A dissertation’s conclusion is the final chapter that encapsulates your research journey. For nursing students, it offers an opportunity to reinforce the significance of their study, drawing connections between their findings and the broader healthcare landscape. This article will explore more on writing dissertation conclusions effectively.

Why Is It Important to Write a Good Dissertation Conclusion?

A well-crafted conclusion ensures that the reader leaves with a clear understanding of the study’s significance. It consolidates the findings, emphasizes the study’s contributions to the nursing field, and sets the stage for future research. The capstone’s conclusion binds the research into a coherent and impactful narrative.

How long should a dissertation conclusion be?

Traditionally, academic guidelines suggest that the conclusion should constitute about 5-7% of the total length of the dissertation. So, for a dissertation spanning 20,000 words, the conclusion would ideally range between 1,000 to 1,400 words.

The depth and breadth of your research can dictate the length of your conclusion. For example, a dissertation focusing on a specific, narrow area within nursing may benefit from a concise conclusion. In contrast, a more expansive study might require a more detailed conclusion to thoroughly encompass all its significant aspects.

What is the difference between a discussion and a conclusion?

The discussion and conclusion sections are integral in a dissertation or research paper, yet they serve distinct purposes and address different study aspects. Here’s a breakdown of their primary differences:


  • Discussion: This section dives deep into the meaning and implications of the study’s results. It contextualizes the findings within the nursing framework of existing literature and theories, comparing and contrasting them with previous research. Dissertation discussion seeks to answer “Why do these results matter?” and “How do they relate to what’s already known?”
  • Conclusion: The conclusion offers a summarized overview of the entire study. It reiterates the significance of the findings, encapsulates the research’s core contributions, and often points toward potential avenues for future exploration. It aims to provide a concise wrap-up and a clear takeaway for readers.


  • Discussion: It typically comprises an analysis of the study’s findings, their implications, any unforeseen patterns or anomalies, and a comparison with existing research. The discussion might also delve into the practical implications of the results and their broader societal or field-specific impact.
  • Conclusion: This section distills the essence of the research, focusing on the primary takeaways. It avoids going into detailed statistics or findings, instead highlighting the research’s overarching significance and contributions to the field. It also often suggests potential directions for future research.

Tone and Approach

  • Discussion: It is more analytical and interpretative. Researchers use this section to dissect their results, weigh them against existing knowledge, and provide insights into their implications.
  • Conclusion: It adopts a more reflective and summarizing tone. The goal is to offer readers a cohesive endnote, emphasizing the study’s value and potential ramifications.

What should I include in the dissertation?

Crafting an impactful dissertation requires careful consideration of its components. It’s not just about presenting findings; it’s about guiding your readers through your research journey. Let’s look at the essential elements you should include:

  • Summarise the Study’s Key Findings: Your findings culminate your research efforts. Summarizing them provides readers with a snapshot of the most significant outcomes. Focus on the main results directly related to your research questions or hypotheses. 
  • Answer the Research Question(s) and Address the Research Aims: This directly relates to why you embarked on this research. By addressing your research question and aims, you complete the research loop. State your research question again and then provide a direct answer based on your findings. 
  • Inform the Reader of the Study’s Main Contributions: Your research isn’t in isolation. It’s part of the broader academic discourse in nursing, contributing fresh perspectives and insights. Detail how your findings enrich the existing body of dissertation literature. Does your research introduce a novel patient care technique, shed light on an understudied area, or challenge prevailing beliefs in nursing practice?
  • Discuss Any Limitations or Weaknesses of the Study: Recognizing the limitations ensures academic honesty and helps readers accurately interpret your results. Be transparent about any aspects of your research that might limit the generalizability or applicability of your findings. 
  • Present Recommendations for Future Research: There are always new avenues to explore, and pointing them out will pave the way for further academic inquiry. Based on your findings and the identified limitations, suggest areas that could be explored next. 

How to write the dissertation conclusion

Writing a conclusion for your dissertation is more than just a summation; it’s an opportunity to underscore the value of your research and suggest its implications. Here’s a breakdown of the steps to follow:

Step 1: Craft a brief introduction section

This lays the foundation by reminding the reader of your research’s core objectives and clarifies what to expect in conclusion. Restate the central research question and objectives. For instance, “This study was designed to evaluate the impact of holistic care approaches on postoperative recovery times in pediatric patients.”

Step 2: Discuss the overall findings in relation to the research aims

It creates a clear connection between your dissertation findings and the initial goals of your study. Offer a synthesis of your primary outcomes, framing them in the context of your research aims. For instance, if one of your aims was to determine the efficacy of a new nursing intervention, explain how your results support or challenge its effectiveness.

Step 3: Discuss how your study contributes to the field

This highlights the unique value of your research within the vast domain of nursing studies. Elaborate on your research’s novel aspects or methods and how they can benefit the nursing community. For nursing students, this could be about showcasing a fresh perspective on patient communication, or it might present evidence supporting an innovative wound care technique.

Step 4: Reflect on the limitations of your study

Acknowledging the constraints of your study demonstrates intellectual honesty and provides context for interpreting your results. Detail any dissertation challenges faced during research related to sample selection, dissertation methodology, or external influencing factors. For example, you might mention the limited demographic diversity of your participants or the specific settings in which your research was conducted.

Step 5: Make recommendations for future research

To ensure that the momentum of academic exploration continues and to pave the way for more in-depth or varied studies. Based on gaps identified in your research or intriguing findings, suggest potential avenues for further investigation. For nursing students, this could involve recommending a study that looks into the long-term effects of a certain intervention or perhaps a cross-comparison of multiple nursing practices.

Step 6: Wrap up with a closing summary

To provide readers with a cohesive understanding of your study’s value and implications. Concisely reiterate the essence of your research, its contributions, and potential ramifications for nursing practices or education. This could be like, “The findings from this study not only validate the effectiveness of holistic care in pediatric settings but also emphasize the need for broader implementation and further investigation.”

Helpful Tips to Address When Writing The Perfect Conclusion

  • Stay concise: Avoid introducing new data or overly detailed statistics.
  • Maintain clarity: Use clear and direct language to convey your points.
  • Be future-oriented: Emphasize how your research can shape future studies or practices in nursing.
  • Use a reflective tone: Show that you’ve critically engaged with your research and its implications.

Example of a Good Dissertation Conclusion

In this study, we explored the efficacy of mindfulness techniques in reducing stress among pediatric nurses. Our findings confirmed a significant reduction in reported stress levels post-intervention. This contributes to the growing body of evidence suggesting mindfulness as a viable strategy in nursing self-care. However, the limited sample size and short duration of the intervention pose constraints. Future studies could delve deeper into long-term impacts and explore similar interventions in diverse nursing settings. In conclusion, prioritizing the mental well-being of nurses through mindfulness not only fosters a healthier work environment but potentially elevates patient care quality.

Final Thoughts on Dissertation Conclusions

The conclusion of a nursing dissertation summarizes your research findings, reflects on the methodologies used, and offers insights for future studies. It is where all your hard work comes together, emphasizing the significance of your research and how it contributes to the broader nursing field. Crafting a potent conclusion ensures that your dissertation leaves a lasting impact, drawing attention to the relevance and importance of your work.

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