For a research paper in my course we had to come up with a topic proposal. When I talked with my professor about my topic he did not seem interested in my proposal and only talked about a topic of his interest, in which I am totally inexperienced and not really interested in. He didn´t even comment on my research proposal.

The problem is, that my professor is really into this topic. How could I politely ask him to discuss my proposal instead of only his proposal?

  • What level is that? PhD? MSc? Something else? Answers depend. Generally, it is not a good idea to have a strong opinion about what topic to pursue with a prof that has a strong opinion preferring a different direction. Better to seek another prof. – Captain Emacs Oct 26 '20 at 14:55
  • 1
    I don't understand the question. Are you basically asking us if can ask discuss with a sort of supervisor / teacher etc? Of course you can. The rest is obscure. – Alchimista Oct 26 '20 at 16:18

Yes, of course you can ask. And, depending on his personality and yours, you might be successful or not. Be prepared for the "not", I guess. But you would be wise to give some deep thought to his suggestions, since he likely has more experience at this stuff than you do.

And one of the things you can ask about is why the professor doesn't advise you to follow up on your own plan. There might be some unstated reasons - though such things should be made plain. I think he owes you that much, at least.

But the best you can probably hope for is to be allowed to follow up on your own idea but with little help or guidance. If you are really new at this, then that guidance might be invaluable.

And fighting with professors seldom leads to successful outcomes.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.