Help for Starting a Dissertation

The best way to instruct someone on how to start a dissertation is to point out the single greatest mistake made by doctoral candidates who are unable to complete a Proposal or draft of Chapter I. Your advisor won't tell you. (S)he just says "give me your proposal and then we can discuss the rest of the project". You sit down and attempt to formulate a Statement of the Problem, and list your hypotheses. You have just made the Big Mistake.

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How to Start Writing a Dissertation

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The best help for starting a dissertation I can provide is found in this paragraph. It is not a magic wand, and it is not a shortcut, but it is absolutely true. The absolute key to dissertation writing is RESEARCH. There is no shortcut, and no substitute for research. Identifying and retrieving the scholarly sources on your topic must be the first step in the dissertation process. But that isn't enough. The next step is the time-consuming one......but if you skip it, I guarantee that you will never get any further. You must read all of the sources you have retrieved, critically and analytically. You must organize them into two categories: theoretical literature and empirical literature. Within those two major categories you must create sub-categories which reflect the variables in your study and the questions/hypotheses you have formulated. You must then draft your , which will become the core of your dissertation as Chapter II.

Starting a Dissertation: What Do I Begin With?

The term "substantial" indicates the dissertation thesis requires new information available only through new research, i.e., information that cannot be obtained by simply reviewing previous research. Again, the only way to identify and collect this type of information is to do a thorough literature review. Again, this is where the keys to starting a dissertation are to be found.

How to Start a PhD Dissertation
Starting a Dissertation Project∗ January 2007 ChoosingaTopic • People often fall into three pitfalls at the outset of a dissertation project:

Starting the dissertation - American Psychological Association

For example, a dissertation must make an "original" contribution to the body of knowledge in a specific area of study, and must prove that to be so. The only way a Ph.D. candidate (the author) can prove that is to read, analyze, and list what has already been done in the past, thus illustrating the need for new research. This is one of the most important things to do when planning and starting a dissertation.

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How to start your dissertation - University of Birmingham

You should start a dissertation project by first checking with your advisor about any special requirements. A typical dissertation follows the classic five chapter format: 1) Introduction (with all of the traditionalsubheadings); 2) Review of Literature; 3) Methodology; 4) Findings; 5) Summary/Conclusions/Implications. In addition, there are frequently Appendices (copies of instruments and permission letters, for example). There is always a References list. Many institutions impose their own rules as well, so it is always wise to check before starting a dissertation or essay, treatise, or paper of any significance. A dissertation may be written in any one of a number of formats, but currently the APA format is most popular. Some universities provide dissertation help in the form of style sheets which augment the APA format with specific features. The MLA format is still favored in some fields, such as literature.

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