When I started my final year, I was very excited not only because I was at the end of my undergrad studies but also because I was going to start working on my project. Looking back, when I was in 2nd year, I didn’t understand why final year students had so much stress in the last days of the submission of their thesis. I would tell myself that it is not going to happen to me! I knew that if I had good planning with my supervisor everything will go smoothly, and that was true.
Well, even though I had everything planned well (in my head:)), the process of agreeing on an idea with my teammate didn’t go as planned. I wanted to work on a project in the Telecommunications field, but my teammate wanted us to do a project that will involve more electronics and simulations. It was very hard for us to decide since we had different ideas that we were both passionate about.
Here is what helped us to agree on the topic to work on and how we chose it:
- Look back to your class modules: we took time to look back on the modules we studied, those ones that we enjoyed studying. Since they were many, we found that there are some that we have in common.
- Go into those modules and see what you liked: after finding those modules that we liked, we then went through them deeply and took time to remember what we liked about them. It was at this stage that we found that whatever we are doing, will be in Telecommunications.
- Go through last year's projects: we then took time to go to the library and go through the works of the previous colleagues who also did their projects in Telecommunications. This gave us an idea of the structure of the project. This was because our project was research which we wanted to be a contribution to the works that were done before. So, we wanted to know the tools to use and the format.
- Choose a topic: this being the last but not the least, since we agreed on where to focus, we then had to choose the topic. For us, through the guidance of our supervisor, we went through the research papers so as to know how to proceed. We read around 15 research papers trying to find out our own topic to work on. Long story short, we then found it!
Conclusion: Throughout the journey of doing the final year project, I learned that flexibility is very essential if you are working as a team, and also to allow your supervisor to guide you. We had different ideas that we were excited to do, but we all needed to come down and agree on something to work on, and it had to be a topic we both liked.