PhD Dissertation Writing Tips For Beginners
Putting together a PhD dissertation may well be the most important step in your academic career. For most people, the completion of a successful PhD program marks the transition from student to scholar in their field of study. Coming up with a topic and thesis can be a daunting task. Considerable effort will go into planning, researching and writing the actual paper. It is a commitment that will be measured in years of blood, sweat and perhaps even a few tears.
We have put together some dissertation writing tips to make the process a little less painful. You may sometimes feel as if you have bitten off more than you can chew. Fear not! You will get through it, and be smarter and stronger for it.
Tips For Researching And Writing Your PhD Dissertation
- Have You Decided On Your Topic?
Have you chosen the specific area in which you plan to pursue your research and writing? If not, you should consult with your supervisors to nail down an original topic. It should be in an area where you have already had considerable experience and one that still holds great interest for you.
A great place to get inspiration can be to go through the most recent journals, magazines and conference papers related to your area of expertise. This will provide you with up to date information on what research is being conducted where, and by whom. Also look at theses that have won awards or received particular attention.
- Composing Your PhD Dissertation Abstract
Your abstract will usually be between four and six paragraphs in length. In your abstract you will be telling the reader what the question, problem or issue is that you are planning to study. Also, why is this issue relevant? How do you plan to approach the issue under examination? What do you hope to discover or expect to find?
- Deciding On Your Thesis Title
You should aim for a title that is no longer than eight or nine words in length. Be precise, concise, and leave no doubt in your reader's mind as to the direction that your research and writing will take.
- Preparing A Dissertation Outline
This is where you will need to decide how many chapters you expect your finished dissertation to contain. You will need to include your introduction, methodology, literature review, and research and experiments.
- Expect The Unexpected
Allow yourself room for flexibility as you begin your dissertation journey. Your research will likely yield some unpredicted results which could change the direction your work takes, and the conclusions you reach. Nothing is written in stone!