Synthesis Paper Researcher Skills


To navigate their field of study, doctoral students are expected to have different skills. Among the critical skills expected is research skills. Research skills are very critical in helping doctoral students find the right information and use the information in making decisions. For example, doctoral students should find information from a variety of resources, come up with reports and construct critical decisions according to the evidence that they are provided. In the provided articles, the common themes highlighted by the authors incorporate collaborative learning, feedback, and time management as comprehensive analysis and in-depth evaluation of the research question.

Three Themes

Cultivating Effective Relationships

Cultivating effective relationships is a critical aspect that all doctoral students have to consider. According to Lindsay (2015), many students cited that effective relations between faculty supervisors and students were good in making sure that students succeeded in their academics. If effective relationships were not cultivated, there are likely to be setbacks for the students, students may fail to finish their research projects on time and may experience attrition or confusion in comprehending the papers.

In another article, Lee, Chang, & Bryan (2020), argue that to achieve success in writing a dissertation, a positive mindset in employing technologies is critical. The second important factor in ensuring that students have developed effective research skills required to finish their dissertation is the creation of an effective relationship with the faculty. This ensures that students achieve success while writing their dissertations. Besides, effective relationships are critical since they ensure that students easily get the necessary resources required for learning which leads to reduced stress in employing technology as a resource for learning. Lee, Chang, & Bryan (2020), also articulate that relations between students and non-teaching staff members are crucial to general fulfillment in higher learning programs offered online. Students’ opinions of the institution’s quality of service are influenced by their interactions with contact employees in divisions like enrollment and records. Students are more likely to stay in school and succeed when they are satisfied with the quality of the services they receive.

According to Klocko, Marshall, and Davidson (2015), creating effective relationships is important since it helps in ensuring that students get a conducive environment for developing effective skills for academic writing through collaboration. Besides, doctoral professors, and especially doctoral dissertation advisors, are frequently asked to interact with students and guide and train students while they balance their personal and professional obligations with those of the academy.


Feedback is one of the key elements of the research skills that a doctoral student should possess during research. To Lindsay (2015), supervising instructors should provide relevant and ongoing feedback that should be both constructive and offered promptly based on the drafts written by the students (p.191). Encouraging and meaningful feedback offers a supportive approach to help doctoral learners gain confidence in their research process so that they can consider themselves to be academic writers. It is thus important to offer doctoral learners a supportive framework through timely and relevant feedback.

According to Lee, Chang, and Bryan (2020), the contact between students and instructors is the most important factor in student contentment. The characteristics that the students were looking for included prompt feedback and response to inquiries, as well as attention to detail, encouragement, and genuineness. In an investigation of second-year doctoral students, ninety percent of the participants gave professors credit for encouraging fruitful discussion and pushing the exploration of novel ideas. The achievement of doctorate learners enrolled in an online program for leadership can be improved, as stated by Lee, Chang, and Bryan (2020), thanks to technological and interpersonal variables. relationships among instructors and learners are important in an online setting since it improves student happiness. For instance, the authors note that interactions between students and instructors will allow learners to receive prompt feedback, support, attention, openness to queries, and honesty (Lee, Chang, & Bryan, 2020, p. 65).

Furthermore, Klocko, Marshall, and Davidson (2015) contend that the teaching staff has a crucial role to contribute in assisting practitioner students as they shift to doctoral-level writers. Most people who participated in the study stated that they wanted to routinely get timely feedback that was constructive (p. 28). The Ph.D. students may write better and finish their dissertations more quickly with the support of constructive criticism. The authors also argue that in doctorate research, feedback is an interpersonal process woven within interactions between supervisors. This necessitates paying attention to the social aspect of feedback, not just on the what, or the content, but additionally on the process, or how feedback is provided and accepted.

Time Management

The authors talk about managing time as their final topic. Excellent time management was acknowledged as a crucial research ability among PhD candidates by Lindsay (2015), Lee et al. (2020), and Klocko, et al. (2015). Doctoral students are capable of managing their time to finish their doctoral program on schedule with the right skills (Lindsay, 2015, p. 184). The completion rate may be increased by the use of an appropriate study strategy and self-control while studying. Writing time was considered to be part of time management, as were organizational abilities developed via self-control (p. 192).

As a research skill, Lee, Chang, and Bryan (2020) considered effective communication to include flexibility of time and schedules (p.64). Through flexible time and schedule, learners will require self-discipline and independence for students to achieve success. Time management was an important component of online student success. Students require skills such as persistence, self-efficacy, and active engagement in the learning community (p.65). Lee and colleagues thus concluded that time management was an effective skill that helped researchers to complete the dissertation and the online program successfully.

Lastly, Klocko, Marshall, and Davidson (2015) noted that for Ph.D. candidates, managing time was the biggest challenge to finishing their dissertations. Doctoral learners that manage their schedules well will be ready to write by making efficient use of the time as well as other resources available to them when they are writing. Although students schedule a time to do their writing projects, the authors claim that they still have significant levels of tension due to the quantity of writing that is expected of them in their doctoral programs. The effectiveness of this allotted time is questioned if enough time is put aside for study. Participants in the research suggested including organizing tools to help them create a completion timeline, set goals for what they are doing, understand how to find and synthesize literature, and build milestones.


In conclusion, for the majority of students, the Ph.D. writing procedure can be demanding and challenging at times. The process of preparing a dissertation for a doctoral degree might be aided by a variety of things. The authors of Lindsay (2015), Lee, Chang, and Bryan (2020), as well as Klocko, Marshall, and Davidson (2015) all concur that several elements could assist doctoral students in successfully overcoming the difficulties they may experience throughout the doctoral dissertation writing procedure. The three components mostly covered how to build good connections, manage time effectively, and receive feedback that is pertinent, timely, favorable, and continuous. Doctoral students should not miss these practical research techniques.





















Klocko, B. A., Marshal, S. M., & Davidson, J. F. (2015). Developing practitioner-scholar doctoral candidates as critical writers. Journal of Higher Education Theory and Practice, 15(4). 21-31. 15_4_.pdf

Lee, H., Chang, H., & Bryan, L. (2020). Doctoral students’ learning success in online-based leadership programs: Intersection with technological and relational factors. International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 21(1), 61-81.

Lindsay, S. (2015). What works for doctoral students in completing their thesis? Teaching in Higher Education, 20(2). 183-196.




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