Writing A PhD Dissertation Acknowledgment: 5 Vital Tips

Writing your dissertation acknowledgment doesn't have to be stressful. You just have to find the right balance between people who contributed to your dissertation in a more personal way, and then those who contributed in a more professional manner, whether it be teachers, authors, etc.

If you're a little unsure of where to begin, let these tips be your guide.

  1. Make a list.
  2. Before you begin writing the acknowledgment, you need to know who you're going to mention. Make a list of everyone that is linked to your dissertation. After you have everyone down, you can divide the list between personal and professional.

  3. Stating personal acknowledgments.
  4. It's up to you about what to include and how much information you want to give. You can go through the list of everyone who's ever inspired you, or narrow the list down to people who are specifically connected to your dissertation. You can mention people who encouraged you or read and edited your work. Just be careful not to fill space just for the sake of it; only mention people who are directly related to your work somehow.

  5. Stating professional acknowledgments.
  6. Anyone who has contributed to your dissertation academically should be stated, though again, keep your list narrowed down to people who helped you with this directly. Talking about a third grade teacher who helped you with your writing is unnecessary, but mentioning a teacher who helped you in your college years is perfectly acceptable if they inspired you or helped you with your work in some way.

    You can include anyone who helped you with your research such as colleagues or classmates, professors or advisors, etc. Anyone academically related should be listed by their full name but with friends or family, it's best to only use their first name. If you are mentioning a group, you can name the group but keep their full names out if it.

  7. Separate dedications.
  8. Personal acknowledgments and dedications can be kept separate. It can be tricky to find the right balance, but keeping dedications apart from everything else can really help. Dedications can be more personal; you can mention family, friends and others who have inspired you. By doing this, you won't have to rule out people who haven't contributed in some way to your work!

  9. Keep it personal but professional.
  10. This part can have personal touches that include your own quirks and ways of speaking, but don't use any kind of slang or offensive language. It's okay to be yourself, but you still have to remain professional.