How much do you care about the topic of your dissertation? I’ve talked to hundreds of dissertation students in the last three decades and it’s clear to me that those students who have the greatest commitment or passion for their topic have the highest probability of completing their dissertation. The dissertation is one of the most difficult of academic ventures because it requires the student to do something they’ve never done before which is conduct research at high level standards with relatively little help or support. If you care deeply about the population, problem, or issue you are researching, your passion and interest will be very high and you can more easily overcome difficulties. When students don’t care much about their subject matter or population of study, then their only motive for doing the dissertation is to get it done and get their degree. Unfortunately, those are poor motivations, when you consider the trials and challenges of this process. However, when students have a passion for the problem, the purpose, or the people they are studying, it is easier to make the sacrifices required to complete a dissertation and earn the degree. So take care and think deeply about the topic you choose to research: it will make all the difference in the world.