The ordeal of an undergraduate that is a week away from his final year reminds me of the story told of the tortoise that was held hostage for 9years in a dung ditch and should be released in the 10th year. Just minutes to his release, he quickly raised alarm, calling them to take him out quickly before the stink kills him. Realizing that writing their final year project will demand a lot, undergraduates are pushed to do everything possible to ease the foreseen stress; they go as far as consulting people whose advise may make no difference during their research period.
You do not have to repeat the same mistakes your predecessors made; I mean it’s not worth it. Here are sets of persons whose advice may not be ideal while writing your final year project.
Lecturers other than your project supervisor/ project Instructor
Research orientation varies with individuals; this principle will never change just because you think your lecturers are team players; yes they are but not at all times. As much as possible, stick closely to your assigned project supervisor and get instructions, advice and corrections from him. If you go consulting other lecturers both within and outside your department, you will complicate issues for yourself; you may have too many solutions on your drawing board which your assigned project supervisor may find confusing.
Before a project supervisor is assigned to you; it would have been confirmed that your final year project topic matches his (your supervisor’s) area of specialty. So seeking advice from somewhere else no matter good it is shows how less you value his attention during your research.
Undergraduates are like farmed copy-cats; they want to follow the same method their contemporaries followed because it was considered right. When it comes to writing a final year project, please keep the copy-cat custom aside and obey. One of my tutors always told me that obedience is intelligence; by this he meant that if you want to go through a tight corner quite easily, just head to simple instructions.
Colleagues from other departments
Flash back to my undergraduate school days where my intellectual mentor studied sociology & Anthropology and I was somewhere in the humanities. I so got used to his human behavioral terms, theories and principles that I almost forgot that he wasn’t going to defend his undergraduate project like I was going to. His final year project material was about a hundred and fifty pages or thereabout so I got really worried. It finally got to my turn and then I realized that it was an entirely different orientation in the humanities, especially communications.
It occurred to me finally that it wasn’t necessary doing that long prose after all; It was just a matter of principles, structures, guidelines and approved methods of presentation of research materials which varies with disciplines and faculty of learning. So on this note I would say – go back to your root.
Non-academic staff/ administrative officers
Like they are called, non-academic staff does not have any business with your final year project. If you cared enough to know the job description of public administrators, you will understand that they are actually trained to harmonize everything else and nothing academic inclined.
One would ask if they didn’t do undergraduate projects in their school days; and I will answer and say that they were students like you who made almost the same mistakes but were not trained to realize how expensive such mistakes were; and that’s the difference between teaching staff and non-academic staff.
Hope you don’t get it twisted; it’s never a bad idea to seek advice or consult any of these set of persons while in school; but when it comes to writing your final year project please stick to the counsel of your project supervisor or instructor for the sake of clarity and a stress free research experience.