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Conflict Resolution Institute

CRI Graduate Degree

MA Thesis

Support Group

Thesis Support Group

When beginning work on a master’s thesis, issues may arise that are frustrating or confusing and present emotional or psychological barriers inhibiting research and writing progress. Student-run support groups, whose members include everyone actively working on an M.A. thesis are useful for this purpose. A support group may help you to find ways to work effectively with your thesis supervisor, to understand and interpret feedback comments on your written drafts and deal effectively with criticism, to bounce back from blows to self-esteem (a frequent problem for many in this process!), managing and scheduling time effectively to move forward on thesis work, and meeting deadlines. Each year, a call for interest in a M.A. support group is issued by the Conflict Resolution Program office.

Common Support Group Issues and Overcoming the barriers:

1. Working with your thesis supervisor and/or oral defense committee

  • Selecting a topic, advisor

  • Allowing time for feedback to drafts and inquires

2. Emotional Blocks

  • Understanding feedback/criticism
Blows to self-esteem
Dealing with frustration

3. Task Blocks 

  • Time management—when working on the thesis 

  • Time commitment—how much time devoted to work on the thesis
Setting deadlines