How to Research & Write a Successful PhD

Series
Prentice Hall
Author
Kathleen McMillan / Jonathan Weyers  
Publisher
Pearson
Cover
Softcover
Edition
1
Language
English
Total pages
424
Pub.-date
August 2013
ISBN13
9780273773917
ISBN
0273773917
Related Titles



Description

A practical, step-by-step guide to postgraduate study, covering the whole research process from planning to writing up and beyond.

 

Undertaking a large-scale original research project involves choosing an appropriate topic, planning and carrying out the research, and analysing and writing up the data and conclusions. At PhD level, these steps can be challenging for any student. Using the tried-and-tested approach, style and pedagogy of the Smarter Student series, this text delivers timely, practical, hands-on guidance based on real-life experience from students and supervisors alike.

 

The book guides the student through all of the key aspects of being a researcher and delivering a successful PhD thesis. It is an invaluable tutorial and reference for those entering academic life at doctoral level, providing practical guidance, examples and tips for success.

Table of Contents

Introduction

1. Taking on postgraduate studies - preliminary considerations

2. Principles of postgraduateness – how to approach study at this new level

 

Getting started  

3. Identifying and framing research questions – how to set targets and formulate hypotheses

4.    Writing a proposal or research plan – how to outline your approach to postgraduate study

 

Key research skills

5. Developing as a researcher – appraising your skills and gaining proficiency

6. Planning and time management – how to complete your research and write up on time

7. Information literacy for PhD study – how to find relevant source material

8. Accessing content from the literature - how to read and evaluate research publications

9. Organising research materials – how to collect and file information and details of references

 

Interactions with others during a research programme

10.  Student-supervisor relationships – how to make the most of this important collaboration

11.  Dealing with the highs and lows of being a postgraduate – how to respond positively to events and feelings

12.  Working in a research team – how to balance research cooperation and autonomy

13.  Teaching as a postgraduate – how to make the most of opportunities to tutor, demonstrate and lecture

14.  Giving a research seminar or paper – how to deliver an effective spoken presentation

15.  Preparing and presenting a poster – how to summarise and communicate your findings

16.  Being appraised – how to respond to progress monitoring and other feedback on your work

 

Research Methods

17.  Critical thinking – how to apply method to arrive at valid, original ideas

18.  Arriving at a position and supporting it – how to sift fact and opinion and express your conclusions

19.  Research ethics and safety – how to conduct an appropriate, principled and safe investigation

20.  Referencing, citing and avoiding plagiarism – how to refer appropriately to the results and ideas of others

21.  Interpreting and presenting data – how to understand and produce graphs, tables and basic statistics

22.  Aspects of qualitative research – how to obtain and analyse non-numerical information

23.  Aspects of quantitative research – how to obtain and analyse numerical data

24.  Experiments and field studies – how to design and conduct lab and field investigations

 

Writing up your research

25.  Links between research, writing and speaking – how to gain from the interactions between investigation, communication and thought

26.  The nature of scholarly writing - how to produce formal writing at PhD level

27.  Scholarly writing style – how to construct effective academic text

28.  Elements of a thesis – how to write up the different sections

29.  Becoming an autonomous writer – how to take control of the writing process

30.  Thesis presentation – how to submit your work in the appropriate manner

 

Examination and beyond

31.  The PhD viva – how to prepare for and perform in your oral exam

32.  Publishing your research – how to write and submit a successful paper

33.  After your doctorate – how to make appropriate use of your qualification

Back Cover

A practical, step-by-step guide to postgraduate study, covering the whole research process from planning to writing up and beyond.

Undertaking a large-scale original research project involves choosing an appropriate topic, planning and carrying out the research, and analysing and writing up the data and conclusions. At PhD level, these steps can be challenging for any student. Using the tried-and-tested approach, style and pedagogy of the Smarter Student series, this text delivers timely, practical, hands-on guidance based on real-life experience from students and supervisors alike.

The book guides the student through all of the key aspects of being a researcher and delivering a successful PhD thesis. It is an invaluable tutorial and reference for those entering academic life at doctoral level, providing practical guidance, examples and tips for success on areas such as:

·    Understanding the principles of postgraduateness

·    Choosing a theme and topic for your research

·    Writing a research proposal

·    Working with your supervisor and progress monitoring committee

·    Planning and managing your time and research activities

·    Teaching as a postgraduate

·    Ethics and safety issues in research

·    Information literacy for PhD study

·    Approaches to obtaining qualitative and quantitative data

·    How to think critically, arrive at a position and make conclusions

·    Interpreting and presenting data

·    Delivering seminars and papers and presenting posters

·    Successful academic writing styles and conventions

·    Correct citing, referencing and avoidance of plagiarism

·    Thesis structures and their presentation

·    The PhD viva

·    Publishing your research and job-seeking

An essential guide to success in academia at PhD level!

Author

Jonathan Weyers and Kathleen McMillan both work at the University of Dundee. Both have been teaching and lecturing for over 25 years and latterly have specialised in the transferable skills area. They have a track record of collaborative writing and achievement in this area.