Teuku Zulfikar


Writing a thesis is an important pre-requisite for students to graduate. All higher education institutions in Indonesia, and some overseas implement this policy, in which students in their senior years are obliged to write a minor if not a major research project. However, shaping research is challenging and difficult as well, especially for undergraduate students, and this article therefore explores EFL students’ voices on complexities in their attempt to shape their research project and develop research proposal, and causes of their complexity. This article also identifies how students’ generate their research problem. To answer these inquiries, ten student-teachers in the department of English Education, Ar-Raniry State Islamic University were interviewed to understand their complexities in shaping their research project; their perceived solutions for the complexities; and their sources of ideas in generating research problem. In addition, their proposals were also reviewed to explore more in depth on their ways of developing their research project. The study identifies the nature of students’ complexities and factors leading to their difficulties. Most students agree that reflecting on own experience and consulting lecturers are the best way to generate ideas. They also suggest that starting building up the argument is the most challenging part in their attempt to shape research project. Finally, the study also reveals that the best way to solve those complexities is through engaging in constant writing practices.


Research problems; thesis development; research project

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