Workload of thesis writing

Is writing a thesis difficult?

Often, people think that writing a master’s thesis is easy. However, this is not always the case. In fact, it can be one of the more difficult things to do in your studies and, actually, your early life. There are a number of factors that go into writing a great thesis: choosing the right topic, researching it thoroughly, and writing an effective argument. Fortunately, with the help of a good mentor and some helpful tips, these challenges can be overcome.

The workload of writing a thesis is high, but…

But let’s quickly revisit the original question: How much work is it? Well, there is good news and there is bad news. The bad news is: it’s a lot of work. And the good news is: it’s a lot of work! Why is this good news? It’s the key to mastery and there are so many learning opportunities in this thesis-writing experience.

It’s the key to mastery and there are so many learning opportunities in this thesis-writing experience.

Dominik E. Froehlich

It’s no secret that the world is increasingly competitive. To be successful, it’s important to have a skill set that sets you apart from the rest. For some people, this may mean learning a new language or mastering a musical instrument. And this is where thesis-writing comes in. Because, yes, this is about doing research and about writing a lot—both of which are increasingly sought-after competencies on their own. But, most of all, thesis writing is about self-leadership and self-management. It’s about being able to prioritize your own time. It’s about knowing what you want and having the discipline to make sure you get that. And then it’s about creating a system where you can follow through on those things that are important to you.

This really is your opportunity for growth. And even if you do not consider these somewhat softer effects, I have witnessed numerous students who have specialized in a field due to their master thesis and they still reap the benefits of being an expert in that particular niche.

So this, really, is my answer. If you are intentional about the work you are doing, the cost is not so much a factor. You need to see it in relation to the value it provides for you. And my argument is that if you do have a clear plan and are proficiently led through the process by a guide, you will be able to manifest massive value.

If you are intentional about the work you are doing, the cost is not so much a factor. You need to see it in relation to the value it provides for you.

Dominik E. Froehlich

So, rather than overthinking the workload, focus on the values instead. Make a list of what you want to get out.

Here are a few reflective questions for you:

  1. What is it that you want to learn exactly?

Here are a few things that come to my mind…

  • applying research methods
  • interpreting data
  • effective writing
  • building convincing arguments
  • receiving feedback
  • responding to critique (also the emotional side of it)
  • text production and editing
  • creating helpful habits

2. How can each of these skills be transferred to your work?

3. What domain would be interesting to research for your work/career?

4. What relationships could your thesis help to create (e.g., to experts in your field)?

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