As a graduate student, one of the most daunting tasks you will face is your dissertation. No matter how enthusiastic you may find yourself initially, the process of putting together your dissertation is a long one. At first, you may find you have a tremendous amount of enthusiasm regarding your topic and the goal you expect to reach upon completion of this extremely important academic document.
The reality is, no matter how enthusiastic you may be at times, you are going to find yourself stuck, bored, and almost disinterested in the task set before you. You will find it a struggle to forge ahead and meet each of the required tasks related to your dissertation. You may even find yourself just wishing you had already completed the process so you do not have to deal with it any further.
The following are a few tips that can help you make it through the dissertation process from start to finish.
Before you even start your dissertation, it is important to get yourself organized. Organization is a way to keep yourself focused, on task, and ensure that you are not allowing the frustrations and boredom that come with writing a dissertation, to overwhelm you. Organization is essential for any graduate student working on their dissertation. It will afford you with a sense of control and helps keep some procrastination at bay.
Time management is crucial when it comes to writing your dissertation. Set up a calendar with your time clearly blocked out for different things related to your dissertation. If reading and note taking is on the schedule from 10 am to noon, stick to that plan. By designating specific blocks of time for specific activities and goals, you are more inclined to achieve each of them. This helps with procrastination, focus, and boredom.
When looking to start your dissertation you might see the big picture with the end goal of completing the entire project. Eliminate that notion from your mind as it can cause the entire process to seem far too daunting to complete. Break your dissertation up into different small, achievable parts.
Quick Turn Around:
One trick that works for some grad students working on their dissertation is the quick turnaround approach. Write as much as you can, then turn it in for feedback, make corrections, and continue with the process. This is one tip that helps some people keep on task and stay on the time frame they desire. You may end up with more initial mistakes than you like, but the constant feedback and alterations to your work will help develop a quality dissertation.
Start at a Comfortable Place:
Many people believe you have to put your dissertation together in a specific order. The truth is, even during your initial proposal stage, you have the ability to divide larger tasks into smaller ones. Instead of diving straight into writing your thesis, make an outline and jot down notes that will lead to the formation of thesis if that is easier for you. Write a list of books you would like to check over for your literature review if that is a more comfortable place to start. Turn larger tasks into smaller ones so you can do what feels most comfortable for you.
Seek Input from Friends/Colleagues:
If you find yourself stuck and just needing a fresh perspective seek out advice and insight from friends, colleagues, or other graduate students who have completed their dissertation successfully. In doing this, you may develop new ideas or get a fresh take on your dissertation you had not considered up until that point.
The entire dissertation process is a long time-consuming one. By following the above tips, you can help make the process a bit easier on yourself.