Tips on reframing your thesis into a journal article

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Before reframing your thesis into a journal article, it is important to understand the differences between the two styles of academic writing. Both these sub-genres are meant for different readers and written for different purposes. Students write a thesis as part of their course and present it before a committee that evaluates whether the candidate deserves a degree. Conversely, time-constrained scientists and researchers read journal articles to look for practical ideas backed with evidence. Thus, it follows a specific format for precise presentation of information. Once these differences are clear, reframing your thesis into one or more journal articles will become relatively convenient.

Below given are some tips that will help you in this process:

A journal article is much shorter than a thesis. Therefore, shorten each section of the latter considerably by selecting and rewriting the content and not by copying and pasting.

A thesis generally focuses on many topics. Thus, narrow down the focus to a specific topic for your journal article. You should be selective when presenting the problem. The Introduction section of the journal article should explicitly focus on literature review to explain the research gap that led to the selected research question.

Limit the description of methods only to the details of the methodology used or experiments conducted pertaining to the research question.

Report only the primary results relevant to your research question and are backed by sufficient evidence. There is no need to elaborately explain all the findings of your thesis. You may include the secondary findings as supplementary data. Similarly, use only those figures and tables that are pertinent to your journal article.

The discussion of the results should be clear and precise, without repetition of your results. It should focus on the primary results considered for the journal article.

– Include a limited number of citations for works cited within the article. Do not include the ‘Definitions’ section of a thesis in a journal article.

While preparing your journal article, ensure that you follow the style guidelines mentioned in your target journal. Generally, most of the journals require you to follow the APA Style for text, tables, figures, and references.

Pay attention to the quality of expository writing. Ensure clarity, avoid excessive repetitions and redundancies, use active voice in general, and use correct grammar.

Note that these tips only provide a sense of direction to convert part of your thesis into a journal article. This process requires significant effort and patience and is by no means an easy task. Most importantly, remember to reference your thesis in the article.

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