6 1 [Dissertation Title in Title Case; no more than 12-15 words]

[Dissertation Title in Title Case; no more than 12-15 words]
[Title should reflect method or design and some sense of geographic scope of the study along with key study variables and/or constructs]
A Dissertation Presented in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of
[Doctor of Management or Doctor of Computer Science]
[Note: Degree concentration is not listed with degree name on title page]
Insert Your Name Here
Department of Doctoral Studies, Colorado Technical University
Month Year
Committee Members
[Mentor name], [Degree], Chair
[Committee Name], [Degree], Committee Member
[Committee Name], [Degree], Committee Member
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: Introduction 1
Problem Statement 1
Study Purpose 1
Research Question 2
Hypothesis(es) 2
Conceptual Framework 2
Significance of the Study 3
Definition of Terms 3
Chapter Summary 4
Chapter 2: Review of the Literature 5
Literature Search Strategies 5
[Replace with Research Theme 1 heading] 5
[Replace with Research Theme 2 heading] 5
[Replace with Research Theme 3 heading] 5
[Replace with Research Theme X heading] 5
Gaps in the Literature 6
Conclusions 6
Chapter Summary 6
Chapter 3: Method 7
Research Method and Design 7
Population and Sample 7
Data Collection Instrumentation and Procedures 7
Data Analysis Procedures 8
Assumptions and Limitations 8
Trustworthiness or Validity and Reliability 8
Ethical Assurances 8
Chapter Summary 9
Chapter 4: Findings 10
Description of the Study Sample 10
Results 10
Discussion of Study Findings 11
Chapter Summary 11
Chapter 5: Discussion and Conclusions 12
Limitations of Study Findings 12
Interpretation of Study Findings 12
Practice Implications of Study Findings 12
Recommendations for Further Research 12
Conclusion 13
Chapter 6: Study Artifact (Optional Chapter) 14
References 15
Appendix A: [Insert title] 16
Appendix B: [Insert title] 17
Appendix C: [Insert title] 18
List of Tables
(Include only as needed)
Table 1 Table label #
Table 2 Table label #
Table 3 Table label #
List of Figures
(Include only as needed)
Figure 1 Figure label #
Figure 2 Figure label #
Figure 3 Figure label #
Chapter 1: Introduction
[Chapter 1 begins with an introduction that serves as the background to the study problem. The introduction clearly guides a doctoral-level reader to the necessary background information and scholarship necessary to understand the study problem. Inferences related to the research focus from professional practice must also be cited by the relevant scholarship for the background information. The introduction should be no more than 2-2 1/2 pages in length.]
Problem Statement
[Make clear this is a practice-based problem and well supported by current scholarship. The problem statement is one paragraph of text (not multiple paragraphs) of no more than 250-350 well-supported words to describe the study problem of focus with citation. The University requires dissertation problems to be both practice-based and scholarship-supported, so the description of the problem must include both practice considerations and cite the current research. A quality dissertation presents a well-aligned Problem, Purpose and Research Question, clearly articulated, and substantiated through citation of the appropriate theoretical, conceptual, and empirical peer-reviewed literature. This section begins with the sentence: The problem is…]
The problem is…
Study Purpose
[Ensure an appropriate study method and design/approach are presented within the purpose statement. This section begins with the sentence to introduce the study: The purpose of the (method choice) (research approach/design) study is to… Following the study purpose sentence, the Purpose section will introduce a brief rationale for the choice of study method followed by research site, target population, sampling method, proposed sample size, data collection method, data analysis method, and the analysis software to be used. The Purpose section will close with a statement of the potential contributions of the study findings to professional practice and the scholarship.]
The purpose of the …
Research Question
[One overarching research question will guide the study. An introduction to the question will be offered here and the question will be formatted as a Level 3 APA header as shown below. Clear alignment must be demonstrated between the problem, purpose, and research question.]
The study research question….
[Phrasing for the research question must align with the traditions and conventions of the study method choice]?
Q1a [Optional sub-research questions will be presented for quantitative or mixed methods studies with multiple hypotheses and formatted using Level 4 APA headers as shown]
[Hypotheses are required only for quantitative and mixed methods studies; remove this heading for qualitative studies. If the study involves multiple hypotheses, sub-research questions are required above to align with each hypothesis. Variables introduced in the Purpose must be labeled verbatim to how they were introduced above to ensure alignment. Both a null followed by an alternate hypothesis are required and hypothesis headers are formatted as Level 3 APA headers. No introduction is required before the hypothesis(es)]
Conceptual Framework
[The conceptual framework in a CTU dissertation research study provides an illustration of interrelated ideas or aspects of your variables/constructs, and is often organized using existing models or theories. Simply put, the conceptual framework is the lens by which the study problem is viewed. Unlike a research doctorate where the dissertation study intends to extend theory, a practitioner doctoral dissertation study applies models and/or theory to an existing practice-based, scholarship-supported problem. The conceptual framework is visually enhanced through the inclusion of a figure cited within the narrative description (i.e. graphical depiction or diagram). The figure will directly follow this section. This section is typically 1-2 pages in length. CTU practitioner doctoral programs require a conceptual framework only and theoretical frameworks are not required; however, applicable theory(ies) and/or model(s) may comprise the conceptual framework for the study.]
Figure X
Figure Title in Title Case and Italics.
[Insert figure that illustrates the conceptual framework]
Note. [Other required figure details.]
Significance of the Study
[In this section, the original contribution of the study is articulated within the current scholarship and professional practice. This section is approximately ½ to 1 page in length.]
Definition of Terms
[Insert a brief one-paragraph introduction to this section to introduce all operational definitions for the key terms used within your study. Terms used to describe your study method and/or design are not included here and presented in alphabetic order. Remain focused on the key operational terms a doctoral-level reader must know to understand your research study. All terms are defined as complete sentences and the term must be included in the definition.]
[Replace with Term 1]
Begin term definition on same line as Level 3 header and ensure term is included in the term definition.
[Replace with Term 2]
Begin term definition on same line as Level 3 header and ensure term is included in the term definition.
Chapter Summary
[Close chapter with a concise summary of the chapter contents]
Chapter 2: Review of the Literature
[Introduction includes a restatement of the study purpose, a brief cited restatement of the study problem, a brief re-introduction of the study framework, and transition into the literature search strategies section. Be sure to review the relevant theoretical, conceptual, extant, empirical peer-reviewed literature and grey literature. A complete chapter 2 is approximately 23-26 pages in length.]
Literature Search Strategies
[A full description of the literature search strategies employed to source the literature for Chapter 2 must include all academic databases used for sourcing, all keywords and key phrases used, and a description of any other systematic processes used to source the current and extant scholarship related to the study problem. This section is typically no more than 2-3 full paragraphs and closes with a clear transition to the literature review that follows.]
[Replace with Research Theme 1 heading]
[All literature reviewed in the chapter are organized under specific research theme headings. Each section heading for this chapter is formatted as a Level 2 APA header and defines the focus of the literature reviewed in the respective section.]
[Replace with Research Theme 2 heading]
[Replace with Research Theme 3 heading]
[Replace with Research Theme X heading]
Gaps in the Literature
[Identify the gaps determined from the literature review and as supported by the literature review and key authors who have also reported any gaps in the research related to the practice-based research problem.]
[Present the overarching conclusions drawn from the literature review in this section and cite the respective literature reviewed to support these conclusions. This section presents the argument for the need for the proposed study to address the gap(s) within the literature identified.]
Chapter Summary
[Close chapter with a concise summary of the chapter contents]
Chapter 3: Method
[Introduction content to Chapter 3 directly follows the Chapter 3 heading (there is no level 2 introduction header). The introduction is approximately 1/2 to 3/4 of one page in length. The introduction restates the study purpose sentence from chapter 1, a brief cited restatement of the study problem from chapter 1, and a brief restatement of the conceptual framework for the study from chapter 1.]
Research Method and Design
[The Research Method and Design section presents a continuation of the brief method rationale from the Purpose section in Chapter 1 to fully describe the research traditions and paradigmatic perspectives that justify the choice of the research method and design/approach as appropriate to address the study problem. In addition, a justification for how and why the method choice and research design/approach align with the degree program discipline and area of concentration as supported by the current scholarship of the respective discipline.]
The research method selected for this study is…
Population and Sample
[In this section, describe the study target population in detail and note the estimated size of the population. Restate the study research setting from Chapter 1 and note the sampling method to be used with sufficient rationale. Also propose the minimum sample size and describe the procedures for sampling.]
Data Collection Instrumentation and Procedures
[Present the data collection instrument, when appropriate, and cite the appendix where the instrument can be found. Support the choice of the data collection method with a clear rationale for the choice in respect to the study method and design as well as the program discipline. Data collection procedures are written in detail necessary for replication.]
Data Analysis Procedures
[Present the data analysis method to be used to analyze the data gathered and support the data analysis method choice with a clear rationale in respect to the study method and design as well as the program discipline. Data analysis procedures are well detailed for replication.]
Assumptions and Limitations
[Identify the study assumptions and support all assumptions with clear rationale along with any potential limitations of the study and actions to mediate potential limitations.]
Trustworthiness or Validity and Reliability
[For qualitative studies, this section is entitled Trustworthiness. For quantitative studies, it is entitled Validity and Reliability. All three areas must be addressed for mixed methods studies. For trustworthiness, present a rationale for how the four criteria for the assurances of data trustworthiness are met (credibility, transferability, dependability, and confirmability). For quantitative studies, justification for appropriate data assumption tests are presented along with appropriate interpretation of validity and reliability of the data gathered.]
Ethical Assurances
[In this section, present a summary of the assurances used to support the ethical principles in accordance with minimizing risk to any respective human subjects, alignment with ethical research expected within the program discipline, and the potential benefits of study findings to the discipline. Be sure to address the ethical assurances for responsible research as provided to the CTU Institutional Review Board. For studies with further social value beyond the practice-based problem, also present the potential larger benefit to society beyond practice.]
Chapter Summary
[Close chapter with a concise summary of the chapter contents]
Chapter 4: Findings
[Scholarly Article Option for 4-Chapter Dissertation: When this option is elected, the traditional format guidelines below are not used for Chapter 4 and instead replaced with the scholarly journal article format. See the scholarly journal article chapter guidelines to employ this option for Chapter 4.]
[Students who choose a 5-chapter dissertation format (or the 6-chapter option) use the following section headings to prepare Chapter 4. The introduction to Chapter 4 includes a clear transition into the chapter and the introduction content directly follows the chapter 4 heading with additional heading for the introduction content. The introduction should restate the study purpose and briefly restate the study problem with citation as aligned with Chapter 1.]
Description of the Study Sample
[In this section, restate the target population, sampling method used, and final sample size. Provide an APA formatted and appropriate demographic characteristics for the final sample as relevant using APA-formatted frequency tables. For secondary/archival data studies with no identifying data, provide a summary of the final study sample for the dataset gathered.]
[The results presentation is guided by APA guidelines for the presentation of qualitative or quantitative findings as well as the conventions and expectations of the method choice and the degree program and/or concentration for the presentation of research findings within scholarship.]
Table X
Title of Table in Title Case and Italics
[table goes here]
Note. [Other required figure details.]
Discussion of Study Findings
[Present an objective analysis of the study findings in context with the current scholarship and synthesized into a coherent discussion.]
Chapter Summary
[Close chapter with a concise summary of the chapter contents.]
Chapter 5: Discussion and Conclusions
[The introduction to Chapter 5 includes a clear transition into the chapter and the introduction content directly follows the chapter 5 heading with additional heading for the introduction content. The introduction should restate the study purpose and briefly restate the study problem with citation as aligned with Chapter 1.]
Limitations of Study Findings
[Present a description of any limitations of the study findings caused by recruitment or sampling challenges, limitations to generalizability or transferability, limitations of data trustworthiness and/or reliability, or other reasons that may have limited study findings. The discussion will include a justification for the value and/or rigor for the study findings in spite of the limitations noted.]
Interpretation of Study Findings
[As a continuation to the section above, describe the inferences drawn from the study findings in relation to current scholarship. This discussion includes the contributions of the study findings to the current scholarship and practice. All claims must be well supported by the findings or current scholarship.]
Practice Implications of Study Findings
[Present a well-organized and coherent discussion of the inferences for the application of the study findings. The discussion must clearly address the problem in relation to practice and the implications of the study findings related to the study problem from a practice-based perspective.]
Recommendations for Further Research
[Present the recommendations for future research in this section. Present each recommendation as the next step in the research and to include a specific method and design for each recommended study. Each recommendation must also be supported by the study findings and current scholarship.]
[Present a concise summary of the study findings, the applicability of the study findings to practice, and the recommendations for future research. This section should be 1 to 2 pages in length.]
Chapter 6: Study Artifact (Optional Chapter)
[References will be formatted per APA 7th ed. guidelines, double-spaced, and left justified with proper hanging indent for second and subsequent lines of the source citation.]
Author, A., Author, B. C., & Author, D. (year). Article title in sentence case. Journal Title in Title Case, V(i), ##-##. https://doi.org/XXXX
Appendix A: [Insert title]
Appendix B: [Insert title]
Appendix C: [Insert title]
Chapter 4 Scholarly Article Option Format Guide
Dissertation students who desire to disseminate the dissertation research findings through scholarly publication are provided the option for a 4-chapter dissertation manuscript. When this option is employed, Chapter 4 is the final chapter of the manuscript and is formatted per the scholarly journal guidelines for the target journal selected. The target journal must be aligned with the student’s degree program and/or concentration and be listed within the Scimago journal master list or be approved by the research supervisor as an appropriate scholarly journal for the discipline. Chapter 4 section headings will be determined based on the manuscript guidelines of the respective scholarly journal chosen for article submission. Please note that while submission for publication is encouraged, it is not required for dissertation approval by the research supervisor and/or dissertation committee. Note. For students who choose this option, Chapter 4 is the final chapter of the dissertation manuscript and no chapter 5 or 6 are included.
Dissertation students who choose this option will follow the example below for the Chapter 4 heading:
Chapter 4: Findings
Chapter formatted for submission to [scholarly journal title]
Level 2 header
[Chapter section headings and content will follow the journal manuscript guidelines and include a separate References list per the journal specifications for reference style and format.]

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