Topic 3: The thesis of the thesis

Introduction

This topic examines the process of getting your doctoral project started. It reviews the challenge of finding a suitable topic and also the need to understand what a doctoral degree is about. Writing a doctoral thesis is a major piece of work and for you to successfully pass the degree it is important that you identify a topic that can be researched at the doctoral level. This thesis and the research work that you will need to do before you can write it, are likely to be among the most complex and difficult intellectual tasks you have ever undertaken.

The topic reviews how to start writing and some techniques and tool you might use to help you do this. Also covered is the development of your literature review and how to read and analyse an academic research paper. The role of tools such as EndNote are described along with the things you will need to consider to develop the “Thesis of the Thesis”.

Recommended readings

Mewburn, I. (2013) How to Tame your PhD, Thesis Whisperer Books.

Hunt Ogden, E. (2002) Completing your Doctoral Dissertation or Master's Thesis in two Semesters or less, Toronto-Oxford, Scarecrow Education.

Chong, P.H.S. (2012) How to Read Journal Articles in the Social Sciences: A Very Practical Guide for Students, Los Angeles-London, Sage.

Lecture slides

Exercise notes and readings

Useful links and videos