Dissertation Direction (1) : Choosing your topic

The dissertation. If you're anything like me, it's something that's been at the back of your mind since first year, but actually having to do it seemed so far away; then before you know it, final year is upon you and it's time to start working on it!

I'll admit that the thought of doing a dissertation always seemed daunting to me - I'd seen older students posting their obligatory hand in photos on social media and heard many horror stories about all nighters in the library and trying to reach word counts, yet still felt a little in the dark as to what to expect when starting my own...

As I've just finished my undergrad degree & successfully tackled my dissertation (in the middle of lockdown😂), I felt like it would be useful for me to do a few posts with some tips and words of advice for other students in the hope that it will provide a little reassurance on what you can expect!

This post focuses on choosing your topic, as sometimes there's so many up and coming topics in nutrition that choosing one can seem almost impossible🤔

🍇 My first piece of advice is to choose something you're really interested in! This will make putting in the hours so much easier, especially when searching the literature already published within the field!

🍏 Take a look at other research going on in your university; you may be able to work on something similar or get good inspiration!

🍉 If you have a particular interest, consider contacting a lecturer from your uni who works within that field- they may be able to advise you on any ideas you've had, or suggest others 😊

🍊 Do your own research on the topic first, as understanding the field will make planning a project so much easier! It also ensures that there's plenty of existing literature to compare your study to, which will make your life soo much easier when doing the write up!

🍋 Finally, remember that the dissertation process may differ slightly between universities; some may give you more freedom into picking your title (note above tips), whereas at my university, we were given a list of available projects and their details to read through. We then had to pick about 10 that we'd be happy to work on and submit these preferences, and were then allocated one of the 10 we selected.

If this is the case at your uni and there's one on the list you'd like to know more about, contact the supervisor as they're normally happy to give you more info 😁 and make sure you'd be happy to work on any projects you select, as you could be given any of your choices!!

I really hope that these tips will be helpful for some of you; and please stay tuned for another post on working with your supervisor! 👀

Katie (IG= KTnu.trition)

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