Best Books, Posts and Tools for Writing Your Ph.D. Updated on February 4, 2017 RoadMonkey moreContact Author Wondering how to start writing up your Ph D? I have now massively updated this lens. Since first writing it, I have discovered a number of other books and tools that have helped me learn how to do a PH.D. I have recently completed my Ph.D. One of the most important things to actually DO when studying for a Ph.D, as well as reading, is to write. Now, you may say that you don’t have anything to write about, that you don’t know anything and can’t say anything that hasn’t already been said. That doesn’t matter. The writing part is just as important as the reading part and I will help you work on that too. This lens covers some of the books, tools and posts I have found useful in getting stuck into writing up work for research. Since writing the above, I have found some writing tools, and also books on writing that will simplify and speed the process and also help to organise it.
I have also added some new pictures. All photos on this lens are either my copyright or they are copyright free from Pixabay. Starting to Write Can be Hard! Research writing feels different. You may have got a really good degree from your undergraduate studies. You may have been out at work in a job that requires you to write lots of papers. But when it comes to writing academic papers or submitting work to your supervisor, sometimes it’s very hard to get anything down on paper. You may have read loads of books and papers on your subject but you may still feel that you don’t know enough to write anything or you may not know what to write. One of the problems may be that you don’t know WHY you are reading a particular book or paper. This happened to me. I have been an avid reader all my life, have read hundreds of books, though probably most of them were fiction, rather than factual or academic books.
I also have a high reading speed but even so, I still did not know WHY I was reading a particular book or WHAT I wanted to get from it. This is crucial when doing a Ph.D. Not only so you know what to get out of the reading material but also to save yourself time so you don’t read what isn’t necessary. It’s easy to get overwhelmed with reading material and think you have to know it all, then despairing because you can’t get through it all. This is not necessary. This is a very well written and interesting book. I wish I had had access to it when in school. It is very accessible to good readers and would have been very useful to me even then. How to find out what you are actually meant to be doing! The next book that I found really useful is “A Student’s Guide to Methodology” by Peter Clough and Cathy Nutbrown. This book does what it says in the title – it introduces you to postgraduate research methodology.
It’s well written and easy to follow and includes a lot of interesting material. One of the best parts about this book is that it also acts as a workbook. It encourages you to keep a research journal and tells you what to put in it. It also encourages you to write something, even only 100 words, after reading something in the book. One web site I found really useful was at Plymouth University in England but unfortunately the article I found so useful has been taken off the site, or at least, I am unable to find it! It was all about beginning your research and was very useful to read along with “The Student’s Guide to Methodology”. WayBack Machine. To use the Wayback machine, carry out a Search Engine search for The Wayback Machine, copy the web site address as shown above and then paste that into the Wayback machine.