I teach a communication research course where the expected individual output is a thesis outline or proposal. The first half of the course covers the whole range of research methods, both quantitative and qualitative. After the midterm exam, the student has to work independently in between consultations with me or the few times that the class touches base to sort out some thesis proposal writing issues. A complete thesis outline includes these chapters: Introduction [nature and importance of the study, objectives, scope and limitations, time and place of the study], Review of Literature, Theoretical and Conceptual framework [conceptualized relationship between variables, statement of hypotheses, operational definition of terms], Methodology [location of the study, research design, sampling procedure, data gathering instrument, data analysis, data requirements matrix], and Literature Cited.
This is that time of the year when my thesis students are required to submit three development communication thesis topics. One email I received today from a student went this way:
These are my research topics. I’m still confused with these topics. I hope to gain better ideas from you. Thank you.
1.” Perceived influence of Books’ Covers on students’ behaviour and interest towards choosing what to read.”
- How could books’ covers affect students’ interest on reading?
- In what way students look on books to read?
- Do books’ covers affect their way of choosing? In what way?
2. “Effects of time duration on VSU students towards lesson retention and understanding”
- Does it affect greatly?
3. “Effects of message framing and peer factors between college students and high school students on evading vices”
You need to read the recent BSDC theses, journals, book, and Devcompage thesis/research coach to understand what thesis topics are like. A BS Devcom thesis has a section on “Suggestions for further research” which presents about 3-4 proposed research topics based on the thesis’ results. Research journals and communication books present rsearch papers that can give one many ideas on possible thesis topics, perhaps a variation on the research reported in the journal. Finally, the “Thesis/research coach” of Devcompage has hundreds of comments from communication students asking for advice on their theses and my reply to those comments. Reading this page alone can give students many ideas on what thesis topic to pursue.
None of the thesis topics you suggested is acceptable. Remember you are a Devcom student. As such, your thesis topic should delve on development communication issues. Review the MDGs — what are the communication issues in any of the MDGs.
Read, read, read.
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