Wednesday, January 7, 2009

MOOing for Newbies

Here are some sites that have some handy references:

Monday, December 8, 2008

It Takes A Village To Raise A PhD student

I should really be reflecting on field-dependent rationality for one final so I can move on to the second final, but just had to note what makes it possible or impossible to attempt two classes in a semester. Julie can share her reflections as well.

Look at your professional life. Mine changed dramatically this semester and as it was due to a new position I couldn't anticipate in what ways and I didn't know how to control things. Oh it was bad at times.

Look at your personal life. Do you have family and friends willing to support you or will they undermine you? I couldn't have taken on everything I did this fall if my husband and son -- as well as a lot of friends -- didn't pitch in at home. Still bad but once your house has achieved a certain level of disarray it just doesn't matter how much longer you ignore it. Everyone was fed and clean clothes were available and homework (for mother and child) was completed on a mostly timely basis. Of course the big question is whether or not your family can take you becoming a wild, crazy person due to pressure combined with lack of sleep. Can you take being this person?

Look at your academic life. How many thoughts can you hold in your head at once? No, seriously, if you are a multi-tasker then this is easier for you -- even if you are already multi-tasking just to attend school (which all of us in this program are). Some people find multi-tasking at this level extremely difficult so taking two classes is simply not for you. Of course, the advice I received (and didn't take) was to take classes that complement each other. I suppose if I knew more about argumentation at the beginning of the semester I might have had better luck with this but I floundered a long time before coming up with a seminar topic that worked for me and by then I was committed to other projects for research methods. However, throughout most of the semester the two classes seemed to be at different ebbs and peaks so it was easier to balance than it might seem. Of course, completing two take-home finals plus a final project all at once is a challenge.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Double Trouble

Well Julie and I are attempting two classes this semester. If we survive with our minds, health, and marriages intact then we may attempt it again in the spring but it is too soon to make the call just now.

So far I am holding my own with Argumentation and Research Methods but then I haven't started work on my Argumentation projects yet having only recently settled on a topic. It is crazy busy and challenging but I am learning a lot. I was warned that this combination would either expand or explode my brain. Stay tuned.

Julie is taking Discourse and Social Issues and Research Methods and finds herself equally stretched.

Let's see, what else are folks taking this semester? Lora and Christine are in Research Methods, Cheri in Argumentation, and Chris in Foundations of Technical Communication. I'm not sure what Rob is taking so we will stay tuned.

We are all busy with our noses to the grindstone!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Conflicted and Confused

I was trying to come up with a third "C" word to make it more rhythmic but my brain is too full.

I've just added two blogs to our sidebar so interested folks can follow the musings, mumbling, and mutterings regarding our progress, research, and learning.

I'm also trying to contact some of the new crop of newbies (at least the ones I have access to and urging my fellow Quadrophonics to do the same) to let them in on our blog. Also, urging those newbies to get in contact now and begin establishing a support system. Trust me, you will need it!

Several of us in the program are Twittering (see my recent Twitters in the sidebar of my blog). Lora already gave it up but I'm still hanging in there. While not all Twitters are useful/helpful/interesting I'm actually thinking that it might assist my thoughts (as in help focus/organization) which is an area that I can use all the help I can get.

And if you want to know more about why I'm conflicted and confused you can check out my blog. Any advice welcome!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

I can't wait until next year

This is my first blog, so this blog is also a test blog to see if it works. Sorry for being blogged down in life and not blogging in a timely manner.

When I arrived at TTU, and met my fellow cohorters, I immediately recognized the importance of our group, and what we mean to each other. We have an association, whether we like it or not, that will last a lifetime. For that, believe it or not, I am thankful. I hope we remain supportive friends forever. Thank you Deanna, Julie, Christine, Lora, Chris, and Cheri for your help and support. We are the Quadraphonics! We will overcome!

Hyper Rob, drinking too many diet cokes.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Leaving On A Jet Plane

This is it. Our first May Seminar is over (if you couldn't guess from the other posts) and today we go our separate ways.

I am so glad to be done and to be able to sleep in my own bed and assume some sort of normal schedule. I am so eager to see my family -- especially my 7-year-old son -- as being away from them is one of the hardest parts of this.

But I am so sad to say good-bye too all my new friends. I know we will see each other in the MOO and at conferences but it is too hard not to be able to be all together until next year. Of course as Joyce says now we only have to wait 50 more weeks. And fortunately the New Media class has a great DVD of interviews that we can use for our fix when things get really bad.

I cannot explain the bond that it developed here through this experience. I am so glad to be in this program and a part of this amazing group of people.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Ready to go home

Don't get me wrong I have just had the best two weeks of my entire life and I can't wait to return next year but I am really ready to go home. My mind and body are tired. I have put in a lot of late nights and early mornings, partly to keep up with work but also having fun and chatting with my roomies. I have really enjoyed getting to know them and feel that we will be friends for life to call on whenever we need it.

Tomorrow at 5:55 a.m. I begin the long journey home to Potsdam, N.Y. where my three sweet children and wonderful husband will be waiting to pick me up and take me the long five hour car ride home. Did I tell you I live in the middle of no where!

Keep checking back because we all plan to continue to blog and share our experiences as we continue through the program and please feel free to ask any questions. We all are more than happy to impart any of our hard earned wisdom on you (the newbies) as you make it through your first year of classes and prepare to head to May Seminar!