5 Challenges Students Face When Writing a Dissertation
Writing a dissertation is no walk in the park. Everyone’s experience is different but if you ask around, you’ll discover that most Ph.D. students are confronted by a similar set of problems. Let’s take a look at the most common challenges you can expect when writing a dissertation and how you can overcome them.
1. Creating a Thesis Statement
A thesis statement describes the purpose of your research. It is one of the essential aspects of your dissertation and shapes the rest of your journey. Some of the things you need to keep in mind when creating a thesis statement for your dissertation include:
- It should have a narrow focus
- It should be debatable and not based on common facts
If you choose a thesis statement with a broad focus, you’ll find yourself pulled in different directions. It might also be hard to find evidence to support a generic thesis statement. A statement with a narrower focus is easier to defend.
You’ll also have an easier time of it when you look for data to argue in favor of it. We recommend doing a preliminary search and discussing with your thesis advisor before you settle on a thesis statement. In this way, you’ll know what you’re getting into and will be more prepared.
2. Planning and Time Management
Learning how to manage your time so that you can complete your thesis within a reasonable timeframe is essential. We suggest that you plan for each chapter by identifying the tasks that need to be completed to finish it.
You can also estimate how much time it will take to complete each task. We recommend using online planners and journals to maintain records of your progress. You can input start dates, end dates, and milestones. It can be difficult to be accurate about this, and you will likely fall behind more than a few times. However, having some kind of plan is better than having no plan at all.
Besides this, we recommend that you review each chapter after you have finished writing it. If you need to make any changes, it is best to take care of them before you move on to the next chapter. Leaving the revisions for later will cause them to pile up, and you might feel overwhelmed.
3. Writing Your Thesis
Perhaps the most difficult part of your dissertation is actually writing it. From procrastination to writer’s block and struggling to find sufficient data and research material, there are plenty of things that can disrupt the writing process.
To overcome these challenges, we suggest that you set deadlines with your supervisor to stay focused. Scour the university library for books and use online resources to find research material. You can also talk to your peers and get their opinion on your research material.
If you are headed in the wrong direction, you can correct your course quickly before it’s too late. We also suggest that you reach out to people who are conducting similar research. Their feedback can help you discover new resources that you may be missing out on to enrich your dissertation.
4. Staying Organized
Things can get fairly chaotic when you are writing a dissertation. If you are having trouble staying organized, we suggest that you create separate files and folders for every section of your dissertation. This includes your introduction, literature review, research questions, methodology, theoretical framework, data, results, discussion, conclusion, and further research. Label all your files carefully, so they are easy to find.
We also suggest organizing your day so that you complete a specific number of tasks daily. Besides this, you can break down your week into three parts:
- Conducting research for your dissertation
- Writing your dissertation
- Reviewing your dissertation
This approach can help you ensure you are covering ground on all fronts and don’t get too wrapped up in one part of your thesis writing journey.
5. Structuring Your Chapters
Making sure your chapters are structured properly and present your ideas and research in a logical way can be difficult. One way to tackle this problem is to use a simple trick originally devised by Mark Twain:
- Start by describing to the reader what the chapter will be about
- Provide the reader with relevant information
- Summarize the information
Of course, you’ll have to change tactics for some chapters. Seeking help from professional dissertation editing services can prove helpful here. A professional editor can help you make sure your chapter flows well and fix other issues.
Wrapping It Up
You’ll face all kinds of problems when writing your dissertation. It’s important to stay motivated, manage your mental health, and reward yourself every time you reach a new milestone.
You should also ask for help when you can. Edit911 can assist you here. Our professional editors have years of experience in providing dissertation editing services. They can help you edit and proofread your dissertation and help you avoid too many revisions from your thesis supervisor. Get in touch with us today to learn more.