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Macmillan Higher Education Palgrave Higher Education

Dissertations and Project Reports

A Step by Step Guide

ISBN 9781137364265
Publication Date January 2014
Formats Paperback Ebook 
Publisher Palgrave
Series Palgrave Study Skills

Bestselling study skills author Stella Cottrell brings her tried and tested approach to help you succeed with your dissertations and project reports. With plenty of hands-on activities, checklists and planners, this guide covers everything you need to know, from choosing a topic and developing a proposal, to conducting and writing up your research.

Stella Cottrell is Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Learning, Teaching and Student Engagement at the University of East London, UK and was formerly the Director of Lifelong Learning at the university of Leeds, UK. She is an international bestselling author, with over a million sales worldwide. Her other titles include The Study Skills Handbook, Critical Thinking Skills, The Palgrave Student Planner, The Exam Skills Handbook, and Skills for Success.

Acknowledgements
Introduction
PART I: PREPARATION AND PLANNING
1. Where Do I Start?
2. What Makes a Good Dissertation or Research Project?
3. Project Managing Your Dissertation
4. Managing Yourself for the Task
5. Time and Timing
6. Working with Your Supervisor
PART II: DEVELOPING YOUR PROPOSAL
7. Understanding the Assignment Brief
8. Selecting Your Topic and Title
9. Literature Search and Review
10. Principles of Good Research
11. Methodologies: Approaches to Research
12. Ethical Considerations
13. Writing the Research Proposal
PART III: CONDUCTING THE RESEARCH
14. The Evidence Base
15. Working with Participants
16. Experiments
17. Observations
18. Surveys and Questionnaires
19. Interviews
20. Case Studies
21. Interpreting Your Findings
PART IV: WRITING IT UP
22. Your Writing Strategy
23. Getting the Structure Right
24. Fine Tuning your Writing
25. Viva Exams
Final Considerations
References
Index

Reviews

... There is so much to like about Dissertations and Project Reports that I am not sure where to begin. Organization is certainly a key variable as one prepares to write a dissertation, thesis, or a research paper. And, here it is, presented in a manner that can be individualized to meet the needs of each writer. I wish I'd been able to make use of this so long ago when preparing my own dissertation! ... The checklists provide the necessary organization to this sometimes overwhelming activity. The resulting 'visual guide' helps to make this process so much clearer.' - Dr Cora M. Dzubak, Nittany Success Center Director, Penn State - York, USA
'It was a pleasure reading through this step-by-step guide. I especially appreciate that the various academic, ethical, financial, psychological and social dimensions of dissertation-writing are covered in a friendly but firm manner. Students embarking on an extended essay or a bachelor's thesis for the first time will benefit from the sound advice about preparation and planning in particular, and more experienced or advanced postgraduates will find the guide a helpful and active reminder of the entire academic research process. The skills audit and evaluation exercise at the beginning and end, aligning with the inception and completion of a research project, readily capture the intellectual and self-development aims of independent student research.' - Dr Cissie Fu, Assistant Professor of Political Theory, Leiden University, the Netherlands
'This text is a well-structured guide for those embarking on their first dissertation or thesis. Taking candidates from 'I had a Dream' stage through to the lodgement of the final submission intertwined with examples learnt from experience ... I will be recommending to my students.' - John Cowan, Lecturer in Construction Management and Property, Construction Project Management, Property and Development, University of New South Wales, Australia
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