Dissertation feedback

By | 03/04/2007

Yesterday I went for some dissertation feedback and heard that some people have not yet been to see their dissertation and if these people have seen no one then I am quite surprised. The reason for which I am surprised about this is that it’s a new form of writing which involves getting a good knowledge of certain rules.

One of these rules was never written “Should”. Your dissertation is meant to be based on fact, on what has been documented. Anything within the speculative realm is worthless. You might as well take those sentences and write an article about them for pleasure.

The second rule is simplicity. If you’re writing a dissertation you’re writing for people who have never heard about the subject before. What this means is that if you use a technical term you must make sure to explain what it means and why it’s relevant. Assume your audience is off the street rather than some well-informed individual. In some ways getting someone to read your dissertation who knows nothing about the topic is great because they’ll point to you the error of your ways in assuming that everyone knows something. I’m going to have to elaborate on those points.

Language is an essential part of the writing process. Did you mean channels or outlets? Are you speaking about perceptions or opinions and do you know the difference. Remember that words are the only method by which to get your point across. If you use a word make sure that it is used in the right context. If you don’t you may confuse your reader but more importantly, you may set out that you are going to do one thing but due to an error in language you’re doing something which does not link directly to this.

Overall dissertation writing should be a pleasure to write and to read. It’s about taking a subject that you’re really interested in and sharing it with your audience.  Over time it comes naturally but if you’re like me it’s a question of experience.

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