Tips for Thesis (Part Two)
Earlier we looked into a few tips that can help in the successfully completing a thesis. In this post, we take it a step further by providing other important tips that would be useful for all students.
Choosing a topic
We recommend that thesis topics should not be forced on the students. In this case, students should be given the right to come up with three or four topics of interest. Just in case, coming up with a topic is proving difficult, simply, reflect on previous areas covered during the coursework and assignment submitted. Another thing to do is to read the recent articles published in the field of interest. In addition to this, read the news when this is done, it helps stimulate your thoughts and also helps find areas were research is needed. Most importantly, share your thoughts with the supervisor assigned to you. Together, both of you can come up with an interesting topic. When deciding on a topic, ensure that it is something you are interested in or an aspect you need to know more about. Similarly, this moves us to the next point, do a literature review.
This happens to be the most important part of the thesis but students are often threatened with the number of articles they are expected to read. Without a literature review, there cannot be any meaningful research. Reviewing literatures helps you know, what has been done and what is yet to be done. Doing this makes student identify the gap which needs to be filled. A tip for this is to read the abstract, introduction and conclusion of the article. Reading these three aspects would let you know if the entire article is worth reading or not.
Keep the research question in view
Writing a thesis should be seen as embarking on a journey with a defined destination. In this case, the defined destination should be answering the research question. Oftentimes when reading an article there is a tendency to just rephrase a statement and add it to the thesis. While this is not bad, be careful not to deviate from the topic and the research question the thesis seeks to answer. At every point when writing the thesis, it is necessary to ask “Is this related to the focus of research”, if not then there is no point in adding it.
It is better to read proofread after writing a few paragraphs or a page than waiting until the end of the thesis before proofreading. There are bound to be typographical errors when typing because our thoughts are usually faster than our hands. Please note that if the habit of reading after writing a few paragraphs or a page has been cultivated, it is still important to read again after the thesis has been completed. In the case where this may not be possible, seek assistance from a friend.