You are familiar with the term research question if you are in university, but you may not know the purpose of this question. In the graduation, master and PhD program, students must write dissertation in a particular course. Sometimes the university professors tell them the topic for their dissertation, and sometimes they have to choose the topic. A dissertation is mainly based on a study question to which the students must find a solution by finding supporting evidence and relevant research. The study question is the first step of the dissertation, and many students get stuck here. Do not worry! This article is for you if you want to read how to develop research question for PhD dissertation. In this article, you will understand the research question in-depth, and key points will help you write it.
What is meant by Research Question in a PhD Dissertation?
A research question describes the problem of the dissertation. It tells the reader that dissertation will have research about what situations and what will be the solution. The question addresses the main focus of the task. There can be two to three sub-questions to outline the dissertation properly. It will also act as a guide for researching and writing your document.
All efforts of the study aim to answer the research question. You need to collect data, analyse it and then evaluate it to answer a specific question. It comes at the beginning of the dissertation, and then you can write the thesis statement, which describes the solution to the question within two to three sentences. If you want to learn how to write a research question for any topic, then read more.
Key Points for Developing an Effective and Compelling Research Question
Your question must be related to your research problem, and it will define the primary purpose of your research. It is not as easy as it seems. You need to follow the following steps if you want to make a compelling question and get your research noticed in the academic journals. Your dissertation provides supporting evidence to answer the given question. In any dissertation, you should ensure that your question is based on the following factors:
- It must point out a particular problem.
- Your question must be related to your topic.
- It must be answerable.
- It must be feasible that has relevant research material available.
- It must be unique and interesting.
Now let’s see the guidelines you need to follow to develop a compelling research question related to your topic.
Analyse the Problem:
Before writing a good research question, you need to analyse the purpose of your PhD dissertation. It is the most necessary step if you want to take a good start in the right direction. Analyse the main problem of your work and see if the problem is solvable or not. Discuss the issue with your teachers and take their guidance to create an effective study question. After analysing the situation and primary purpose of your research, you will understand the following:
- Which direction suits best for your dissertation?
- How to construct a study question that is related to your problem?
- What types of arguments do you need to make in your dissertation?
- What outline is perfect for your dissertation?
Set the Course of Research
After analysing the research problem, you are clear about the main direction of the research topic. There may be many factors and research available on the same issue. So, you must choose a specific approach that describes your dissertation and attracts readers towards your work. It is the second step required to develop a study question. When you select the course of your research, you will surely choose the best research question.
Suppose your topic is: The hostile effects of Different Social Media Platform
Your research direction could be “Internet Policing and how it can be used to control the different online platforms.”
Do Research on your Topic
The next step toward developing a research question is proper research on your topic. After researching, you may get an idea to construct the best question for your PhD dissertation. You have to analyse the sources related to your topic that are not too old and provide relevant information. You will have to identify the relevant material that can support your study question. Moreover, it would be best if you also analyse the literature gaps on your current subject. This will help in building a question that will be feasible and will fulfill a literature gap as well.
Target Potential Audience
The next step is to target potential audience. You have to write a compelling question for your readers so that they want to read more and see what solution you will provide for the issue. You can do surveys and interviews to see what they are interested in. Once you know their point of view, your research question will be formulated keeping in mind what your readers will be interested in. The study question gives the audience a clear image of your niche. To get the idea about potential audience, you can ask experts working at PhD dissertation help.
Make the List of Questions:
When you do all the above steps, the next is to make a list of questions based on your research and analysis. You can do it by considering all the above points. You need to write more than five questions for your topic.
Suppose your topic is: Impressions of Social Media platforms on teenagers?
The research question contexts are like this:
- How does regular use of Facebook impact the candidates under 18, and what role internet policing can have?
- How did social media platforms become a reason for students’ depression?
- How do online platforms distort the minds of youngsters?
- How can you overcome the drawbacks of social media on the youth by implementing internet policing?
The most crucial step when developing a study question is to evaluate it. When you have a good grip on the guidelines, you can pick the right question for your PhD dissertation. Although you are writing a dissertation, your grades will depend on how well you present your thought process. Use credible sources to evaluate the credibility and usability of your research question. Our guidelines would help you write an engaging question.