What Goes Around Comes Back Around

Grad School Tips to Speed up the Process

Writing a thesis or dissertation is a long and, at times, slow process. Given the daunting nature of such a task, it would make perfect sense that you would want it to go by quickly. There are many ways that you can speed up the process of writing your dissertation. For example, writing a little bit every day, maintaining a writing calendar, and setting personal writing goals are all very intuitive and doable grad school tips to speed up the dissertation or thesis process.

Unfortunately, there are some parts of the dissertation or thesis process that cannot be sped up. One of the biggest hiccups in the dissertation or thesis process is revision and, more specifically, turnaround time between drafts from your advisor or chair. At this point in your academic career, you have probably grown accustomed to the fast-paced world of graduate school and implemented plenty of grad school tips you had been given before you started your program. However, keep in mind that your professors have made a career in the fast-paced world of academia and constantly have a million things to do at any given moment. The chances of your professors dropping everything they are working on to revise your dissertation or thesis overnight is highly unlikely. Below are a few more grad school tips to avoid getting delayed in the dissertation or thesis process by faculty turnaround time.

Send what’s done when it’s done.

You do not need to be finished with your dissertation from cover to cover before you send it to your advisor. Not only will it take much longer to review the entire document, there may be revisions in earlier sections that will affect later sections. Solid advice is to send it off to your advisor as soon as you finish a major section, and continue working on other sections of your project in the meantime.

Plan ahead.

You know all too well how much work your dissertation is. Additionally, you know your timeline. If you want to defend by a certain date in order to graduate, you probably know the deadline. You may have been able to procrastinate a few projects over your career as a graduate student; however, the dissertation or thesis is not a process that can be rushed. Give yourself and your advisor ample time to revise your document.

Don’t be annoying.

Have you ever heard the saying that the squeaky wheel is the first to get oiled? That is not good advice when it comes to your dissertation. Your advisor will know when he or she needs to look over your document, so pestering him or her with emails about your document’s status will probably not help you get your revisions in a timelier manner. In fact, bugging your advisor might actually result in your revisions mysteriously taking longer.

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