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Thinking analytically, synthesizing complicated information, writing well, and organizing your time will all serve you well regardless of the career you begin.
When you embark on this large, independent project, you may begin to ask yourself questions about your future in academia.
After all, the dissertation is the beginning of the end of a graduate career.
While you can’t do anything about many of these stresses —the rent needs to be paid, and the Grad School still wants you to know two foreign languages, for examples—you can change the way that you deal with these external concerns and minimize their impact on your psyche and productivity.
Often, graduate students juggle many personal and professional responsibilities while working on their dissertations.
You may feel like your research interests, your theoretical influences, and your skill as a writer may all be evaluated by this first piece of serious scholarship.
Whether any of these points are true or not, you may find yourself questioning your commitment to your chosen profession or topic and unable to begin the dissertation.
The dissertation, on the other hand, is a new kind of academic project, unlike anything else you’ve done.
It is the academic project that marks your transition from student to scholar.
When you finish your dissertation, you have to change your life pretty dramatically —you may go on the job market, begin work as an independent scholar, develop classes, move out of a community that you have grown to love, and so on.
You may also feel like your dissertation will begin to define your professional identity.