dissertation

How An Editing Service Can Help You Complete Your Dissertation

Earning a doctoral degree takes several years, with graduate students often living on meager stipends, and sacrificing their social lives. Despite their arduous labor to complete their coursework successfully, many PhD candidates never actually finish their dissertations and end up becoming ABD’s (All But Dissertation) instead of PhD’s. Why is this? They, certainly, have the content for their research covered by
their coursework, literature reviews, and careful selection of dissertation committee members, who know the criteria for a well designed study and publication of the manuscript. So, the inhibiting culprit isn’t lack of knowledge, but rather, the process of completing a doctoral dissertation inhibits many from actually getting their doctorates. Researching and writing a dissertation involves a very stressful and time consuming process. Good coping skills and effective time management are two necessary criteria for finishing the dissertation and achieving the degree.

The Role of an Editing Service in the Dissertation Process
Although it may appear that an editing service helps solely with the content of the delivery of the dissertation manuscript, perhaps a more important role involves facilitating effective coping with the dissertation process.

Social Support


Psychological research on stress has identified a number of very important variables in effective coping. Perhaps the single most important one is seeking social support, which can be informational (i.e., learning what has to be done and how to do it) as well as emotional support. While your dissertation committee may be able to provide some of the informational support, editors also help with myriad formatting details and offer suggestions for content revision that address the specific concerns of your committee members. But, even more important is the emotional support that editors infuse into their comments to you, the doctoral student, that keep you motivated to trudge on.

Metaphorical examples.

Let’s reflect on a prototypical example of the dissertation process by imagining ourselves as Dorothy in the Land of “Oz” and as
“Alice in Wonderland.” Doctoral students often start off with great exuberance down the yellow brick road with high hopes and dreams of reaching the “Emerald City,” envisioning an illuminated gated entrance of flashing emerald letters, “PhD” But, after a series of committee review setbacks, these same students, once feeling ten feet tall, begin to shrink, like Alice after imbibing a shrinking potion, beneath the harsh critiques and daunting, endless revisions. Concrete reality gives way to the surreal experience of captor by flying monkeys to the witch’s castle where they lie shuddering behind the slamming of the dungeon’s door, with bolted latch of emblazoned letters, “ABD!”

It is precisely at this juncture that many graduate students lose their way, no longer feeling excited and empowered, but rather, bewildered and disillusioned. Without someone to offer assistance and emotional support, behavioral passivity and inertia replace enthusiastic drive. For some, debilitating anxiety creates behavioral paralysis; for others, depression spawns inertia. In either case, the end result is derailment from their goal of degree attainment. Procrastination and avoidance often become primary, yet maladaptive, coping responses. What is needed is the kind of emotional support that comes from someone else who shares a connection on student’s side of the writing and revision process. This is what the editor affords the graduate student. And, this is an invaluable coping asset at this point in the process of completing their degree programs. Students maintain an emotional connection to their dissertations because the editor, also, is affectively engaged in both the content, as well as the process, of their dissertation research proposal and defense.

 

Perceived Control and Self-Efficacy

Other salient coping variables involve our thought processes: perceived control and self-efficacy; i.e., the student’s belief in his or her own ability to stay in control of the process and meet the demands of the dissertation process. Although at the outset, students possess varying degrees of optimistic views about their power to succeed, the grueling process can erode even the hardiest beliefs. Working with an editor reestablishes the student’s sense of control over the process as well as the outcome. With each completed revision, in the on-going exchange with the editor, students experience a sense of mastery, restoring self-confidence in their ability to meet the challenge and finish the dissertation successfully.

Time-Management Skills


One other coping skill that is greatly enhanced by using an editorial service is time management. Completing a dissertation imposes great demands on students’ time, and managing time, inevitably, is put to the test. While one segment of the dissertation is sent off to the editor, another is worked on by the student. The timeline established by the committee becomes far more reasonably achieved because each sub-goal is facilitated by the contributions of the editor. This keeps students engaged in the process rather than in flight. It is much easier to keep the writing moving when you know that an editor will take it over and get it back to you quickly.

Good Stress vs. Bad Stress


The dissertation is a source of stress that can be good stress (eustress) or bad stress (distress), and much of that depends on whether you come to see it as a challenge, which catalyzes motivation, or as an albatross, which often leads to defeat. Understanding the process of dissertation writing and the role that an editor can play in helping you cope effectively can make all the difference. It can be the pivotal point
in determining whether you complete your dissertation or remain ABD. Once you make the decision to contract with an editorial service, you will understand the meaning behind the PhD degree. The “P” connotes Persistence; “h” can mean hardiness (perceived control, commitment, and challenge); and “D,” Dedication (fostered by maintaining a positive emotional connection and attitude to the goal of degree completion).

Personal Experience with the Dissertation Process


Editors who are PhD’s have been through the process and understand what makes it work. They know what they need to provide to promote success, and their engagement with you, and with the process itself, is what makes this editorial service stand out above the others.

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10 Wise Steps in Writing a Dissertation

Step 1

    • Ask your department chair if you can skip the dissertation and get a Ph.D. solely on the strength of your winning personality.
    • Okay, so it’s never worked before. It’s still worth a shot, isn’t it? Think positive!
    • Or, if not your winning personality, some previous work, work experience, body of work—anything at all!
    • Okay, so that rarely works either—but it does and has worked for some people, depending on the strength of that previous work.

FRIENDS JOEY AND CHANDLER REGRET NOTHING

Step 2

  • Make a plan and stick to it!
  • Plan to spend more time finding a manageable dissertation topic than researching that topic, and more time researching it than actually writing the dissertation.
  • Plan to spend more time revising the dissertation than writing it, and more time writing it than researching it.
  • Spend more time researching it than finding out what your topic is.
  • To help with the organization of your thesis, consider hiring a logician. I did.

that's the plan dr. horrible neil patrick harris

Step 3

  • Make sure you and your thesis advisor are on the same page.
  • Make sure to tell your thesis advisor what page that is.

matt bomer always on same page

Step 4

  • Abandon all hope of reading everything that’s germane to your chosen topic. Eventually you’re bound to discover that somebody has already said everything you want to say, and in the very words you were going to use. Scary!
  • However, don’t be alarmed by this. Remember: “There is nothing new under the sun,” and “Of the making of books there is no end,” and “So, the heck with it, what’s one book more?”

silver linings playbook throwing book out window

Step 5

  • When you’re ready to write, strike while the iron is hot.
  • If the iron is not hot, heat it. By … any … means … necessary!
  • If you don’t know what the iron is, forget about a career in academia. Consider becoming a professional golf caddie, instead. (“Here’s your 5-iron, Tiger.”)

jim carrey bruce almighty typing

 

Step 6

  • Be sure to follow all of your department’s specifications for formatting your thesis, no matter how difficult they are.
  • When in doubt, hire a reputable editing service to do this for you.

Andy-Samberg-Wink-SNL

 

Step 7

  • Prepare for your thesis defense as if your life depended on it. As a matter of fact, your career does.
  • Anticipate every possible question. Now is the time to do the research I told you not to do back in Step 4. Quickly, quickly.
  • However, on the day of the defense, relax. You’re as ready as you’ll ever be. There’s nothing more you can do.
  • Try to enjoy your defense. If you have some ability to make people laugh, make your committee members laugh. If they’re having a good time, the defense might be a breeze.

 i've got the power boom bruce almighty jim carrey

Step 8

  • Answer each and every one of their questions politely and thoroughly.
  • If, after 45 minutes of politely and thoroughly responding to each and every one of their questions, they still maintain that you’re talking gibberish, remember your Samuel Johnson. Say, as haughtily as possible: “Sirs,  I am required to furnish you with an explanation. I am not also required to furnish you with an understanding of it.” (This will sound twice as impressive if you happen to be wearing a powdered wig.)

samuel johnson book perplexed

Step 9

If at some point you find yourself at a complete loss for words, quote the lyrics of some Broadway or Hollywood musical. I have found that there are surprisingly few things in life, academic subjects included, that have not at some point been made the subject of a song. A comforting thought, no?

Step 10

Okay, here it is, my final word of advice, the fruit of my years of experience as a dissertation editor: take pride in writing your dissertation and do the very best you can do. It’s a reflection of you. So cherish, respect, and enjoy the entire process for it should be a labor of love. If it’s not, then you’re not doing what you should be doing with your life. Tough love words, I know, but the absolute truth of the matter.

big bang theory sheldon that's how its done

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