Effective Thesis Writing
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14-06-2009, 09:33 AM

Effective Thesis Writing
Dr. H. S. Ram MohanPage 2

Climb the thesis mountain
A guide for research degree students.
Set up for success
Design your project and implimentation
Build thinking and writing skills
Develop oral communication skills
Write the thesisPage 3

Set up for success
You are about to start your climb up the
research mountain. It is going to be an exciting,
exhilarating and meaningful journey. Like the
mountain climber, if you prepare well in
advance, if you are fit, take appropriate
equipment, have a good map and guide, you are
likely to reach the summit and to do so in the
best possible wayPage 4

In the first instance it is important to identify your own
reasons for wanting this research degree.
Understanding your personal goals defines the best
path to the summit. One way to achieve your goals in
the available time is to become a good project and implimentation manager
. Develop structures to manage your time, your work,
your space and also your information.
Know yourself
As you start climbing the research mountain, identify
your personal strengths, understand and know yourself,
so that you can maximise your past learning and
personal qualities and then you can build and
develop your personal capacities in ways and in areas
where you feel you need more expertise or more
guidance. For example, you may need to
develop particular research skills.
Understanding your personal GoalsPage 5

Meaningful learning can be an
emotional experience
Like a real mountain climber, you will not know what
all the terrain is going to look like in advance; there
will be some easy and some difficult patches.
Meaningful learning can be an emotional experience,
with highs and lows. The better equipped you are, the
more enjoyable the challenge will be.
Because this research degree is going to take up a lot of
time, energy and resources, you want to ensure that the
experience offers what you are seeking, that you enjoy
the process, and simultaneously prepare for
life after the thesis, so that you maximise the desired
Prepare for success - Enjoy the process and the
product!Page 6

Define your goals
Why have you chosen to undertake this degree?
The prime motive might be professional advancement,
a job requirement, personal satisfaction, a desire for
personal intellectual development.
What do you want to accomplish through the course
of your higher degree candidature? Where do you
want to be once you complete your degree
Clarify these targets or goals for yourself. This will
enable you to monitor your progress and know where to
concentrate your efforts.
Your supervisors can help you best if they understand
your personal goals, so you will want to be able
communicate your priorities clearly to them.Page 7

Track your Path
The research process is long, often exhilarating and
exciting as new learning unfolds. Some of the work and
some phases may prove arduous. There are no exams,
no assignments, so you have to track your own progress
against your objectives and the milestones you have
defined. Value each small accomplishment on your
road to successful completion.
. Identify each stage of progress in your degree path
and reward yourself for completing each stage, so that
you're constantly aware of the strides you make in your
climb to the top of the thesis mountain.Page 8

Manage your Project
You are the manager of this large and evolving
project and implimentation. It is your project and implimentation, your doctoral
research, which will culminate in the
production of a thesis, and it is very important.
From this perspective, you may like to focus on
developing your personal managerial skills,
project and implimentation management skills, time managementPage 9

Create your working space
Create a comfortable, adequate, undisturbed working
space, where you can organise your work and your
thoughts and where you're happy to be.
Ensure the availability of an adequate computer, (and
good online connection if possible) desk space, and a
comfortable chair.
If this area is adapted for you, if it is pleasant and
organized such that notes, articles and books are easily
located, documents are well filed, you will be nurturing
yourself and your own progress. Page 10

Writing is a process that starts at the familiarization
stage, continues through the research phase and then
becomes your major activity.
Through writing you will:
explain the background to the research
demonstrate knowledge of relevant literature
explain methodology
formulate data is into visual tables, graphs, histograms
or descriptions and integrate case studies into the
whole text
show how your findings answer / do not answer the
research questions
demonstrate how your research contributes uniquely to
the field
produce a scholarly piece of writing which contributes
to the field of research. Page 11

Define your thesis topic
Remember, the question has to be small enough to be
researched in the required time, yet significant enough
to merit the exercise and the degree. Moreover, if it is
to become your PhD, it will have to provide an original
contribution to knowledge.Page 12

Fit your thesis into your life
This is a major project and implimentation and a very demanding
one. It requires time, focus and energy.
Put this into its correct perspective so that you
achieve a balance between consistent thesis
work with dedicated time, but leaving some
energy and interest for life outside your thesis,.
Care for your health, and include leisure,
interests and diversions in your schedule.
Fit your thesis into your life and don't allow
your thesis to become your life!Page 13

Remember all those warnings to back up your work regularly!
?Keep backup copies of all your computer files - computer
disasters can occur, and you would not want to lose critical
In fact, you would not want to lose any of your writing, data
or notes. It is all valuable.
?Make sure that as the thesis progresses you have backup
copies of thesis drafts in different locations.
?Even though the notion of theft or fire may seem remote,
protect yourself against an unexpected eventuality in which
years of work could disappear
Back up!Page 14

Design your project and implimentation
What methods will you use?
Conceptual framework
Some points to consider:
Constrained by realities, you will need to design a research project and implimentation that is
feasible. Therefore you will take into account a number of factors such as the
scope of the project and implimentation, the time needed for an investigation, available funds
and equipment, personnel, ethical considerations and access to participants
or samples.
Your research discipline, whether in Science, Social Science or Humanities,
will largely determine the appropriateness of the methods of investigation
and the choices available to you. Whatever research paradigm you engage
and the consequent research methods you use for your study, you will want
to make sure that they are suited to the nature of the investigation and the
kind of data you would like to gather.
Validity, reliability, trustworthiness
You will need to determine a process that is ethical, transparent and meets
critical research criteria such as reliability, validity and trustworthiness.
Robust research
Through following a carefully defined and legitimate research process, you
ensure that your research is robust, can be replicated, and can produce
significant results.Page 15

Build thinking and writing skills
In your thesis writing process thinking and writing are
inextricably bound.
The thesis writing process is developmental and
creative, and with commitment, time and focus you will
grow intellectually and improve your writing skill..
The essential feature of your thesis is the argument that
answers the research question. You will combine your
thinking, writing and reading in
generating your argument. This main idea has to be
built from lots of related parts, sequentially developed
and clearly presented taking into account
academic writing conventions and using an appropriate
academic writing stylePage 16

The thesis writing process
Plan the writing
Define your purpose
What is your primary message, the main
idea that you would like to convey
through your thesis?Page 17

Get started, keep motivated
Start writing as soon as you start thinking
about the research.
Write notes about everything vaguely related to
your thesis. Think about your research and
make notes, wherever you are, whenever. As
you read any relevant literature, make brief
notes; as related ideas occur to you, make a
note of them.

Learn how to be selective!
Envisage your audience
Keep a research journalPage 19

Deal with writer's block
Perfectionism: 'I'm not ready to write yet because I
need to get my ideas all worked out first.' 'I need to
read more before I can write anything.'
Impatience: (failure to invest in pre-writing and
planning): 'I started writing and it just didn't work.'
Too long between writing sessions: 'I just can't get
back into this.'
Need for inspiration: 'I can't write unless I'm in the
right mood.'
Burnout: 'I've been working on this so long, I can't
work up any enthusiasm for it any more.'
Guilt: 'I should be doing more, but I can'tPage 20

Free writing
Lateral thinking, developed by Edward de Bono ,
is ideal for "changing concepts and perceptions
."Page 21

Lateral thinking
Lateral thinking means being able to look
at issues from other angles and fresh
perspectives beyond logical structured
thinking. It's a tendency towards
creativity and innovation that fosters new
ways of seeing something or linking
ideas.Page 22

Six-hat" approach
Comprehensive strategy for generating lateral
The six hats represent different perspectives and are
depicted as different colours.
White is the neutral observer, emphasizing the focus on
Red represents fire and warmth, emotions feelings and
Black is the colour of judgment, critical logical and
Yellow is sunshine, suggesting optimism and positivity.
Green indicates creative thinking, possibilities.
Blue is cool like the sky, and suggests an overview, a
summary, organized and controlled.Page 23

Skilful reading
What should I read and how should I
manage the information from my
Make your reading smart, critical and
Evaluate what you read!Page 24

Read critically
Look for the writer's argument in the
Three criteria for a good argument.
relevant to the conclusion
must offer adequate support for the
must be acceptable, plausiblePage 25

Taking notes
Write down all the things you know now that you
didn't know when you started the research. Use a
single sentence for each item. (At this point,don't
worry about whether they relate to your aims or
research questions)
Sort the sentences into groups. Give each group
a heading. Now check the headings against your
research question(s). Do all the headings relate
to the research question(s)? Do the questions
need refining?
Use these groups and headings to make a plan of
the points you want to make in your discussion.Page 26

Academic Writing: conventions
of the discipline
Your presence in the text
In a thesis, the relevance and importance of you
as the author can change from section to
section. The way your identity intrudes into the
text depends to a large extent on accepted use
in your particular discipline. Take your cues
from the way this is done in published articles
and seek the advice of your supervisor
.Page 27

I is important , but
Traditionally in much academic writing, it is
not generally accepted to write: 'I think¦' or 'It
is my opinion¦', because this detracts from the
supposed objectivity of scholarship. It is true
that too much insertion of yourself in your
writing swings the focus away from the material
you are investigating and on to you. Page 28

Showing agreement or
?Example: 'The following discussion is based on the work
in Murray et al.(1990).'
?Example: 'From the above discussion, it is clear that the
design of moment connections involving solid members
offers considerable insight into¦'
?Example: 'Bruegge et al. (1992) review OMT; however,
their paper is from a project and implimentation management and team
communication perspective and is not relevant to the
argument presented here.'
?Example: 'Neither mathematics nor the classic Newell
and Simon (1972) descriptions of human problem solving
are particularly useful in domains where absolute
correctness, resolution, proof and related concepts are
inappropriate.'Page 29

Use of tenses
The verb tenses you use reveal more to your
reader than just the time frame. They can also
tell your reader:
whose idea is being put forward (yours or
someone else's)
something about your attitude toward the ideas
you are reporting on (if you have attributed
them to an author/theorist)
how general or specific your point/description
is Page 30

Past tense
The past tense is used to:
Describe the contents, findings, or conclusions
of past research. It emphasizes the completed
nature of a past activity. It is often referred to
as the 'reporting' tense, and is traditionally
used by scholars to report all past findings,
including even very current research in some
cases.Page 31

Present tense
The present tense is used for:
a generalization (in overviews, statements of
main points, etc.) OR a generally accepted fact
"This thesis investigates the second approach."
a statement made by you as a writer
"Non-standard applications such as CASE,
CAD/CAM are now emerging."Page 32

Present perfect tense
The present perfect tense is used to:
indicate that research in the area is still continuing, or
that the research has immediate relevance today
Example 1:
"Several researchers have studied distributed database
Example 2:
"Fricke (1983) has illustrated that black liquor shows
three rheological behaviors."
generalize about past literature
"Software has been tested manually for most of the last
four decades."Page 33

The language of thesis writing
English has a history of borrowing words from other
languages, especially French, Latin and Greek. This
has resulted in the co-existence of two vocabularies:
one to talk about things in an everyday context, and one
to talk about thoughts, theories and events in a more
formal context. Compare these two groups of verbsPage 34

Words of Old English origin, commonly used in
believe, know, mean, say, tell, think, understand
Words of French or Greco-Latin origin, used in more
formal speech or writing
assert, assume, claim, concede, conclude, confirm,
contradict, criticize, declare, define, deny, discover,
doubt, explain, hypothesize, imply, infer, interpret,
observe, predict, prove, remember, suggestPage 35

Writing vocabulary
In addition, the multi-
word verbs of Old
English origin which we
use in common
conversation have
Latinate equivalents
which are more formal
or academic. Some
examples are given in
the table :
Old English origin
Latin origin
look into
work out
come up with
make up
get rid of
eliminatePage 36

Academic core vocabulary
Every discipline has its own specialized terms, and its
own particular uses of words (eg, significant has a
particular meaning when used in statistical analysis).
However, some academic vocabulary is used in
research writing across all or most disciplines with the
same meanings, eg, assumption, suggestion, claim,
implication, prediction, epitome, anecdotal, hypothesis,
There are also a large number of idiomatic phrases,
collocations and expressions to be found in academic
writing generally.Page 37

Set phrases
The following set phrases, for example, may
occur in writing from any discipline of study:
recent studies have focused on¦,
increasing necessity has come about for¦,
the contribution that X has made to the
discipline of¦,
X's hypothesis has been based on the premise
these findings imply that¦,
from the above discussion it seems that¦, etcPage 38

Avoidance of emotive, colourful or
idiomatic language
Other features that can lead to the feeling that
writing is 'not academic' are:
language with high emotional content or
descriptive colour
Australian participation rates for women are
shockingly low compared with European and
North American employment patterns.
It would be better to replace shockingly with
very or extremely.Page 39

Grammatical structures
In general, it is best to avoid contractions
The central bank chairman predicted that a
devaluation wouldn't take place.
The central bank chairman predicted that a
devaluation would not take place.Page 40

Avoid rhetoric etc !
Some negative forms are more formal than
others (hint: the less formal ones usually
occur with contractions):
Limit the use of expressions like and so forth,
etc. It is better to be explicit.
Avoid addressing the reader as you.
It is best to limit the use of direct questionsPage 41

Place adverbs within the verb
In this section, first I will discuss how commercial
buildings can be built in economical ways .
In this section, I will first discuss how commercial
buildings can be built in economical ways.
Then any underlying causes can be identified and
Any underlying causes can then be identified and
addressed.Page 42

Turning actions into nouns
The term 'nominalisation' refers to the process of
turning verbs into nouns:
We analysed (verb) the data. This revealed a number of
The analysis (noun) of the data revealed a number of
trends. Page 43

Cautious language
It is certain that
It is very probable/ highly likely that
It is likely that
It is possible that
It is unlikely that reducing fat intake lowers the
risk of heart disease.Page 44

Cautious language
Reducing fat intake appears to lower the risk of heart
It seems that reducing fat intake lowers the risk of
heart disease.
Some researchers suggest that reducing fat intake
lowers the risk of heart disease.
Some studies indicate that reducing fat intake lowers
the risk of heart disease.
For this age group, reducing fat intake lowers the risk
of heart disease.
In most of the cases studied, reducing fat intake
lowered the risk of heart disease.Page 45

Cautious language
Use a qualifying verb:
Reducing fat intake tends to lower the risk of
heart disease.
Reducing fat intake contributes to lowering
the risk of heart disease
.Page 46

Write with authority
A research degree is usually the first step towards
independent research. As you carry out your research
you become an expert on your topic, ready to engage in
discussion with other experts in your field. While you
don't want to overstate your claims, the knowledge you
acquire does allow you to adopt a particular position in
relation to other researchers' work.
Develop your position
Taking up your position as a scholar in the discipline is
not always easy, particularly when you read the work of
highly esteemed professionals. Before you can actually
write authoritatively you will need to develop
confidence in your work and your opinions.
Here are some ways to helpTongueage 47

Culture and styles of
What constitutes good writing at university is
determined partly by the practice of expert writers in
various disciplines, and partly by the writing norms
that are taught in schools. These practices and norms
can differ from one country or language region to
another, as well as from one discipline to another. They
influence the expectations that a reader brings to a text.
Research comparing the presentation of argument in a
text in a number of languages has identified these areas
of variation:
placement of purpose
reader and writer responsibilityPage 48

1. Placement of purpose
2. Linearity
3. Reader and writer responsibilityPage 49

The following Table of Contents gives the
headings of a Masters thesis. What do you
think of it? What could be improved

The following Table of Contents gives the
headings of a PhD thesis in Medicine. What
do you think of it? What could be improved
? Acknowledgements
? List of Abbreviations
? Synopsis
? 1. Introduction
? 1.1 Content of Dissertation
? 1.2 Aims and Hypothesis of the Study
? 2. The Concept of OCD
? 2.1 Diagnosis, Classification and Formulation
? 2.2 The Development of the Disorder
? 2.3 Subtypes of OCD
2.4 Other Possibilities
? 2.5 Discussion and Subclassification of OCDPage 51

? Aspects of BiologicalNeurotransmitters and OCD
? [There are then 6 sub-categories listed at this level]
? Discussion of Methodological Considerations
? The Ethics of Clinical Research in Psychosis
? Approach to Psychopathological Analysis in this Study
? Neuroendocrine Strategy in this Study
? Results
? Refusals to Consent
? Comparison of Patients and Controls
? Within Patient-Group Analysis
? Discussion
? Elaboration of Results
? Possible Confounding Factors
? Significance of the Results
? Further Research
? The Planned Study
? Concluding Remarks
? Bibliography
? AppendicesPage 52

At the different levels of the thesis and starting with the
top level this can apply to:
The whole thesis ("The focus of this thesis is...")
Another chapter ("The physical properties are presented
and analysed in Chapter 5.")
The current chapter ("The rest of this chapter will
Another section ("In the previous section, it was
demonstrated that...")
The current section ("The following case study will
Passage immediately preceeding or following ("The
objectives are as follows:...")Page 53

Reader directions
More specifically, these reader directions can
function to serve the following three purposes:
To provide forecasting statements which give
the reader in advance the structure of what is to
follow, so the argument is easier to follow and
the detail easier to absorb.
To recapitulate or review, which enables the
reader to make explicit links between what has
just been read and what is to come.
To give an overview or purpose (pointing
forward and/or back). Page 54

Sharpen your writing skills
As you write and rewrite, your ability to express
yourself clearly and precisely should be
improving all the time.
In this section you can learn to develop a good
paragraph, the basic building block of your
polish your text through effective editing and
make your writing more readable Page 55

Developing a good paragraph
Paragraphs are the building blocks of
argument. Knowing how to construct a good
paragraph enables you to make your points
clearly and connect them logically.Page 56

Organisation of a paragraph
Each paragraph in a text contains a main
idea which is related to the other major
points presented in the text. Unity, or
concentration on a single topic, is
essential if a paragraph is to be effective.
It is usually helpful to present
generalisations about the topic before
specific information.Page 57

There are numerous ways of supporting
the main idea of a paragraph with
supporting information. The following
are some of the most commonly
encounteredTongueage 58

Editing and proofreading
Editing may seem like something you don't
need to do until just before you hand your
thesis in, but it should be part of your writing
cycle. You can think of the preparation of any
piece of writing as taking place in stages, like
thisTongueage 59

Definition (formal, informal, and expanded;
especially in the non-science disciplines, may
involve competing definitions)
Classification (formal and informal)
Description (physical, function, and process)
Expansion (may involve paraphrasing or
summarizing the evidence of other researchers
on the topic)
Cause and effect
Exemplification (may involve facts, statistics,
evidence, or details that support the topic)Page 60

It's always best to put your writing aside for a day
or so before editing. Printing out a hard copy also
makes it much easier to see your work as another
reader would.Page 61

What do you look for?
1. How this piece fits into the larger unit it
belongs to:
What is its function of this section in the
overall thesis/chapter/research paper? (Are
you introducing a topic, giving background,
arguing a particular position...?)
Have you made clear how this section relates
to the big picture?
Does it actually do what it says it is going to
do?Page 62

1. How well it works internally:
Are there logical connections between the
points of the argument?
evidence -does it support what it is supposed
to support?
relevance -does every point contribute to the
language -are the right words/expressions
used to make the points you want to make?
(clarity, conventions and terms of your
discipline, consistency of register)Page 63

1. Presentation:
Checking at this level, usually referred
to as proofreading, is done after the
other two.
These are some examples of the kinds of
detail you should check at this stage:
grammatical accuracy
formattingPage 64

Try to automate for consistency (use styles, templates,
reference-managing software)
Build up a writing guide for abbreviations,
capitalisation, spelling (-ise/-ize)
Do small chunks at a time
Proofread for one specific thing
Create a checklist of your common errors. Update it
each time you edit.
Find ways of looking at the text differently (to focus
on form), e.g:
Print out a proofreading copy in large font
Put in a page return at the end of each sentence
Read aloud, word by word”using your mouth and
ears as well may help you to notice things your eyes
would miss.Page 65

Using a professional editor
As well as the editorial advice that academic supervisors
provide, students are permitted to use a professional editor
in preparing their thesis for submission. A policy for the
ethical editing of theses has been developed by the Deans
and Directors of Graduate Studies ollaboratively with the
Council of Australian Societies of Editors. Professional
editorial intervention should only be in terms of language
and illustrations, completeness and consistency. It is not
permitted to include substance and structure. At Monash,
students must obtain written permission from their
supervisor before using a professional editor. Where a
thesis has been professionally edited, the name of the
editor and a description of the service should be presented
in the acknowledgements.Page 66

Paragraph doesn't read well?
To find out whether every sentence in a paragraph is
contributing to the purpose the writer had in mind, take
the key ideas from each sentence and arrange them in a
tree diagram. Start with the key words of the topic
sentence (usually the first sentence). Each branch of the
tree follows an idea until it can go no further.
Sentence doesn't read well?
Is the problem that it doesn't link well to the
surrounding sentences? Check sentence linking by
reading out loud. If your sentences sound
like a set of unrelated statements, check whether you
have arranged old and new information in the best way.Page 67

Chapters / sections too long?
Check your paragraphs. Your reader should be able to
glance at the first sentence of each paragraph in a
section or chapter and this should constitute the
framework of your logical argument. Have you
elaborated these points more than is necessary?
Remove unnecessary words, clauses or sentences.
Check if you are including more examples or quotations
than are necessary to make your point. Replace lengthy
descriptions with tables or figures.Page 68

Chapters / sections too short?
Say to yourself, "The point I want to get across here
is..."; then, "The specifics of this point are..."'. At this
point, you can try asking who, what, when, where, why
and how: you are guaranteed to come up with more
useful things to say. (This can also help with writer's
Check that you have introduced and concluded each
chapter sufficiently. Make sure you have explained your
methodology adequately. See if there are more
references to include. Have you got any material in an
Appendix that should go in a chapter?Page 69

Readable writing
In a thesis you often need to use technical and abstract
vocabulary, and to express complex ideas. At the same
time, your reader should not have to work too hard to
understand what you are saying. What makes writing
easy to read?
When we read, information perceived by the eye is held
in working memory while it is processed by the brain.
The more familiar we are with the subject matter of the
text, and with the kind of text being read, the easier this
processing task is. Our prior knowledge means that less
visual information is needed, so reading is faster and
easier.Page 70

Some common problems
The following kinds of writing features place a heavy
load on the working memory, even for readers who
know something about the topic:
very long and complex sentences
using many words when one would do the job
densely packed information
text does not "hang together" (i.e. it reads like a
series of unrelated statements)Page 71

Develop oral communication
In order to develop a substantial academic work that is
considered robust and novel, it is helpful to engage in
communication with colleagues and professionals about
the research. You will talk about your research and
justify your contentions to those who are knowledgeable
in the field and those who have expertise in research in
other fields. Consequently, part of developing the thesis
in a way that meets the academic rigours and standards
of the discipline is engaging in communication about the
research with other researchers, academics and
practitioners, and gaining worthwhile insights from
them. Page 72

Since one goal of the research degree is to enhance your
professional standing, and the expected outcome is to
have expertise in your particular area, the duration of
candidature is a time for developing your academic
persona within the discipline so that you are comfortable
to take up your place as an authority. You will therefore
need to be able to speak comfortably and authoritatively
about the disciplinary area in general and your own
research in particular. It is a good idea therefore to
consciously develop these skills and seek opportunities to
discuss your research with authority and to be able to
present your work in an informed and confident manner
in both formal and informal fora. Page 73

¢Much of the support you will get during your
candidature and substantial learning can take
place through a positive interpersonal
relationship with your supervisor built on good
communication. Keep in mind, much learning
can take place through dialogue with your
¢Sophisticated oral communication skills are
often necessary for the data collection phase of
your research particularly if you if you choose to
use a qualitative methodology such as
conducting interviews or focus groups. Page 74

Talk to your supervisors
As you undertake your journey along this exciting and
creative degree path, you will be accompanied by a
guide, your supervisor (or supervisors). Over the
duration of candidature, your supervisor may take on a
number of roles and personae, from expert and teacher,
to facilitator, critical friend and confidant.Page 75

Communication is the foundation for a good
relationship with your supervisor.
It is a hierarchical relationship, and therefore you could
legitimately feel that your supervisor should be the one
to initiate communication, put you at ease and be the
good communicator. This is not always the case. Your
supervisor may have considerable expertise and
knowledge that can guide you and your project and implimentation, but he
or she may not have good interpersonal skills. If that is
the case you may need to be proactive in taking
responsibility for establishing a comfortable interaction
with your supervisor. It is helpful to look for some ways
to create a good working
relationship with your supervisor at the start of
candidature by
establishing expectations and responsibilities, and
ensuring that you get good feedbackPage 76

Just as each doctoral project and implimentation is unique, so each
supervisory situation is different.
Your supervisory relationship will endure over several years
through a range of personal and educational circumstances.
Ensuring that it is a pleasant and comfortable relationship is a
priority which will free you to enjoy the research process and
allow it to contribute to your intellectual growth, your
professional development and the timely completion of a
successful thesis. The supervisory relationship tends to be
intense and can be a source of stress. Some have even
compared it to a marriage! Difficulties can arise at times in
the personal interaction. You may feel that your supervisor
provides you with inadequate validation, feedback, guidance
or support or conversely, you may experience too much
direction and control, or even too much friendship. In
general, difficulties will be averted by clear communication. If
you create a comfortable supervisory relationship you will feel
more supported and also more satisfied with the research
degree process.Page 77

Keep in mind that much of the success of
your supervision lies in your hands.
Within the supervisory relationship is the potential for
significant learning: a good supervisor can create an
intellectually stimulating, enculturating and challenging
learning environment, facilitating immersion into the
academic life of the discipline and its discourse. Casual
interactions, formal meetings, focused suggestions,
actual teaching and intellectual challenges, where your
supervisor challenges your thinking, assumptions, and
argument as well as providing rigorous critique of your
written work - these are all means for personal
intellectual growth.Page 78

And so on and on¦.
Go ahead and write you thesis¦

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