“I Am Constantly Having To Rewrite It To My Advisor’s Wishes”

Posted in category Master Students

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Ask Vladimir

Ask Vladimir

‘Ask Vladimir’ is a new feature on this Blog. I take most interesting (sometimes most common) questions and address them here so that other users can benefit from the information (tips, advice and so on).

Here is a classic question I get over and over (asked by Bellyn K. Whitteker).

“I am in the end stage of my thesis. I am constantly having to rewrite it to my advisor’s wishes. This has been going on for over a year. What would you suggest at this point? Would you hire an editor? I feel like I need fresh eyes to tell me exactly what is wrong. Thanks!”

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My answer:
Dear Bellyn,

First of all, congratulations on the final stage of your thesis. However, as you might have experienced, the end stage is always the most intense part of thesis writing project.

Thanks for your question and here is my answer.

Calm down, it is natural that you have to rewrite your thesis all the time to suit your advisor’s wishes. Of course over a year is a bit too much, but I assume that you’ve not been pushing the project too hard on a continuous basis.

My guess is that your advisor does not see a good flow in your thesis, which is why you’ve been asked to rewrite over and over. Most likely, there are some parts in your thesis that do not connect well.

Yes, to get somebody to look at your thesis is always a good idea. However, don’t just give it to anyone. If you could find a person who has some specialized knowledge in the area you are writing about, great! Go ahead and ask him/her to go through your paper.

But most importantly, there is only one person who knows your thesis the best of all. And that’s YOU. In fact you know your thesis so well that at times it feels like you know nothing about it. At such times, I strongly suggest that you rejuvenate yourself first (by taking some walk, or getting fresh air or going to swimming pool). Come back to your working space, eliminate all distractions and read your paper as though you’re reading it for the first time. I know it may sound odd but you need to put yourself in the mindset as though you’ve never seen this paper before and be as critical to the points made in the thesis as possible. Use your marker/pencil and just go over all the points as quickly as possible. Don’t get caught up on the details. Just read it through and mark things you find disconnecting. You will come back to those points later. I assume that you have a nice bulk of content. So, I would not recommend to go over your thesis at one straight shot. Divide it into several rounds. Let’s say read it for 20 minutes non-stop, take a break for 5-10 minutes, then come back and do it for another 20 minutes. Don’t get distracted! It is very important.

Normally, I don’t recommend hiring an editor. Of course it is not a bad thing to do, but I am sure you can handle well without such a service. If you can’t find anyone to look at your thesis and give you a feedback then you may consider the service.

Writing a thesis is not an easy task, which is why some people sometimes tend to hire professional writers/editors to help them with their theses. I think in most cases that’s a big excuse. I am 100% sure that you can and will finish your thesis yourself. It is just a little bit of more patience, hard work and perseverance. But the longer you extend it the more likely you will resort to the external services like the one you mentioned. Just remind yourself that nothing is permanent. You just need to get it done!

Please let me know if this answer helps you a little.

To your success,


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One Response to ““I Am Constantly Having To Rewrite It To My Advisor’s Wishes””

  1. thomasNo Gravatar says:

    November 4th, 2008 at 1:47 am

    I believe it is an important advice for lots of persons who are writting or will write a thesis.

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