Exploring Objections

It’s reasonable to expect that examiners might object to something in a thesis.

In all the many words you’ve written – the ideas, results and conclusions, and the chapters, methods and formatting – in all of this there’s a chance there’s something they might object to.

Does an objection mean there is something “wrong”? Does it mean you need to make changes? Does it mean you need to apologise?

No, not necessarily; it would be rare for something to need an apology!

An objection needs to be understood first. You might need to ask questions if the comment or point isn’t clear. You might need to think. You might need to read or check something in your thesis. And it’s possible that you can’t simply give a short, quick response to an objection.

You need to understand what the objection is, then respond to it.

And that could be it. That could be all you need to do. It could be that you need to add a sentence to your thesis. It could be that you just need to explain your thoughts because they weren’t clear on the page.

Objections: understand, then respond.