Developing Scientific Thinking and Research Skills through the Research Thesis or Dissertation

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For doctoral students, master’s students and final year undergraduates (referred to throughout as research students), the final assessment is usually a dissertation or thesis. The product is an end in itself with assessable merits; however, it also stands as a proxy to indicate a range of higher order thinking, changes related to how the candidate sees themselves in the world, practical skills and actualisation, which all are part of scientific thinking. At the outset of a research journey, the range of challenges, developments, changes and achievements are rarely discussed, nor is there always explicit support for tackling them successfully. I suggest a model of four quadrants (see Figure 9.1) of interlinked higher order research-related skills, explored and discussed here.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDevelopment of Scientific Thinking in Higher Education
EditorsKieran Ballou, Mari Murtonnen
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Publication statusPublished - 29 Apr 2019


  • undergraduate
  • research
  • supervision
  • writing


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