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PhD Writing: Tips And Prompts

How to Complete a Dissertation in Social Sciences Successfully

The best way I can inform you of how to write a successful dissertation is to share with you all the tips I learned as I went along.

First, Research Tips

Dissertations are not only a chance for you to show of your scholarly ability to read a variety of sources and write a lengthy and challenging work upon them, not to mention your ability to publish in the competitive world of professorship today, it is also a test of your ability to distinguish the best scholarly materials available to use in your works.

You’ll want to research and ask your dissertation director and committee and other favorite professors who specialize in your area of interest in the social sciences to give you lists of

  1. The most respected, peer-reviewed journals in your area of specialization or in the realm of social sciences period.
  2. The most respected presses for book length sources
  3. Ask your teacher about his/her favorite social science researchers
  4. Research respected journal sources via google to see if you can find some at home
  5. If you have access to the university’s databases from home—keep these all on a usb storage device or print from home. Most universities charge for copies now anyway. Find out your cheapest options and print them there.
  6. Another option, one which I used is to find cheap sources of printing or take a few hours at the library to actually type down your favorite quotes from these articles—ALWAYS noting at the top of them the author, journal, volume number and all info you will need for the citation. Beside every quote—note the page number the quote comes from.

Second, the wonders of a dissertation model

The best dissertation models to use are recent dissertations in your discipline that follow, most likely, the same dissertation guidelines that your school has established as primary. Confirm with your professor that the same guidelines you will follow were used in the previous year (whenever the model you were using was written). Find out what’s different or update yours to follow recent guidelines.

What’s Great About Models

You can order dissertations on your topic from universities all over the country and peruse their works cited too—use their research, if the dissertation is a stellar one, to save you time on older sources!

Now, the most necessary object you will need toward

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