For 14.5.19

For next week, review at least one source based on a preliminary review of the advice I outline below

  • You can’t possibly read all of these chapters in one week, so let me recommend that you spend 15 minutes on each, make notes of what you read and learned and where to pick up next week
  • We’ll repeat this basic three chapter plan next week, so go at it in the way you think best, ok?

Wonderful Writing

  • You’ve simply got to seek pleasure in your writing and avoid pain, and you’ve already made great progress in doing that by starting six months before your thesis is due, by writing up a couple of pages every week and, as I am so completely happy to report, by approaching your this class and your work with a simply wonderful, constructive attitude!!! It is a pleasure to think of you and what you’ll come up with next!!!
  • Review my Wonderful Writing, find one interesting thing here, apply it, and report briefly (one paragraph) on your results

Craft Chapter 3, from Topics to Questions

  • As some of you did this week, ask lots and lots of general questions of your own
  • Then, look for the questions asked by your sources

The issue here is to get going and keep going by asking your own questions, but to make yourself attractive to professionals, employers, and each other by identifying what questions relevant professionals are asking in their field

  • When reporting on the questions others are asking, use report structures, “they ask …”
  • Learn some more of these reporting verbs and use them, lots!

Craft Chapter 4, from Questions to Problems

You are still in the overview stage, and that means making surveys of what others are talking about before you narrow your research question, so, one of the best things you can do is survey, develop a bird’s eye view, and the best tool to map your survey and share with others is the mind map

  • Develop a flexible mind-mapping scheme to manage complexity
  • When you group questions, you do so under problems/concepts — what will become your sub-heads
  • Learn how to use a mind-mapping tool, like MindMeister

Craft Chapter 5, from Problems to Sources

There’s a lot of good advice here on finding sources, and since you are at the beginning of your studies look for breadth (don’t just dig in), and write up what you did and found FOR YOU — so you can pick up where you left off after you’ve gotten some feedback

  • Look for sources that interest you, best are surveys like the Big 4 consulting firms as they offer overviews
  • Look for the most interesting questions
  • Write up a survey of the questions you find, keep it brief but interesting, so you can ask others for feedback