Doctoral Thesis in Grief Counseling
Breyer State University
COURSE OVERVIEW: Welcome to GRD 1300, Doctoral Dissertation in Grief Counseling. This course is part of the Accelerated Doctoral program in Grief Counseling at Breyer State University. It is a 6-hour semester course that must be completed within 6 weeks. Writing a thesis is the culmination of your studies. It provides the opportunity to combine your knowledge, skills, creative and critical thinking to investigate a research question, establish new perspectives, and ultimately contribute to the body of knowledge of your field.
In order to successfully complete your thesis, you will need to be both systematic and creative in your approach. Working closely with your supervisor (a.k.a. your instructor) is essential, as communication during every phase of the process will help you focus and channel your efforts.
Below is a general outline of the dissertation writing process
Brainstorm in order to come up with topic ideas. Narrow your focus to one or two ideas that are broad enough to hold your interest and facilitate the materials search but are narrow enough to really address thoroughly in a dissertation. Refine your research question.
Discuss your choice with the instructor and obtain approval.
Complete a written proposal, which will include
(b) proposed methods (quantitative, qualitative, case study, etc.)
(c) materials outline
(d) preliminary references list
After obtaining approval of your proposal, conduct through literature review of your topic. This will be refined and included in your dissertation. A good literature review will include books and RECENT articles (barring exceptional circumstances, post 2000) from PROFESSIONAL journals (i.e., The Journal of Family Violence is acceptable, Time magazine is not). In some cases, online resources will be acceptable (for example, information found on the Amnesty International website could be used to quote statistics on torture).
Write up your literature review and proceed with a preliminary draft of your paper. Any qualitative or quantitative research should be finished now and ready to be incorporated into your paper. Your paper MUST include the basic sections of title page, abstract, introduction, materials, methods, results, discussion, conclusion, references. Dissertations must be written in APA format in 12 font times new roman. There is no specific rule on length- however, as a general rule, no paper that is shorter than 50-60 pages will be thorough enough for final approval.
After your preliminary draft is approved, I will make suggestions and give you feedback. You can proceed with a second draft.
The process will be repeated (i.e., feedback and revisions). You will provide a final draft. The draft will be reviewed and either approved or subjected to further revision until it is acceptable.
Once your final draft is approved, I will have specific questions to ask you about your topic, your research, and your work in general. This will be the equivalent of defending your dissertation. Once this is done, you will have completed your dissertation requirement. Congratulations!
Please note that no form of plagiarism, intentional or not will be tolerated. You will automatically fail this course if any part of your paper is plagiarized in any way. This includes failing to reference indirectly, i.e.
The authors found that borderline personality disorder is correlated with suicide (Brown & Mass, 2003).
or directly, i.e.
The authors stated that “clients with BPD are more likely to commit suicide than controls” (Brown & Mass, 2003, p. 49).
Also, at this level, no type of grammatical or spelling errors will be tolerated. Your final draft will NOT be approved if it is written in anything short of flawless English.
Remember, do not hesitate to ask me for feedback or help at any point during the course! I am here to assist you in any way I can. Good luck!
Be able to effectively select a research topic relevant to grief counseling
Demonstrate your capacity to conduct and utilize a literature review
Successfully carry out your research projects in all its stages
Produce and original body of work on topics related to grief counseling