IOE Writing Centre



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Basic Components

As with introductions, conclusions vary according to assignment types. In general, your conclusion probably needs to include some or all of the following basic components.

  • An indication that this is the conclusion: If you are not using a subheading (e.g. 'Conclusion'), you could start with a clear phrase that indicates this is the conclusion. (e.g. 'In conclusion...', 'To conclude...' or 'Overall...'). Such signposting can help the reader to understand that they have reached the concluding section of your assignment.
  • Summary of the discussion: This could reflect the aim/purpose and/or organisation/outline indicated in the introduction. (e.g. 'This essay has critically explored X in relation to Y...' or 'This paper set out to examine the relationship between X and Y...').
  • Re-statement of the central argument(s): This might reflect the thesis statement in the introduction. (e.g. The discussion has highlighted the main.....', or 'It has been argued that the priorities for...).
  • Implications:  You could make recommendations for research or practice, or answer the question 'So what?'. (e.g. It may be useful to investigate further...', 'One recommendation for classroom practice could be...', or 'The above discussion highlights the importance of ....' ).

Further guidelines

  • You can include references in the conclusion, but it is advisable not to include any new references. This is because you do not have space in the conclusion to discuss any new references in enough detail.
  • The conclusion is not generally the place for new ideas. Rather, it summarises what has already been stated. 

Example Conclusion

To sum up, this report has defined coaching as a conversation which can enhance performance at the same time as contributing to the development of the coachee (Boyatzis, Smith and Blaize, 2006).  The report took a psychoanalytically informed approach to an analysis of coaching within organisations, and considered the associated benefits and the required resources.  Applying the theory to the specific organisational context of the [XYZ Workplace], the need for coaching in this context was discussed, together with a strategy and implementation plan in order to facilitate the recommended coaching conversations. It was suggested that coaching could usefully be incorporated into certain areas of the organization.

Source: Anonymous UCL Institute of Education student (2013).

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