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Official Dissertation Thread - 2010-11 watch

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    (Original post by George Agdgdgwngo)
    Don't worry you'll get it done I'm sure. I've been the same. Since week 3 where we were assigned our projects I've had at least two submission/exam/presentation in every week since then. It's bloody hard but it has finally taught me to divide my time well. I also work Mon-Thurs 6pm-10pm so need to cram everything into daytime.

    Also, my classes finished week 8 which left 4 weeks to concentrate solely on lab work which was basically 9-5 although I'd have an hour here and a couple of hours there. I used that time wisely to prepare presentations and study for tests.
    Thanks

    Jeez that sounds like a nightmare! I've cut out my job atm cos I don't think I could take anymore but I could use a bit of money.

    I'm normally quite good with managing my time but as I don't sleep well for health reasons and had the flu during the last week of term it's a bit scary wondering if I'm working enough. Didn't help that the guy recording the programmes I need for my dissertation screwed up and he's having to re-do 2 of them. I could've done with a few weeks like that but I don't think we get any until next semester. Got a plan for the hols so I'll hopefully get most things done.
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    This dissertation is never going to end.
    I'm going to die buried in notes and partially complete diagrams.
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    (Original post by jus-mi)
    ...
    (Original post by chidona)
    ...
    I've quoted you both in since you're both doing Economics. I'm just curious, really, as to how you guys went about choosing your topics for your dissertation, how much supervision you're being given, and any other specific tips you might have.

    I'm going to be doing mine next year, and although I've a general idea about what I want to do it on (something relating labour markets, international trade, and the Euro, more than likely with a special focus on France), I'm obviously no where near an actual question and am not sure how much advice I'd be given on choosing one or what sort of steps I'd have to go through to try and think of one. How did you guys do this?

    Thanks.
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    (Original post by .ACS.)
    I've quoted you both in since you're both doing Economics. I'm just curious, really, as to how you guys went about choosing your topics for your dissertation, how much supervision you're being given, and any other specific tips you might have.

    I'm going to be doing mine next year, and although I've a general idea about what I want to do it on (something relating labour markets, international trade, and the Euro, more than likely with a special focus on France), I'm obviously no where near an actual question and am not sure how much advice I'd be given on choosing one or what sort of steps I'd have to go through to try and think of one. How did you guys do this?

    Thanks.
    Well, I chose my dissertation based on a combination of what I enjoyed studying and what would lend itself to a dissertation. I was fortunate in that I enjoyed studying the economics of social policy, and was also heavily involved in the debate over the US health care reforms; it was only a natural extension to base my dissertation on those reforms. The exact question essentially was the result of a bit of research in the area; to be honest, the question may change as you research more and actually write your dissertation; you'll find that due to space constraints you may not be able to include everything or might have to alter your title slightly due to an interesting conclusion you've found.

    It's not really possible to comment on supervision; I know people who've had to give a presentation on their dissertation progress every fortnight or so, but for me it's largely a case of the supervisor not getting too involved. They'll tell you what you should have aimed to have done by certain points in time, and give you advice on ideas you're developing/problems you may have, but ultimately it's all on your own shoulders.

    A tip I would give is to break your dissertation down into chunks. It's kinda easy to just give up at the thought of writing 12,000 words or whatever, but when you break that down, that's only three 4,000 word essays, which isn't a huge amount. Also, make sure you get a clear structure as early as possible; if you have a structure then the thing more or less writes itself. Finally, use appropriate tools of analysis; if you're doing policy appraisal (like me), then don't waste time shoehorning econometrics into it, as it's not relevant.
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    (Original post by .ACS.)
    I've quoted you both in since you're both doing Economics. I'm just curious, really, as to how you guys went about choosing your topics for your dissertation, how much supervision you're being given, and any other specific tips you might have.

    I'm going to be doing mine next year, and although I've a general idea about what I want to do it on (something relating labour markets, international trade, and the Euro, more than likely with a special focus on France), I'm obviously no where near an actual question and am not sure how much advice I'd be given on choosing one or what sort of steps I'd have to go through to try and think of one. How did you guys do this?

    Thanks.
    Hiya

    Well i didn't have a clue on what i'll will be doing when i started 3rd year in sept, however at my uni in the first week we had two lectures and he basically said to get really good marks you have to do an empirical study otherwise if you did a theoretical one you may find it hard to get marks, he then said you have to have sound hypothesis' i.e. you got to have something you want to find out/prove/or counteract a previous theory etc etc....i think our lecturer thought we all had something in mind at this time but most of us didn't.

    Then he handed out a topic sheet and he asked us to fill it in, the questions was just to write possible areas you might want to do your disser on ...so i wrote banking, developmental, finance and microeconomics - literally he then used this to assign supervisor.

    Then he said we had until week 3 to decide on a topic :O so i ran to google and literally imputed all those words, i read loads and loads of previous studies before deciding on my topic. At this stage i didn't have a question i just wanted to do something about firm growth. So i went to my first meeting with my supervisor. He then basically said before i decide on anything that i should see what data is available (via ecowin) and then think 'is my work going to be feasible?'.

    After doing all of that it kinda helped narrowing down what my topic will be on, but i'm yet to make a question, but that can be done last just as long as you know what your doing

    ...and then from week 3 till about week 8 I constantly bugged my supervisor (his Japanese and his hilarious wouldn't change him for the world) and he helped me with my methodology part i.e what i will be regression, what estimator e.g. ols or 2sls that i would need to do and of course possible problems endogeneity and/or omitted variable bias etc etc. However i did my literature review/intro all by myself.

    sorry if half of this doesn't make sense, i'm typing with one hand cos i don't wanna take my other hand out my blanket...its cold ...if you need any more help just pm me.

    c ya x


    edit: Just exactly as the previous poster said, they usually give you a time line to complete sections in your dissertation...for an example our first draft chapter had to be handed in, on the last day of the term(17/12) and its graded ...dammit lool....but yeah although 10k-12k seems big if you break it down, it really isn't much. My supervisor said i should do roughly 2k-3k per chapter.
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    Just hit the 10,000 word mark, ****'s gettin' real son.
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    (Original post by k007)
    hey, is anyone studying american/european history? i'm thinking of doing my dissertation on european integration e.g looking at ECA, OEEC, ECSC. I don't know how to narrow down european integration though as this topic is so large! I need to focus on one specific topic, can anyone give me any suggestions???
    HI K007!!!
    Your topic for dissertation is very intresting.
    If talking about European integration, Currency Integration is just a first step of the large picture.
    The Geo-political integration will be the toughest one and should be attempted last.
    Currency integration has to be subsequently followed by Economic integration ( by economic integration, mean Banking, Capital markets, Financing) While economic integration is being done each member country should observe Fiscal Descipline and should be governed by common norms.
    Parallely the social integration should move at faster pace.
    For integration to succeed Socio Economic developement of the entire region will only keep the ball rolling. Reversal of the integration process will have catstrophic effects on some of smaller economies of the EC.

    Do I make some sense??

    --Sanman.
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    (Original post by DancinBallerina)
    Ditto . . .the stress is unbelievable - I was shaking from lack of sleep and no food for 24hours! . . .I slept for about a week after I posted the damn thing. . NEVER AGAIN . . . . .Mind me asking, what mark did you and your housemate get in the end? . . .
    Hiya, sorry for the late reply! I got a first for my dissertation (somehow), and my housemate got a 2:1! At this point last year we were on the verge of dropping out!! We were chuffed to bits
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    (Original post by eddy2375)
    Hiya, sorry for the late reply! I got a first for my dissertation (somehow), and my housemate got a 2:1! At this point last year we were on the verge of dropping out!! We were chuffed to bits
    Awww congrats . I was on the verge of quitting as well, but my mum was like ''NO WAY'' . .so she pushed me til the end. I managed to get a 2:1 (overall and for the dissertation, considering I rewrote the entire thing in 2weeks lol), although I missed a First for my overall degree classification by 4 marks! But hey still chuffed with myself nevertheless.
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    seems i am way too far behind compared to people already writing it, i'm still like the 4 other people in my group at the stage of trying to understand it :p:

    get me back side into gear in the new year get everything done i was meant too
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    (Original post by robinson999)
    seems i am way too far behind compared to people already writing it, i'm still like the 4 other people in my group at the stage of trying to understand it :p:

    get me back side into gear in the new year get everything done i was meant too
    I know the feeling, I still have so much more to do before I can write it. We only have to do 5-6,000 words though and part of mine will be made up by a transcription.

    Finally got some more done over the past 2 days- I've started a plan, found 2 good parts of the English programme to transcribe and made detailled notes. I'm feeling like it's so fiddly though as the first German programme I watched was no good so I have to find another now. Does anyone know if it's possible to convert media (AVI) files just into audio ones? I have to get that done afterwards so I can start the transcription.
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    (Original post by hannah_dru)
    I know the feeling, I still have so much more to do before I can write it. We only have to do 5-6,000 words though and part of mine will be made up by a transcription.

    Finally got some more done over the past 2 days- I've started a plan, found 2 good parts of the English programme to transcribe and made detailled notes. I'm feeling like it's so fiddly though as the first German programme I watched was no good so I have to find another now. Does anyone know if it's possible to convert media (AVI) files just into audio ones? I have to get that done afterwards so I can start the transcription.
    half the trouble is not having the fear of a deadline any time soon, thats all i have to do is about 6000 word spf, which once i know what i am doing and bring results together won't take 2 3 weeks max to write

    i need to get working last 2 weeks i've done nothing its been chirstmas and new year so its seeing people and drinking :p:

    i don't have a cue about that try some one in the tech forum
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    (Original post by robinson999)
    half the trouble is not having the fear of a deadline any time soon, thats all i have to do is about 6000 word spf, which once i know what i am doing and bring results together won't take 2 3 weeks max to write

    i need to get working last 2 weeks i've done nothing its been chirstmas and new year so its seeing people and drinking :p:

    i don't have a cue about that try some one in the tech forum
    I'm not too sure when mine is either but I think it's the end of March. I'm hoping it'll take that long to write too.

    That sounds great! I've not had enough days off

    Hoping I can get the IT tech guy in my dept to do it for me but I'll probably ask in the tech forum anyway cos this guy's already screwed up my diss once.
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    I keep stressing about my dissertation, usually in bed when I am trying to sleep. I feel like I am completely out of my depth. I have to submit my first chapter in a couple of weeks and have not even finished researching yet. Hoping to really focus on it in this coming week, as I've booked the time off work and should be able to focus. If I don't get my act together soon, I think I am going to end up flunking it....
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    (Original post by affinity89)
    I keep stressing about my dissertation, usually in bed when I am trying to sleep. I feel like I am completely out of my depth. I have to submit my first chapter in a couple of weeks and have not even finished researching yet. Hoping to really focus on it in this coming week, as I've booked the time off work and should be able to focus. If I don't get my act together soon, I think I am going to end up flunking it....
    Me too and I have chronic insomnia so it's making things worse. I seem to go through periods where I feel fairly confident about it and then completely confused. Hope it works out ok for you
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    (Original post by hannah_dru)
    Me too and I have chronic insomnia so it's making things worse. I seem to go through periods where I feel fairly confident about it and then completely confused. Hope it works out ok for you
    Yup, same here. There's a chapter where it's basically just my analysis alone, with hardly any references aside from data sources, and I oscillate between 'yeah, that's pretty sound' and 'argh! Is this enough/is it deep enough/is it relevant/am I missing the point?'

    That said, one chapter and a conclusion away from having a draft ready! Am taking a break for a day or two to do another assignment. Oh, the fun!
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    (Original post by chidona)
    Yup, same here. There's a chapter where it's basically just my analysis alone, with hardly any references aside from data sources, and I oscillate between 'yeah, that's pretty sound' and 'argh! Is this enough/is it deep enough/is it relevant/am I missing the point?'

    That said, one chapter and a conclusion away from having a draft ready! Am taking a break for a day or two to do another assignment. Oh, the fun!
    You've done more than I have then! Think I'm gonna have to spend less time on other modules and more time getting this done once exams are over.
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    (Original post by hannah_dru)
    You've done more than I have then! Think I'm gonna have to spend less time on other modules and more time getting this done once exams are over.
    Aye, my course structure is good in so much that it allows me to dedicate the entire winter hols to my diss; if I can bash a draft out by the time I'm back then I can actually do a bit of work on the other 4 modules I'm meant to be studying
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    I haven't even started it yet. I've done a plan and a 2000 word sample, both of which are a load of rubbish. It's on Shakespeare (the political aspects of his Roman plays), and I'm beginning to think it was a mistake choosing something so well known.

    I'm hoping that the spark of inspiration will hit me soon, and I'll start ****ting out literary brilliance every night...
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    I've started having nightmares about it! I haven't done any work on it yet this holiday, the minute I start to the nightmares should abate a little, but...who knows!
    I've done a literature review and started to sketch out paragraphs and links. My literature review was nicely ripped in to by my supervisor, so I've got a lot to think about.

    But I've also got three other summative projects to start thinking about.

    I've slacked off all Christmas and tomorrow is when the work starts. That's quite a relaxing thought!
 
 
 
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