Choosing Dissertation Subjects | Critical Essays

Choosing Dissertation Subjects

A variety of topics at your fingertips

You have been collecting it now for some time; the overflowing binders stuffed with research materials, the power-point print presentations, and every other odd and end that you have felt was worthy of saving from your hard-fought time in the classroom.

Yet with all of these potential dissertation subjects kicking-about right there before your eyes, you still have yet to settle on one. Most likely, it is the very presence of all of this physical evidence of your hard work that is preventing you from committing to a single dissertation subject.

Whatever topic you choose, remember that it must be carefully cultivated over time; you are going to be spending a good slice of your time thinking about this subject, and therefore is important that you approach it with passion.

The key elements of choosing successful dissertation subjects

Before you sit down to write your dissertation, there is one important point to remember. The more effort you put into really narrowing-down your top dissertation subjects, the easier it will be to select just one and craft it into a structured and meaningful document.  Looking at your collected notes you probably think that you are awash in dissertation subjects, and it is only a matter of organising the information.

But a dissertation is not just a well-organised collection of research and facts, all presented in a neat and tidy parcel. The truth is, you may find that some of your older material no longer seems relevant, or that perhaps practices have changed. If this is your situation and you find yourself no further forward in sorting-through your potential dissertation subjects, there are two important points to remember.

The first point is to remember the quality of your sources.  Ideas for dissertation subjects can spring from just about anywhere, but your reference material needs to be concrete. Remember your critical literature analyses, and strive to use only the best quality source material. Remember your professor’s endless lectures on evaluating research?  Finding supporting material for any variety of dissertation subjects is the time to put these skills to use.

Dissertation subjects should be specific. You will be expected to be able to answer a myriad of questions about your chosen topic, so you are going to need a lot of information. But you’re not done there. You’ll want to be able to whittle it down further to two or three specific points you want to make about your subject. Again, look through all of your old research materials.  Be realistic about what is really there.  Is there really enough material to support your argument?

Finally, remember that sorting through dissertation subjects is a time consuming process. Allow yourself a few missteps here and there, giving yourself plenty of time to arrive at your finished dissertation in a cohesive (not to mention relaxed) manner. Once you have selected your topic from your potential list of dissertation subjects, the project will be finished before you know it!

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