Make the thesis process as painless as possible by trying out these websites to help you with everything from your RRL to deck design and organized collaboration!
One of the most excruciating things about doing your thesis is looking for related literature. It has to not just be related, but also relevant, accurate, and properly-sourced. One of the most exciting things about doing your thesis is finding those perfect references to use in your paper. Thankfully, there is a wide variety of websites and databases available to students and scholars alike so you can be more excited than excruciated when embarking on your thesis journey.
Besides libraries and databases, this list also includes tools and platforms that will help you in being organized, creative, and streamlined in your research process. From JSTOR to Canva, Google Scholar to Miro, there’s a little bit of everything for everyone.
Zotero is a free tool that can help you collect, annotate, and cite all your references quickly and efficiently. Tired of having to cite manually or having to input each reference into a citation machine individually? Zotero’s got your back. You can upload links, PDFs, books, and other references and sort them as you wish, and Zotero will automatically grab the metadata for easy citation. You can make minor edits to the data, then just pick which citation style to use, and Zotero will generate your entire bibliography just like that.
Philippine E-Journals or PEJ collects and stores articles, publications, and journals from schools and universities across the country. While a lot of material are only available in print, you can find older, less well-known, and very specific localized references written by Filipino scholars in this database.
Google’s search engine for scholarly literature is incredibly helpful, especially when you’re just beginning your research. It scans across a broad range of sites, databases, and libraries to give you leads to articles and books relevant to your thesis. Its tagline “stand on the shoulders of giants” is accurate representation of what it offers to the world, and is actually quite inspiring.
Taylor & Francis publishes renowned, peer-reviewed journals and makes them available on the website. Spanning a wide range of fields, Taylor & Francis is trusted and closely monitored, so you’re sure to get quality references—but often, for a price. Many articles are open-access, but to gain access to more, you have to subscribe, or your institution may be able to help you. Regardless, you’ll for sure find something that helps.
This digital library stores and publishes millions of journals, books, media, and other sources across a wide range of fields. While most resources are unfortunately hidden behind paywalls, JSTOR’s Open Access Collection does have accessible publications and references for your perusal. Also, check with your university as they may be able to give you access to those journals and papers.
YOUR UNIVERSITY DATABASE
Don’t sleep on your school’s library and database. After all, there’s a reason why your tuition costs as much as it does. They most likely will not just allow you access to paywalled websites like Taylor & Francis or JSTOR, but they also have publications and archives that much more relevant to your studies because they’re most likely localized and from similar contexts. You might even be able to contact some scholars directly for more help!
ResearchGate is more of a social networking site for scholars, but it’s great because most of the time, authors and scholars whose articles are hidden behind paywalls upload their papers to the site. If not, they may have contact information you can use to reach out. Last year, when I was doing my thesis, I used ResearchGate to contact a Hong Kong-based scholar whose conference paper was unavailable online, and she replied with a copy of the paper and even a PDF of her presentation deck!
The United States Library of Congress, the largest library in the world, hosts millions of source material in its digital database. Books, films, newspapers, photographs, audio recordings, maps, and manuscripts are all there for your perusal. If you’re doing any sort of historical research, this library will provide you with countless resources. And even though it is owned by the United States, there is so much material about the Philippines, especially during the American occupation.
With newspapers, exhibits, books, pictures, and publications, the National Library holds a pretty sizeable collection of documents. While its interface leaves much to be desired, the website is another nook and cranny you should check out to find the best resources for your study.
ScienceDirect makes papers and publications all about the sciences available to users. People can use it for scholarly, government, or industry work involving topics from the physical, life, and health sciences to the social sciences. Millions of its reference material are open-access as well.
Lucidspark and Miro are both collaborative platforms where you can make digital “whiteboards” to organize your thoughts, references, and data, as well as create diagrams, flow charts, and visualizations of said data. They’re great for brainstorming and taking note of ideas, tasks, and plans. Choose whichever platform works for you and get to collaborate with your thesis-mates in an organized and engaging manner.
For studies dealing with interviews or focus group discussions, Otter can help you transcribe your audio files so you don’t have to deal with the excruciating, long-winded pain of transcribing manually. However, be warned, though, that you will still have to double-check the transcripts because it will not be 100% accurate, especially if the language spoken isn’t English or if there’s too much noise in the background. The service is also free-to-use for a limited number of minutes and transcriptions per month.
Move over, PowerPoint and Google Slides. Canva has taken over the scene as the premier design platform to use for everything from presentation slides to birthday cards. You can use Canva to design your thesis materials—your deck, your thesis poster, pamphlets, graphs, and more! With their templates and easily-available graphics, your materials will never look better.
Continue Reading: Here’s How You Can Win A 350,000 Peso Scholarship To Study Abroad