CHAPTER FOUR: WRITING YOUR RESULTS
Now you are in the Results chapter of your thesis. Congratulations! The time has come to enjoy the fruits of your labour. Now you can declare to the world what you have discovered in your investigation. No discussion in this chapter. You need only to document your results scientifically. Just report the information collected and analyze your findings without bias. Your results should be accompanied by figures, tables, charts as well as illustrations, if necessary, so that your problem statement, hypothesis and research questions are addressed clearly. Take note that your results, whether negative or positive, are still significant contributions to existing knowledge
Result Writing Roadmap
When you are reporting your results, make sure they are properly organized. It is always helpful to start with a small abstract-style introduction stating what you intend to do in this chapter. A short paragraph would help your reader remember your research problem, questions and hypothesis so that when they read this chapter, they can understand your results better. Pay attention to the key findings of your investigation. Report your results in the past tense as the data have already been collected. When you are declaring your results, do not mention phrases such as I, We, or I found that…, we found that… because it is unprofessional for a scholar to boast. Instead you may state: this research has investigated, this study has found that…. and so on.
Start from your problem statement and put forth evidence to show that you have proved or disproved the research problem. Mention your research questions and explain with evidence what you have discovered. Have you answered all your research questions? Next, discuss your hypothesis and explain whether it was accepted or rejected, using evidence based on your results. Explain your findings and relate them to your problem, questions and hypothesis. Show the significance of your findings. Do not interpret and discuss anything in the Results chapter.
Only report what you have found, based on the data collected. Any interpretation and argument can be discussed in the chapter that follows, i.e. the Conclusion chapter.
The length of your Results chapter depends on the amount of data collected as well as the number of charts, tables, graphs, etc. to make the presentation of your results more meaningful and easier to understand. Outline the significance of your findings chronologically. Report the most significant part of your results first. At the end of the Results chapter, write a concluding paragraph similar to the one in the introduction. In this way, your readers will remember what you have stated earlier.