11. Working on the Thesis and Avoiding Delay


Occasionally, students encounter difficulties with working on and writing their theses. We encourage you to consider using the following resources to help minimize delays:


Assistance with the writing process


Writing Centers

The EECS Communication Lab offers assistance for to students who are in the process of writing theses or conference papers.  The Communication Lab offers free appointments and workshops to students to discuss all aspects of the writing process.

The Writing and Communcation Center also provides free services to students through individual consultations about any writing difficulty, from questions about grammar to matters of style, including difficulties common to writers. This center also offers specialized English as a Second Language (ESL) learning services.



The Office of Graduate Education offers workshops on Thesis Writing:

Xiaolu Hsi, Ph.D, will be hosting a workshop entitled “Staring Down the Blank Screen – the Psychology of Thesis Writing for Master’s Students,” designed to help master’s students who will be writing a thesis as a part of their degree requirement.  Topics to be discussed are the essentials of thesis writing, self-direction, accessing support (like a thesis advisor, peers, and writing resources), time management, stress and sleep management, productivity, anxiety-induced procrastinating, as well as other interpersonal issues related to the thesis process.  These workshops will take place at MIT Medical Mental Health and Counseling Services on Monday afternoons at 5:00pm (dates available when you call 253-2916 to sign up).  There is a limit of 10 to 15 per workshop; a follow up session is available upon request.



Consider speaking with Phoebe Ayers, the EECS librarian at the Barker Library, who is an excellent resource for research materials.


Communication with supervisor and other researchers

We encourage you to set up a clear plan (including regular meetings) for your thesis with your supervisor.  The more you are in communication with your supervisor, the easier it is to speak with them about any problems you may encounter during the process.  If your work intersects or depends upon another person's project, please explain to them that your work is on a fixed timeline. 

Make sure that you speak with your advisor about special materials that you may need in order to finish your thesis and that you are able to order any materials well before you need them.


If you would like to speak with someone (other than your supervisor) about writing, time management, or common hinderances to thesis writing, please feel free to make an appointment with anyone in the Undergraduate Office by emailing ug@eecs.mit.edu



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