Seminar – Thesis Examination..Tips (PART 1)

Firstly, WHAT ARE THE EXAMINERS LOOKING FOR?

Note of course the REQUIREMENTS FOR PhDS.

  • Substantial and original contribution to knowledge.
  • Competence in the design and conduct of a project; makes a contribution to knowledge.
  • Appropriate methodological skills and understanding of them, including any shortcomings they may have.
  • Appreciate the relationship between your work and that of others in the field.
  • Ability to communicate clearly, concisely and authoritatively in the discipline, at a satisfactory level of literary presentation.

THESE DO NOT MEAN THAT IF YOU PAY YOUR MONEY, DO YOUR TIME DUTIFULLY, AND THAT GUARANTEE YOU WILL GET YOUR DEGREE!

SO, THESE ARE WHAT THE EXAMINERS ARE MEANT TO PERUSE IN YOUR THESIS.

Secondly, HOW DO THEY (GENERALLY) GO ABOUT IT?

There is no “right’ or “wrong” way to write a thesis, but there are numerous hints that you should follow. So put yourself in the position of an examiner. You find the package in your mailbox, and open it. What would be the first features that should strike you?

The followings are important to note:

  1. Size
  2. General Impression

SIZE

Examiners are nominated because of their expertise in the field; or because they are generally quite familiar with the area of your research. Usually, they are also very busy people, so mostly they do not want absolutely everything explained/defined in the minutest detail. But they do appreciate new concepts/methods being described clearly. They want to see a thesis, not an encyclopaedia! So please do not exceed the word limit.

GENERAL IMPRESSION

Although first impression is not the end of the world for your thesis, a good overall general impression does help in making the examiner much more tolerant towards the whole thesis. So make sure of the following:

  • Is it properly bound and labeled? Not “el cheapo”! Also identifiably yours.
  • Are diagrams, graphs, figures, photos, etc. Properly reproduced; and clearly, adequately labeled? No hand-written scribbles!
  • Title page and university designation correctly formatted? Is it the work that the examiner expected to receive, or has it changed somewhere along the line?
  • Are the references properly gathered together and formatted according to normal practice in the field?
  • Does the “contents” pages accurately reflect the contents?

IT MUST BE NEAT, TIDY AND PRESENTABLE. IN OTHER WORDS A PROFESSIONAL JOB.

Next, the examiner will do A FIRST (REASONABLY) FULL READING

This will confirm or (contradict!) The first general impression he/she got from the overall thesis.

Examiner would look for:

  1. Abstract clear and concise? (acknowledgments)
  2. Chapters in a sensible order?
  3. Objectives of the research clear and up front?
  4. Methodology stated?
  5. Results stated?
  6. Conclusions stated?
  7. Publications arising stated?

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One Response to Seminar – Thesis Examination..Tips (PART 1)

  1. Pingback: Thesis Examination – What examiners look for? | lawkingdom

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