How to define the Scope of your Research ?

The theoretical study and practical implementations that will be carried out during the course of research define the scope of the Ph.D. work.  Scope of the work clearly states the boundary for the research work that will be done during the Ph.D. This will help to derive logical and practical implications of the work carried out. With the help of the scope of the study, a researcher can visualize and reach his finishing point with utmost clarity.

The following sections will help a researcher in defining the scope of his/her PhD work.

When to define the scope of the study?

The scope of the study has to be defined at a preliminary stage and that is very important. It cannot be done in the later phase of doing the research as it creates a lot of ambiguity about the research goals. If the researcher fails to define the scope at the initial stage itself it is indicative that the research would eventually not meet the expectations set by the dissertation committee.

Who has to define the scope?

The Research scholar in consultation with the  Research supervisor and Doctoral Advisory committee members has to define the scope of the Ph.D. work. This has to happen during the Doctoral committee meetings.

What points to consider while defining the scope?

I. Applicability of Research

Here you have to define in which type of environment your solution works. For example, whether your solution is better suited for i) indoor or outdoor environment, ii) Certain temperature range( between 25 to 30 Degree Celsius), iii) only within water or iv)Seasonal, etc.

II. The data sets

  • Which data sets are used  to test your algorithms?
  • If data sets are generated by the researcher then what methodology is used to generate data sets and who will ratify your data sets ?
  • The specific location in which the data sets are collected
  • Size of the data sets considered ( in terms of number of samples)
  • Why specific type of data sets are not considered?

III. Software and Hardware Specifications

  • Software details including the programming language used to implement with version details.
  • Operating system details.
  • Hardware configurations used to test your data.
  • Any other specific equipment,  then its make, capacity, etc.


The navigation system developed here is applicable to any indoor environment consisting of rooms, corridors and doorways, which are accessible by a wheeled platform. This behavior fits mainly, but is not limited to personal and service Robots. Performance of the object motion prediction algorithms developed in the work are verified ed by the real-life data sets available online. Real-life data has been gathered through bench marked data sets from

i) INRIA Labs with data captured at INRIA Labs at Grenoble, France[13],

ii) Motion Capture Web group of Univ of S.California[102] and

iii) CMU Graphics Lab data set[123].

The data sets consist of different human motion patterns. These data sets include people walking alone, running, meeting with others, window shopping, entering and exiting shops. All the algorithms developed in the work are implemented in C/C++ programming language. Parallel algorithms implemented using Message Passing Interface ( MPI) instruction set on cluster computing setup.

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