺔ‬ .4‫اﻟﻌﻠﻣﯾﺔ‬ ‫درﺟﺗﮫ‬ ‫و‬ ‫اﻟطﺎﻟب‬ .5‫ووظﺎﺋﻔﮭم‬ ‫اﻟﻣﺷرﻓﯾن‬ .6‫اﻟﻛﻠﯾﺔ‬/‫اﻟﻣﻌﮭد‬ .7‫اﻟﺟﺎﻣﻌﺔ‬ .8‫اﻟﺳﻧﺔ‬
  5. 5. First few pages • Numbered in Roman letters (i, ii, iii,...) • Approval sheet of discussion panel • Table of contents with corresponding pages – Chapters/sections ............................20 • Subsections............................................21 • List of tables with corresponding pages • List of figures with corresponding pages • List of abbreviations in alphabetical order (a-z) • Acknowledgment • Abstract
  6. 6. Approval sheet ‫اﻟﻤﻤﺘﺤﻨﯿﻦ‬ ‫ﻟﺠﻨﺔ‬ ‫اﻋﺘﻤﺎد‬
  7. 7. Acknowledgements • You thank those who helped you • List these aspects • Supervisors and others • Has implications in the publications
  8. 8. Table of contents • Sections – Subsections • Corresponding pages • List of figures • List of tables • List of abbreviations
  9. 9. Automatic table of contents in Microsoft word Learn it via””
  10. 10. Abstract • We will discuss it with the summary at the end
  11. 11. Introduction and Aims • Introduction – Short opening section (1-2 pages) – Explain clearly why you researched this topic – Summarise any necessary background information – Set the scene that existed at the start of the project – Clearly state your research question • PICO? • P: population under study • I: Intervention • C: Comparator • O: outcome – Example” In patients with locally advanced breast cancer, does the addition of celecoxib to standard chemotherapy improve efficacy?
  12. 12. Introduction and Aims • Aim(s) – Exactly as the protocol – TO + VERB – SMART: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time-bound – To assess safety and efficacy of (…..) in patients with (…..) – To assess the prognostic/prdictive value of (…) in (…) – And to calculate the cost/effectiveness – To assess the impact on QoL
  13. 13. Review of Literature Discussion Prof Rabab Gaafar Professor of Medical Oncology
  14. 14. Methods and Results Prof. Manar Monir Head of Cancer Epidemiology and Biostatistics Dept.
  15. 15. Conclusions and recommendations • Conclusions – Summary of the results • Recommendations – For routine practice – For improvements – For future research
  16. 16. Conclusions • In conclusion, HCC affects males than females mostly in the middle-age group. Most patients had chronic HCV infections and cirrhosis...... TACE in the current study produced 25% overall response rates that lasted for a median of 12 months. The median overall survival was 29 months. The median PFS was 12 months. It was generally tolerable with PES being the most common toxicity (90%) and live cell failure being the most dangerous.
  17. 17. Recommendations It is recommended that: • TACE using beads to be the standard practice at the NCI. • Standard doses of chemotherapeutics rather than the higher doses be used • MDT be set to discuss all HCC cases • Predictive markers be developed to predict which patients can benefit from TACE and with the least toxicity
  18. 18. Summary and Abstract • Both – Reduce a long text to its essential key points – Should be composed after work completion. • An abstract: – More specialized summary. – Structured summary – Less exhaustive than summary and word-limited e.g. 500 words and never exceeds a page – Contains key words
  19. 19. Summary and Abstract Abstract • Structured :IAMRC • Word limit: 250-500 words • Page limit: one page max • One paragraph • Key words Summary • Non-Structured : • No Word limit • No Page limit 2-3 pages as needed • More than one paragraph • No Key words • ‫ﻟﻣﻌﻧﻲ‬ ‫ﺗرﺟﻣﺔ‬ ‫ھو‬ ‫اﻟﻌرﺑﻲ‬ ‫اﻟﻣﻠﺧص‬ ‫ﺗرﺟﻣﺔ‬ ‫ﻟﯾس‬ ‫و‬ ‫اﻻﻧﺟﻠﯾزي‬ ‫اﻟﻣﻠﺧص‬ ‫ﻗﺎﻣوس‬ ‫اﺳﺗﺧدام‬ ‫ﯾراﻋﻲ‬ ‫و‬ ‫ﺣرﻓﯾﺔ‬ ‫اﻟطﺑﯾﺔ‬ ‫اﻟﻣﺻطﻠﺣﺎت‬
  20. 20. Abstract and Key words • One page ONLY • Word limit: 200-500 • Structured: – Background – Aims – Methods – Results – Conclusions • Key words: – 5-6 key words
  21. 21. Examples of summary English summary • This study was conducted on # of patients with ........ • to ...... • They were divided into two groups. Group 1 received......... • Key results • ± conclusions • ± recommendations ‫اﻟﻌرﺑﻲ‬ ‫اﻟﻣﻠﺧص‬ •‫ﻋﻠﻲ‬ ‫اﻟدراﺳﺔ‬ ‫ھذه‬ ‫أﺟرﯾت‬#‫ﻣرﯾض‬ ‫ب‬ ‫ﻣﺻﺎب‬....... •‫اﻟدراﺳﺔ‬ ‫ﻣن‬ ‫اﻟﮭدف‬ ‫وﻛﺎن‬........ •‫إﻟﻲ‬ ‫اﻟﻣرﺿﻲ‬ ‫ﺗﻘﺳﯾم‬ ‫ﺗم‬ ‫ﻗد‬ ‫و‬ ‫ﻣﺟﻣوﻋﺗﯾن‬.‫ﺗﻠﻘت‬ ‫اﻷوﻟﻲ‬.......... •‫أن‬ ‫اﻟﻧﺗﺎﺋﺞ‬ ‫أظﮭرت‬ ‫ﻗد‬ ‫و‬........ •‫أن‬ ‫اﺳﺗﻧﺗﺟﻧﺎ‬ ‫ﻗد‬ ‫و‬........ •‫ﻧﻧﺻﺢ‬ ‫و‬........
  22. 22. ‫اﻟﻄﺒﯿﺔ‬ ‫اﻟﻤﺼﻄﻠﺤﺎت‬ ‫ﺑﻌﺾ‬ ‫ﺗﺮﺟﻤﺔ‬ rate ‫ﻣﻌدل‬/‫ﻧﺳﺑﺔ‬ Median ‫وﺳﯾط‬ Overall Response ‫اﻟﻛﻠﯾﺔ‬ ‫اﻹﺳﺗﺟﺎﺑﺔ‬ Mean ‫ﻣﺗوﺳط‬ Complete response ‫اﻟﺗﺎﻣﺔ‬ ‫اﻹﺳﺗﺟﺎﺑﺔ‬ Overall survival ‫ﺣﯾﺎ‬ ‫اﻟﺑﻘﺎء‬ Partial response ‫اﻟﺟزﺋﯾﺔ‬ ‫اﻹﺳﺗﺟﺎﺑﺔ‬ Disease free survival ‫اﻟﻣرض‬ ‫ﻣن‬ ‫ﺧﺎﻟﯾﺎ‬ ‫اﻟﺑﻘﺎء‬ Stable disease ‫اﻟﻣرض‬ ‫ﺛﺑﺎت‬ Progression free survival ‫ﻣن‬ ‫ﺧﺎﻟﯾﺎ‬ ‫اﻟﺑﻘﺎء‬ ‫ﺗطور‬/‫اﻟﻣرض‬ ‫ازدﯾﺎد‬ Progressive disease ‫ﺗطور‬/‫اﻟﻣرض‬ ‫ازدﯾﺎد‬ Relapse free survival ‫إرﺗﺟﺎع‬ ‫ﻣن‬ ‫ﺧﺎﻟﯾﺎ‬ ‫اﻟﺑﻘﺎء‬ ‫اﻟﻣرض‬ Toxicity ‫ﺳﻣﯾﺔ‬ Relapse/recurrence ‫ارﺗﺟﺎع‬/‫ارﺗداد‬ Adverse events ‫اﻷﺣداث‬‫اﻟﻌﻛﺳﯾﺔ‬ Remission ‫ﻛﻣون‬‫ظﺎھري‬ Side effects ‫اﻵﺛﺎر‬‫اﻟﺟﺎﻧﺑﯾﺔ‬ Predictive factors ‫ﺗﻧﺑؤ‬ ‫ﻋواﻣل‬ Incidence rates ‫اﻟﺣدوث‬ ‫ﻣﻌدل‬ Prognostic factors ‫ﺗﻛﮭن‬ ‫ﻋواﻣل‬ Prevalence rates ‫اﻹﻧﺗﺷﺎر‬ ‫ﻣﻌدل‬
  23. 23. Writing Style and references
  24. 24. ‫اﻟﻜﺘﺎﺑﺔ‬ ‫طﺮﯾﻘﺔ‬ Writing Style • Volume: – MSC: 100 pages – MD: 150 pages – ROL: not more than 1/3 • Margins: – Upper, lower, outer: 3 cm – Inner: 4 cm • Header of chapter name: optional • Page number: upper right corner • Spacing: – English: 1.5 – Arabic: 2 • Paragraph indents: 7 spaces • Spacing between paragraphs: 2
  25. 25. References • Why should you reference? – Credit to original authors – Authorize to your work, strengthens your argument and demonstrates the breadth of your research. – Verify your sources of information. – Avoid being accused for Plagiarism
  26. 26. Referencing style • Alphabetical (author and date): – References are arranged in the reference list alphabetically in an ascending order. No numbers – In-text citations mention author last name and year. Not numbers – Used in academic writing e.g. Theses Harvard style
  27. 27. Citation and reference Breast cancer is the commonest malignancy in Egyptian females (Zeeneldin et al., 2013). COX-2 expression is encountered in 46% of patients (Abdelwahaab et al., 2012). Reference list Abdelwahaab A (2012) COX2 in Egyptian ……. Zeeneldin A (2013) Breast cancer laterality……
  28. 28. Author names • Citation: surname ONLY – (Zeeneldin, 2014) • Reference: surname + first name initials ± middle name initials – Zeeneldin A (2014) breast cancer..... – Zeeneldin AA (2014) breast cancer.....
  29. 29. Citing within the text Artificial intelligence can be defined as the science of making machines do things that would require intelligence if done by men (Minsky, 1968). (Minsky & Sriver, 1968) (Minsky et al., 1968). According to Striver (2001 p21) “all aspects of rational thought should be considered to involve some degree of experimentation” (Striver, 2001)
  30. 30. Citing within the text (alphabetical) • Rules – include the author’s surname and the year of publication and also any page numbers if you are quoting from a specific page – If more than 2[3] authors, give only the first authors surname and initials followed by et al. – If you state the authors name within your work then just include the date of publication to indicate the work being cited
  31. 31. 4 Essential components of a reference Who (When) What Where Authors Year of publication Title (article, book, book chapter, thesis) Journal, book, website, thesis. Exact numbers Zeeneldin A (2012) Breast cancer in Elderly Egyptians JENCI 13(7):23-29 ‫ﺳﮭل‬ ‫ﺳﮭل‬
  32. 32. Essential components Who (authors) – Surname, initials (Zeeneldin, A [AA]) – List all authors without AND – List some followed by et al. • 6: 5 et al. • 4: 3 et al. – Be consistent
  33. 33. Essential components Where (source) Article Journal name Volume Issue pages Book Edition if not 1st Publisher City pages Book chapter In -à book Website [online]. Available at: Web address (access date) Thesis Degree thesis Faculty/university
  34. 34. Essential components Where (source) Article Journal name Volume Issue pages e.g. JENCI. 12(3):27-29 Book Edition if not 1st Publisher City pages e.g. 5th ed. Madbooli: Cairo. pp 202-213 Book chapter In -à book In khaled H et al. (eds.) Lymphoma. 2nd ed. Cairo Univ: Cairo. pp 100-160 Website [online]. Available at: Web address (access date [online]. Available at: (access date 20 March, 2014) Thesis Degree Faculty/university MD Thesis . NCI, Cairo University.
  35. 35. Bibliography (reference list) • Alphabetical (author and date): – References are arranged in the reference list alphabetically in an ascending order of author sur. No numbers Zeeneldin A (2011) ….. Zeeneldin A (2012) ….. Zeeneldin A (2013a)……. Zeeneldin A (2013b)……. Zeeneldin A, Taha F, ….. (2009)….
  36. 36. Examples • Book: – Halliday, D., Resnick, R., Walker, J. (2005) Fundamentals of physics. 7th ed. New York: Wiley. pp 20-50. • Book chapter: – Murray, A.P. (1999) Fundamental equations of surface theory. In: Ledermann, W. & Vajda, S. (eds.) Combinatorics and geometry. 2nd ed. Chichester: John Wiley, pp. 23-66.
  37. 37. Examples • Article: – Kim, H.S. (2007) ‘A new model for communicative effectiveness of science’. Science Communication, 28(3), pp. 287-313. • Webpage: – Allen, S. (2007). Referencing: a guide for University of Liverpool online students [Online]. Available from (Accessed 15 August 2007).
  38. 38. Examples • Thesis – McDonald, L.R. (2005) Assessment of body composition using magnetic resonance imaging. Ph.D. thesis. University of Liverpool.
  39. 39. Referencing software • Endnote • Ref manager • Ref works • Zotero • PubMed (my bibliography) • - • -
  40. 40. Appendices (optional) • Any thing you feel it is worth adding e.g. – Master sheet – questionnaires – Raw results – IRB approval – ICF – A modification of a standard method.
  41. 41. Timing of each section First: 1. Title Page, Arabic Title Page 2. Introduction and Aim of the work 3. Methods Second 1. Results Third: Review of Literature Discussion References Fourth: Conclusions, Recommendations Appendices (optional) English summary, Arabic Summary, Abstract Fifth: First few pages; numbered in letters (i, ii, iii,...) i. Acknowledgements ii. Table of Contents with corresponding pages iii. List of Tables, List of Figures, List of Abbreviations Sixth: i. Approval sheet
  42. 42. First • Title Page: English and Arabic • Introducti on & Aims • Methods Second • Results Third •Review of Literature •Discussion •Reference s Fourth •Conclusions, Recommendat ions •Appendices (optional) •Summary: English and Arabic , •Abstract Fifth •Acknowle dgements •Table of Contents •List of Tables, Figures, Abbreviati ons Sixth •Approval sheet Timing of each section
  43. 43. Thank YOU