An evolution analysis is the analysis and description of changes to or in an object (target object) over time. The process is also called development.

During an analysis in a research project or a bachelor’s or master’s thesis, a certain object is defined, actually or mentally dissected and its components (elements) and features (attributes) are described precisely and in detail. The evolution analysis compares the status at the beginning of the project to the status at further points in time.

An example topic can help us understand the abstract:

Evolution of chocolate addiction among students - a systematic analysis

How do I proceed with an evolution analysis?

The procedure for the evolution analysis is as follows:

  • First define all terms. These are all important elements of the object or system.
  • Describe, with the help of textbooks and studies, the object that develops, i.e. changes.
  • Make a timeline. This is ultimately a model of the development of the object (changes in the students’ chocolate addiction).
  • Define the characteristics necessary to detect and describe the changes (weight, health status, cholesterol, insulin level, chocolate eating habits, happiness level, etc.).
  • Identify the possible data sources (literature or empirical sources).
  • Evaluate the data sources and select the most appropriate ones.
  • Design a procedure for obtaining the data.
  • Collect the data from literature or empirically.
  • Analyze the data and draw conclusions.
  • Describe the observed changes.
  • Make references to the still unknown changes.

Why do I need to know how an evolution analysis works? How can that help me?

It helps you with your bachelor’s or master’s thesis and even in life! You can use it to find an easy to work on topic instead of researching many topics then wasting time and patience and getting off to a rocky start.

  • 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 following the approach of a development analysis instead of stumbling along.
  • Quickly identify the sources for data collection.
  • Perform your evaluation alongside the analysis model.
  • Write your text clearly, alongside intelligent questions instead of puzzling ideas and hoping that the reader will somehow make the connection.

What is the research question and goal of development analysis?

In general, the research question of an evolution analysis is ….

What changes can be identified and described in different phases of the Alpha object?

Example: What are the characteristics of students’ with chocolate addictions at different stages?

The objective is to gain knowledge about the changes in the chocolate addiction on object Alpha. Right now, the WHY is not important.

Is such an evolution analysis a literature thesis or empirical thesis?

This type of analysis fits both types. You can gather knowledge scattered in literature sources, which would make it a simple literature thesis.

But you can also collect and evaluate the data yourself and close the gap, which would make it an empirical thesis. An empirical thesis is considered more valuable, of course. By the way, this does not have to be more difficult than a literature thesis. Collecting data can be less time-consuming than finding old literature.

What kinds of tools and materials do I need for an evolution analysis?

It depends on the nature of your work, whether it is theoretical or empirical.

  • The literature thesis requires very good search methods to find the right sources and thus contents and arguments used to evaluate the sources. The methods of 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 and established knowledge becomes your text.
  • You need an instrument of source evaluation for the collection of data sources. Our catalog of questions can reliably evaluate data and data sources by determining to what extent they help you in writing the paper. The rating works like a filter.
  • The 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, surveys or interviews. There are standards for the contents, outline, type of data documentation etc.

But the most important part of academic writing are the questions! In all possible variations. There is one big research question, then there are detailed questions that break down the big research question. If you conduct interviews, there are interview questions. The questionnaire is full of questions with predefined answers. And don’t forget, there are still micro questions for the chapters.

By the way, you can write five pages of text per day with the right writing technique.

What are the biggest challenges in an evolution analysis for the bachelor’s thesis or master’s thesis?

  • You must first locate the gap, the unknown or little known changes. Remember the chocolate example. You could also examine teachers or schoolchildren.
  • You must find out what we know and what we don't know but WANT to know. Then you have to figure out if the information is obtainable at all.
  • You must clearly define the topic of the investigation and thus define it. For example, it is not just THE STUDENTS, but those who study sports or business studies etc.
  • You don't build a model every day either.

And then there is the seemingly hard task of finding and evaluating the data and drawing the right conclusions. This sounds harder than it is. But with a large excavator, you can remove a significant pile of earth in one day! The same idea applies to the appropriate methods and tools 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 keyword in the textbook.

You should also find descriptions and representations of the objects. For chocolate, you would find a description of the ingredients, the different specialities and product variations like pralines 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 and then writing of the text. It's all fun when you see the end clearly in front of you.

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

The Aristolo Thesis Guide provides detailed instructions for the development analysis and includes all the steps, plus instructions, checklists, tools and examples. This will save you a lot of time, your results will be much better, your findings will be real and you will receive an awesome grade!

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.