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Research Guide: Research ideas

This Guide provides post graduate students with the tips and tools necessary to successfully complete their research.

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Research ideas

Ideas are everywhere! All you have to do is keep an open mind and look. Although this sounds simple, it isn’t always the case. For some tips, scroll down.


  • Consult the Institutional research themes.
  • Consult the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (SDG's)
  • Consult your Faculty or Department's webpage for their specific research focus areas. It is essential that you know your field as well as the types of research conducted within your field of study. You can also explore related fields.
  • Search for trending topics in your field of study, for example, by doing a Google search or browsing through sites such as ScienceDirect, Thomson Reuter's Science WatchScience DailyTed Talks and The Conversation Africa. These tools and many other sources can help you get some ideas of what to conduct research on.
  • Have a brain storming session with colleagues and/or lecturers.
  • Attend conferences, Departmental seminars and workshops to get the creative juices flowing.
  • You can also explore your ideas by drawing mind maps.