The discussion section in a project is one of the sections everyone reading through a research project looks forward to. The section is where the meaning, importance, and relevance of your research results are discussed. In the discussion chapter, you get to focus on explaining and evaluating what you found out, showing how it relates to your research questions and literature review. It’s a section where an argument in support of your overall conclusion in a project is stated. If you are looking for how to write the discussion section of your project, then this article is written just for you
How to write the discussion section of your project
What is the discussion section of your project?
The discussion section of a project is the chapter that explains the results gotten during the research, it is the most creative and interesting part of a research project, it can be likened to telling a story about the research. The use of figures and tables in the result section is not enough to convince the readers of the importance of your findings. There is the need to support the results with explanations of your findings, defend answers to research questions and give arguments to support the research conclusions; this is what the discussion section does.
How to approach it
Usually, there is an overlap between discussion and conclusion. The following steps state categorically how to approach the discussion section of a project.
1. Summarizing of key findings
That’s reiterating your research problem and summarizing concisely your major findings. In this section aim for a clear statement of your overall result, that clearly and directly answers the main research question. Note however that this must not be more than one paragraph in the section. Examples below-
- The data collected propound that…
- The results stipulate that…
- The studies exemplify/give an idea of a correlation between…
- The experiment supports the theory that…
2. Give interpretations of your findings
Not everyone may be familiar with the meaning of your results, it is of essence to spell out its significance and show how exactly they answer your research questions to the readers. Note however that the form of your interpretation depends largely on the type of research. Some approaches to interpreting results include:
- Discussion of results; if they support your hypothesis and met your expectations.
- Comparing your findings with previous theory and research
- Evaluating the significance of the result and explaining unexpected results.
3. Discussion of Implication
This is relating your results back to the work by other scholars you surveyed in the literature review. The discussion here shows how your results fit with existing findings if there are any insights they contribute and their consequences in theory and practice. Some of the questions that should guide you are:
- Do the results correlate with previous research results? If so, what is the difference?
- Is there a similarity between the results and similar research findings? If so, how come?
- Does the present result challenge or support existing theories?
4. Acknowledgment of limitations of your research
This may not be pleasing but is a noble thing to do at all times. Every research has some limitations, when you acknowledge this, it demonstrates your credibility. It is providing an accurate picture of what can and cannot be concluded from the research. Limitations here are directly relevant to the research objectives, evaluating how much impact they had on the outcome of the research. Further reiterate why the results are still valid for the purpose of answering the research questions, despite the limitations.
- The accuracy of this data is impacted by…
- Generally the result was limited by..
- Due to lack of …, the results cannot confirm…
5. Give recommendations
Based on your result discussion, recommendations can be given for practical implementation or further research for better results, especially if there were limitations. In this section concrete ideas can be given for future work, giving areas your research was not able to address. It could be given as follows:
- More research is needed to affirm…
- Further studies should take into consideration…
How to compare your data with other data
This is an important part of the discussion section of a research paper. The discussion section provides interpretation and explanation of the results of a study by comparing and relating study results with previous studies. It is pertinent to note that no one is ever the only person who has or is researching on a particular subject, there are always competitors and companions in some cases of a researcher, as such the discussion section should present facts that relate the research to previous studies done on the same subject; contextualizing the contribution of your study and relating your study findings with previous studies.
Comparison of your data with other data can be done using tables or charts. It can be done by
- comparing the results with the literature covered in the literature review of the research project
- Give a generic explanation of your study findings that is unique, similar, or different from the other studies
- Give examples from other studies indicating what is similar and different.
How to get material for the discussion section
The discussion section is the hardest section of the research; it should be prepared by arranging the information in the following order:
(a) Provisions of findings
(b) Strength and limitations of the study
(c) Strengths and limitations in comparison to other studies; discussing in details similarities and differences.
(d) Future research and unanswered questions.
(e) Meaning and outcome of the study; findings and its implication.
All these are discussed in detail with insights from the literature review.
This article on How to write the discussion section of your project is very important to every research writer; first-timer and experienced authors alike. However, as with other activities in life, constant practice will improve one’s discussion writing skills. The points outlined here address the area that could be challenging to researchers and provide an easy guide to writing a scientific discussion section of research project with ease.