Almost all universities require students to undertake a piece of independent research. This is often referred to as a dissertation or thesis. Because the dissertation relies more on the initiative of the student, and because it is usually a substantial piece of work, it often causes students a great deal of stress. Here are some hands-on tips to help you tackle the dissertation.
Tip 1: Start early – do not delay in getting the dissertation under way. A little bit done on a regular basis really does make all the difference. Set aside two to three hours a week to begin with. In no time at all you will have made substantial progress, which will serve to motivate you even further.
Tip 2: No data = no dissertation. While ideally the research process requires you to come up with a topic and then decide what data you need, in the real world I would never embark on a research project without first considering access to data. In many instances it makes sense to start with reflecting on what data might be relatively easily available to you that you could build a dissertation around. Read the rest of this entry »