Below is a list of online writing guides, videos and blogs that provide comprehensive tips and guidelines for academic writing, and thesis writing in particular. These resources are appropriate for graduate students in the Arts & Social Science, Public Administration, and Sprott School of Business. If you are a Science or Engineering & Design student looking for discipline specific writing resources click HERE.

These resources were compiled by Shaun Stevenson, PhD English Student, Carleton University.

General

Online Writing Guides

Writing your Dissertation: Writing A to B – Cornell University

This resource links to an in-depth 46 page pdf. which serves as a comprehensive dissertation writing guide. If you’re looking for one document that covers all the technical aspects of the dissertation, this might be the one.

Completing Your Dissertation Without Tears – Columbia University Graduate School of Arts & Sciences Teaching Center

This is an excellent 6-page PDF. that includes common problems in beginning and moving through the writing of your dissertation. While it is relatively short, it hits a lot of the key issues on the head, in a straight forward, concise style.

Video & Multimedia Writing Resources

Optimizing MacOdrum Library’s electronic Research Tools

Zotero Reference Management Software

Writing a Dissertation –Produced by the University of Leicester’s AccessAbility Centre

This cross-disciplinary video provides a screen view with graphic illustration and serves as a fairly comprehensive overview of the planning and writing process. Clocking in at 20+ minutes, it requires some commitment

 Videos on: “The Research Proposal,” “The Literature Review,” “APA Referencing: The Basics,” “Preparing for your Thesis Oral Examination,” – Massey University, New Zealand

These are excellent 10-15 minute videos, which are very well animated and laid out. They are more engaging and better produced than most.

Write a PhD Thesis in Record Time and Keep Your Sanity While You Do It, Parts 1-3 – James Hayton

Some lighter, accessible articles on his website, and while the videos are mostly him giving a lecture, they remain fairly engaging. His ideas are a little on the motivational speaker side of things, which isn’t for everyone, but he still provides lots of helpful pointers, especially if you’re just beginning the process.

 Blog Resources

 To Do: Dissertation: Motivation and Encouragement for Dissertation Writers Across Disciplines – Kathryn Linder, PhD

While no longer active, this blog has a wonderful archive of lively articles for over coming writers block, different writing rituals, tips on backing up and protecting your work, and much, much more. It is extremely accessible, and the author has since compiled some of her most helpful tips in a relatively inexpensive ebook, which you can link to from the blog.

The Thesis Whisperer – edited by Dr Inger Mewburn,  Australian National University

This ‘blog newspaper’ is dedicated to the topic of thesis writing and includes a wide range of posts on research, psychological obstacles, how to effectively use word processors, and more. Its archive is huge and you can find a good post on just about anything related to the PhD process. Posts are no longer than 1000 words, which is nice, and most are quite enjoyable to read.

Surviving the Dissertation: Tips from Someone Who Mostly Has – Inside Higher Ed, gradhacker

 While this may initially appear to be more of an article than a comprehensive resource, it contains much of the point-by-point tips you’ll find in any given resource while linking to an array of other relevant blogs and resources. It is wonderfully written and much more inviting than the more traditionally formatted resources. You can also check out other areas of gradhacker on the Inside Higher Ed website to help you with all avenues of graduate school.

 Your Uncommon Guide to Thesis Writing and PhD Life, The Three Month Thesis – James Hayton

 While the title of the blog, “The Three Month Thesis,” made me a little skeptical at first, this is an excellent, honest blog about the trials and tribulations of dissertation writing. The posts are simple and to the point and yet extremely insightful. A lot of the blog is dedicated to managing stress and time and I think these are some of the biggest issues faced in tackling something as large as a dissertation. I immediately found the post on procrastination to be very helpful. There is a lot to explore on this blog.