This week I ran a workshop for research students on the topic or writing up the thesis. I remember my own journey well and how exhausting it all seemed. I, probably like many other research students, did not relish the prospect of turning my research into a well crafted piece of writing so I procrastinated.. a lot! Much of my written work was completed in a matter of weeks right at the end only because I was given an immovable deadline, just what the doctor ordered for a classic last minute type of person.
I set out to try and help research students understand that it doesn’t (and probably never will) feel comfortable to approach such a seemingly daunting task as producing a thesis and I set about imparting as much wisdom, hints, and tips on writing as I could. This has led to this particular workshop being quite content heavy as it has been added to over the years (so any thoughts on streamlining the content will be appreciated!) incorporating bits and pieces from the Vitae Resources repository as well as nuggets collected from far and wide.
Two things I think are important about writing a thesis:-
- Writing should be thought of as being integral to the research, not as a add on activity
- The purpose of the written thesis is to convince the examiners that you meet the criteria for the award of doctorate – so clarity is important!
Here’s the slides.
Throughout the session I made reference to a number of blog posts which I think are worth highlighting here:
I'm a former researcher into the microbiology of the mouth who now runs a skills development programme for other researchers.