A pattern analysis is the analysis and description of the components (elements) and characteristics (attributes) of an object. In an analysis for a research project or academic writing, a certain object is defined or mentally dissected and its components (elements) and characteristics (attributes) are described precisely and in detail.

Here are instructions for doing a pattern analysis, the basic type of analysis.

How do I proceed with a pattern analysis?

The procedure for the characteristic analysis is as follows:

  • First define all terms. These are all the important elements of the object or system.
  • Describe, with the help of textbooks and studies, the features known so far.
  • Design an overview of all relevant features. This is ultimately a model.
  • Isolate and mark in the overview (in the model) XXXX for the still unknown characteristics.
  • Define the necessary data to describe the unknown features.
  • Identify the possible data sources.
  • Evaluate the data sources.
  • Design a procedure for obtaining the data.
  • Collect the data.
  • Analyze the data and draw conclusions.
  • Describe the unknown features in the overview.
  • Show the still unknown characteristics.

Why do I need to know how a pattern analysis works? How does that help me?

It helps you with your thesis and in life! You can use it to find a topic that’s easy to  write about instead of browsing different topics and losing time and your patience and ruining the start of your thesis...

  • Formulate the research question and the goal clearly instead of just roughly.
  • Build the model for the investigation instead of simply listing content from many sources in the text, without a storyline.
  • Determine your research design with data, data sources, methods, etc. instead of starting at the beginning and then muddling through.
  • Structure your entire research process along the procedure of a pattern analysis instead of stumbling along.
  • Quickly identify the sources for data collection instead of wasting time sifting through useless sources.
  • Perform your evaluation following the analysis model.
  • Get your points across clearly by using intelligent questions instead of puzzling ideas and hoping that the reader will understand.

What is the research question and goal of feature analyzes?

The research question for the pattern analysis is general.

What features or characteristics does the Alpha object have?

Example: What are the characteristics of chocolate lovers (in terms of age, physical form, income, work ethic, etc.)? The goal is to gain knowledge about the characteristics of the Alpha object.

Is this type of pattern analysis a literature thesis or empirical work?

This type of analysis is suitable for both. You can gather knowledge scattered in literature sources, which would make it a literature thesis or theoretical project, or you can collect and evaluate data yourself and close the gap which would make it an empirical work. However, the empirical thesis is more valuable. By the way, this does not mean that it is more difficult than a literature thesis but collecting the data can be very time-consuming.

What tools and materials do I need for a pattern analysis?

It depends on the nature of your work, whether it is theoretical or empirical. For a literature thesis, you need an efficient method to find the right sources, contents and arguments to properly evaluate the sources. The method for literature reviews is best suited for this purpose. You are looking for scientific studies according to a tried and tested scheme. These studies are your material, previous knowledge functions as a base for your text. For the collection of data sources, an instrument of source evaluation is required. With our catalog of questions, you can reliably evaluate data and data sources and to what extent they help you in writing the paper.

Rating each piece of literature works like a sieve. In the end the duplicate and more useful sources are clear. An empirical thesis requires the methods of literature thesis mentioned above in addition to a few more methods and instruments. You need data sources and instruments to collect data such as questionnaires, survey forms or interview guidelines. There are standards for the contents, outline, type of data documentation etc. but the most important thing in academic writing is the questions! In all possible forms.

There is one big research question followed by detailed questions that break down the big research question. If you conduct interviews, you must prepare interview questions. The questionnaire is composed of questions with predefined answers. As a crowning conclusion, you also have the micro questions within each chapter. By the way, you can write five pages of text a day with our power-working model.

What are the biggest challenges when working on a pattern analysis for the bachelor’s or master’s thesis?

You must first locate the gap, or the unknown features. Think about chocolate lovers. You could also investigate habitual e-book readers or companies with a global brand. You need to find out what we know and what we don't know but WANT to know.

Then you have to figure out if we CAN know, whether the information is obtainable at all. You must clearly define the subject of the investigation and thus delimit it. For example, there are not THE e-Book readers, but there are those who read specialist books, others read fiction and still others love mangas...

You don't build a model every day either. And let’s not forget the time-comsuming task of finding and evaluating data then drawing clever conclusions. It sounds worse that it is but with a large excavator you can remove a large pile of earth in one day! The same applies to the appropriate methods of analysis.

What's the best place to start?

Start with clean definitions of your terms and use only scientific sources, i.e. no online sources, no lexicons. Example: Sustainable tourism should be defined by a reference book on the subject not by an online source. You will find much more on the subject in a book, and you should also find descriptions and illustrations of the objects. For e-books, you have to find a description of the special features and the contents and formats etc. This is followed by the formulation of the research gap and research question, the aim of the work, the selection of methods, the source evaluation, the acquisition and analysis of data then the writing of the text. It's all fun when the end is in sight. The end, by the way, is clear from the beginning thanks to the aim of the work, namely a precise description of the characteristics sought. Sounds doable, right?

How does the Aristolo Thesis Guide help with a pattern analysis for the bachelor’s or master’s Thesis?

The Aristolo Thesis Guide provides detailed instructions to help compose a pattern analysis with all the steps, instructions, checklists, tools and examples. This will save you a lot of time, your results will be better, your findings will be real and you will receive a grade you’re proud of!

Good luck writing your text!

Silvio and the Aristolo Team

PS: Check out the Thesis-ABC and the Thesis Guide for writing a bachelor or master thesis in 31 days.