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Engineering: Picking a research topic


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That might be a little bit of a standard question but could be still interesting to people here.

I'm in a little bit of self crisis at the moment wondering the following question: How do I choose my research topic? (I'm in engineering)

Criterias I can imagine:

- income/important in the future

- personal relation to the area

- random/by accident

- strengthfinder 2.0

- media presence

- know professor at the school of interest

And second question, what is in your opinion important in the future? Bio-Nanotechnology,...

Where will we get the most funding lateron?

Please share your opinion.

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Are you already in grad school or not? I ask because of your last criteria.

I still haven't narrowed down my research topic, and probably won't for a couple of years. Unless I can get outside funding through a NSF fellowship or something similar, my topic will more or less be dictated by my advisor's projects.

There are likely "hot topics" in your field, but you need to ask yourself if they're worth doing.

I also think that there is no way to figure out what will get you funding later on in your career. The tenured professors in my department are all getting grants now that are pretty unrelated to their research in grad school.

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You're an undergraduate applying to grad schools? You'll get a much better response if you post this question in a more appropriate forum, e.g. the Engineering forum or the Applications forum. It might also help if you ask a more precise question and explain why you're asking it. Otherwise your questions are so general that they're hard to reply to.

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