If one of your goals or objectives in life is to be admitted to a graduate school or a PhD program, the most important and rather inevitable element is a thesis or dissertation (usually interchangeable), without which, a master’s or a doctoral degree would simply remain a far-fetched idea. A dissertation or a thesis basically refers to a writing or document which involves the author’s personal research and findings in the area of his/her study as a requirement for a master’s or doctoral degree. It is not only an important requirement for an academic degree, but it will also most likely serve as a stepping stone to your future job or career.
One herculean task of writing a thesis or dissertation is deciding the topic for the project/research. Being the very first step in writing a thesis/dissertation, it is crucial that you make the right choice and decide on the most suitable and apt topic for yourself. While some people may have had a head start on their research journey, with the topic of their research interest mapped out; yet for many, it continues to be a dreadful moment in their academic life. One of the main reasons being, not having a clue of where their interest lies. Not everyone is as headstrong as they would like, about the research topic that they plan to tackle. In fact, some students may not even have a clue about what topic they should or would want to work on.
Although the process of coming up with one may differ from person to person, there are certain ways that may prove to be helpful in coming up with Your Forensic Science Dissertation Topic.
1. Be well informed about your subject
While choosing a topic in itself is not an easy task, it certainly becomes harder to choose one when you are not well versed with the subject you have taken up. Equip yourself with proper knowledge: revise or refresh the topics from your course curriculum and keep yourself updated on the industry demands. It certainly helps when you have an idea about the current trend and practical problems being faced within your area of study.
2. Know your areas of interest
This is one advice that almost everyone will give you and although it sounds cliché, it stands true. Although some students are very much aware of what they are interested in, it may not come very easy for others. In that case, think about all the topics and theories that you have studied and learnt in your program and try to specify a particular area or chapter that interests you. Look into the topics that you would like to learn more about or the questions that come into your mind. Your dissertation or final year research project is not some small assignment that you complete in a span of a week, it’s gonna require months of efforts and endurance. If you do not have passion for your project, it will be nothing short of distress, even more so when you encounter roadblocks. So choose the topic of your liking to keep yourself motivated when things get hard.
3. Do not act in haste
One mistake that students usually make is to decide on a topic without giving it much thought. May be you have left the decision for the last minute and there is constant pressure from your university or faculty to submit a proposal. However, keep in mind that you will be the one to take the final blow if you find out that your project is not feasible at a later stage. This will result in a huge setback, especially, when you realise the mistake too late. You may run out of time or an opportunity to restart with a new topic.
4. Research, research and research
Once you manage to find your area of interest within your program, the most important thing is to research more about the it. Look up all the relevant information that are available including prior academic research on that topic, books, blogs and articles. Skim through the recent publications of various journals, which will give you an idea of the current works that are being done in that particular field of study. This will probably help you to narrow down to a single topic or even a question that has not been addressed adequately. You can use the help of platforms such as Google Scholar and even the journals and databases subscribed by your library.
5. Consider the time available for the project
While choosing a topic, the given time for the project is another important factor. It will be useless to work on a project if you cannot finish it in the given time frame. Without a complete project, there will be no degree. Therefore, instead of focussing on very vast or broad topics, try to narrow it down to a well-defined and more specific one.
6. Consider the available resources
It is also necessary that you consider the resources and facilities available in your university. For example, for a study on drugs, you need to check whether such drug standards could be procured by your university and whether the required instrumentation are available in your laboratory.
7. Determine its relevance
Once you have narrowed down a particular topic of interest, try to determine its relevance. Although research calls for new findings, it is usually not advisable to take up a topic where no prior work has been done, specially for a master’s thesis. In the same way, it will not be very relevant to take up a topic where a lot of work has already been carried out. Choose a topic where definite findings have not been made and where questions are still being raised; one that involves the practical requirements of society as well as the academic community.
8. Always have backup
At the end of the day, your topic has to be approved by your supervisor/department and you cannot rule out the possibility of it being rejected. Therefore, instead of focussing only on a single topic, having a second or third topic as backups will also help you when you change your mind at a later stage.
9. Take advice from your supervisors
Even though your research project may feel like a one-man job, it is not a crime to take the help of your supervisor/faculty and even your colleagues. You will always find someone who will be willing to help you out by giving good advice and constant feedbacks on your work.You can also ask around on the topics that currently require looking into, in your subject area or ask for information on a specific topic of interest.
00a39010. Keep abreast with the recent events and developments in the field
You can also look at the recent events to identify a interesting topic for your thesis. Many a times this would lead to a thesis which is both pertinent and well received by the forensic community.
In conclusion, even though deciding on a particular topic can seem to be such a difficult task, you will always find a way to work around it. Find a topic that excites you and research about it as much as you can. Keep yourself motivated at all times and at the end of the day, it will be worth all the hard work you’ve put into!