Friday, August 22, 2014

Ready for your Viva? Can you answer these questions? All the best
 
 
 
 
General Questions
  • What is your thesis about?
  • How did doing this research change you as a researcher?
  • Can you tell us how you came to choose this topic for your doctorate? Or How did your topic emerge?
  • What made you interested in doing it? Why do you think its important?
  • What were some of the difficulties you encountered and did they influence how the topic was framed?
  • What were the crucial research decisions you made?
  • How did you deal with the ethical implications of your work?
  • Why have you chosen to organize your research into these stages/chapters?
  • Which are the most important papers concerning this aspect of your research?
  • How do you expect the research in your field to progress over the next few years?
  • Can you take your research further?
  • How do your findings fit with or contradict the rest of the literature in this field?
  • Where will you publish your work?
  • Which aspects of your thesis could be published?
  • What have you learned from the process of doing your PhD?
  • What have you done that merits a PhD?.
  • What's original about your work? Where is the novelty?
  • Why is the problem you have tackled worth tackling?

Questions based on Chapters
 
Chapter 1
 
  • What is the idea that binds your thesis together?
  • What are the motivations for your research?
  • What are the main issues and debates in this subject area?
  • What is the research problem? What phenomenon are you trying to explain/understand?
  • What is happening "out there" (in the business world) that makes your research worthwhile? What practical problems are you trying to solve?
  • What contribution do you expect to make from this research? What theoretical gaps are you trying to fill?.
  • What are your research questions? Would the answers to these research questions provide answers to your research problem?
  • What are your research objectives? Have you stated them clearly?
  • Can you achieve the understanding of your research problem through these objectives?
  • How did your thinking about this topic develop as you went through this research process?
  • Describe your methodological approach? Why did you choose this approach? In an ideal world, are there different techniques youâ€.d have liked to use? Scope
  • Significance
Chapter 2 – Literature Review
 
  • How did you select the literature? Is there anything missing from your literature review?
  • What conflicts are there in the field?
  • Who are the main `players' in the field?
  • Is your literature current (up-to-date)?
  • Have you included the seminal works in this area?
  • Have you obtained the local literature on this topic?
  • Have you reviewed and not merely copied the literature?
  • Who has had the strongest influence on the development of your subject area in theory and practice?
  • What published work is closest to yours? How is your work different?
  • What developments have there been in this field since you began your doctorate? How have these changed the research context in which you are working?
  • You do not say much about the ... theory in your thesis - can you explain why you have not focused more on that?
  • Which topics overlap with your area?

Chapter - Survey
 
  • Why did you use this research methodology? What did you gain from it?
  • How have you evaluated your work?
  • How do you know that your findings are correct?
  • How do your findings relate to the critical literature in this field of studies?
  • Results are in agreement with the objectives
  • Explain the main theories or approaches to the project
  • In retrospect, were there other theories you could have considered?
  • Were there any particularly problematic moments that were difficult? How did you overcome them?
  • What were the main findings?
  • How did these findings relate to previous work?
  • What are the implications/significance of your finding?
  • What are your dependent variables?
  • What are your independent variables?
  • What are the expected relationships between the independent variables and the dependent variables? Why do you expect these relationships?
  • What is the unit of your analysis? Individual? Organizational? Group? Transaction?
  • What is the population of your sample? What list/directory you are using?
  • What sampling technique are you going to use? Why? How are you going to choose the sample from the population?
  •  Why use a five-point scale? Seven-point scale? Why not use objective data?
  •  What statistical tool/s are you using to test each hypothesis?
Chapter - Algorithm development
 
  • How do you know that your algorithm/rules are correct?
  • How could you improve your work?
  • Have you considered other factors that may have contributed to the outcomes?
  • Why have you done it this way? You need to justify your approach - don't assume the examiners share your views.
  • What are the alternatives to your approach?
  • What do you gain by your approach?
  • What would you gain by approach X?
  • Why didn't you do it this way (the way everyone else does it)? This requires having done extensive reading. Be honest if you never thought of the alternative they're suggesting, or if you just didn't get around to it. If you try to bluff your way out, they'll trap you in your own words.
  • Looking back, what might you have done differently? This requires a thoughtful answer, whilst defending what you did at the time.
  • Are you going to take this work further?
Chapter Quasi-Experimental
  • Why did you use this research methodology? What did you gain from it?
  • How well did the study design work in practice?
  • Did you have any problems with the data collection process?
  • What were the main ethical issues of conducting this research?
  • How did you establish the limits around the scope of your data collection?
  • Can you talk us through your methods of analysis?
  • Sampling?
  • Do you think the data you collected were the most appropriate to answer your research question or are there any other data you would have liked to have collected?
  • Can you describe your main findings in a few sentences?
  • How do your findings relate to the critical literature in this field of studies?
  • What were the main findings?
  • What is the implications/significance of your finding?
Chapter - Conclusion
  •  What are the key strengths of your thesis?
  • What are the key findings/major contributions of your thesis?
  • What are the limitations of the thesis?
  • Looking back, what might you have done differently?
  • Why are your research questions interesting or important?
  • What would have improved your work?
  • Who will be most interested in your work?
  • What are the main achievements of your research?
  • How would your system cope with bigger examples? Does it scale up?
  • Have you solved the field's problem that you claim to have solved?
  • How does the research approach and/research findings differ from those of other key players in the field?
  • What are the key strengths?
  • What is the significance of your findings?
  • Were there any particularly problematic moments that were difficult? How did you overcome them?
  • What are the implications of your findings

SUMMARY
SUMMARIZE THE THESIS IN SMALLER BLOCKS COVERING THE FOLLOWING:
  • What you have done;
  • Why you have done it;
  • How you did it;
  • What you have found;
  • What the implications are.
  • Can you start by summarizing your thesis?
  • Now, can you summarize it in one sentence?
 
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