The Dissertation Thread 2016-2017

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    (Original post by SammyHam)
    Both pretty much. I'm not sure where to start or how to break the work down, feeling a little overwhelmed!
    Well I haven't found out what my actual dissertation topic is yet, but for the ones I'm looking at I've made a rough plan of what I want to do. I basically took each topic and made a mind map of what I think would be interesting for each topic. Then I did some research as to how I would realistically carry out that project. For example, 2 of the 5 main ones that I'm considering involve doing questionnaires, which I would ideally like to avoid, so I'm probably going to scrap those ideas. 1 of my other ideas is too complex for an undergrad dissertation of only 10,000 words, so I need to decide whether to do an event study pre or post financial crisis, rather than comparing the differences between the results of two different event studies. For actual planning my time and stuff, I made a to do list spreadsheet that break it all down into chunks. It has a list of each section that is likely to be in my dissertation and then columns for planning & research, rough draft, first complete draft, editing additional drafts, final draft, proofreading, word count check and references. It breaks it down into manageable chunks instead of trying to look at it as one whole project. Hopefully that helps you out a bit .
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    (Original post by GoingToBurst)
    Well I haven't found out what my actual dissertation topic is yet, but for the ones I'm looking at I've made a rough plan of what I want to do. I basically took each topic and made a mind map of what I think would be interesting for each topic. Then I did some research as to how I would realistically carry out that project. For example, 2 of the 5 main ones that I'm considering involve doing questionnaires, which I would ideally like to avoid, so I'm probably going to scrap those ideas. 1 of my other ideas is too complex for an undergrad dissertation of only 10,000 words, so I need to decide whether to do an event study pre or post financial crisis, rather than comparing the differences between the results of two different event studies. For actual planning my time and stuff, I made a to do list spreadsheet that break it all down into chunks. It has a list of each section that is likely to be in my dissertation and then columns for planning & research, rough draft, first complete draft, editing additional drafts, final draft, proofreading, word count check and references. It breaks it down into manageable chunks instead of trying to look at it as one whole project. Hopefully that helps you out a bit .
    Ah, that is really helpful, thank you! I was thinking about breaking it down into a series of mini-essays kind of, and then having deadlines for each chunk I want to do. Thanks again
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    I'm studying Linguistics at Queen Mary, University of London and my dissertation is due in April. Trying to brainstorm potential topics :-)
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    (Original post by Anna.Karenina)
    I'm studying Linguistics at Queen Mary, University of London and my dissertation is due in April. Trying to brainstorm potential topics :-)
    Mine is due in April too , we can do this! When do you have to submit your topic selection by?
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    (Original post by GoingToBurst)
    Mine is due in April too , we can do this! When do you have to submit your topic selection by?
    By November Do you know what you're going after you graduate?
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    I'll be doing a dissertation in International Relations/Poltitics and I'm wondering whether all dissertations need some sort of data collecting component, e.g. survey ? I'd rather avoid this if possible, also because if I choose to focus on a topic prevalent elsewhere to the UK it would be nigh on impossible to collect good data.
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    (Original post by Anna.Karenina)
    By November Do you know what you're going after you graduate?
    That's the same as me! I'm hoping to go on and do my CA qualification, what about you?

    (Original post by gtswattsy16)
    I'll be doing a dissertation in International Relations/Poltitics and I'm wondering whether all dissertations need some sort of data collecting component, e.g. survey ? I'd rather avoid this if possible, also because if I choose to focus on a topic prevalent elsewhere to the UK it would be nigh on impossible to collect good data.
    You can do literature review dissertations. I had hoped to do one, but none of my topics of interest are really suitable for a lit review dissertation .
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    (Original post by GoingToBurst)
    Thank you! Yeah regardless of any prior approval we still have to submit 3 topic options for official approval. It's a bit of a pain really, but I guess I'm learning some interesting things during my search, so can't complain too much. That's very true! Choosing topics is pretty tough, or rather, narrowing down to a question has been pretty tough haha. Yeah it's a nightmare. We have silent rooms in the library, but the building is a big glass box and the silent rooms are around the perimeter of the building, so they get very hot and stuffy when it's busy or sunny. I just prefer to work from home or use the library at the other university in my city haha. Although it's a big glass building too, such terrible library choices here.
    That's so annoying you have to still come up with two more ideas! Do they have to be different, or could you try and do two on slight variations of the one that's pretty much been approved? Haha, I'd never thought about using another unis library, that's a great idea! We need our ID cards to get into ours so I always thought that would be impossible to do
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    (Original post by Firefly13)
    That's so annoying you have to still come up with two more ideas! Do they have to be different, or could you try and do two on slight variations of the one that's pretty much been approved? Haha, I'd never thought about using another unis library, that's a great idea! We need our ID cards to get into ours so I always thought that would be impossible to do
    They have to be different. I've made some good progress since yesterday though, I had a list of 15-20 possible topics, narrowed that down to 4 topics I could realistically see myself researching and writing about and now I've got 5 possible dissertation questions that I could do (two on the same topic, but different branches). I'm meeting a lecturer tomorrow to discuss my ideas, so hopefully I'll have cut my top 5 down to my final 3 by this time tomorrow! You can use SCONUL and access any university library for free (if your university takes part in SCONUL) .
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    (Original post by GoingToBurst)
    They have to be different. I've made some good progress since yesterday though, I had a list of 15-20 possible topics, narrowed that down to 4 topics I could realistically see myself researching and writing about and now I've got 5 possible dissertation questions that I could do (two on the same topic, but different branches). I'm meeting a lecturer tomorrow to discuss my ideas, so hopefully I'll have cut my top 5 down to my final 3 by this time tomorrow! You can use SCONUL and access any university library for free (if your university takes part in SCONUL) .
    Wow, that's amazing! Just keep up this motivation and I'm sure you'll get a first
    I'm not sure if we have that, I'll have a look, it would be really helpful of we do
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    (Original post by Firefly13)
    Wow, that's amazing! Just keep up this motivation and I'm sure you'll get a first
    I'm not sure if we have that, I'll have a look, it would be really helpful of we do
    I really hope so! I'm so worried about getting a lower mark on my dissertation than on anything . Yeah it's been so handy for me! I signed up to use it at the other uni in my city so that I could avoid people I know when I NEED to get stuff done haha! No one comes over to distract me if I don't know anyone there.
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    (Original post by GoingToBurst)
    I really hope so! I'm so worried about getting a lower mark on my dissertation than on anything . Yeah it's been so handy for me! I signed up to use it at the other uni in my city so that I could avoid people I know when I NEED to get stuff done haha! No one comes over to distract me if I don't know anyone there.
    I'm worried about that as well! Do you know how much of your overall degree is based on your dissertation? Ours is something like 30% . I'd hope with the amount of work you're putting in now you'll be fine because if not the rest of us have no hope! Are you planning on making a start on yours over the summer as your topic is kind of approved already?

    I don't think my uni has signed up to that, but maybe I'll find friends at another uni so they can let me in
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    (Original post by Firefly13)
    I'm worried about that as well! Do you know how much of your overall degree is based on your dissertation? Ours is something like 30% . I'd hope with the amount of work you're putting in now you'll be fine because if not the rest of us have no hope! Are you planning on making a start on yours over the summer as your topic is kind of approved already?

    I don't think my uni has signed up to that, but maybe I'll find friends at another uni so they can let me in
    30% is a huge amount! Mine is only worth 12.5% of my final degree, which is a bonus, but my uni doesn't classify degrees based on averages, they have a stupid, different way of doing it haha. Yeah I'm planning on doing some basic groundwork for my final three topics so that once it has been officially approved, I can just pick up from there rather than having to start entirely from scratch. Definitely a good idea! Or try a local city library, I sometimes use those too, they aren't the nicest buildings but they're very quiet (unless you catch them on school-trip day hahaha).
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    Hallelujah! I finally have my options cut down to 3 (I need to submit three choices). My only problem now is that my top dissertation topic would come with my third top supervisor, whereas the other two would come with either of my joint first favourites. I don't know whether to go for my favourite topic or a better supervisor?
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    (Original post by GoingToBurst)
    30% is a huge amount! Mine is only worth 12.5% of my final degree, which is a bonus, but my uni doesn't classify degrees based on averages, they have a stupid, different way of doing it haha. Yeah I'm planning on doing some basic groundwork for my final three topics so that once it has been officially approved, I can just pick up from there rather than having to start entirely from scratch. Definitely a good idea! Or try a local city library, I sometimes use those too, they aren't the nicest buildings but they're very quiet (unless you catch them on school-trip day hahaha).
    30% will either be great or the worse thing that's happened to me, lets hope for the first
    Well done on getting your three choices sorted!
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    (Original post by Firefly13)
    30% will either be great or the worse thing that's happened to me, lets hope for the first
    Well done on getting your three choices sorted!
    Hopefully it's awesome because you have plenty of time to fine tune it, unlike exams!Thanks! So chuffed thats the first dissertation task out the way .
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    (Original post by GoingToBurst)
    Hopefully it's awesome because you have plenty of time to fine tune it, unlike exams!Thanks! So chuffed thats the first dissertation task out the way .
    Lets hope so! Although we had a mini-dissertation last year to prepare for the one next year and I did better in my exams so I wouldn't like a repeat of that . Do you have exams when you're doing your dissertation? We do all of our exams by March and have half of next year just on the dissertation (one of the only things about my unis organisation they've done well!). I wasn't sure what other unis did
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    (Original post by Firefly13)
    Lets hope so! Although we had a mini-dissertation last year to prepare for the one next year and I did better in my exams so I wouldn't like a repeat of that . Do you have exams when you're doing your dissertation? We do all of our exams by March and have half of next year just on the dissertation (one of the only things about my unis organisation they've done well!). I wasn't sure what other unis did
    Think of it as a way to learn from past experiences and avoid a repeat of it happening again though . I'm so unbelievably jealous of that! I've got one class running alongside my dissertation, so I've got three essays to submit and a group presentation to do, then an exam 3 weeks after my dissertation hand in. The exam isn't my problem, it's having all of that other coursework to be doing as well as my dissertation that gives me the fear. Plus group assignments counting towards my final degree classification do not make me very happy .
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    (Original post by Firefly13)
    That's so annoying you have to still come up with two more ideas! Do they have to be different, or could you try and do two on slight variations of the one that's pretty much been approved? Haha, I'd never thought about using another unis library, that's a great idea! We need our ID cards to get into ours so I always thought that would be impossible to do
    It's extremely common for students to go to their library help desk and request books from other uni libraries or just local/city/town libraries if your uni doesn't not hold the book you need for your topic and research!
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    Oh @goingtoburst I'm coming to Aberdeen for my postgrad in September and the library was one of the big positives for me in making my choice! Luckily I don't need absolute silence to concentrate, but that's disappointing to hear that sound carries so badly in the building. Hope the dissertation prep is going ok!
 
 
 
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