Are you a doctoral student tired of searching for information in an effort to finish your dissertation proposal?
Good news...writing the proposal doesn’t have to be difficult!
Does any of this sound like you:
- You are ready to start the first three chapters but don’t know where to begin.
- You feel like you are receiving little to no support or guidance from your dissertation chair and committee.
- You have been scouring the internet and reading all the books to figure out exactly what you need to do but are left feeling overwhelmed and exhausted.
If yes, you’re not alone. I’ve been there too!
Here’s what no one will tell you about the dissertation process: Just because you finished coursework, doesn’t mean you know how to be a researcher or even a write. Most people learn how to be effective researchers from struggling through it.
Imagine having personalized accountability and support so that you no longer have to figure out this qualitative stuff on your own because you have a trusted advisor and a community of like-minded scholars assisting you.
How would you feel?
If you’re anything like me, you would finally feel like this research thing is doable without tons of money and years of study.
I already made those investments, so you don’t have to!
My $25,000 Lesson…
I was required to complete an independent research project before I could move on to my preliminary exams in my doctoral program. This project is intended to be completed during by the end of the summer of your 1st year. My program is a 3-year program. That was not my story.
I became completely overwhelmed by the entire process.
Guess what I did? I found myself literally copying articles and other people’s proposals because I did not know what I was doing. It was difficult balancing course work along with this research project. I felt that I didn’t know enough or hadn’t read enough to be able to do my own research project.
I just reading another article or another qualitative book to get focused or to learn about research and I would end up right back in the same place: Overwhelmed by all the strategies and suggestions.
I did not finish that research project until the fall of my 3rd year. (When I should have been working on my dissertation proposal.)
When I started on my dissertation proposal, I started with Chapter 2, and then I would switch to Chapter 3, go back to Chapter 1, only to abandon it to go back to Chapter 2. As I continued to finish all the things at the same time, I didn’t complete one thing.
That’s when my chair gave me the side eye and said, “Work on one chapter at a time and send me your drafts as you go along. Don’t worry about making it perfect.”
I sent what I had for Chapter 2 (Bless my chair for reading that mess!).
I then decided that my one thing would be Chapter 1. I wrote a sh*tty draft, sent it to my chair, and then moved on to the next Chapter. I was able to finish my entire proposal in less than 2 months.
Here’s the thing no one tell you about writing:
All first drafts suck and no one is an island. We all need others to help us to improve as writers and researchers.
Unfortunately, I learned this lesson after taking an additional year (over $25,000 in tuition/fees) to finish that research project. I don’t want you to have to learn the same costly lesson.
Your Path to a Finished Proposal
You can complete your first 3 chapters without feeling overwhelmed and isolated.
Without taking up months and months to finish.
It’s going to require you to know a few things first, like qualitative research design.
To write your proposal, you need to have these must-haves:
- Clear problem you are addressing and a clear understanding of why it needs to be addressed.
- Confidence in your knowledge and abilities as a scholar and researcher.
- Courage to share what you know and what you want to know.
You need to start writing in order for you to feel confident that you can complete your dissertation.
You must have clarity on who or what is centered in your study.
You have to know about their experiences and the gaps that exists.
You have to know possible ways to address those gaps so you can change your field (even the world).
Guess how you’re going to figure this out? Through writing one chapter at a time!
Let me help you!