The Criteria Guide To A Dissertation English Language Essay

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Introduction

While the course work is an important part of any doctoral program, it is the dissertation that is uniquely you. The topic chosen should be one that interests you, and that represents an area of study that you can use to identify you as one with special expertise in a particular area. Therefore, it is very important to proceed with forethought into the dissertation process. Choose the topic with care. Also be sure to choose your advisors carefully, as they will be your guides and mentors.

This guidebook has been designed to provide you with the information you need to successfully complete this process. Read and follow it carefully. You are responsible for understanding and apply- ing its contents.

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Research Criteria

To produce a dissertation of which you and your school can be justly proud, it is essential that your dissertation meet certain quality standards that are generally recognized in graduate education. The following policy statement, by the Council of Graduate Schools, indicates in general terms what is expected.

"The document (doctoral dissertation) should demonstrate breadth of scholarship, depth of research, and ability to investigate problems independently and efficiently."

"It (dissertation) must be a significant contribution to scholarship."

"It should reveal the student’s ability to analyze, interpret, and synthesize; and demonstrate thorough knowledge of the literature relating to the project"

More specifically, the faculty of the School of Education has adopted the following criteria indicating that the doctoral research should:

1. Present the relevance of existing theories to the problem.

2. Include an original and unique dimension which builds on cited research.

3. Enable the candidate to enter the national or regional debate.

4. Be sufficiently broad from which to generalize to a larger audience.

5. Acculturate the candidate to differing academic communities.

6. Encourage the continuation of scholarly activity.

7 . Reflect the methodology appropriate to the type of research commonly found in dissertations.

Dissertation Topic and Committee

How do I get started? How is my committee formed?

The first steps in producing a dissertation are (1) the selection of a topic (2) the selection and appointment of a research advisor and (3) the selection and appointment of a research committee to provide advisement throughout the process.

Dissertation Topic

Early in your doctoral studies, you should be thinking about research topics that interest you. Keep a notebook of ideas as they come to you. As you read for your various classes, add to or delete from your notebook of ideas. Talk informally with your professors. Find out their interests. Discuss- ing your ideas for potential dissertation topics with several faculty members helps you in selecting your topic and in choosing a committee.

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