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What You Need to Know About the Dissertation Writing Process

One of the universal truths about the dissertation writing process is that you can never be 100% prepared. This isn’t reason to be alarmed though. Most students are only partially prepared to handle all of the tasks required to finish a project of this magnitude. The good news, however, is that you can increase the chances of successfully completing each task by knowing these few things about the dissertation writing process:

You Need to Set Clear Deadlines

Before you get started you should spend time critically thinking about all you will need to accomplish in order to keep your dissertation writing process moving without a problem. Working backwards from your final deadline set clear milestones and dates by which you need to complete each one. This should just be an overview to start but as your project becomes more clear you will be able to set more detailed tasks and deadlines.

Get Feedback Often and Early

As you write it’s important that you get as much feedback as you can from every available resource. Your advisor is sure to give you feedback throughout the process as you submit chapters for review. But also ask friends or classmates to commit a few hours in reading your work. You can offer up the same type of assistance to get a sense of how others are progressing with their own projects.

Learn What the Committee Wants

The graduate committee will comprise of four or five professors within your discipline with two or three of those members being experts in your area of specialization. You should likely know a little bit about most and a lot about at least one member – your advisor.

Prepare yourself by learning all you possibly can about their academic interests – their past and current research studies and the kinds of questions they are likely to ask. This will make you more comfortable when writing your document because you’ll think a lot like they would and will know what to include and what to cut out.

Take the Time Off to Re-Energize

There have been several studies linking the positive effects of leisure time on the mental and physical well-being in people. It’s impossible to get your graduate project completed in a matter of days.

Usually the project will take you several months to complete. This means you’re going to have to take some time off for yourself at several points throughout the process.

It’s good to take breaks when you feel you need them the most, but more effectively you should schedule breaks (a couple of days) beforehand and make sure to honor them.

Stay on Schedule and Write

Taking breaks is a great idea, but don’t fall into the disastrous trap of not being able to get back to work.

This is why it’s important to develop a plan before you get started so that you could easily get back on track as soon as the break is over and you are feeling re-energized.

It’s always going to be a sort of balancing act that you will have to manage effectively if you want to reach your goals. Carve out a little time each day to write so that you aren’t overwhelmed at any one point.

Stay Positive and Confident

Finally, you should remain positive and confident throughout the entire process.

No matter what unexpected challenges might come your way you should constantly remind yourself that you will eventually reach the end and a great reward awaits you upon completion.

Appreciate all of the little accomplishments you encounter along the way. This will improve your attitude which will fuel your motivation and momentum, making the entire process easier on your psyche.

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