Unit 4: Completing your doctorate in a timely fashion

R13: Reflecting on the research process – writing a thesis


Reflecting on the research process – writing a thesis

  1. Have access to a memory stick . You will be doing some writing during the session that you may want to keep.
  2. Have access to all of the writing you have done so far towards your thesis (printed or on a memory stick).  This may be several chapters, a single draft chapter, or some notes. What you have access to will depend on what stage you are at in your doctoral study.
  3. Go on to the British Library ETHOS repository of thesis. http://ethos.bl.uk/.  Search for a thesis in your subject area and download it to a memory stick. Study its structure and style as well as content. Bring this with you to the session.  NOTE some theses may not have been digitised and this can take up to 3 weeks. Please make sure you can access a relevant thesis during the workshop

Take a look at the video clip about writing your thesis. It is a bit long and a bit self-indulgent in places but you may find it interesting and useful. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5yUQ4H5d8fo


In this session you will:

  • Explore ways of getting started and 'seeing the big picture';
  • Analyse a thesis in your subject*
  • Consider ways of structuring your thesis,
  • Create an outline of chapters, and sections within chapters using STYLES in Microsoft Word;
  • Share writing, editing and revising hints and tips

* Prior to attending this session you are required to download and study at least one thesis in your subject area from the ETHOS data base. (See Electronic Resources in the Library Information System). You will need to refer to this thesis during the session.

Facilitator: Dr Debra Cureton

For 2023-24 R13 Reflecting on the research process- writing a thesis runs twice as a stand alone session, and twice as the first in a series of sessions run consecutively (the other sessions being R10 Landmarks in your research degree programme –APR and progression,  and R21 Using photography in your research and in your thesis).

To book use the Eventbrite link, it will register you for all  sessions for the consecutive delivery dates although you are at liberty to drop in and out of consecutive sessions as required. 


Date Time Venue Booking Link
Wednesday 25th October, 2023 (consecutive delivery session)  9am - 10.30am Online Eventbrite Link
Monday 8th January, 2024 10am - 11.30am Online Eventbrite Link

Monday 15th April, 2024  (consecutive delivery session)

9am - 10.30am Online Eventbrite Link
Tuesday 25th June, 2024
2.30pm - 4pm   Online Eventbrite Link


Vitae RDF descriptors addressed in this session are:

Knowledge and intellectual abilities (A)
This domain contains the knowledge and intellectual abilities needed to be able to carry out excellent research.

  • Knowledge base (A1)
  • Cognitive abilities (A2)

Personal effectiveness (B)
This domain contains the personal qualities, career and self-management skills required to take ownership for and control of professional development.

  • Professional and career development (B3)

Research governance and organisation (C)
This domain contains the knowledge of the standards, requirements and professional conduct that are needed for the effective management of research.

  • Professional conduct (C1)

Engagement, influence and impact (D)
This domain contains the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to engage with, influence and impact on the academic, social, cultural and economic context.

  • Communication and dissemination (D2)
  • Engagement and impact (D3)