Dissertation Defense: 15 Tips You Should Follow 


A dissertation defense is the final step during your academic career, and it is important that you are successful when presenting your thesis. This calls for a thorough preparation of the defense questions that will be asked by the faculty committee. Your objective will be to convince the committee members that you have done ample research, and that you can summarize the major points of your project within a limited time period. Here are 15 tips you can follow to ensure the dissertation defense goes smoothly without any hitches. 

  1. Make sure that your thesis and presentation address the problem of the study, the important points as well as the findings you came up with
  2. Put your dissertation aside for some time and take a break. Spend time doing other things like hanging out with friends and family or by taking a vacation. You can as well attend sports events or engage in other activities. The objective is to get your mind off the dissertation for a while before you analyze it further.
  3. Ask a friend to go through your work and check for mistakes or other weaknesses. They can ask you important questions like why you decided to follow a certain path. Alternatively, they can point out significant things that you missed in your paper.
  4. Brainstorm on questions that professors are likely to ask. Take some time and prepare outlines, notes as well as scripts that provide answers to probable questions that you may be asked during the dissertation defense.
  5. Attend other dissertation defense presentations to get an idea of what is required
  6. Be confident during your presentation.
  7. Do not let fear and anxiety get hold of you. Do not worry about how you will perform. Instead, concentrate on how to make your oral presentation better.
  8. Talk to your professor and other individuals who have participated in a dissertation defense and ask them for tips.
  9. During the presentation, ensure to use “I” rather than "we," so that the committee can know the aspects of the projects that you tackled on your own.
  10. Be prepared to answers tough questions from the professors.
  11. Demonstrate to the faculty committee that you are passionate about your work. Professors love to see students that care about their work.
  12. During the presentation, be sure to give a summary of your background.
  13. Relax and avoid overloading your brain on the night before the presentation of the dissertation defense.
  14. Go to bed early and get some rest on the night before the presentation.
  15. You can also consider providing the faculty committee with refreshments as it is a sign of good gesture. 
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