The purpose of the thesis dictates the direction of the study, according to which the topic is disclosed. The goal is the final result of the research, what the graduate student should come to in the end.
Usually the purpose of the thesis is consonant with the topic, it can study the process, analyze the characteristics, identify patterns. But the formulation of the goal should begin with the words: develop, reveal, establish, substantiate.
Traditionally, the goal is formulated on the basis of the problem and the formulated object and subject of study.
Sometimes members of the dissertation council state that goal setting is carried out before determining the object of research, but this is a wrong judgment. The goal can be set on a specific object and subject. It is unlikely that an accountant will be able to generate an annual report if he does not have documents in his hands. Then the goal should be defined as the meaning of the research, which follows from the problem posed.
Very often in dissertations the goal is defined as “to solve a problem”, but such a formulation of the question implies that the research of the problem has already been exhausted, and after conducting the research, other scientists will have nothing to do. But, if we talk about pedagogy, it is hardly possible to take the liberty to say that the problem has been settled. It can be assumed that within the framework of the study, the problem will find a solution. That is why the purpose of research in dissertations is formulated in a condensed form.
If you pay attention to many dissertations that have been defended at different times and in different councils, then the formulation of the goal is not distinguished by a variety of phrases and is often reduced to the following: development of methodological foundations; identification of patterns; form justification; development of tools. It turns out that the wording is not rich enough, but this does not mean that they cannot be used, but necessarily develop something of our own. If the dissertation research is devoted to the development of any direction, then the goal is formulated: to analyze the theoretical foundations and practical experience and determine its importance for the development of science.
However, an incorrectly worded goal can play a bad joke on defense. Many dissertation councils do not accept the use of the word “paths”, which graduate students very often use in formulating a goal, for example: to substantiate ways to improve performance. In this case, the meaning of the word “path” is evidenced to the definition of the direction of activity, but this is precisely where the uncertainty of judgments is contained, since the thought arises that the author of the dissertation does not yet understand what the results will lead to.
Very often an incorrect formulation of a goal occurs when a scientific goal is replaced by a practical one.
For example, the formulation of the goal of “improving production” is not the goal of the research. Of course, the results obtained can be used in practical work, but this will not be the aim of the dissertation research.
Thus, the purpose of the thesis is aimed at solving the problem, which is the basis of the subject of research, which in turn is within the boundaries of the object of study, which guarantees obtaining new results. Considering a systematic approach, criteria for evaluating formulations can be: feasibility, efficiency, measurability, flexibility. That is, the goal is focused on meeting the need, in accordance with which the problem is solved if it is about a master’s thesis or if there is a theoretical justification and a solution to a scientific problem, if it is a doctoral dissertation.