Hi I'm a master's program student studying statistics.

I'm wondering whether I can write a theoretical paper or not.

Recently, I want to write a theoretical paper as my thesis. But, a lot of people say that writing theoretical paper is not appropriate as master's thesis, since it is too hard.

So, I want to know that writing theoretical paper is impossible in usual case.

Thank you :)

  • It depends on your abilities and experience. Since we do not know these, we are in no position to tell if you are capable of writing a theoretical paper or not. – Joel Reyes Noche Apr 13 at 14:54
  • Can you write a theoretical paper. Yes, you can write a manuscript. Will the manuscript be publishable? That is up to the journal, your writing skills, and your statistical contribution. Will your advisor and graduate program let you use the manuscript for your thesis? We don't know. – Richard Erickson Apr 13 at 15:00

It depends on the standards you want/need to achieve. If you aim at Nobel price winning work, then the chance of you succeeding is near 0 (not least since the Nobel price for statistics does not exist...). If you aim at achieving at least a very bad level then the chance is probably near a 100%.

Probably your aim is somewhere in between, and now the answer differs a lot across disciplines, but also across programs. The difficulty of doing theoretical work differs from discipline to discipline. If your program aimed at teaching you how to write a theoretical paper, then it should obviously be easier than if your program has a more empirical focus.

So the person to talk to is your advisor. If (s)he advises you not to do it, then that is a strong signal you would probably not want to ignore.

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