And don't forget that it can be very useful to follow the research trails of scholars whose work interests you.Follow up on footnotes that refer to other books and articles, and use the lists of works cited in the various texts for the course.Tags: Writing Critical Analysis PapersWhat Makes A Person Powerful EssayExample Of Term Paper TopicsHow To Write A Recommendation Letter For College ApplicationEssay About TelecommutingDeeds Of Assignment
Once you have drafted your prospectus under the guidance of your dissertation committee, you might want to have it read by someone who knows nothing about your topic, to see whether you have clearly set out your problem and defined a workable method.
Seeking out a general reader right at the start is a good reminder that although you may be writing on a specialized topic, your dissertation should be written in clear, intelligible prose.
The outline should be as precise as possible, even if it is very likely to be modified in the course of writing the dissertation.
Finding, defining, and communicating a topic that is at once significant and of realistic scope are tasks that require discussion and cooperation between the dissertation writer and faculty members.
A dissertation prospectus is a paradoxical piece of writing.
It is not an abstract (which is to say, a summary of a completed dissertation) or an introductory chapter of a dissertation, but rather an attempt to describe what is planned before it has actually been done.Make sure you define the theoretical categories you are introducing, and try to avoid technical jargon unless it is necessary to the intricacies of your argument.Prospectuses and dissertations tend to either lose themselves in detail, or to be too general.The committee will then meet collectively with the candidate to discuss the project and its implementation.There is no single recipe for a good dissertation prospectus.But all writers should answer, to the best of their abilities at this early stage of research, certain fundamental questions:· What is the central problem that the dissertation will address?This problem can be theoretical, critical, or historical; but it should, in most cases, be presented as a question or related set of questions to which the dissertation will attempt to find answers.The "American Memory" collection at the Smithsonian may be especially useful if youre doing work that crosses disciplinary boundaries.Many nineteenth-century periodicals are available on microfilm, in a collection called the American Periodical Series.I encourage you to avail yourselves of the expertise of the research librarians at here at Barnard.I also encourage you to talk to me, both about research issues and about more general issues related to your thesis. Ive been very pleased to see the exchanges of information and support taking place on the bulletin board, and I hope that they will continue.