Mastering An Impressive PhD Dissertation Proposal

One of the toughest and most stressful times for a PhD student is the time of the presentation of his or her dissertation proposal. Compared to the actual thesis and the paper itself, the dissertation is a fairly small document, in some cases not longer than five pages. However, it is perhaps the most important document before the students actually qualifies for postgraduate education, since it is on this proposal that the approval of the governing committee depends. Therefore, it is necessary for the dissertation proposal to be, in short, “excellent”. Here are some tips on how to make it so:

Spend time on your dissertation proposal:

  • Give ample time to writing your dissertation proposal. Remember, it is on the basis of this proposal and your topic that you will be considered qualified for your PhD. Therefore, know what you want and where you want your dissertation proposal to go.
  • Some scholars spend as much as two months on their dissertation proposal. You need not spend this much, but be confident of what you have put in your document.

Look up ample academic resources:

  • You might say that this is a given when it comes to dissertation proposals. However, it is also one of the most important things to do.
  • Look up sufficient research material when writing up your proposal. Thus, you will have an idea of what angles and topics have already been covered in your area of interest.
  • Secondly, you should have a clear idea of what you are going to study once your proposal actually gets approved. Conducting an in depth research before-hand will arm you with enough information to go on.

Also remember, the dissertation proposal is not set in stone:

  • It is not at all necessary that you have to stick to one topic after your proposal has been approved. That is not to say that you can change your area of study entirely, but should a more challenging and better topic come along, you can choose to pursue it if you desire.

Take notes and refer to sample dissertation proposals:

  • If you are having trouble discerning where to start or what to write, you can refer to sample dissertation proposals from the internet. Many websites and sources also provide copies of the best dissertation proposals submitted by real students.
  • Take notes from those proposals and pay attention to how the students word their papers. This will come in handy should you get stuck on a particular problem. 

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