• Writing A Dissertation: What To Know About Common Research Methods


    A dissertation can be defined as a lengthy work like a thesis on a given topic and involves much research on the part of the writer about the topic, usually assigned at post-graduate and PhD level. The methods of researching greatly depend on the topic of dissertation. However, few techniques of conducting research is common to most topics and are widely followed by those working on various dissertation. Here we will discuss some of these common methods and provide you a guideline that you can apply as you pursue your own dissertations.

    • Going through and analyzing surveys and reports of those past years, related to the given topic- Depending on your topic, scan the internet and libraries for relevant data and analyze them and note down your observations. For example, if your topic of paper is agricultural progress in India, go through data of the past years recording the overall harvest annually, and also check relevant data like that of rainfall, natural disasters etc.
    • Try and locate relation between apparently unrelated issues- While the amount of rainfall and per hectare harvest in a year may seem to be two different issues, we can actually deduce a relationship between them in terms of influence exerted by rainfall on the harvest. In short, explore beyond your assigned topic for a better research.
    • Be observant- Some topics demand more than just working on your computer or the library. Field works are a major research technique applied for many subjects such as sociology, geography and history. Conduct your own surveys. If the topic involves observation of a certain object or wildlife, be observant and take down necessary notes. A dissertation with unique facts is the best in quality.
    • Depending on the topic of your dissertation, conduct interviews- Social and psychological topics often demand taking into account the views, feelings and experience of the masses in relation to the topic. Prepare a questionnaire and conduct interviews of people. Use these interviews to draw conclusions such as common factors and dissimilarities among the views of people from different social background or religion.
    • Do not try and incorporate all methods at once. Be systematic- Prior to writing down your dissertation, chalk out a plan on how you intend to progress with the topic. Do not apply every research technique you know of. Take into account the time you have in hand for your paper and work accordingly.

    Discuss your plans with your supervisor in need. If you already have enough material at hand work with them rather than spending a lot of time and energy on conducting your own surveys. Your work would be immensely simplified only if you follow a steady and proper course of research.

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