Over the past month, I had a visit with one my stepson’s and he had a discussion with us regarding what is a doctoral program? The reason for his question was because my husband has just begun his DBA (Doctorate in Business Administration) with an emphasis in technology at the end of December. Most individuals know that a doctoral program is the highest degree that can be earned, the difference is the task that must be performed to graduate and earn the doctoral designation.
As the year of 2016 is preparing to end and as we head into the New Year of 2017, one of the tasks many people do is set their New Year’s Resolution. What is your New Year’s resolution?
Awe, the problem statement! What is a problem statement?
When going you go for your doctorate degree, most programs require the writing of the dissertation or as my husband say, “the book.” In a way, the dissertation is a small book because it does have five chapters in most cases depending upon the school. The fact is the dissertation is research, original research, which is conducted by you. Whether you are doing a practical degree like me doing a PsyD or a DBA or a PhD, the dissertation is about doing original research.
So you have decided to go for your doctorate degree?
Doctorate degrees require a dissertation and dissertations are based upon a research topic. The time to select a research topic is during the course work and not at the end of course work. When beginning your course work, as questions come to your mind log them. Building a list of questions will save time when it comes to the part where the problem statement is required. Focus on having more questions than just focusing on one the reason is due to the fact that you want to look for limitations in the study to find a topic that can be approved.
There are many reasons why an individual goes seeks a doctorate degree. For many it is a personal achievement, for others it is for a career and for others it important for their field of study. The one thing to remember is that a doctorate degree requires more time than a Master’s or MBA degree. The typical doctorate degree is typically 3.5 years up to seven years. There is no shortcut or short fixes to earn a doctorate degree.
As I explore my doctoral goals, one of the things I see among my classmates is unrealistic goals in terms of completing the dissertation process. One thing to keep in mind, a doctorate degree is the highest level in the education journey, so it is not a sprint.
“Life is a marathon, not a sprint……..So don’t rush things! Because anything worth having is worth waiting for” Author Unknown
A doctorate degree is the highest level one can earn. What makes the doctorate different than other degrees is the dissertation process. The dissertation is typically doing original empirical research that answers a research question within five chapters. There are a few colleges that utilize a three chapter dissertation, but most have a five chapter dissertation. So for this month’s blog the goal is to explore the dissertation, what it is and selecting a topic.
The biggest part of a doctoral program is the dissertation which is what separates it from the bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Prior to reaching the dissertation phase, there is the course work that has to be completed and until today most of my blogs have been about doing the course work. For this month, I have decided to begin discussing the dissertation process and what a dissertation is all about.
For this month’s blog, I was trying to determine what the best topic was to write about. Based upon my husband’s recommendation and the process he is currently going through, and that is selecting the right school along with the right doctoral degree program. My husband is in the process of completing his MS in Information Systems and wants to continue into a doctoral program. The challenge is does one do a DBA, PhD or what type of program? Does he stick to a program that offers an emphasis on technology or perhaps just do one that is more about business?
Last month, my blog was about the different types of research. This month it is about how to use the college databases. Every college has a different set of databases, but there are a couple of databases that every college has in their school library. Two of the most popular databases are Ebscohost and ProQuest; these are my two favorite databases for a couple of reasons.
Both Ebscohost and ProQuest cover a wide variety of topics, they can be accessed utilizing one particular focus or by searching all of their different topic databases. I like to search each of these databases for my assignments, typically I will find more than enough research in these two databases to support my research papers.
One of the things that I hear frequently from my students and others is that these databases are different than Google. Change can be difficult and Google has created a search engine that allows you to ask detailed questions. So to help better understand how to use these databases at college libraries, I have created a video for this month.