if you are currently in the process of writing a final paper a master's dissertation or thesis then you've come to the right place today I'll be walking you through my process and how I've been organizing my research brainstorming writing and managing my time throughout this process since I'm very new to this type of long term project my method is like a patchwork of different techniques and I'm still learning how to manage everything nicely so by no means this is the correct way to write a dissertation or a paper but more my own process of doing it and the means of inspiration for you to start the same thing for a little bit of background I'm quickly writing my master's thesis on European environmental law I have to turn it in by March 2019 this means that I actually have a comfortable timespan to complete the dissertation since its supposed to have a maximum of 90,000 characters but most assert Asians are actually around fifty pages or so since it's a law of Association it relies heavily on research and the state of the art but it also needs a strong component of comparative study in case referencing and opinion for brainstorming and organizing I usually do a mix of writing ideas down on my Evernote app my bullet journal and the document of the dissertation itself in Evernote I have a notebook dedicated to my master's thesis where I usually create a list of documents I want to read things I need to email my supervisor.
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and cross-referencing I still need to do it's usually the immediate place where I type any random thoughts or ideas that pop in my head during the writing process and that I feel the need to organize before I just forget them my bullet journal works is a more organized and reflective collection of my thoughts I have a dedicated collection for my dissertation on my bullet journal where I write down major tasks deadlines and goal-setting this includes a number of pages I want to write per week internal deadlines for each chapter or topic and so on since my bull journal is currently working as a personal journal as well which makes its productivity with my own personal notes I also use this collection to write down any worries I have about my writing for instance if I'm writing a chapter on a particular topic but I'm still not sure about the consistency of the research or the authority of the references I use my bullet journal to capture those thoughts so I can revisit them in the future and revise and redo the things that worried me that way I feel like I'm constantly working to tie loose ends and I'm not forgetting any of my past opinions on a certain subject this type of brainstorming or sign note-taking also takes place in the comments column of the word document I'm working on while I write I'm constantly highlighting and commenting my own writing with notes like find research to back this up rewrite this section add more references and so on some of these notes are then migrated to my bullet journal or my Evernote notebook in case they are relevant enough or need detail like hyperlinks attachments or cross-referencing regarding research I'm limited to physical textbooks and PDF articles my dissertation is in English.
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since I live in Portugal Howard University Libraries don't provide good sources for research so I need to trust the internet for most of my sources regarding textbooks I always try to find the cheapest secondhand editions on books Scouter or Amazon or finds cheap ebook options in places like read shelf for PDF articles I'm limited to the free access versions and the cheapest renting services since my university only provides for a cup of databases for really important documents that I feel will be detrimental to my research I will end up purchasing the article but unfortunately I'm not able to access all the resources I want since some of these articles are like 100 dollars for 48 hours access all of this is reflected in a separate document with my references lists I prefer to keep this list in a separate place so I can freely add things to it if I'm working on my original document.