Big Project. Despite All the Tutors' AdviceDissertation

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¶ … big project. Despite all the tutors' advice and warnings, however, I did not expect just how big and time consuming it had the potential of actually becoming.

Within in my journal I have noted that my first group tutorial was on the 29th of October 2009. I was slightly worried, as by this time, most of my other course mates had already had their first or second tutorials completed. The reason for this was that my group supervisor was tied up with other commitments and as such this was the earliest that he could meet us. For me, the first tutorial was a very significant one as it aided in outlining the process of the dissertation. This was especially important to me, as I often find it difficult to actually start work proper until I have all the information required. This is a habit that I will elaborate on further along in the essay. However, I have since collaborated in concern to online vs. retail shopping later on, upon detailing both my personal reflections as well as this topic of interest.

My worries about lagging behind my course mates were soothed by the confidence of my tutor, who explained to us that the most important first step was establishing the topic that we were to write on. Across the previous summer vacation, I had already decided that I wanted to do my dissertation on fashion and the Internet. However, I was very hesitant as much of the literature on this had largely been written a good ten years ago, when the internet first set it's foot in the industry. This meant that getting up-to-date information would prove to be more difficult. For a while after the first tutorial, I toyed with the idea of tackling different topics with one strong contender being "the importance of customer service in the luxury sector." I was driving my group mates and tutor crazy, having repeatedly changed the topic of my dissertation. Finally, something that my tutor said left a strong impression on me and helped me to make up my mind. He basically said that our dissertation was a huge project that would consume our lives for the next 9 months at least, and that if we thought we were having problems now, imagine how we would feel smack in the middle of research. He suggested that we choose a topic that greatly interested us, as it would provide motivation in getting the huge project completed.

With his advice in mind, I decided that I would indeed stick to the topic of Internet shopping, retail shopping, and internet fashion. Moreover, the other topics in mind kind of brought out the "so what" question. The entire process took me the whole summer and it wasn't until college was about to close for Christmas vacation before I finally came to this decision. I had wasted plenty of time due to my indecisiveness. I learnt that in future, I should make a decision and stick with it. Upon graduation and in the industry in future, I will not be given the privilege of taking so long to make a decision. It is important for me to be decisive and more importantly, confident in my decisions.

I may seem to have written a huge chunk of text on something seemingly trivial, but for me, the decision making process for choosing a suitable research topic was one of the most difficult aspects. This is a problem I have always encountered, through out the three years of university life and before that. It was all the more prevalent in this particular assignment, as it would count towards a large percentage of my final degree grade. I kept on worrying that there was something better or simpler out there that I could focus on, that I would be able to understand better and thus excel at better.

In retrospect, I realize that whilst my final grade is still very important to me, the dissertation was not just about the results but was also a learning process for me. I should not make decisions based on what would be an easier option, but instead what is likely to interest and enrich me. Later on through out the course of the dissertation, I attempted to… [END OF PREVIEW]

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