Writing A Dissertation - Learn From Others' Mistakes

It is always a very good idea to study somebody else's dissertation and look for the good points. You can then try and put those good points into your own writing. It's a free tutorial service and a great idea. But the opposite also applies. You study other people's dissertations but this time look for their mistakes, their failings. Obviously you don't want to copy those mistakes but rather avoid them. Again this is a free tutorial service where you learn to better your score.

So what are some of the mistakes other dissertation writers make?

  • They choose the wrong topic.
  • They ignore the outline and wander off topic.
  • They don't get feedback from people who are critical.
  • They restrict their research material.
  • Proofreading is not just about typos but also about proof.

We hear a lot about the importance of choosing a dissertation topic which seriously appeals to the writer. And this of course is true. But is the topic up-to-date? This can be a major mistake when somebody writes a dissertation on a topic which is outdated and which has been written about many times before. Don't make that mistake yourself.

By having a detailed outline, you give yourself a roadmap. Any dissertation writer who does not stick to the topic is usually somebody who has not studied the outline. Keep it in front of you at all times and don't get lost. It’s a serious mistake to write about irrelevant material.

Asking people to read your dissertation and provide feedback is a good thing provided you ask people who are prepared to be constructive in their criticism. Getting people who will only tell you nice things is a serious mistake. Don’t be surrounded by yes men or women. Regular feedback from intelligent readers is a great way to avoid mistakes in your dissertation writing.

If you restrict your research material to one side of the argument, you come up with a lopsided dissertation. Remember the dissertation should be a broad study of the subject rather than you simply expressing your opinion. Good research material equals a good dissertation. Read widely and read well or else you will make a serious mistake in creating your essay.

Many people make the mistake of thinking that proofreading is all about spelling and punctuation. It is more than that. It is looking to see if you have actually proved what you set out to do.