Grad students, get writing!

Aug 25 2010 Published by under [Education&Careers]

Over at Academic Inspirations, Dr. O brings up a great point about dissertation writing:

On the contrary, grad students should be continually writing throughout their thesis work, one results section at a time. For papers, if possible. If not, then for practice. Writing is an art, and it takes lots of practice. You understand your data and results better when you have time to write and reflect on them. Speaking on those results is important too, but unless you can convey your message on paper, you're doomed.

So grad students, start writing now.

Yes, yes, and more yes. For some of my students, I've had to structure them a bit, coaxing them to get me a draft of a manuscript--even if the results aren't all in yet--but such-and-such a date, just so that they get in the habit of writing about things while they're fresh in their minds and they don't procrastinate and put off starting the manuscript for another month (or 6). Grad students, it's a great habit to get into RIGHT NOW--write a bit every day (or every week, if you're like me and prefer to vomit papers up in larger chunks)--just get into the habit of doing it regularly and you'll be way ahead of the game when it comes to your thesis or dissertation.

No responses yet

  • DrugMonkey says:

    Grad students? Hell, anyone from undergrad to Emeritii. Keep your writing in practice.

  • kijibaji says:

    Definitely! Writing is not something that comes naturally to me, so I'm trying to make the whole process a little less painful -- because let's face it, I'll be doing it for a while! I'm working on my prospectus and I've been forcing myself to write something (or re-write something) every day and it really has helped. Not only does it feel less forced but my writing is improving, to the point where one of my supervisors commented on how well my last draft reads (of course, that didn't stop him from giving me a long list of things to re-write... again!). So, grad students everywhere, write! Write like you've never written before!

  • rebecca says:

    DM, yes, good point. But hopefully those of us more advanced in the game know that we need to keep writing...