thesis-----disseration defenseDuring a thesis defense, one gets the opportunity to show how knowledgeable they are in the topic of their research thesis or dissertation paper. A thesis lasts for an average of 1 to 2 hours, depending on your research area. Here, one is expected to give a presentation of their research interest, their findings, and what they concluded from the research process. Once one is done defending their thesis to the panel, they are then asked questions regarding their oral presentation, and the written thesis, which the panel will have gone through prior to the presentation. 

Below are some of the questions to expect during a thesis defense

  1. What is your research study all about? Here you can give a brief overview of your thesis 
  2. Why did you choose this study? Your answers could touch on your interests in the area of the study and the approach you used for your research
  3. Why did you choose this particular title for your research? Here they want to know how you came to the final decision of the topic for your research
  4. What is the scope of your study? Elaborate on the extent to which the research was performed and the parameters you chose for the study
  5. What phenomenon were you trying to understand with this research? a more direct question would be, the focus concept of your thesis/ dissertation paper
  6. Who will be most interested in your research? The target audience for your research
  7. What are the dependent and independent variables in your research
  8. What gaps did you intend to bridge with your research? The thesis must eliminate the current niches in the concepts related to your topic. A similar question would be; what does your study change in your subject area?
  9. Why is your research significant? Here you may discuss the impacts of your research on your field of study. You may talk about the new insights that your research will contribute and its impact on the society 
  10. What did you find in your research? Discuss some of the findings you came across in your research. Some associated questions may be; How will your findings contribute to the related area of knowledge? 
  11. What research findings surprised you? Findings that you came across that you were not expecting to find, you can discuss what other areas are open for exploration and research 
  12. What is the validity of your findings? You may talk about the accuracy of the results among the participants for your study, in relation to the representation of true findings among similar individuals who were not part of your study. An associated question may be; Do your findings relate to existing literature?
  13. Why did you choose this research methodology? What is your procedure for qualitative analysis in your research? What are the statistical tools you used 
  14. What sources did you use for data collection? Here you would list some of the sources you used to find the data for your research topic, you might have referred to databases, online sources, or even conducted primary research by interviewing or using questionnaires
  15. How can your research be put into practice? What are the practical implications of your research? You could talk about how your research is beneficial for society and how it can help in eliminating current issues
  16. Did you experience any limitations in your research? Expound on difficulties faced and the factors that may have hindered, altered or restricted your research
  17. Do you think there might be some biases existing in your research? Bias in your research may come about from relying more on opinions rather than facts, or not using enough sources before coming to a conclusion
  18. If you would redo your research, what would you do differently? If along the way during your research or towards the end, you realized that maybe you could have or should have changed something, this is the best opportunity to bring it up
  19. What areas do you suggest for further research? The suggestions for further research may include building on the findings of your research, carrying out the same research in a different location, carrying out the research with an expanded framework, or conducting research addressing the limitations of your study.

 How to Prepare For a Thesis - Dissertation Defense

how to succeed a Dissertation defense Preparing for a thesis defense is certainly not one of those last-minute tasks. The last thing you want to do is try to defend months, even years of hard work and research in front of a panel of academic professionals, without having properly prepared.

Here are some tips on how to prepare for a thesis/dissertation defense

  • Re-read your thesis paper- you need to make sure you have properly grasped your material inside and out, this will also prove fruitful when it comes to answering questions after your defense.
  • Analyze some of the commonly asked questions and prepare for them- there are a couple of common questions that one can expect during their thesis defense, some of which we have listed above, review the questions so that you can have an idea of how to respond, to avoid being caught off guard.
  • Prepare your presentation slides in advance- always review the timeframe for the presentation, to have a clear view of how many slides to prepare given the time you will have to speak. Afterward, prepare your presentation slides well in advance and review them to ensure you have captured everything you needed for the thesis defense.
  • Practice your presentation before the thesis defense- having a pretend/ mock presentation prior to the thesis defense is always recommended as it can help boost your confidence, enables you to familiarize yourself with your presentation, and can help you assess and better your presentation skills.
  • Attending an open thesis defense of other candidates- if possible, listening in while other students present is always a plus, as you get to have an idea of some of the questions asked and how to respond.
  • Dress appropriately for your defense- Appearance is everything, especially during an important presentation such as this, plan in advance what you will wear and even try on the chosen outfit to make sure you feel comfortable in it.

What happens after the Dissertation/Thesis defense

After a thesis defense, the student is then required to answer all of the questions asked by the panel, thereafter, the student leaves the room whilst the panel has a discussion about your executions. Some of the outcomes after a thesis/dissertation defense may include:

  • The thesis is approved without any revisions- the panel concludes that you nailed your thesis defense and approves your thesis, although this does not happen very often.
  • The thesis is approved with a few minor revisions- the panel concludes that your thesis and defense meet the required standards, and approves your thesis, however, they may recommend a few changes that may need to be made, after which one can then submit the final document to their supervisor. This is the most common outcome.
  • The thesis defense is approved with major revisions- the panel may conclude that your thesis defense does not completely meet the required standards as it is, and there would be a substantial amount of revisions, where you may be asked to come back afterward, to redo your thesis defense while presenting the revised document. This does not happen very often.
  • The thesis is rejected- the panel may reject your thesis after concluding that it does not meet the required academic standards, this means not completing your course. This rarely ever happens, as by the time you are getting to the thesis defense, you would have received a substantial amount of guidance from your supervisor. However, this may also still occur due to say a breakdown in communication between the student and their supervisor

Do not forget that we can help you with your thesis writing process and so help you have an easy defense.