Rachel Wilson blog post
What have been the major obstacles you have faced in putting a research project together?
I knew what important themes such as women’s rights and race equality I wanted to discuss during my research but I had to make sure I placed these within a relevant historical context in order to meet the criteria for a history dissertation. The dissertation topic was in some ways a bit vague so I had to address this. Also I found that the Stirling University library database was somewhat limited in terms of relevant sources for my dissertation which at first posed a threat to my topic. I also struggled understanding methodology and choosing one.
What strategies have you adopted to overcome these obstacles
Through detailed research of a variety of sources I have established the time period of 1994-2010 for my research. I also conducted research in to the America dream, economic, social and social context of America during this time period and how it contributed to events today. This therefore set my dissertation in a key historical context and make my topic more relevant to events today which helped when it came to justifying my topic.
I also learnt through this module that JSTOR is another good database for sources, this provided a lot of sources that could not be accessed on the online university catalogue so this really helped collate evidence for my findings.
I did further readings about methodology to consider what one would be the most suitable
What has this taught you about approaching your dissertation
In order to provide key historical context I need to continue undertaking a variety of relevant literature in order to come to evidenced conclusions relevant to my dissertation. I also need to utilise JSTOR to it’s full potential as well as use some of the universities online catalogue in order to collate all the necessary information.
It has also taught me to leave extra time for tasks in case I come up with issues during carrying them out and during research.
Which aspects of the 9X6 module heave been the most useful in helping you get your project ready to start?
The supervisor meetings were helpful in letting us know what was expected of us in order to provide successful dissertation proposals it helped us ask vital questions early on which helped our development of our dissertation. Having to do method paper really helped me think about my approaches for my dissertation and read other similar work which helped me as it helped me learn what methods seemed to be successful. Presenting my methodology paper over canvas to my peers helped me learn to justify and further understand why I was using certain sources and methodologies. I also learnt from other people’s ideas by seeing why they were for example using comparative methodology and this influenced my choice to use this.