Choosing a subject matter for a thesis

One of the problems that tend to frustrate many students is how they need to go about choosing an original and useful subject matter for their thesis. There is so much work being done in various topics by so many researchers around the world that it can be hard to find material that has not been examined before. This is where thorough literature review, both on the Internet and in paperback libraries, is so essential. One of the features of a dissertation is that once the student is committed to it there is no turning back, and the last thing that he would want after a considerable amount of work has been completed on it, is to find out that what he has achieved is either insignificant or has already been worked on by others. So choosing the right subject matter is extremely critical.

Many researchers apply new methodology to an old subject when they want to bring novelty to their project, or they combine different ideas across various subjects to develop a new concept. Having come up with an idea, the researcher then has to look into whether he has the competence, skill and resource to complete the task that he has undertaken for himself. Can he work on the project alone or does he need the help of others in completing it? Does he have the ability to procure enough material for his research? Is the project financially viable or does it involve spending lots of money without any practical returns? These are the questions that the researcher needs to ask of himself.

While generating new ideas the researcher needs to compile a list of a few good thoughts and then narrow it down to one or two that he feels would allow him to prepare a quality thesis. He can also carry out a few initial tests and investigations that would provide him with an insight as to how easy or difficult it is to complete the work. In this regard the researcher would be well advised to seek the opinion and advice of his peers and professors. Even after the idea has been generated the researcher still needs to refine it to come up with a smart question. The researcher also needs to keep in mind the expectations of the examiners and the standards of the university where he is doing his work so that he can meet those expectations and standards.

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