Tuesday, June 23, 2009

5 Things I've Learned about Myself in the Past Couple of Weeks

1) I've learned that my dissertation is like a layered cake. Each chapter is a necessary layer that builds on the next. If I'm doing a teacher-research study on an Afrocentric curriculum, I need a) a chapter that provides a context for how Afrocentricity (vis a vis Ebonics) is situated in education, sociolinguistics, and rhetoric and composition scholarship; b) a pedagogical chapter that describes my Afrocentric pedagogical practices and the theoretical rationales for implementation; c) a methodological chapter that uses previous teacher-research studies on Afrocentricity and Ebonics to demonstrate how my teacher-research study builds on them; and d) chapters that discuss my data results on African American students and all students. (Of course there's a conclusion that I'm still working out.)

2) I've learned not to take on projects where people easily lose interest and expect other people to do the work for them. I have a dissertation to write!

3) I've learned not to apologize for being MIA. I have a dissertation to write!

4) I've learned that support and mentorship is irrespective of race, class, or gender. The people you think are least likely to help you with your work are the ones who've been the most helpful and influential.

5) I've learned not to buy clothes when you're bloated and it's humid. I bought two dresses that fit on Thursday only to find that they were too big by Saturday. At least I got the $241 bucks I spent on them back.


Kim said...

ooh i was there in my masters...so i cant imagine a phd. disappear when necessary. best of luck!

Robyn said...

lol. yep, dissertation is a fantastic and respectable excuse for anything!

i like your layered cake thing. i was also told to think of it as one huge 5-paragraph essay, with all the chapters focusing toward one huge thesis.

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