Regardless of where they were in the process, all the participants made progress on their dissertations and left with a set of writing strategies that would help them maintain their momentum on their projects. If you want to read about how the participants from last year's retreat thought the retreat helped them, take a look at this post from our Writing Center blog.
The University Writing Center consultants who work during the retreat are experienced writing teachers who are also PhD students currently working on their dissertations.
Each participant in the retreat will be paired with the same consultant for the entire week. The retreat will take place in the University Writing Center in the Ekstrom Library and will include lunch and snacks. There is no fee for participating. Participants must be willing to attend the entire week.
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Then breathe freely and forget about all difficulties connected with writing or dissertation editing. She claims she was invigorated by the surrounding energy of the city and it kept her thesis word count up. Some folk will prefer quieter places to write. Each to their own. And for those who cannot take themselves away to another country or even to another town or place within their own due to practical reasons work, family obligations, finances etc take heart in what Shapira and Liberman say about the creative cognitive benefits of merely thinking about far away places.
So what will you do to help you get the words down? Or is your imaginative capacity read daydreaming strong enough to give you the creative boost you need? A thesis workout schedule. Travelling during your PhD. I spent a wonderful five weeks as a visiting scholar at Rice University in Houston Texas where I got some significant research and writing done — but fairly early in my candidature — just after I upgraded to a PhD.
The only thing I did not factor into my plan was the effect of jetlag. I could go through my list of references to find and locate them in the Rice library and photocopy them, but reading with understanding, analysis and synthesis were beyond me. It lasted for days and days and I began to get really worried and then about day 6 or 7, my brain snapped back into gear and away I went.
Because I am part time and have since changed jobs and move to the other end of the state, I am still not finished, but this encourages me to think about a shorter retreat in Australia.
Now to persuade my husband to take some long-service leave so I can get away from the children. I thought I was being extravagant!! Yes, lots of great ideas here already about how people have designed their own thesis writing retreats.
Notwithstanding the obvious obstacle of cost, it can be useful — provided the place you are retreating to has the desk space you require.
Is it a dining, kitchen or work table? Is there room to spread out? A distant relative had to cancel a non-refundable time share booking during the last year of my PhD, and I nervously took up the offer. It was for a one bedroom apartment in a Paris suburb. It was bland but well equipped and furnished.
I occupied the dining room table with my laptop and spread post it notes across the walls as I progressed from raw interview transcripts to fully coded and categorised theories.
I looked at what felt like hundreds of apartments in Manhattan before I found one in my price range with any kind of table at all! It was my only criteria really, as well as some decent light. Fortunately I found one but it took a lot of hunting around. I spent 5 weeks in Europe at around the 3 year period in my thesis. I was still trying to come to terms with some of the data I was analysing, and bring my argument together really coherently.
The trip involved visiting a few other people, but it also involved a couple of weeks of just writing quietly by myself in the French country-side no less. Those 5 weeks turned out to be very important — and not just because of the people that I met. I finally had some quiet time completely to myself and got to come to terms with some bit features of my analysis. I love the fact that there is a scientific justification.
I have empirical evidence too — I spent 15 days at a resort in Malaysia with my family. The deal was I could write in the mornings only until I got more reading and writing done in those 15 days than I did in the three months prior. It totally got me back on track in terms of wordcount and content. Yes, I think that in keeping with the empirical method there should be a post about how fabulously productive, and fabulous, New York was!
My partner had a two-week teaching gig in Palma de Majorca a couple of years ago, so I tagged along. I worked while she and her colleague were at the Uni, then when they returned to the apartment in mid-afternoon we would go sightseeing. I completely re-arranged my thesis in those two weeks — a huge job.
But, as I work full-time and normally have to fit my thesis in around my work, my writing retreats have mostly consisted of a week or two weeks working on my PhD every day at home — often half of a chunk of annual leave. Thanks for the great post Kylie! I appreciate you sharing your plans for New York.
I have often thought a secluded place in the Australian bush would be where I would go to get some chunky PhD writing done I am a farm girl after all!
The Dissertation Writing Retreat is organized by the University Writing Center with support from the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies. The retreat will take place in the University Writing Center in the Ekstrom Library and will include lunch and snacks.
Dissertation Writers’ Retreats. Fall Dissertation Writers’ Retreat. October , a.m. – p.m. Sponsored by the Graduate School and. the College of Arts and Science Dean’s Office.
Each May Term, fifteen dissertation writers from across the University gather in 15 Nicholson Hall for three weeks of concentrated dissertation-writing time in a supportive group setting. This year's retreat will be held Mondays through Thursdays, May 21 through June 7 (no session on Monday, May 28, Memorial Day). At Retreat, the Writing Center, Success Factors collections, and Dissertation Research collection writers comprehensive resources writers information literacy and management, and critical thinking, ranging from conceptualization of a problem to publication of a final manuscript.
Dissertation Writing Retreat The Dissertation Writing Retreat provides participants with space, time, and encouragement to make progress on their doctoral dissertations in the company of other fashionlosdaeroh.cf retreat is made possible with the resources and support of the Graduate School, Sheridan Center, and Libraries, and is lead by the Associate . The Dissertation Writing Retreat (DWR) is a 3-day intensive writing session held in Fall and Spring semesters.