How I failed to Defend my First Research Synopsis

You already know what Research synopsis defence is, because of either you have already failed it or don’t want to fail in near future.

There are certain reasons that can contribute to this failure, most of them are those which we usually ignore due to our lack of understanding of the empirical research and busy in dreaming about ourselves as scientists publishing scores of research papers and the shelf full of books. These are few things that lead to my grilling during research synopsis presentation

Too Broad Research Title

Research title is the first thing that everyone sees first which make sense that why every member of the committee is too active to find the mistakes in it. Research title must reflect what you are actually trying to do.

Let’s say I was researching on few animal species about their eating behaviours but I write the name of their whole family. Similarly, if you are working on eating disorder then mention it rather than “Comparative analysis of eating disorders in equidae”.

Poor calculation of time frame

Committee referred to my work using words like “fantasy”  and “imaginary” work because I forgot that my research project is time-bound and I have to complete it no matter what.

I wrote ideal time required for every step in a well-optimized situation which is impossible for first-timers. Technically I spent more time in designing in my Gantt chart in PowerPoint rather planning the time frame of my research.

Improper parameters of choosing right data from pre-requisite

It is necessary to have the complete and clear understanding that based on what parameters you will choose the input of next step. Especially if the pre-requisite is the in-silico work yielding a huge amount of data.

This must be clearly mentioned not only in the synopsis but the presenter should also discuss it during the presentation. This problem usually occurs when the study is based on different phases.


Always try to spend a good amount of time with your supervisor and discuss each and every aspect of your study to avoid any embarrassment. No matter how good you are and confident about the literature study you did, your knowledge is still far less than your supervisor and the committee sitting there.

Make sure to write down the suggestions during the defence session and amend them after discussing it with your supervisor.

What mistakes you did in your first research synopsis? Please share in the comment box and help the community to learn.

2 thoughts on “How I failed to Defend my First Research Synopsis

Leave a Reply