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Category: Dissertation Tips

Developing Your Study Purpose

Developing Your Study Purpose

Outlining the Purpose of the Study Developing a purpose for your research can be a bit confusing. There are so many pieces that need to be arranged in a logical flow. Finding the specific problem that will be the research question is a critical part of developing the dissertation proposal because it tells you where you want to go with your research. Equally important is clearly and concisely presenting your plan to address the problem; this is the purpose of…

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Academic Roadblocks: Quality Writing

Academic Roadblocks: Quality Writing

Writing is a daunting task for many students. You may be good at planning a task, listing and organizing the steps needed to complete it but when it is time to write the paper, things seem to fall apart. Whether it is a weekly reflection paper or a dissertation, putting ideas and concepts into words so a reader can understand them is critical. When students have poor writing skills, the results are often disappointment and failure. What I Should Have Learned Primary and secondary education teaches basic writing skills and post secondary work is supposed to sharpen them. However, the…

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Ever Feel Like the Only Clown in a 3-Ring Circus??

Ever Feel Like the Only Clown in a 3-Ring Circus??

Source: Pixabay, CC0 Public Domain This is probably one of the most accurate analogies for you as you move through your dissertation. I imagine that you have felt that way many times if you are focused on completing your dissertation or thesis. So many things need to be done and of course, all at once! The dissertation process can overwhelm many students because it is so different from traditional coursework. It requires careful long-term planning and short-term planning besides setting…

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Starting To Think Like a Scholar

Starting To Think Like a Scholar

  Want to speed up your dissertation process? Want to make your committee members happier? Want to look more like a professional scholar? If you answered yes to any of those three questions, continue to read this post. Some things to remember You are learning to become an independent scholar by completing a research proposal conducting research, analyzing the data, and finally reporting it in the form of a manuscript and defending it in a presentation. Don’t forget that -A…

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You Have Arrived!

You Have Arrived!

You have finished your coursework and are ready to begin your dissertation! You have waited a long time for this moment, the point at which you can now use the skills that you have learned and pursue your own contributing work. It is an exciting time in your doctoral education and one that will have many surprises. How the Dissertation Process Is Different What makes the dissertation process different from your doctoral coursework? What can you expect when successfully completing…

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The Weak Link in the Research Process…and how to fix it.

The Weak Link in the Research Process…and how to fix it.

To be successful in a graduate program, students must be able to write a clear, concise literature review with a logical flow that provides a convincing rationale for conducting the proposed research. The literature review is the foundation for identifying a research problem/question and creating the plan to address it. There are good online tutorials that explain how a thorough knowledge of the literature allows students to go from a broad perspective of a topic to that minuscule slice that…

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Making the Most of Your Doctoral Experience

Making the Most of Your Doctoral Experience

How would you like to get an edge on others in your field? Do you want to move to the top of your profession? There are many ways that you can enrich your doctoral experience. Making contacts- online networking Your doctoral experience is different in many ways. One important activity should be to make connections with others in your field of study. While reading the current literature is critical to your success, it is also important to know what is…

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Goals and Objectives

Goals and Objectives

So you want to finish your dissertation? What exactly are you doing to make sure that will happen? What kind of planning have you done? Do you have a master timeline? What are the short-term goals you have set to realize your long-term goal of completing your dissertation? Do you know what steps to take to achieve each goal? How will you know when you have achieved a given goal? All of these are questions that should be answered if…

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The Value of Planning Your Writing- Outlining and Flowcharting

The Value of Planning Your Writing- Outlining and Flowcharting

Background Having taught for many years and mentored students at all levels of education, I have noticed one thing that is often overlooked by novice and even experienced students: the power of outlining and flowcharting in the writing preparatory phase. However, I can recall my high school days when English teachers would always tell us to “start with an outline and then write” our papers. I didn’t learn that lesson in high school or even in undergraduate work; I only…

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Trying to Solve All the World’s Problems?

Trying to Solve All the World’s Problems?

Students entering the writing phase of their master’s or doctoral programs are faced with a difficult challenge: to find that one particular aspect of a much larger topic that is recommended for further research by those in the field of study. The “Gap” in the Research Students often think of a “gap” in the research as something about which nothing has been written. That is only partially true as there may be some aspects of a topic considered insignificant to…

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