How To Find Outstanding Dissertation Topics: Helpful Advice

When you finally reach the point in your academic career where you get to write a dissertation, you might feel completely overwhelmed. This paper will be the culminating activity in a lifetime of education. It will affect your potential job searching ability and it will show what you have learned and how you are able to use it your post-college life. While you might be experiencing mixed emotions on the fact that you get to write a dissertation, you are probably experiencing fear in the idea that you need to choose a topic.

Preliminary Research Gets You Started

The first step to picking a dissertation topic is to do some preliminary research. Most likely, you do have some idea about what you would like to do, so you should start by looking at what is available and what has already been done. Successful students often look at their school’s dissertation database to see what has been written and how the topic was evaluated by committee members.

When you are ready to narrow down a topic, here are some questions to ask yourself:

  • Does the topic repeat an idea that you found in the database?
  • Does the topic offer something new or does it simply rehash previous ideas?
  • Can your topic help other people with their own research projects?

Your research topic should not be similar to any found in a database. The topic should provide new ideas, even if the topic has been covered. It should also provide new ideas that other researchers could analyze at later dates. Otherwise, the dissertation topic is rather useless.

Consider Your Research Methods

Another consideration for dissertation topics involves the methods you use for research. Each curricular area will have different research methods, so the topic should fit your course of study. For example, a dissertation on a literary topic will most likely not involve research in a lab, but a dissertation about biology probably will.

Here are a few topics to get you thinking:

  • How does young adult literature attract non-readers?
  • What is different about the genetic makeup of elite athletes when compared to average athletes?
  • How does branding affect the minds of children under the age of five?
  • How do linguistic differences in the same language affect the understanding between speakers?
  • How does art and music education really affect student test scores in math and reading?