Here's a thing. I've been looking at a few dissertation samples on Proquest, and it's struck me that almost everyone else in the world is better at writing acknowledgements than I am. It's not that I deliberately write dry, dutiful and oddly ungrateful-sounding acknowledgements, I just get overcome by embarassment whenever I start typing. When one's brain seems to be squirming in one's head it's difficult to summon anything better than "I am extremely grateful..." Having looked at pages of acknowledgements that manage to be fulsome (in the good sense) sincere and witty (damn them), I'm suffering from severe acknowledgements-envy.
And I don't think it's a Brits vs. North Americans thing - I do know of one British institution where acknowledgements are frowned on as "pretentious", but I also saw a US dissertation that had none at all. Besides, m' learned supervisor manages to write screeds.
Sigh. Maybe there's some kind of course?