Make the Dissertation Writing Process Less Intimidating With The Top 10 EdTEch Tools

Before you started working on your dissertation, you never expected to face such a huge challenge. You are confident in your knowledge and skills now that you are close to a doctoral degree, but that doesn’t make the final project easy. If you fail to come up with a proper strategy, your efforts won’t result with the success you anticipated.

No matter how intimidated you are, the important thing is to stay calm. You deserve this degree. All you need to do is prove it to everyone else. The following tools will support you throughout the dissertation completion process.

Top 10 Tools for Dissertation Writing

1. MindMeister

This is the ideal tool to use during the early stages of idea development. MindMeister enables you to develop your concept through a visually-intriguing mind map. The best part is that the tool is collaborative, so you can share your creation with your mentor or another person who can help you identify its strong and weak points.


This is one of the most popular brainstorming tools available online. It’s absolutely free, so you can start brainstorming without any previous procedures. The handy keyboard shortcuts will make the process faster, so you’ll be able to follow the progress of your thoughts.


3. BiblioExpress

This is the ultimate reference manager, which enables you to format citations in the appropriate style. You can use it to create, manage and edit bibliographic records in APA, MLA and ACS style. BiblioExpress doesn’t have a problem with rich text; it can display any citation you need to include.

4. Google Scholar

The online world is an immense source of materials you can use for your dissertation. You clearly know that not all of them are reliable. If you use Google Scholar as your primary search engine, you will locate resources worthy of a reference.

5. Evernote

This masterful app offers several tools for your mobile device, desktop computer and web browser. It enables you to capture ideas on the go, save text notes, photos, screenshots, and other materials that will enable you to memorize and retrieve your ideas whenever you need to.

6. PapersGear

This service has helped many doctoral candidates to achieve their ultimate goal. First of all, the blog posts featured at the website will give you the needed motivation for the writing process. In addition, you can also get professional assistance at any stage of the development of your project. The collaborative experience will make you a much better researcher and writer.

7. Zotero

This is a free online tool that you can use for collecting, organizing, citing, and sharing research sources. It will sync the data across all devices, so it will be easy for you to access your materials at any time. The collaborative aspect enables you to consult your mentor about particular resources.

8. Google Calendar

You don’t need to use some fancy organizers. Google Calendar is the simplest, but most effective online tool of this type. You can access your plans from any device, and you can share it with your supervisor. You’ll have a clear view of your agenda, so you can rest assured that no deadlines will be missed.

9. HabitRPG

A simple calendar is not motivating enough for you? HabitRPG offers the reinforcement you need. This is more than a productivity app; it’s a habit building tool that will boost your productiveness in no time. The reward/punishment system is a strong motivator, but it can also become distracting. The tool is fun, but remember the reason you start using it!

10. LeechBlock and StayFocusd

These browser extensions (for Firefox and Google Chrome respectively) will make you immune to online distractions. You won’t be able to access unnecessary websites during a working session.

Bonus Tips for Effective Dissertation Writing

If you try to clarify all your ideas before you start writing, you’ll delay the beginning of the actual work for too long. It’s important to have a concept, but don’t expect to have a 100% specified structure in your head before you start writing. Start going through the planning and research stages as soon as possible. Perfectionism is not necessary at this time; you’ll have plenty of chances to fix the flaws as you write.

Think of each chapter as an individual section that’s connected to the whole project. That will enable you to work progressively without getting into a writer’s block!

Article contributed by Jessica Millis



Jessica Millis works at James Madison University as a professor assistant. She is also a freelance writer and editor. You can follow her on Twitter and Google+