I often encourage PhD candidates to reflect on Why, How and What:
- Why did you do this research?
- How did you do it?
- What was the result?
These three questions are useful for breaking down the thesis contribution. They could be a good way to build up a summary. They’re a nice reminder that your thesis has something valuable.
But don’t forget Who:
- Who did it?
- Who kept going?
- Who got more capable, more knowledgeable?
Your thesis has a significant original contribution. It’s only there because you did the work. You persisted, despite any pressures or setback – you made it happen. You became more talented along the way.
So: who is going to pass their viva?