Avoiding Thesis and Dissertation Pitfalls-61 Cases of Problems and Solutions

R. Murray Thomas
Dale L. Brubaker


In response to a book we wrote (Theses and Dissertations: A Guide to Plan­ning, Research, and Writing we’ve received a host of inquiries from master’s degree and doctoral candidates about problems they face in their research  efforts-inquiries that include requests for potential reme­ dies. Because those problems appear to be rather common, we believe that students other than the ones who sent us their questions might find our replies of some value. Thus, we have created 61 case descriptions that concern types of problems degree-candidates may face as they work on their research projects.

The problems on which the cases focus are ones drawn (a) from our own experiences while supervising graduate students’ research projects and serving on thesis and dissertation committees and (b) from graduate students and faculty members who have told us of
difficulties students have encountered during their research activities. We wish to express our gratitude to those students and professors who contributed prob­lems around which cases in this collection have been built.