Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Thesis Progress (really)

I haven't had a personal post in what feels like a little while. Maybe it hasn't been that long. I can't really remember. This one isn't too personal. Just an update on school stuff.

I have been a graduate student at BYU for far too long to not have another degree. My thesis project has been the main thing slowing me down. That has partly been my own fault, but I will say that my committee chair hasn't been a ton of help either. There was a time last summer where I actually waited two, almost three months, before he gave me feedback on my thesis draft. It was a little bit ridiculous.

With impending events soon to occur in September, I really need to make some significant progress on my thesis so that it wouldn't hang over me through the Fall.

So I ended up changing my thesis topic. My original topic, sexual harassment, was going to be a beast to collect data on. It was at the point of being ready to be defended, and to begin data collection, but my committee kind of fell apart with the summer months, and in late May when it was ready to go, it was looking like mid to late July would be the soonest it could be scheduled. It was ridiculous.

So late last month, I talked to the Associate Chair of the Master's Program, whom I also happen to work with a lot at the internship office, and mentioned to him that I was thinking of changing my topic to something related to the internship office. The data was going to be a million times easier to collect, and I knew that he was interested that I finish as soon as possible. So it began.

In month's time, I got farther than I had in the last 3+ years with my other project. Today I defended my prospectus, I'll send in my application for review to get permission to survey human subjects. That will hopefully move through by next week, and we can collect data the next couple weeks. Hopefully data analysis can get done quickly, and hopefully it will only take me a few weeks to finish.

It's just amazing to me because it looks like this could actually wrap up pretty soon. I might have to kill myself to get it done before the baby arrives, but I think it's a real possibility.

And it makes me a little giddy to think about.

In 2 years time, I will have at least two graduate degrees from BYU. I could have a PhD also. Depending on my mood, I go back and forth on whether I want to finish it or not. The thing is, I could actually turn my work on sexual harassment into a dissertation. In which case, it's actually pretty far along then because it's already at the point of being ready to defend.

That's kind of amazing to think about. Then it actually isn't that far off from being done. Granted, data collection will be horrifying. Because it's an experimental design, we can only run subjects one at a time, for about 45-60 minutes at a time, and we'd need to get at least 100 participants, and ideally 150. So it was going to take months to complete data collection. And then there's the analysis and write-up, but still...

Anyway, things are actually moving along now. Real progress is being made. And that's really nice and probably more than you really wanted to know.


Lisa said...

Sounds great. I'm impressed. Good luck to being able to finish it up quick.

Doris Anderson said...

So, did you already finish your thesis? Well, I think it is good that you have a blog so that you post some of your thought for your thesis. It would be a big thesis help so that you can keep track of your thesis writing progress. Anyway, I do hope everything went well with your project.