a) What have been the major obstacles you have faced in putting a research project together?
Some of the main obstacles I have faced included deciding on what dissertation research project topic to do as I was picking between doing my Dissertation on Otto Von Bismarck, the interwar period between the aftermath of the First World War and before the start of the Second World War, and the rise of Syrian nationalism in the Ottoman Empire from the nineteenth century until 1923. I chose the latter but it was a difficult decision. Another challenge will be looking and obtaining more primary sources as I have few primary sources to work with at the moment but optimistically in the summer I will have more to work with plus most of it may be in Arabic and Turkish so the translation of some of the sources will be a challenge.
b) What strategies have you adopted to overcome these obstacles?
I talked to my dissertation supervisor about what topic I wanted to my dissertation and I decided on the rise of Syrian nationalism and the conversation led to that decision. For the primary sources, I will need to expand my internet research during the summer and also do some traveling, depending on the easing of restrictions, to museums and libraries to gather and look into more primary sources.
c) What has this taught you about approaching your dissertation?
My approach to my dissertation is to start preparing, planning, and doing most of the research, including the collection of primary sources and reading into secondary sources such as the author’s main argument, in the summer as this will give me a great deal of time to get a lot of my research done and it will help me plan more.
d) Which aspects of the 9X6 module have been the most useful in helping you get your project ready to start?
Talking to my dissertation supervisor has been one of the most useful features in helping me get ready to start the dissertation as by talking to him, I had a better idea of what to do my dissertation on and he gave me good sources to look into to help me with my planning and research.