We asked 5 PhD students, their best advice on completing a Doctoral Thesis, if you or someone you know are on this journey, be sure to read this article
1. Khyati from Gujrat
One of the biggest things that I have struggled with is maintaining a healthy work-life balance – to be able to finally zero in on a routine that worked best was quite a struggle. Eventually, I had to sort everything out right down to short-term goals, so that I felt a sense of order and fulfilment with those little milestones that kept me on track! Two other things that I have realised along the way are – firstly
“Oh I’ll remember this for sure, so I’m not going to note this down” is the biggest lie ever!
(You never end up recalling it faithfully!) so instead of racking your brain later just note down everything or better yet take the lazy way out and make voice notes (but do be sure to name the files coherently for sorting purpose!). Secondly, it’s never too early to start making your drafts – you will have to keep going back and forth with your supervisor regardless, so to give your thesis a better direction and structure just start writing it already!
2. Hina from Singapore
Stay positive through this journey. Though, I am still in this journey
3. Amreen from Chandigarh
- Procrastination: I’ve done this and trust me doing all the month’s work in one week is not at all good for your under eyes or even for your sleep cycle.
- Get to know your supervisor: It is vital to know your PhD supervisor as PhD is atleast 5-6 years of commitment. If you are stuck with a supervisor who is just unbearable then best of luck to you.
- Time Limit: Before you start your Ph.D, bear in your mind that it is not necessary that your thesis will be completed within a set time frame as it not only depends upon you but your supervisor as well. It can take longer than expected.
- Work: Do not wait for your Ph.D to finish before you start working. Apply for the job you want as soon as you have decided your thesis topic.
- Your topic: Take time to explore and come up with the topic which interests you rather than jumping the gun. Sometimes we are in a hurry to start off with our thesis that we don’t spend enough time exploring more options with respect to our thesis topic. It is better to take time than regret later.
4. Himanshi from Uttar Pradesh
Choose a topic after deep research and plan your work on the basis of facilities available in the lab in which you have to work. And also try to finish your work within stipulated time.
Don’t make it a mountain in your head, just aim to do a little everyday. Question what you write for assumptions, bias and opinion, to get a well written thesis. Lastly, the key is to focus on your contribution to knowledge.