Dissertation Diaries | The Final Entry!

I have officially finished my masters!  I cannot believe it.  It feels surreal like just yesterday I was shivering with fear about GCSEs and now I have a masters under my belt.  This one year has been a rollercoaster of excitement and newfound knowledge.  I'll be doing a wrap up about my degree in the coming weeks with a link to all of my relevant blogposts so they're easy to find.

For tips on how to ace a presentation check out my post here: http://www.misstrendable.com/2018/04/how-to-ace-presentation.html

Today was my VIVA (viva voce) which is basically a presentation about your dissertation.  I was nervous because you never know what kind of questions they will throw at you.  Therefore, ask your supervisors everything you are doubtful about because two questions that were asked, I actually asked my supervisors myself!  This emphasises the importance in submerging into your project and understanding the ins and outs of the research.  You can't get away with the bare minimum.

The way in which my masters' VIVA differed to my undergraduate one is that my undergraduate VIVA consisted of 15 minutes of presenting and a further 20 minutes discussion.  I was assessed by my supervisors.  Today, I was assessed by three lecturers who were not involved in my project at all.  My presentation was only 10 minutes long (which means you have to talk fast and omit information that sounds clever) and the question and answer session was only 5 minutes.  However, other students are able to ask about your project whereas I was in a private room for my undergraduate VIVA which is oddly more intimidating.

A big tip is to familiarise with your written thesis.  Clear any confusion well before you go into your VIVA because you cannot hide behind fancy jargon or a computer screen.  Try to read up-to-date papers relating to your work so it appears that you have consistently looked at your work.  This will help you prepare for any question they hit you with. 

There isn't much else I can really say except for this has been a long, hard, and fruitful journey.  I've learnt and gained skills I will cherish throughout my career.  Thank you for joining me on this rollercoaster ride of public health!

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