A syntactic subject for MA_ Dissertation


Hi dears;

It is very hard for me to decide on a syntactic  subject .

Would you please help me to find one!

asked Jan 29 '13 at 07:59 Golafshaan New member

2 answers


My first thought is to ask your advisor and think about what you have been learning that most interests you.  A simple internet search on "how to choose a dissertation topic" results in a page full of what looks like very helpful links. 

link comment answered Jan 29 '13 at 13:55 Patty T Grammarly Fellow



It seems that you are in search of a thesis topic related to the general topic of how words and phrases get combined into sentences.  Otherwise known as syntax.  I don't think that any of us can really help you arrive at a specific topic, because if we suggest one that doesn't resonate with you, you will get bored at some stage or other of the research or writing process, and blame us, or the world.


Far better, I would like to ask the following questions:


(1) what syntactical or other linguistic issue, however obscure or specific, has seized your imagination? 


(2) when was a time that your professor and/or your fellow students all agreed on some syntactical or other linguistic point, and you found yourself doubting or wanting to challenge them but shrunk back for some reason?


(3) can you recall a passage from one of your favorite books from when you were a child? Go back and re-read it, and try to remember and relive the questions which animated and enlarged you at that time.  Can you make an academically-relevant inquiry out of those animating questions, those crucial bits of language that shaped you?


(4) what do you notice, syntactically or linguistically or otherwise, when you listen to your non-academically-trained friends or family talk?  Are you curious about the linguistic differences you hear when you go back home, compared to how you have learned to talk and write?  Can you passionately delve into the way that your professors and academic colleagues speak, compared to the way that your hometown friends and family do? Is it exciting, and energizing to explore those differences, and what they mean in the world?


In other words, go the way your blood beats. If you don't choose something that really means something personal, I fear you will get lost in the morass of academic gobbledeygook, never to be heard from again.  Keep it real, girlfriend (or boyfriend)!  I know you can. 

link comment edited Jan 29 '13 at 17:56 Shawn Mooney Expert

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