Thesis Examination – What examiners look for?

I recently attended a seminar on “What examiners look for in a thesis?” yet again ūüôā You can read on my previous experiences and tips received here and here.

Anyway, it was a different speaker this time around, Professor Andrew Brennan, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Graduate Research) of LTU. Despite being somewhat similar in contents, the presentation was different. There were also a few extra tips I received from the talk that I wanted to share.

Basically, your thesis is an evidence of your current competence and future capacity. It must provides good, readable report of professional interest. It’s supposed to tell a story articulately, takes the reader into a new realm and be original enough (just enough he..he..he..).

The structure of the thesis must be answering the following questions:

(1) What am I saying?

Say what is it you are trying to tell the reader clearly

(2) Does it matter?

Why is what you are saying that important

(3) Has anyone said it before you?

Well, yes…maybe…but definitely not in a way you’re saying it

And as for choosing examiners, an interesting tip is to always try to suggest and appoint a senior, more experienced person. Because in most cases, they are the ones who will be more supportive¬†of your work compared to a more younger, recently¬†appointed¬†academics who would consider your work¬†as ‘competition’ ūüėČ So think about it, when you talk to your supervisor about your choices of examiner. All the best!

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