Book Review

Surviving Your Dissertation

A Comprehensive Guide to Content and Process

by Kjell Erik Rudestam and Rae R. Newton, Sage Publications, Thousand Oaks, Calif., 2007, 317 pp., $39.95 softcover

Writing a dissertation is a long-term headache. In Surviving Your Dissertation: A Comprehensive Guide to Content and Process, Kjell Rudestam, graduate dean at the University of Santa Barbara, and Rae Newton, professor at California State University at Fullerton, provide helpful hints to reduce this headache.

The authors provide practical tips on the research process, including selecting an appropriate topic, reviewing literature, writing the dissertation, accessing and collecting online data, selecting types of research, using online data, describing the research and considering the research presentation format.

Perhaps the greatest resources offered are in the areas of online data access and collection programs. To those of us who work with students in this area, the text is helpful in understanding what and how much qualitative data are acceptable, and what data-collection and presentation formats work best for dissertations.

In nearly each chapter the authors list “suggestions from students” to provide some relief in the whole process. For the scholar practitioner, the ease with which the whole process is explained will reduce the stress, and yet result in a high standard of research in dissertations. This book is helpful for both the mentor and mentee in a Ph.D. or Ed.D. program.

Reviewed by Jerry Horgen, adjunct professor of edu-cational leadership at St. Cloud State University, St. Cloud, Minn., and Capella University, Minneapolis, Minn.