If there is insufficient data available or the question is too difficult, you will fail to accomplish this task. This is often the principal cause of failing a dissertations. Just be sure that sufficient resources exist for your particular thesis topic. There is no point choosing a dissertation title for which only out-of-print books or outdated information will become your available research material.
Choose a current dissertation topic A good dissertation topic is also one that is current. The academic world is constantly presenting new research and information, so you should choose a dissertation title that reflects the world today. There is no point choosing a dissertation title that is no longer relevant. You may also have trouble finding current resources for an outdated topic. Choose an original dissertation topic Many students believe they have to create a completely new dissertation topic, which is certainly not the case.
You may be able to approach an existing topic with a new perspective. Originality can still be maintained if you choose to alter your angle of vision or switch the emphasis of a previous dissertation topic. If you are unsure of the originality of your proposed thesis title, discuss it with your tutor or supervisor. Other ways to choose a dissertation title There are many methods you can utilise to help you create a good dissertation topic.
One option is to reflect on current issues discussed during your programme that you and the reader would find interesting to address.
Reviewing previous dissertations can also prove very helpful; you may be able to identify any gaps in previous documents and expand on them when you choose your particular dissertation title. In addition, you can create a list of all your favorite authors or books or review some of the academic papers you have written that earned you the highest grade.
You may begin to notice an emerging trend that can help you formulate an appropriate dissertation topic. Industry journals and magazines are another effective resource that can help you create a current and relevant dissertation topic that is related to your field of study. Narrow your subject area Once you have narrowed down your subject area, you can decide whether you prefer to choose a specific or more general topic within that field. The next step involves further narrowing down the subject matter.
It is often very helpful to take note of several questions that you will attempt to answer in your dissertation. As you begin to increase the number of questions, you will soon notice a main question continues to emerge. You should focus on this principal question as your dissertation title. Simplify your subject When you have decided on a good dissertation topic, you should simplify it. Many students choose an overly ambitious topic that becomes too difficult to answer.
A more effective approach is to expand on a simple idea by reviewing both sides of a particular argument. As you get ideas about possible topics, place them in a separate file folder that you can review from time to time. This helps keep your topic antenna up and alert for new ideas. I cannot emphasize enough the importance of making a concerted effort to become familiar with the literature and to talk with experts in your field.
You cannot know for certain if the topic you desire is significant, nor can you have a clear notion about what is known and not known about the topic. Some might think it outstanding, while others claim it has no value. The thing to remember is that you only have to satisfy your dissertation committee to pursue a topic that interests you.
Time spent pursuing a lost cause can cost you valuable time and make it difficult to obtain an advisor. In other words, as the adage says, if the horse dies, get off! Replication Studies One strategy in pursuing a dissertation topic is to replicate a previous study. Replication simply means doing the study again. It is quite the opposite.
Knowledge accumulates incrementally through studies that build on each other over time, and replication adds strength and clarity to research findings.
You can make a valuable contribution by repeating an important study. It may be important to verify, reinforce, or contradict the results of earlier studies Balian, Text Box: Remember Caution: It would not be wise to replicate a trivial study or one with weak methodology or incorrect statistics.
Research studies may be replicated in several ways. You might choose to alter parts of the research design of a previous study. It would also be appropriate to add or subtract variables, restate the research questions, or alter the research instrument s.
You might replicate it in a different geographic area, with a different population, or using different instrumentation e. These modifications, provided there is justification, can help clarify existing results. You may adapt the research instrument s to fit the new population under study. You also must invent a whole new literature review. Replicating a study is not nearly as easy as it seems. In writing the dissertation, you must state a rationale indicating why replication is important the previous study was conducted 15 years ago, there are updated variables that may influence the results, etc.
You must also acknowledge the replication and compare your findings with previous findings. This chapter suggested some effective and efficient ways to select a topic and offered seven criteria to consider. Replicating a previous study is often desirable and appropriate since knowledge accumulates through studies that build on each other over time.
With the necessary gear and a topic that interests you, the next step is obtaining expert guides to help you reach the peak. The next chapter concentrates on selecting and working with your dissertation advisor, committee members, and others responsible for guiding the dissertation process. Bibliography Balian, E. Madsen, D.
Successful dissertation and theses. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Martin, R. Writing and defending a thesis or dissertation in psychology and education. Springfield, IL: Charles C. Ogden, E. Lancaster, PA: Technomic. And, of course, you want to avoid a topic that will lead you down a blind alley or paint you into a corner. The last major submission of your degree, your dissertation is also expected to prove that you can process complicated information and order it coherently.
An added bonus would be for your dissertation to help prepare you for your future career.GSAS is starting a community-wide discussion on the subject of how to pick a dissertation topic. Waiting for inspiration is not the best approach to topic selection. You may also have trouble finding current resources for an outdated topic. Your disinterest will also quickly become apparent to the reader once they begin reading your academic paper.
Your own professional interests. Social relevance means that the research can advance our understanding of society and inform social change. It needs to hold your interest for a long time.
Sometimes the type of research is obvious: if your topic is post-war Irish poetry, you will probably mainly be interpreting poems. Determining your preferred research method Once you have chosen a good dissertation topic, you must decide which research method you will utilise to present your arguments. Step 3: Look for books and articles Try skimming through a few recent issues of the top journals in your field, as well as looking at their most-cited articles. Your own professional interests.
However, you should be careful not to choose a dissertation topic that is too narrow, as it will make the research much more difficult, if not impossible, to complete. Is your topic manageable, given your time frame, resources, and availability of data sources? The method will formulate the manner in which you approach your particular thesis topic. Our tutor gave us highest mark in the class. This will ensure you remain interested in the topic, and it may also help you gain employment once you have completed your degree.
If you feel comfortable and well informed about your chosen dissertation title, you will have a much better chance of obtaining a high final grade. All rights reserved. Call and find out what they are currently doing, and ask their advice about potential studies. This is excellent and tells you which topic you should immediately throw out. It must be manageable in size.
It must be manageable in size. All rights reserved. If you think a topic might be suggested in which you have no interest, you are better served not to conduct this research. Successful dissertation and theses. Students often mistakenly believe they must continue with the original dissertation title they devised.
Has it already been adequately researched? Visited times, 1 visits today.
One particular method may also simplify your task of conducting research and writing your dissertation. This helps keep your topic antenna up and alert for new ideas. Share Tweet print email For a student pursuing a doctoral degree, selecting a dissertation topic can cause an existential crisis. It needs to hold your interest for a long time.