10 Things To Learn Before You Start Your Dissertation

There isn’t a student who was faced with writing a dissertation and didn’t wish for it to be written by itself, in a single day. Dissertation writing never seems to flow as wished, as it requires many months of hard work, hard research and even harder thinking. Those who have already passed this stage are lucky that it’s finally over, but there are some things they wish they knew about before they started working on it. We will tell you everything about those aspects, so you can face this challenging stage of your education more easily: 

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1. You need the right supervisor

Having the right supervisor for your dissertation is very important if you want to get the best out of you. If you’re having trouble with an unresponsive, unreliable and unapproachable supervisor, you shouldn’t hesitate to ask for a change. However, you must keep in mind that this has to be done during the early stages of the process, and that you need to justify your requirement with a valid reason. You need a supervisor who will provide you with detailed feedback any time you need.

2. Don’t expect everyone to be impressed

When your friends and family members ask you about the topic of your dissertation and you answer with clear excitement, you probably expect everyone to be impressed by the work you are doing and the topic you’ve chosen. That won’t happen! People usually anticipate some grand dissertation topics on modern society, war, revolutionary science and other things that sound impressive to them. Your dissertation is probably focused on a specific topic that interests you a lot, but the people around you will surely award you with looks of disappointment and confusion.

3. Answer people’s questions, but don’t waste your time

If people ask more questions about your dissertation, they are probably only being polite and want to keep the conversation going. People who are interested about others’ specific dissertation topics are a rare specimen. Don’t waste your time in meaningless conversations – every single minute is valuable during the process of preparing a dissertation.

4. Don’t compare yourself to anyone

Stop asking your friends how far into the work they are. Either you or they will get paranoid by such conversations, and you won’t get to any constructive conclusion with them.

5. Freaking out is not unusual

Few months before your deadline, there will probably come a point when you will start doubting everything you have achieved and think about starting from scratch. Some people even think of a new thesis and start working on it, only to abandon it and go back to their previous work after a day or two. You are allowed to start over, but unless your supervisor recommended you to do so because of serious gaps in your work, you should not start from scratch by any means! This is only a stage of panic and doubt which will pass soon; you just have to stay focused and keep going.

6. Edit out!

Dissertation writing involves a huge amount of research, taking notes and writing drafts. You shouldn’t expect for the entire material to make it into the final version. You will need to perform some brutal editing in order to make your writing flow is straight to the point, and fits into the required word count.

7. Be ready for a lot of printing

When you’re writing a dissertation, you have to be ready to print like you’ve never printed before! If you are paying for your printed material, it will cost you a lot of money, so it is recommended to get your own printer before you start this project.

8. Be ready to isolate yourself

Whatever else you have going on in your life, you will have to put it aside for few months. You will need to isolate yourself in the working room and focus entirely on your work. Your social life can wait!

9. Plan every single minute

Time is your most valuable resource during the dissertation preparation – do not waste a single minute on unnecessary things! Your thoughts have to be focused on that goal and you have to come to the deadline point being completely prepared about it. You might feel self-doubt when you are working, but you will definitely feel guilty when you abandon the work for coffee with your friends.

10. The effort is worth for success!

No one said that writing a dissertation was easy. In fact, it might be one of the toughest things you have done. However, finishing it and achieving success with it will also be one of the greatest moments of your life. This is a very important piece of work, and you deserve to be very proud of it! Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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