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Psychological effects Students Experience While Writing Dissertation

A student shouts charter understand and read the paper in preparation for the session

Graduate school is stressful for many students. You have to work on essays, assignments, and dissertation writing projects. What do you think about working on these areas? Is it easy or difficult? Yes, you are right. It is not easy at all and can give you nightmares. There are many psychological effects that you may face due to a dissertation. Those effects strongly jeopardize your abilities to work on your dissertation. Hence, knowing about them is very much important. Keeping this in mind, today’s article is about the psychological effects of dissertation writing. But discussing the effects, let’s briefly explain what a dissertation is and what makes it so difficult to attempt.

What is dissertation writing, and why is it so difficult?

A dissertation is a scholarly piece of writing submitted as part of your Ph.D. degree. Writing a dissertation is difficult because it takes a long time to complete. The extensive research and detailed analysis of the collected data add to its effects. So, when all these things combine, they give a tough time for students. The psychological effects of the dissertation start appearing soon after starting writing it.

What are the psychological effects students face due to the dissertation?

Writing a dissertation is no easy task. It is a lengthy and arduous writing task that have many effects on students’ lifestyle and minds. Now, you must be thinking about what those effects are. Do not think too, as a brief description of the major effects is as follows:

Excessive stress

The first effect that most students face is stress, and that too in excessive quantity. Nothing else would give them such stress that a dissertation gives. The tension of coming up with the guidelines of the university and teacher. The stress of formatting the dissertation right to earn good grades and the time taken by the dissertation. All these things mount up and create a lot of stress for students. Most of the time, students do not get out of this stress state to work on their dissertations. Hence, excessive stress is the first psychological effect that a dissertation brings. Note that you can get rid of this effect by practicing the following things:

  • Break down the dissertation into smaller chunks. Once broken, it is easy to work on each piece rather than the whole dissertation. Moreover, it will not affect your brain and give you excessive stress.
  • Be specific when you write. You must not waste time by wandering here and there. You can also hire a PhD dissertation writing service to overcome the issue.

Increased anxiety

The next psychological effect on the list is anxiety. It is one of the main psychological effects that affect the learning process of students. Whenever the students think of doing something productive, they start feeling increased anxiety. The dissertation-related things like dissertation guidelines and deadlines contribute much to the anxiety. Students normally face two types of anxieties when working on a dissertation. A brief description of those is as follows:

  • Somatic anxiety. It is the most common anxiety which is due to the nervousness of students against their dissertations. Students worry about their low writing skills, which adds to the psychological effects.
  • Cognitive anxiety. This type of anxiety is related to the cognitive aspects of anxiety. For example, students think of other people’s perceptions of their work. The expectations of the supervisor also add to this anxiety.

Enhanced depression

Depression is another psychological effect that most students face. It severely affects how students feel, how they think, and how they act. It causes a persistent feeling of a bad mood and negative thoughts. The main cause of depression during dissertation writing is the quality of the work that teachers demand. As students are unable to produce that quality work, they get depressed. The negative thoughts like they cannot do this occupy their minds and hence indulge them into a more and more depressed state. To minimize depression, students must take things positively and start early.


Lowered motivation

A dissertation being the hardest and longest piece of writing often leads to lowered motivation. It is one of the major psychological effects students face. With lowered motivation, students are unable to work properly on their dissertations. Everyone knows that motivation is something that guides students to do better in every phase of life. The main cause of lack of motivation among students is the length of their dissertations. They get worried about the time that why it is taking so long. It is also because they have never worked on such a big writing project. Hence, lowered motivation is the 4th psychological effect.

Lowered self-esteem

Self-esteem is how positive or negative students think about themselves. Here, they judge them based on the dissertation writing task. As writing a dissertation is an arduous task, the students most of the time feel lowered self-esteem. They think they cannot work on this lengthy project and start underestimating their writing abilities. The lowered self-esteem gives birth to many negative thoughts, like students thinking that their work in the dissertation is not up to mark. The thoughts of working lonely in this scenario add to the overall psychological effects.

Poor mental health

When you are working on a dissertation, along with your physical health, your mental health also matters a lot. Graduate school is stressful. So, students often face mental health issues when working on their dissertations. Poor mental health leads to lowered motivation for the dissertation task. A recent study has revealed that more than one-third of Ph.D. students have poor mental health. With each passing year, this number is growing unprecedentedly.


Writing a dissertation is no less than climbing the Nanga Parbat Mountain. Students face many ups and downs during their journey of dissertation writing. Those ups and downs are the psychological effects of the dissertation. The increased stress, lowered self-esteem, and motivation are some of those effects. Students must learn how to cope with these things to produce a better piece of writing.

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Written by Tyler Archer

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