How to prepare consciously for your thesis even at the beginning of university

Kőszegi Anna | 2022-11-08
Many students only start to address the subject of their thesis when they really can't procrastinate any longer. Of course, the task is huge and intimidating, especially for someone who hasn't even written a paper for submission with references. Keeping these tips in mind will make things much easier for you later on.

Some people are so uncertain about how to get started that they postpone their submission, even if it means delaying it. Do you feel the same way? It’s not your fault that you haven’t learnt the mysteries of writing academic papers on your own, in addition to all the other subjects. However, if you still have a few semesters left, it’s worth thinking about a few things now so that you’re not taken by surprise by the novelty of the thesis assignment.

Keep your eyes open!

During your three to five years at university, you’ll complete a range of courses, including some optional ones that ideally give you the opportunity to orient yourself around what interests you. If you keep your eyes open during the first few semesters, and keep in mind during classes or studying that one of the questions in a course could even be a thesis, you can easily find interesting topics. And even better, if you fall in love with a topic so much that you do some research on it. 

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Get to know each other!

If you’re writing a thesis, you’ll also need a consultant or topic leader. You will work with this tutor for a relatively long period of time one-on-one, and if things go right, you will have several meetings. For this reason, it is a good idea to start with someone who you have a good relationship with. In a small course or conference you may have the opportunity to talk to your tutors, and ask questions if you have any. It’s the perfect opportunity to decide if they deal with topics that interest you. You’ll soon find out how engaged you are with your students.

Be active!

It does not hurt, if you have some previous experience in writing a piece of work that needs to include references to literature and has specific formal requirements. Entering academic competitions during your years of higher education is quite useful in many ways. You can gain a lot of experience, and you don’t even need to have achieved a ranking. A huge advantage is to try your skills in competitions where you have to write a longer text, possibly an essay. If you know how to get started, you’ll be able to get down to writing a thesis in the real world. What’s more, you can even use an essay written for a scientific student group conference as a thesis.

Talk to others!

What is unknown is always scary, because you don’t know what to expect, you can’t make a plan and you lack a sense of being in control. We advise you to talk to friends and acquaintances from your senior year who have experience in writing a thesis, and as many as possible, to get a fair idea of the reality. Whatever you hear, it is worth keeping in mind, just like regarding all academic gossip, that statements which are either too bad or too good are likely to be exaggerated.