I will have my viva in less than a week and I lost all my confidence. I am afraid that I will sound very weak and can't defend my thesis. I think I am not an expert of my subject and my thesis is not good at all. Lately I also developed a mental block so I can't speak about my thesis.
Does anyone have any confidence tips?
For general confidence building I found Marissa Peer's confidence book very good - it includes a CD I believe. I get very nervous about public speaking (presentations etc) and found it really helpful for that. I used to read the book and then listen to the relevant bit on the CD. When you think about it, a viva is like public speaking so I guess it would be helpful for your viva. Otherwise, try to relax and remind yourself that you can do this, you're just having an attack of cold feet/nerves which is very understandable and natural but you can overcome it. Good luck, I really hope it goes well for you.
Believe in yourself - you are the expert as you have spent the last few years doing it so you know your topic inside out even if you think you don't! Have the confidence to say what you think as your opinion is valid even if it's different from your supervisor's or examiner's one!
Think of it as more like a chat about your work which is what it is essentially as your examiners are keen to find out about what you did and why.
Typical questions will include something like the following: what you did and why, the rationale and the methodology you used and your results & analysis and conclusions.
They will probably start of generally asking general questions about your topic to ease you in before getting down to the finer details. Be sure you highlight what makes your research different and why so you show that you have made an original contribution to your field of research.
Hope this helps ang good luck! You can do it! Get a good night's sleep before it really helps you focus. (up)
======= Date Modified 07 Jul 2011 14:49:43 =======
I just read your post
how are you doing?
I think its probably worry that makes you think you've lost self confidence :-)
One tip is to write all your good qualities on a piece of paper, and carry it with you (put it in your handbag). Pull it out to read whenever you feel down, it will help to give you a boost.
love satchi :-)
Hi Satchi, you are back to forum after so much time.
Thank you to all for the confidence tips. Sunflower have your first star.
I passed my viva with minor corrections. Examiners told that important results are not stressed enough in my thesis. This also shows my lack of confidence.
Well done Dr Blue, fantastic news!
I too found confidence a problem and wondered if I would be able to attend my viva let alone discuss my thesis, but was amazingly calm on the day (if a little like a rabbit in the headlights lol). Take a little time to reflect on the viva (I was buzzing for a while) and relax (up)
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