Dissertation & Thesis Guides

Dissertation Acknowledgements: Writing Guide + Examples

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Writing a dissertation is a hard task, but it is too early to relax after completing it. Before defending your scientific thesis, you must write dissertation acknowledgements.

Dissertation acknowledgements allow the author to express appreciation to those who provided support during the research and writing process. This section provides an opportunity to recognize the contributions of other individuals and institutions who helped with your study.

Although this section is not taken into account when your dissertation defense is evaluated, it can impress readers and the academic community. Still, this page is not easy to handle, since you should follow certain rules. Read on this guide and find out how to write a thesis or dissertation acknowledgements without effort. Don’t forget to check out examples that will surely come in handy.  

What Is Acknowledgement: Dissertation

Acknowledgement in dissertation is an optional section. It is a common courtesy rule in any academic community. Acknowledgements are placed immediately after the front page. This section contains personal thanking to all people who have helped and supported you with dissertation writing.

This is not only a formal acknowledgement. It can also be a recognition of these people’s contribution to a full-fledged research. After all, you’ve probably got advice from professors or asked to find the necessary literature. Chances are that you also enjoyed the support of your beloved ones.  

Who Should You Thank in Dissertation Acknowledgements

A list of people you can thank may vary greatly. But we recommend including these people in dissertation acknowledgements:

  • funding bodies
  • supervisors (both current and former ones, if there have been a few of them)
  • professors
  • laboratory assistants
  • librarians
  • editors
  • classmates
  • research participants.

It is not required to dedicate a separate paragraph to each of them. This can take the text beyond 1-page limits. You can unite them into groups or not mention them if their contribution was not significant enough.

A separate part should be dedicated to your dissertation defense committee chairman. Do not highlight any of them, try paying the same attention to each member of your list.

After a formal list of dissertation participants, you can thank an informal group of people. These may be parents and other family members, spouses, children, friends. Even pets or shop assistants will do – in short, everyone who has influenced your work.  


No one limits you when choosing your acknowledgment section volume. Still, we recommend writing down your appreciation in 1 page. As a rule, no one exceeds this length and for good reason. It’s not too long and complicated, but long enough to mention all important members of your research process. Nevertheless, figure out your alma mater’s requirements. Sometimes, the limitations are set by educational institutions.


For formatting PhD dissertation acknowledgements, you should follow certain criterias:

  • Place a page at the very beginning of your thesis — right after your title page and before the dissertation abstract.
  • Align all margins on both sides.
  • Place the ‘Acknowledgements’ title at the top of your page and center-align it.
  • Leave 4 space lines after the title.

How to Write Acknowledgements for Dissertation

Before you start writing Ph.D. dissertation acknowledgements, you should make a list of those who have made an important contribution to creating your study. You should distinguish personal support from professional help. Still, your writing style may be slightly informal. But you should not lean toward common speech. It is better to follow a semi-formal style. Remember that it’s not a dissertation itself – there is no need to use complex terms.

Having gathered your wits and thinking of all those who supported you in writing your scientific work, proceed to our writing tips:  

  1. Work on a professional style. Make all merits in acknowledgement concise but succinct. Mention the provided help without going into unnecessary details.
  2. Stick to all recommendations. Some educational institutions set requirements for how an acknowledgement page should look like. Some schools even provide a sample. But most universities still guarantee creative freedom.
  3. Put the most important people first. Sort those who will receive acknowledgement by the importance of their contribution made. An alphabetical list is not recommended.
  4. Don’t exclude your advisor from a list. Even if your supervisor’s support wasn’t that significant, they still have contributed to your research. Besides, some people may perceive this as disrespect for advisor’s achievements.

Now, let’s see how to mention professional and personal contributions in a dissertation.

Professional Acknowledgements

It is recommended dedicating the beginning of your appreciation section to professional acknowledgement. This section implies gratitude to:

  • Academic community
  • Research supervisor
  • Instructor
  • Professors

Think of those people who provided you with support and helped with collecting and handling all information. Here are some examples of professional acknowledgement:

Example of dissertation acknowledgement

These are examples of formal acknowledgement to all scientists who have helped with your research. It is a great opportunity to highlight some merits of the scientific team. But it is equally important to mention the names of sponsors if they supported you financially.

Personal Acknowledgements

Keep your final part for personal acknowledgement to those who were the most meaningful. These can be family members, partners and friends who have inspired you. Here, a less formal style is appropriate, you can add quotes, poems, even put a touch of humor to your text – this is not prohibited.

Take a personal approach into account and include personal facts. Provided this approach, your acknowledgement will be as complete as possible. Specify not only the first and second names of people involved, but their positions and titles if there are any.

Thus, we suggest the following personal dissertation acknowledgements sample:  

Personal dissertation acknowledgements sample

Do not make it too personal. Keep in mind that you are still writing a part of your scientific thesis, even if it does not affect the evaluation. If you doubt your skills, contact our academic writing service. Whether it’s a dissertation or a research paper, we will compose a work in line with all requirements.

Dissertation Acknowledgements Examples

Below, please find a short sample of what dissertation acknowledgements may look like in general. As you can see, a writer has mentioned important people from both professional and personal circles. All paragraphs should be well-organized and of equal size.

Dissertation Acknowledgements Examples

Contact our academic writers who can add professional touches to this section, as in the example above.  

Acknowledgement Template Dissertation

Follow our recommendations and you will be able to write a dissertation acknowledgement yourself. Feel free to use this dissertation acknowledgements template to express gratitude you have accumulated over the years of scientific work. If you ever need proper hands-on dissertation proposal writing services, feel free to ask StudyCrumb.

Acknowledgement template dissertation

Bottom Line

The best dissertation acknowledgements are a reflection on an opportunity that you got. It is an informal part of the scientific work that won’t be considered during the evaluation process. However, common courtesy generally requires you to work on this section. To write a good acknowledgement part, you should mention those whom you really appreciate. You can thank them in prose. Besides, you can also allow a little restrained humor if allowed by the person’s status.

If you are in need of expert backing – contact StudyCrumb dissertation writing service. We’ve got a dedicated team of professional writers who have extensive experience in the scientific field. They are ready to handle any part of your dissertation and deliver it in time.  

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Where do the acknowledgements go in a thesis or dissertation?

Usually, dissertation acknowledgements are placed after the title page and before your abstract page. This is a section where you thank everyone who has helped, inspired, and supported you when writing your scientific thesis. Place an acknowledgement page before the main text. This will help readers understand who has contributed to your work.

2. How long should the acknowledgements be?

There are no specific requirements for how long dissertation acknowledgements should be. We recommend including your recognition in 1 page with standard layout. Start your acknowledgement with the most important people. Work on sincere but brief recognition. You can expand this list a bit later, but usually there is no such need. By keeping to 1-page text volume, you will be able to highlight the most valuable assistants who have really ensured the success of your scientific work.

3. How do you express gratitude in Acknowledgement?

We recommend not going deeply into listing all merits of your assistants. After all, an acknowledgement in dissertation is a text that will allow you to remember all those to whom you are grateful. Use the sample phrases “I am grateful...”, “I express gratitude to...”, “I am deeply grateful...” and others. They will help you express your attitude to all important people, while not setting this page apart from the main style of your dissertation.

4. How do you thank your boss in Acknowledgement?

You can omit highlighting your boss in the acknowledgement of your dissertation. Especially if he has put a minimum of effort into your work. But if this is not a case and their support was sufficient, work out your gratitude deeply. Specify his academic degree and given assistance. Remember all important moments of cooperation. This will show that you appreciate this specialist.

Article posted on:May 9, 2022
Article updated on:Jun 6, 2024


Leave your comment here:
6/25/2022 9:48 AM
Hi there,

I have almost finished writing my PhD dissertation. The last thing left to write is dissertation acknowledgements. In your article you said that this section is not taken into account when defending. In this case, can my acknowledgements in a dissertation be humorous? I think it can positively impress readers and the academic community.
6/25/2022 11:47 AM
Hi Chase,

Yes, it is right that the acknowledgments section is not considered when defending, but it should still be written according to general dissertation writing rules. The dissertation acknowledgments section is typically written formally, so humor can't really be expected in this case. Thus, you should not be humorous when thanking people for collaboration or acknowledging people who assisted with the research. However, your writing should not be thin and dry. Try to make it more live. Hope this helps!
6/25/2022 11:56 AM
Thank you for your answer! I have already defended my dissertation and everything was fine. I did what you said, didn't make my acknowledgments humorous, but added a little expression to it.
6/25/2022 12:01 PM
Great to hear that! Good luck in your further academic pursuits!