How will not doing a dissertation affect me?

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EloiseStar
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Hi,

I'm a joint honours student and a dissertation is not a compulsory part of my degree, however I can opt in to do one. I'm going to go to all the dissertation prep sessions in case I do it, and I do have a rough idea of what I would do it on. How would not doing a dissertation affect me? Is it something employers look for or even ask about if you're not going into academics? Instead of a dissertation I would be doing a special subject which I'm not too sure what the logistics of that are...

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KJane
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(Original post by EloiseStar)
Hi,

I'm a joint honours student and a dissertation is not a compulsory part of my degree, however I can opt in to do one. I'm going to go to all the dissertation prep sessions in case I do it, and I do have a rough idea of what I would do it on. How would not doing a dissertation affect me? Is it something employers look for or even ask about if you're not going into academics? Instead of a dissertation I would be doing a special subject which I'm not too sure what the logistics of that are...

Thanks
Unless you're thinking of doing a masters it's not going to impact massively. At my university those who were doing joint and were free of the dissertation were considered lucky.

I took a shorter dissertation myself rather than a long one and took another module alongside it. You're still putting in the work, it just won't be in a single project.
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Champagne Supernova
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(Original post by EloiseStar)
Hi,

I'm a joint honours student and a dissertation is not a compulsory part of my degree, however I can opt in to do one. I'm going to go to all the dissertation prep sessions in case I do it, and I do have a rough idea of what I would do it on. How would not doing a dissertation affect me? Is it something employers look for or even ask about if you're not going into academics? Instead of a dissertation I would be doing a special subject which I'm not too sure what the logistics of that are...

Thanks
It might be worth finding out what the 'special subject,' is before making up your mind. Once you're fully aware of both aspects then you'll be in a better place to make a decision.

Not doing a dissertation won't affect you much - on my more academic version of my CV, I've briefly mentioned mine but I don't see it as essential (might even get rid of it!). It may be something they ask about ('did you do a final year project?' or something) but explaining what you did instead would be enough of a talking point. See how you find the prep sessions, at the end of the day it's more important for you to enjoy what you're doing and get the most out of your degree. If that means not doing diss then it's hardly the end of the world!
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The_Lonely_Goatherd
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Just want to throw in there that my tutorial partner didn't do a dissertation at undergrad but still managed to get onto quite a specialised, prestigious Masters course. Obviously the question of why he didn't do an undergrad dissertation came up but his degree spoke for itself at the end of the day. He got a Distinction for his Masters, including a Distinction for his Masters dissertation, so I doubt the uni regretted the decision to take him!

If you can prove you can write at length and well and have the research skills, you may still be able to get onto a Masters without doing an undergrad dissertation, basically.

That said, you've been given very good advice before about exploring both options properly before you make a decision!
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RtGOAT
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It will make your life easier
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Quilverine
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It might vary accross courses, but I am pretty sure the dissertation is the difference between an honours degree and a degree without honours. So whilst you call it joint honours, a dissertation would be needed to actually call it as such, possibly? I know someone in my cohort was given the option to take her degree without honours or to stay on an extra year to do a dissertation which hadn't been done because of resitting L5 modules. I saw the diss as a chance to do something I really enjoyed for a few months.
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arguendo
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(Original post by Quilverine)
It might vary accross courses, but I am pretty sure the dissertation is the difference between an honours degree and a degree without honours. So whilst you call it joint honours, a dissertation would be needed to actually call it as such, possibly? I know someone in my cohort was given the option to take her degree without honours or to stay on an extra year to do a dissertation which hadn't been done because of resitting L5 modules. I saw the diss as a chance to do something I really enjoyed for a few months.
Whether you need to do a dissertation or not to graduate with honours is university specific and part of the individual university/course regulations.

I have LLB (Hons) and did not have to do a dissertation.

OP - I chose to take an elective module that was 50% coursework in my final year, so submitted an 8000 word essay. I enjoyed it and don't regret my choice, but I am generally better at exams than coursework and so it weakened my grade slightly. I also didn't put enough time into it as it coincided with other coursework, extracurriculars, and my normal class/work schedule. It was, however, a valuable learning experience - I am now studying for a masters and would have been terrified at the prospect of my 15000 word dissertation without that experience. My dissertation will definitely be stronger for having had that experience, as most of my undergrad degree was assessed by exam. It's also a fun opportunity to research something that interests you - as opposed to reading what you're told to and following a syllabus in modules.

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hellodave5
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Lucky thing. Dissertation = hell.
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