How to assess whether your dissertation topic is a good one

Here are some important questions to ask yourself in order to assess whether you have a good dissertation topic. I recommend that you go through this brief evaluation before you make a commitment to an area of inquiry. This exercise will reduce your stress and contribute to a topic that you will enjoy and be acceptable to your Committee.

1. Are you genuinely interested in this topic? Are you willing to do the work to become an expert on topic?

2. Do I have the expertise, skills, equipment and resources to address this topic in my research?

3. Don't ask a "so what?" question. Does it have practical value?

4. Do you have an interest in a certain area or a pet area that you really enjoy exploring?

5. Is there a new treatment that you would like to compare to another one or older one?

6. Is there a gap in the body of knowledge that you would like to fill?

7. Are there contradictions in results published the literature that you would like to address?

8. Does it build upon someone else's work but has a different twist?

9. Is it an original idea or has it been done with conclusive results?

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