I've found out from other professors that my topic for B.A. research is something that has already been covered thoroughly. My B.A. research topic covers the hindrances affecting high school students from achieving good English speaking skills. It is a subject that I've been quite passionate about and my supervisor never gave me any negative remark about it. I started to read deeply about it and was discussing it with two other professors. They both gave me this shocking remark that this topic has been thoroughly dealt with before. I really feel frustrated and disappointed, for I feel that I'm just wasting time not adding anything new!!! I don't know what I should do now?!!

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    Have you read the previous studies in question? Do they really cover it so completely and definitively that there is nothing to add? Has there been any additional research since those studies were published? Apr 28 '15 at 14:24
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    well, i did read some works on the net and i did found that they cover the same topic that is the hindrances affecting students from mastering english speaking " but still there are of other countries ..never seen any done in morocco ...still professors claimed the opposit
    – salma
    Apr 28 '15 at 14:50
  • and of course there lll always be things to add ..and i wouldn't deal with the topic of course the same way it has been dealt with with iof course it will be different acording to how .myself wanna deal with it !!
    – salma
    Apr 28 '15 at 14:51
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    Discuss your concerns with your adviser. Also you might want to ask the professors you were discussing this with for references so you don't end up duplicating the work already put forth. You say your are quite passionate about the subject what drives you? Do you have a solution to the issue? That could be your angle. Reading some works on the net isn't the same as good research. Dig a bit deeper and you might find more than you thought was there. Apr 28 '15 at 14:53
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    This post might be useful to you: academia.stackexchange.com/questions/24168/… Apr 28 '15 at 14:54

Like @PatriciaShanahan said in her comment, you have the following possiblities:

  • Check it up if the previous work is the same as the one that you are actually doing. At this point, it would be advisable that you present to your supervisor with your current work and some past articles that resemble what you are actually doing. He could help you to see if its the same or not.
  • If indeed your work has been published before, then you can make a literature review about it; adding your own experimentation and so on. That could become your thesis for your BA degree.
  • If your proposal is new or at least an extension of what has been done before, then you can continue it, but aiming maybe to a future publication.

In all the cases you can, and should, continue with your current work. Remember that what your professors or teachers look after your BA thesis is that you manage to amalgamate what you have learned on your undergraduate period, but not necessarily to present some novel contribution as it happens on the PhD studies. Good luck!


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