Difference Between Thesis and Dissertation(With Table)

The thesis is a summarizing document of the author’s study process, which focuses on the author’s own opinions and research. On the other hand, the dissertation is a systematic and detailed presentation of scientific achievement. A thesis may not include any data or graphs, whereas a dissertation includes tables, graphs, illustrations, and other data. The dissertation and thesis are both academic papers. However, there are many dissimilarities between these two documents. So in this article, we will cover all the differences between them with the help of the following set of topics. 

What Is Thesis?

A thesis is a research paper written by a candidate for an academic degree. The thesis is the most important part of the degree, as it shows the student’s ability to conduct independent research. Thesis papers are usually long and comprehensive, and they require a lot of work on the part of the student. A well-written thesis can make the difference between a pass and a fail grade, so it is important to take the time to write a good one.

A thesis should be based on a specific question or topic, and it should be clear what the student’s position is on that question or topic. The paper should provide evidence to support the student’s argument, and it should be well-organized and well-written.

Moreover, a thesis can be either positive or negative, but most students choose to write a positive thesis. A positive thesis states the student’s position on the question or topic, while a negative thesis would argue against the student’s position. Either way, the goal is to present a well-reasoned argument that supports the student’s point of view.

In a nutshell, A thesis is a formal document that presents the findings of a research project, but it is typically shorter than a dissertation and is submitted as part of a master’s degree program.

What Is a Dissertation?

A dissertation is a formal document that presents the findings of a research project. It is submitted as part of a doctoral degree program, and it is usually written by a student who is pursuing a Ph.D. Dissertations are typically extensive and require a student to conduct original research in order to write them. 

At the conclusion of the Ph.D. program, the dissertation is written under the supervision of a mentor who advises, directs, and teaches the applicant about the selection of a topic that is not only intriguing but also distinctive, original, and debatable. It is a type of evaluation that looks at the student’s capacity for investigation, knowledge, and argumentation. Also, it serves as the foundation for their final grade. It contains an abstract, an introduction, a methodology section, a literature review, findings, a discussion section, a conclusion, and a suggestion.

Thesis Vs Dissertation – Main Difference

The main difference between a thesis and a dissertation is the length of the document. A dissertation is usually much longer than a thesis, and it includes more research. A thesis is typically shorter than a dissertation, and it generally focuses on one specific area of research. Another key difference between the two documents is that dissertations are usually written by doctoral students, while theses are usually written by master’s students.

You Can Also Read: Difference Between Formative and Summative Assessment

Thesis vs Dissertation(Comparison Table)

comparison table for difference between thesis and dissertation

Key Differences Between Thesis And Dissertation

A thesis and a dissertation are both academic papers, but there are some key differences between the two. Here are seven key differences between a thesis and a dissertation:

  • A thesis is a remarkable piece of writing created as part of a university or degree program following extensive research on a subject, in which a particular idea or thought is put up as a statement for further discussion. As a key requirement for the Ph.D. program, the dissertation, on the other hand, denotes a document that compiles research to support one’s results.
  • A thesis is usually shorter and more focused on one specific topic, while a dissertation is longer and covers a broader range of topics.
  • Secondly, a thesis is focused on a single research question, while a dissertation is broader in scope.
  • While a thesis is written as part of an undergraduate or master’s degree program, a dissertation is written as part of a doctorate program.
  • A thesis must be approved by a panel of experts, while a dissertation does not need such approval.
  • A thesis is defended in an oral examination, while a dissertation is not defended.
  • The tone of a thesis is usually more formal than the tone of a dissertation.


The main difference between a thesis vs a dissertation is the scope of the project. The former is usually shorter and more focused than the latter, and it generally takes less time to complete. A dissertation is usually longer and more comprehensive, and it can take months or even years to finish. Whether you’re writing a thesis or a dissertation, remember that both require research, analytical thinking, and a clear argument. Whichever you choose, make sure you put in the time and effort to do your best work.

A thesis can be written by a student who is pursuing either a master’s or a Ph.D.  Both are written in academic language, and they follow a similar structure: an introduction, followed by chapters or sections, followed by a conclusion. 

Basir Saboor

Basir Saboor is a dedicated writer with over 7 years of expertise in researching and disseminating information on technology, business, law, and politics. His passion lies in exploring the dynamic landscape of technology, tracking the latest trends, and delving into the intricacies of the ever-evolving business world. As a firm believer in the influential power of words, he crafts content that aims to inspire, inform, and influence.

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