16 Common Mistakes to Avoid When Conducting a Research
Academic work that undergraduate or graduate students develop sounds simple, but it is not. Especially because each student undergoes evaluation during the process of preparing this work. Do you want to stop making mistakes when writing a research? If yes, it’s good to pay attention to this article. It shows the 16 main misconceptions that you should avoid when writing research paper.
Common mistakes when writing a research paper
Setting up, executing, and writing a research paper requires concentration, wisdom, and the ability to identify inaccuracies. The most common mistakes are:
1. Being unsure of the topic and not consulting the advisor
Many students make mistakes of picking a topic without the input of their supervisor and when they eventually run into a block during the research, it becomes difficult to ask for help. To avoid this scenario, you can select some themes, however, you should introduce them to a teacher who you think is appropriate to guide your research. It is important to consult your research supervisor if:
- The question to be answered is pertinent.
- The procedures to answer it are looking infeasible.
- There are limitations associated with these procedures.
2. Stop asking questions about the research itself
Many times, students tend to lose focus on the research work and stop asking questions about the research itself. However, the truth is you need to ask yourself this question, am I trying to answer a question that has been answered by a lot of people before me so that I will “rain in the wet”? This and other questions need to be answered before you start writing the research project.
3. Giving little importance to the research project
Writing a research project takes time, but it has advantages. Students tend to see research work as a laborious effort at something meant only for professors, thereby giving it little importance. However, you need to place a huge value on research work, and you can start this by planning. Hence, make a draft of your final project and send it to your supervisor for correction and comments. Planning the research is an extremely important step.
4. Ignore the literature suggested by the supervisor
Students also make the mistake of ignoring academic literature recommended by their supervisors. A lot of academics feel offended or ignored when students disregard the bibliography indicated by them. If you do the same, know that you won’t even be able to start a conversation on the topic of your research. So, avoid this error when doing your research work.
5. Not studying scientific methodology
Nobody is born knowing how to do research. Take your time to get to know the fundamentals of the scientific methodology. Without this knowledge, you won’t become familiar with the appropriate research design and methodology to be used for your research work.
6. Do the fieldwork in a hurry
Many students tend to wait till almost the end of the academic year before starting to work on their research work and most times it comes up too late too little. This problem of procrastination is common at all levels ranging from undergraduate to graduate students. Indeed, the topic for your research project may be perfect, but if its execution is careless, everything may be lost. Hence, to avoid this mistake, it is recommended that you start very early.
7. Missing meetings with the supervisor without prior notice
Never leave your supervisor waiting for you in vain. This scenario breeds a huge disconnect between the student and his supervisor most times as the supervisor concludes that the student is unserious with the work at hand. Hence, if you are unable to go on a particular meeting date, let your supervisor know hours in advance to avoid time-wasting.
8. Keep the collected data in disarray
Indeed, some people start their research work early, plan for the fieldwork and writing stage and still produce watery research. This happens because the result they acquired is not structured well or their writing is disorganized. Therefore, we recommend that you leave laziness aside, record and organize the information you are collecting. Keep them in a format that is easy to access and understand. This is the leeway to avoiding many future problems.
9. Adding dubious numbers and images to your work
It has been established in the academic community that many people manipulate data during research work either to achieve the desired result or out of laziness. This mistakes most times leads to a low grade from the examination board for students and rejection of the paper for professionals. It is advisable to use real data as the basis of your research.
In addition to the above, students tend to make the mistake of using low-resolution images during research work. This makes it difficult for the examiner and audience to understand the content of the picture. To avoid this mistake, you should learn how to make and use images with magnetizing effects.
10. Ignore the research model required by the faculty
Another common mistake student make is using a research model that is different from what is applicable in the faculty. Take, for instance, using the quantitative method of data collection instead of the recommended qualitative method by the school. You should consult the college website to find out if there is a model of research to be followed. If so, save this model to your notebook and learn all the details about it.
11. Writing the project in a haste due to the submission deadline
Creating textual content only at the end is one of the worst mistakes when doing research. Anxiety and rushing will not let your mind run smoothly. Gradually write, add information, read and reread what you produced. This is the best way to produce good research work.
12. Delivering the project to supervisor late
You should know that your supervisor has several other duties besides helping you in the construction of your project. Therefore, he needs a reasonable time to evaluate your work. And you only stand to gain from an analysis free of dissatisfaction with his work.
13. Ignoring the research presentation room
Your oral presentation will be better suited to the lighting and format of the room if you visit it beforehand. Hence, it is recommended that you visit before the day of your presentation as many people now do.
14. Talking too much and making many gestures during the presentation of the project
State the essential ideas of your work. Don’t walk too far and don’t raise your arms excessively while presenting your project.
15. Getting sulky in the face of criticism from a member of the board
Many people tend to forget that they are in the learning stage. Always remember that you are in the apprentice position. Even if the reviews don’t come in a kind form, listen to them and write them down. Even if you are upset by what you heard, try not to get a frown on your face. After all, you are unaware of the possible role of examination board members in your professional career, which is just beginning.
16. Forgetting to thank everyone for their participation
One of the mistakes when doing your project that is committed out of pure nervousness is forgetting to thank some people.
A tip: write on paper the name of everyone who contributed to your development during the course work and project and leave the paper in the pocket of the clothes you are going to use for the presentation. Then just remove your “note” and quote all the names. And then, wait for the round of applause!