“I have no clue”

by | September 14, 2009

Situation: Beginning of the doctoral program, coursework.

Answer: “I have no clue”

The question: “What topic are you focusing on for your dissertation?”

Mostly, that answer is o.k. when you are at the beginning of your program and may, in fact, be desirable.
[ If someone comes into coursework with a set topic/idea, they are less likely to allow other variables, or totally different topic, to enter their thought processes. As I like to say, let education happen. Have an idea, but be willing to shift and change as you learn new perspectives in your courses. ]


IF you do the work to determine the focus and narrow to a topic throughout your coursework.
IF you are open to thinking and pondering throughout courses.
IF you network with faculty and professional colleagues.

Let’s start with the ‘I have no clue’
Sure you do.

Narrow it down:
Say you are in education. You can dismiss the rest of the world that doesn’t have to do with education.
Say you are in k-12. You can dismiss training, adult education.
That narrows topics even further. So, your topic will have something to do with k-12. This is your context.

If you have no clue, or if you have an idea, proceed throughout coursework to identify a topic of interest.

Now, do your work–over time–to identify possible topics.

4 Responses to "“I have no clue”"

  1. Jacqueline Hatcher says:

    I am wandering through the capella virtual campus to find a hint of what I am in store for entering the EdD program. Until classes start there really arent any clues. This entry was a bit of a help for me because I do have an idea of what I want to write about. So one step in the direction is that I do have a clue. The information about the index cards will help me put the clues to my ideas together. I am still searching for answers to the unknown.

  2. Lynn Riskedal says:


    Congrats!!! on starting an exciting program. The EdD program will unfold as you progress through the courses.

    I am going to ask my colleagues to respond to your query, too, as they are much more involved in the EdD.



  3. Jacqueline Hatcher says:

    Thank you so much……every little bit will help in my journey.

  4. Lynn Riskedal says:


    You can be more involved with the EdD community by joining the Capella EdD facebook group.

    1. If you are already a member of Facebook proceed to step 3

    2. Go to http://www.facebook.com and create a user profile. note: you must have a member profile to participate in facebook

    3. Log-in to facebook using your user name and password.

    4. Using the search tool, Search Capella University EdD Leadership and Management. Click to enter the group.

    5. The first time you attempt to enter the site you will be asked to request permission to become a member. Request permission.

    6. Administrator will check site daily to verify that you are an enrollee or enrolled into the EdD program. This could take a couple of days.

    7. When granted permission from the administrator you will receive a message to the email account you set up in your profile letting you know.

    8. At this point when you use your user name and password to log-in to facebook you will have access to the EdD group. This is the little people icon on the bottom right hand corner of page.