Thursday, June 26, 2014

Another fiery hoop

I am trying to find a good management software to use for both prospectus as well as final dissertation. I am entertaining the idea of using Scrivener. So far I like the capabilities. I do not like the lack of Mendeley integration for citations and citation management, but that may just need to be a work around for me to manage.

I have spent June focusing on getting some research projects here at UT Arlington completed and working with a few students on their projects. I have spent considerable time cleaning and organizing my references in Mendeley for dissertation proposal as well as giving thought to the artifact. Preliminary literature reviews are looking good as well as basic thoughts on evaluation of the framework/method, or whatever actually comes out. I am a little concerned about the revelations on the truecrypt project and how it will affect my research designs, but that may just be worry.

I will begin mind mapping the constructs and ideas here soon in the next week. I will be using this blog to outline and track myself during the dissertation process. I will also attempt to get back to my youtube channel for video logging the process as well.

Saturday, June 07, 2014

End of Comprehensives

A major milestone in the pursuit of a doctoral degree is the comprehensive exam process. For me, this process is now complete. The next step is the prospectus defense. I will be spending the summer preparing the prospectus documentation with the hopes of defense in Fall. I can honestly state that the process was not pleasant and I am extremely happy that is it over.The summer will also allow me to re-organize my collections in Mendeley and really get started on the process. My primary concern now is the time frame as well as setting up milestones for deliverables. The issue with the dissertation process is that there are no really defined deliverables. At this point I need to come up with some form of schedule to keep on a writing track. 

At the same time, I need to prepare two courses for Fall. The first is a research methods course, one that has been taught forever, but this time it will be on campus. I would like to make the course as least confusing as possible for the undergrads. The second course is one on organized crime. Traditionally this would revolve around the Italian mafia, but I want to expose students to many more of the organized crime groups worldwide. I had the hardest time finding a text that I liked, and ultimately decided on journal articles and government information (FBI, DEA, Interpol, CIA) to provide the reading materials. I am really looking forward to this course. 
The final project for summer is a revamp of my cybercrime course. I have used two different texts and they were both mostly good readers, but the order in which the information was presented was always a little off for me. I decided that I have enough notes, class projects, and former participation to really make a revamp work. I am laying out the new schedule and calendar now and I hope to be complete in about two weeks. 
All in all this is going to be a busy and great summer, but the stress of comps is over, and I am happy to be ABD.