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The members of your committee have already read it, so there is no need to go over every detail.
As we said, a thesis proposal is a summary that details an outline of your work.
It identifies a problem that you’re researching, clearly states all the questions that will be researched as well as describes the resources and materials you need.
The usual pattern of a dissertation defense is the same as that of any presentation—introduction, body, conclusion—or as it is often expressed, “tell them what you are going to tell them, tell them, then tell them what you told them.” The introduction describes the problem attacked and why it is important. Perhaps you have already given the essence of the defense in group or department seminars.
The body describes the plan of attack and the results. Go through the graphs a few times anyway, speaking the words you will be saying.
The typical parts are as follows: The best way to put together an organized thesis proposal is to organize how you will write it before you get started.
Many thesis proposals have been rejected simply because the students didn’t plan their writing and instead tried to hack it all together.And when after a short wait in the hallway, I was called in to shake hands with them as a newly minted Doctor of Philosophy, I actually felt like one.For grad students, the most important proposal in the world is the thesis proposal.Second, knowing that you are well prepared will give you confidence when you begin the presentation.Your written dissertation is long, maybe 200–300 pages.If you attempt that, it will show, and the thesis proposal is likely to be rejected. Plan the flow of your writing — and stick to the plan!The usual flow of writing a thesis proposal is as follows: Note that the writing of the thesis proposal does not follow the actual structure of the thesis proposal.Here are some tips to quell the anxiety and make the process run smoothly. First, half-forgotten references and lab work will be fresh in your mind, instead of buried somewhere in a few hundred pages of print.After several years of research and several months of writing it up as a dissertation you probably know more about the topic than anyone else in the world. Therefore, you will be able to respond easily and promptly to questions that come up.This will give you a sort of unconscious “muscle memory” of the tongue that will stay with you during the presentation. If there were some major problem with your work, they would almost certainly have told you prior to the defense.Even if you know what you want to say, the words might not come easily unless you rehearse. Smile, be courteous, and don’t be afraid to interject a touch of humor now and then. Speaking to a handful of professors that I knew well, answering questions concerning the work, genially agreeing that one experiment was worth ten theories, I felt a glow of collegiality.