Chap11 - 11 Drawing your Conclusions and Identifying Future...

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Drawing your Conclusions and Identifying Future Work The most important thing to remember about the conclusion section of your report is that it must refer back to the aim and objectives. For example, if you have stated a specific hypothesis, the conclusion section of your report should discuss whether this hypothesis still holds after completion of your work. Was the hypothesis sup- ported by your experiments or investigation, or does the outcome show that the hypothesis no longer holds? In the latter case, you might propose a new, revised hypothesis, which may then become the basis of future work in your area. Alternatively, you should at least give some feasible explanations for why the current hypothesis does not hold. The conclusions should also put your results into a wider context. For example, suppose that you found that a particular type of modelling method for relational data could express some object-oriented features, what would this mean in a wider con- text? We could perhaps say that there is no need to develop new modelling methods. This possible conclusion should be discussed. You should present supporting argu- ments as well as all the counter-arguments you can think of. In addition, you should make an analysis of your project in terms of identifying its weak and its strong points. In other words, go back over all the steps in the process and make an assess- ment of what you did right, and what mistakes you made. One reason for this is that you help the reader to identify those weak and strong points. In addition, by doing such an evaluation of your own work, you are demonstrating your knowledge of how a project should be done. You may have made some mistakes along the way, but you now have an opportunity to show your awareness of those mistakes and of the impact they may have had on the outcome of the project. Finally, you should also identify the most relevant future directions relating to your work. It is rarely the case that a project presents the definitive answer to a research question, or the optimal solution to a problem. Given this, it is part of your job to identify further work of two kinds: work you would do yourself if you were continuing with the same project; and work you would suggest for other projects. One reason for doing this is that it makes your report more interesting if you pro- vide suggestions for people who may consider continuing your work. It also places your work in a wider context, and shows that you understand how it fits into the general progress in your field. Most importantly, you are the one in the best position 87 M. Berndtsson et al. (eds.), Planning and Implementing your Computing Project - with Success! © Springer 2008
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This note was uploaded on 10/10/2010 for the course IFT 7002 taught by Professor Lamongtagne during the Spring '09 term at Université Laval.

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Chap11 - 11 Drawing your Conclusions and Identifying Future...

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