Dissertation - Motivation & assistance required!

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  • Leela 25 Mar 2006 15:18:56 485 posts
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    did a search and couldn't find any general dissertation threads, so thought I'd start one.

    I've been plugging away all afternoon trying to work on my web site and ending up going round in circles cos I haven't the foggest what I'm doing.

    So, please post motivational tips here, and if you know anything about Microsoft Visual Web Developer 2005 express, your help would be greatly appreciated.

    oh, and before anyone slags off the application I'm using: don't bother!

    cheers :)
  • Kay 25 Mar 2006 15:31:56 17,967 posts
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    The best advice I can give is to make a plan, and stick to it. If you're really far behind, then try and get rid of any distractions - TV, games, magazines. It works best if you arrange a schedule to work a few hours each day, and then relax - you'll find that once you get into the flow of it, you'll get a lot done.

    K

  • Deleted user 25 March 2006 15:35:47
    The best motivational technique is to have a big, angry-looking man shout 'GET ON WITH IT' every time you start to slack off...;)

    Er, I've never really done web design and it's a few years since my dissertation now, but personally I always find reverting back to pen and paper the best way of making progress if I'm stuck on something. There's just something about being faced with a computer screen with a big blank document on it that just stalls my brain dead.
  • brains 25 Mar 2006 15:59:42 491 posts
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    Totally agree with the big blank document thing!

    I find it helpful to do a bit of brainstorming, list out key points I want to get across and put them in a rough order, then write the document around that.
  • Leela 25 Mar 2006 15:59:50 485 posts
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    thanks! I have done lots of doodling on paper! making sketches and diagrams, etc, and lots of to do lists.
    I'm kinda on schedule but I thought the building bit would be easier and I'm starting to run out of time...
  • bunglebonce 25 Mar 2006 16:15:16 2,228 posts
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    My law dissertation's due on Thursday. For a long time I didn't think I was going to get it done on time, even after having the best part of a year to think about it and do the required researching. After doing 2-3k a day for the last wee while, I'm pretty much at the required wordcount with about 3000 words left of writing (15-20k required).

    Roll on Thursday.

    Good luck!

    PSN ID: erniewhatbert

  • Deleted user 25 March 2006 16:28:19
    Leela wrote:
    thanks! I have done lots of doodling on paper! making sketches and diagrams, etc, and lots of to do lists.
    I'm kinda on schedule but I thought the building bit would be easier and I'm starting to run out of time...

    Sounds like you're pretty organised, so you've probably already done this, but my one piece of advice when you're just presented with a mass of unfinished stuff is - take a step back. Sit down with the thing and go through it, in it's entirety, making a list of everything that still needs implementing and everything that needs fixing. The important thing is to not get drawn into fixing or doing anything while you're doing this. Once you have the list, go through it point by point and do the work, before crossing it off the list.

    The good thing about this approach is it naturally breaks the work down into more manageable sections, but also enables you to have a bit of a breather and look at the thing as a whole - I find if I don't do this regularly I end up just fixing one thing, which then leads onto another thing, and another, etc., and I end up chasing round in circles fixing small, unimportant issues while larger ones get left! You also get the satisfaction value of crossing stuff off lists, an action proved to be one of the top ten 'things' a person can do.
  • Angel_Treats 25 Mar 2006 17:20:40 11,072 posts
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    I'm rubbish at this stuff so can offer no help whatsoever, but just wanted to say good luck with the dissertation :) Imagine how great it'll be when you finally finish it, that might spur you on!
  • EGBartonFink 25 Mar 2006 17:24:37 914 posts
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    What's the dissertation about for starters?

    I am assuming the dissertation and web site are unrelated.

    Edited by EGBartonFink at 17:26:14 25-03-2006
  • Syrette 25 Mar 2006 17:27:02 44,209 posts
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    I recommend using a whip.

  • EGBartonFink 25 Mar 2006 17:28:05 914 posts
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    No need to start gettin all S&M at this time of the day we will leave that till later. :)
  • Leela 25 Mar 2006 17:50:54 485 posts
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    thanks all :) some really good advise there.
    bunglebonce - good luck with yours!

    EGBartonFink - the web site is for the dissertation - it's a computing degree and I'm building recipe database web site.

    right.. back to it!
  • ScoutTech 25 Mar 2006 18:19:51 2,425 posts
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    I've got mine due in June.... But it's a whole project and I am way behind, leading to me putting it off as I have to face up to what I have put of meaning I'm getting further behind etc etc etc. Aint it all grand!! Was intending to spend today catching up but managed to put it off until now, well until I found this thread :)

    Ohhh and to cap it all I've just got back into climbing and bought a new big kite so want to be doing them. Supid education systems :p
  • Salaman 25 Mar 2006 22:43:28 19,598 posts
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    I'm clueless about the stuff you're working on but just to hear people say you're doing good and keep at it can help.

    So there:

    You're doing good! Keep at it!


    Having people about to pamper you a bit is also a helo I think.
    Drinks/snacks brought to you at regular intervals and food cooked so you just need to take a break to come eat it and be off again is helpful.
  • morriss 25 Mar 2006 22:51:01 71,286 posts
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    I'm the same as you Leela. It's sitting there staring at me ('it' being the title) and I can pick the book up.

    I'm trying to use Oblivion as bait. i.e. only buy it when you're finished. Then the purchase it justified.
  • Leela 26 Mar 2006 20:51:38 485 posts
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    ScoutTech - get started and then keep coming back to this thread for motivation! that's what I plan on doing!



    Salaman - good idea! but my husband (Brains) is doing his too! so we have to take it in turns to make the tea!

    Morriss - that's a good idea! though I have got hold of a copy of AC:WW that distracts me from time to time! but we have a two week break in the sun planned for July! sun, swimming pool and lots of food and drink (or should that be drink & food?!)
  • WarKitty 26 Mar 2006 22:19:03 566 posts
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    Thanks.. I find I need things like this thread thread to kick me into action now and then.

    *runs off to make to-do list*
  • Xerx3s 26 Mar 2006 22:41:42 23,944 posts
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    Erm isnt this the first thing you learn? oh well, Get a dummy, and make some lists in it, draw some things in it, apply one of the creative processes, design, form the db structure, ditch that crap package, code the pages, review the result, go to the pub and pat yourself on the back for another job done. \0/

    I'm the same as you Leela. It's sitting there staring at me ('it' being the title) and I can pick the book up.

    I'm trying to use Oblivion as bait. i.e. only buy it when you're finished. Then the purchase it justified.

    Im trying a diffrent approach. For every task i complete, i get to play 45 mins. Ill let you know if it worked. ;p

    Edited by Xerx3s at 22:44:56 26-03-2006
  • Leela 26 Mar 2006 22:42:05 485 posts
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    get to work, warkitty!!

    have been working all weekend on my dissertation. Unfortunately, it's been one of those times when you restart loads of times because you've done it slightly wrong... argh!!! computing.. I hate it sometimes...

    but.. I think I'm on the right track now.. fingers crossed...

    and to top it all off, I have a Java exam Tuesday to revise for..
  • Leela 26 Mar 2006 22:44:54 485 posts
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    Xerx3s wrote:
    Erm isnt this the first thing you learn? oh well, Get a dummy, and make some lists in it, draw some things in it, apply one of the creative processes, design, form the db structure, ditch that crap package, code the pages, review the result, go to the pub and pat yourself on the back for another job done. \0/

    If only I'd though of that...
  • Leela 5 Jun 2006 11:48:16 485 posts
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    Just had to post and say.. I'VE FINISHED!!!!!!
    Handed in today.. but then I had to come into work, so no sunbathing / gaming for me today :(
  • Salaman 5 Jun 2006 11:55:50 19,598 posts
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    Excellent. Well done. I recall the horrors of having to write one.
    I spent hours and hours putting off getting started on it (finished the original Tomb Raider) and then spent hours and hours into the night once I did actually get started.

    Bummer to have to go straight to work but at least the evenings/weekends are yours to enjoy again!

    :-)
  • Khanivor 5 Jun 2006 12:05:26 41,253 posts
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    Nice work Leela, glad to hear that's all out of the way. And that you treated the dissertation with more respect then I did with mine, (English MA, started on Saturday moring, handed in Monday morning, 7 items in bibliogrpahy including two key texts).

    The weight that is lifted from your shoulders by not having that fucking writing still to do is heavenly!
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