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ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
Dissertations are judged against a set of guiding criteria. The order in which the points are set out below implies no particular weighting; all the criteria listed are potentially of equal importance, though some may be more appropriate than others according to the particular topic covered in any one dissertation.

CONTENT
• Relevance to policy development in fields associated with the programme of study
i) Is the dissertation relevant to the discipline of the programme and policy development within this specified field? Does the student demonstrate an appreciation of the relevance of the work for policy development, or to deeper academic understanding of the discipline?
ii) Does the work deal adequately with relevant theoretical and methodological issues, and where appropriate, highlight the policy implications of the work, within the topic defined? Does it avoid superfluous detail?

• Aims, objectives and purpose of study
i) Does the writer spell out the aims and objectives of the study clearly? Do the objectives substantiate the achievement of the broader aims?
ii) Do the research questions or hypotheses set out clearly the analytical path of the study?

• Use and knowledge of literature
i) Where appropriate, does the literature review demonstrate a clear appreciation of broad theoretical perspectives relevant to the topic, and the strengths and weaknesses of these perspectives?
ii) Where appropriate, does the literature review demonstrate a clear understanding of public policies relevant to the topic?
iii) Does the literature review offer an adequate review of related research, and demonstrate an understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of other studies? Does it suggest an understanding of the remaining gaps in the research conducted on the chosen topic?
iv) Has the writer made use of an adequate range of sources? Is sufficient attention paid to academic and theoretical arguments as well as technical reports and policy documents? Are there relevant references which have been omitted? Are sources acknowledged?
v) Are references listed fully, and in the correct way?

• Methods (where applicable).
i) Does the writer set out clearly the adopted research methodologies? Do the research methods used involve original research (e.g. data collection by interviews, surveys or analysis of secondary data).
ii) Are the methods selected appropriate to the study topic? Do they flow logically from the literature review?
iii) Are the methods selected used effectively?
iv) Where case studies are used, is justification offered for selection? Are case studies linked to broader topics?

• Fieldwork (where applicable).
i) To what extent are empirical data relevant to the aims/hypotheses and methods selected for the study? Are there any gaps in data collected?
ii) Where relevant, is questionnaire design and analysis adequate?
iii) Where interviews are used, has the student given consideration to structuring of questions, transcription methods and range of interviewees selected?
iv) Has the writer gone beyond the obvious, showing initiative or imagination in finding relevant data in original places?
v) Does the writer show an appreciation of data access difficulties?

• Quality of argument
i) Does the work distinguish between ‘facts’ and ‘values’? Has the writer avoided imposing his or her values upon the work, so far as possible, or is there a reasoned justification for these values?
ii) Is there an appropriate balance between description and analysis? Is each piece of description supported by an appropriate piece of analysis, demonstrating the meaning, significance, or implications of the events or phenomena which have been described?
iii) Is the line of argument presented clear and justified, or, conversely, does it tend to be incoherent, unstructured and repetitive?
iv) Are conclusions drawn adequately supported by empirical evidence, by statistical information, by appropriate quotations or by relevant examples or case studies? Does the work avoid assertion and unsubstantiated inference? Where the available evidence does not enable clear conclusions to be drawn, is there a clear appreciation of this?
v) Does the work show an appreciation of the implications of arguments presented in one portion of the dissertation, for material covered elsewhere? Do arguments flow in a logical fashion and avoid contradiction?
vi) Do the conclusions offer original interpretations and novel lines of argument, or merely rehash the findings of other studies?

Type Of Service: Dissertation services
Type of Assignment: Dissertation
Subject: Sociology
Pages / Words: 37/10000
Number of sources: 20
Academic Level: Bachelor’s
Paper Format: Harvard
Line Spacing: Double
Language Style: UK English

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