Archive for December, 2013

Dissertation Writing TIps: Doctoral Difficulties: The Way Out

Doctoral Difficulties: The Way Out

A fellow was walking along, stumbled and fell into a deep hole. He stood up, brushed himself off, yet could not find a way out. He began to yell for help. A doctor (MD) eased up to the rim of the hole, saw the man was in distress, quickly took out his prescription pad, wrote out the prescription for an anxiety drug, dropped it down to the man, and went on his way. A priest heard the man’s cries for help, carefully looked into the hole, told the man he would say a prayer for him, and then quickly departed. The trapped man was distraught, and all of a sudden another fellow jumps down into the hole with him. The trapped man said, “Are you crazy, now we are both stuck.” The other fellow replied, “Yes, I know it seems that way, but I have been down here before, and I know the way out.”

What is the moral of the story? For me, the moral was this: during my doctoral journey, I fell into numerous holes; some I was able to claw my way out of, yet sometimes the situation seemed hopeless. During the difficult times, I sometimes turned to experts (my Chair, committee members, statisticians, etc); while at other times I asked unqualified people their opinion and received in return an unqualified answer. The folks that had no idea how to get out of the hole were pretty much worthless in helping me get out. I learned many lessons the hard way.

As you continue to progress toward completion of your study, there might not necessarily be an easy way out, but my experience tells me that we can make the process more difficult by not using every resource available. You are not the first person attempting to complete a dissertation or doctoral study. Many people at your disposal have been in the hole and know the way out. Utilize their expertise, talents, and insight. Never reject help from someone willing to reach down and free you from a doctoral abyss.

Getting out of the hole (completing the study) requires an enormous dose of motivation. Referring back to the story, no one is going to jump down in the hole and carry you out (write your study for you), yet with an abundance of resources (human and technical), you can overcome the challenges that seem insurmountable.

Dr. Ron Jones
Guest Blogger

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December 20th, 2013 by admin