Anyone who decides to pursue a Ph.D. will be required to put a thesis together in order to be awarded a degree. Understanding this key component of a Ph.D. program is essential to decide whether this degree is in your future. Time, dedication and research are all required while composing a thesis.
Harvard University Professor H.T. Kung details that students need to choose an area to research before getting into the process of examining a specific subject. The research topic must be very specialized for Ph.D. candidates, and students can expect to spend a lot of time building up general knowledge about the subject before moving to the in-depth research.
Becoming a serious researcher is not an easy transition for every Ph.D. candidate. However, successfully completing a Ph.D. program is dependent on a student's ability to learn how to conduct thorough, valid research. Professional publications are typically available to students through their university. A fee may be charged to every student attending a university to allow students to access subscriptions to research databases that are relevant to their major area of study.
It is important to remember to put some focus on newer technology when researching a subject. Research that only relates to the technologies that were available a decade ago will not provide valuable insights into the subject area. A Ph.D. thesis must provide new information or a different way of looking at a subject. Ph.D. candidates are expected to become experts in their area of study.
Formulating a Thesis Proposal
Students need to formulate a thesis proposal to present to professors for approval. This proposal must outline the question that the student intends to answer by conducting research. The University of Glasgow reminds Ph.D. candidates that their thesis is expected to contribute to the body of knowledge about a particular subject instead of simply reiterating information that is already known.
It is not necessary for students to talk about something that has never been discussed by academics in the past, but it is important for Ph.D. candidates to take a fresh approach to a subject. Deciding on a thesis requires a student to choose something that can be appropriately researched. However, students need to choose a specific topic instead of a broad subject matter.
Many potential Ph.D. students are overwhelmed by the idea of writing a lengthy paper for their thesis. While a thesis does need to be long enough to thoroughly explore the topic at hand, the exact length of a Ph.D. thesis varies according to the school and program. For example, the University College of London School of Computer Science suggests a thesis length of 150 pages. Other schools may require as little as 50 pages, but students must be able to provide value to the reader in these 50 pages.
Writing a Ph.D. thesis is a difficult process, but the rewards of earning a Ph.D. are many. Students who graduate with this degree can become professors, researchers and top professionals in their chosen field.