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How to Write a Successful Research Proposal

In my first semester of graduate school, I wrote a research proposal for the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowships Program. I had no guidance on how to write a proposal for this very competitive fellowship program. Many websites seem to contradict each other on the guidance that they gave. Ultimately, I was unsuccessful at attaining the fellowship.

The next semester, after I had written multiple academic papers, I then applied for an NIH T-32 Predoctoral Fellowship. When I started working on my proposal, I felt like I had learned more about what I had done wrong on...

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Research Paper vs. Research Proposals: 3 Key Differences

Research Papers and proposals can be very difficult and frustrating to write. However, while they may create similar emotions, they are very different, and understanding these differences is important.

There are three important differences between research papers and proposals, which are the timeframe, purpose, and structure.

First, the time that you write a research paper and proposal is different. This is the difference that most people are aware of. For a research paper, you want to start writing this when you have finished all of the data collection. On the other hand, research...

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10 Tips for Success in Online Classes

Uncategorized Dec 13, 2020


With the current situation in the world, I know many classes are moving into an online format. While many basics of learning are the same between an in-person class and an online class, I believe that there are some specific tips for online learning that can help you be successful in this new format.

Know the Syllabus and Rules for Each Class

In in-person classes, the professor will often walk you through the syllabus and stress and expand the rules that are important to the professor. However, this is almost never the case for online classes.

The first thing you should do at the...

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Stop Being A Good Grad Student and Become a Successful One


When you first start a new experience, there are a lot of new things going on and it may be difficult to know exactly how to act through this new experience. This is especially the case when you are first entering graduate school.

Before you enter grad school, everyone tells you how different it is from undergrad. Generally, telling you how much harder grad school is going to be!

When you first walk into the doors of your first classroom or lab, you may feel lost and like you are already behind. How do you figure out how to be successful in grad school?

What most of us will do is...

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The Secret to Writing Your Dissertation Literature Review

Uncategorized Nov 02, 2020

I remember thinking about writing my first literature review and feeling overwhelmed. I kept asking myself:

How am I going to read all the papers?

How will I know when I have read enough papers?

I learned that this thought process leads to a crappy literature review.

So, in this post, I want to discuss three things I have learned that actually will help you write an excellent literature review for your dissertation.

Narrow Your Topic Down

The biggest mistake we make in a literature review is having too broad of a topic.

Too broad of a topic will lead you to read hundreds of articles,...

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Stop Procrastinating, Start Succeeding

  Procrastination is a major killer to being successful as a student.

Many people know all too well the cycle of procrastination. Where you start to procrastinate, cram at the last minute to get things done, feel stressed and guilty for procrastinating, and then start to procrastinate again.

How many of us have attempted to apply a method that is supposed to prevent procrastination just to end up procrastinating again?

The problem with these methods is that they never address the root of why you are procrastinating.

Find the Emotion

The first step that you should take whenever...

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Don't Start Your Dissertation Before You Do These 3 Things

 If I would have known what to do before I started writing my dissertation, my last semester would have been so much easier.

In this blog, I am going to give you three action steps that you can take to start your dissertation off right that doesn’t include writing.


Step 1: Outline Your Chapters

This may seem really simple and intuitive, but the dissertation process is so daunting that it is often overlooked. We constantly think we need to write our dissertation, but sometimes we need to take a step back and actually plan and outline.

When I started working with...

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