Thesis Nuggets #1 & 2 / by Maia Kaufman


Identify a possible thesis topic.
Briefly describe an article or observation it came from.

Answer the following questions:

  1. Is the community accessible?
  2. Is there research to be done?
  3. Can you imagine the possible interventions?

"Create an intervention that _______________"

Idea #1

Possible thesis topic: Emphasize the bridge issues between pro-life and pro-choice groups to create less divide and more collaboration.

This comes from personal experience with close friends and family (and LOTS of research into reproductive rights- I have a list of websites). To many, there is no gray area around abortion rights. However, there are many women's rights issues that the pro-life (to use their terminology) and pro-choice organizations could work together on, such as maternity leave, child care, fertility treatment coverage With their combined influence and power, could have a positive effect for women in this country.

1. The community is very accessible. There are organized groups of both viewpoints in this city. I think it would also be key to talk to women who may not fully identify with either camp.

2. There is a lot of research to be done. I have no idea if anyone has ever tried to bridge these two groups, but I would want to find similar case studies of polarizing issues becoming less of a controversy by collaboration.

3. I would see the intervention as bringing together men and women on both sides, and focusing on a new topic. By showing that the sides don't have to be enemies, and can have impact when working together, it will hopefully start the conversation that these issues are not black and white.

"Create an intervention that bridges the gap between pro-life and pro-choice groups."

Idea #2

This is an idea I've had for a very long time, and I'm not quite ready to abandon it, even though I'm not sure that a) it's viable, or b) this would be the best use of my thesis time.

I want to invent a pregnancy/ovulation/testicular cancer test that would check your status daily & automatically.  Most people are not aware that pregnancy tests also indicate testicular cancer in men. This is a product for both genders that would relieve anxiety, allow someone to know their health status earlier than they otherwise would, and for women, possibly help prevent unwanted pregnancies all together.

1. The community of users is accessible- it's literally any woman of child-bearing age and any man. The community of say scientists and ob/gyns to help me develop this may be harder to access.

2. So much research to be done. That's the most daunting part. Both scientific (can this even exist) and personal (is this something people want and would use, and how to create the best user experience for it).

3. I have been imagining this for years, and while the item itself changes (I've imagined a color coding system, digital readouts, text alerts), but I am very excited about the possibility of this being a real product. 

"Create an intervention that relieves some of the anxiety around both planned and unplanned pregnancies and may serve as an early warning for testicular cancer patients."