Difference between a Book and a Dissertation

Academic books and dissertations differ in format, content, citing, chapters, and many other things. In the other words, unlike many researchers assume, a dissertation is not a book without making any changes in it. Accordingly any editor will not publish a dissertation in the format of a dissertation. In fact you need to make some changes in your dissertation in order to get it published.

If you are going to turn your dissertation into a book, you need to be aware of the differences between a book and dissertation and apply them, so that your dissertation becomes ready to publish as a book.

What is the main difference between a book and a dissertation?

A dissertation focuses on a specific subject, discusses the subject in depth, explains whole process of the study, and demonstrates collected data by graphs, tables, etc. to prove the validity of the research and the authority of the researcher. So the number of pages in a dissertation could be more than a book.

While a book is written on a more general topic and needs to be appealing to a wider range of readers, and usually is red more than a dissertation by more readers. It also may contain fewer pages.

Freedom of the researcher to write a book and dissertation

Another fact about the difference between a book and a dissertation is that when you are writing your dissertation, there is a professor directing the research, while you can write your book in your own way. It is totally yours and should contain your ideas. However do not forget that it is supposed to be a book based on your dissertation. Do not change the main content of your dissertation.

However academic books are written based on previous researches, you need to have evidence of other researchers for every single assertion you make.

Furthermore, the format of theses is determined by universities. You have to adhere to determined format in terms of chapters and the order of them, while you decide about the chapters of your book, and you can explain your research in a way that satisfies you.


To summarize, a book and a dissertation differs in:

  • The limitation of subjects
  • The generality of audience
  • Method of citation
  • Depth and details
  • Chapters
  • Etc.

To conclude, the primary purpose of writing a dissertation is to learn how to conduct a research and report its results so that you can graduate, while you are going to write a book to provide information you gain during your research to other researchers and professors. In fact, when you write your book, you introduce yourself as an academic person.

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