Avoiding Project Pitfalls
Watch out for a number of common project pitfalls. Any of the following could increase your workload, stress, or time to completion:
- Adopting a topic or question that is far too broad or poorly defined.
- Getting distracted by other interesting issues or problems along the way.
- Not taking time to get organized at the beginning of your process.
- Adopting a work plan that doesn’t include time for unanticipated delays or setbacks.
- Failing to reset your timeline with your advisor when you miss a key due date.
- Not setting concrete progress goals or milestones.
- Writing without an audience in mind.
- Writing without a clear outline - you can use questions about what you need to know or include to guide you.
- Writing about existing literature like it is a laundry list rather than a critical foundation to guide your work.
- Focusing too much on project results and not enough on the process.
- Working without a weekly schedule.