Thursday, April 19, 2007

Thesis update: Conditional approval!

Earlier this week my thesis director conditionally approved my thesis. This is big news for me; it means the content and structure are basically final (I still have to add a brief explanation in one part of chapter 3, eliminate one of the appendices, and perform a handful of other minor tweaks).

After I have made the edits, it's off to the copy shop to print up a draft for the ALM research director at the Extension School to review. He'll be looking for formatting problems, but I am not too worried about this -- I referenced the Chicago Manual of Style and ALM Thesis Guide throughout the writing process, and don't think I'm too far off the mark.

When the thesis is finally approved and bound, I'll post a copy on Harvard Extended. I have also been lobbying the Extension School to submit ALM theses to UMI/ProQuest or other electronic databases, so the global scholarly community can access them, but it seems that the program doesn't have the resources to make this happen. It's a shame -- if the only place people can access ALM theses is in the Grossman Library, then the impact of Extension School research upon our respective disciplines will remain limited.

3 comments:

Brandon, future MD said...

Hello,

I wanted to say I enjoy the depth of your blog as well as the insight into the Graduate programs here at Extension. I'm in the process of muddling through different ideas on how to propose developments to our curriculum and to expand both the prestige of Extension and the access to Harvard facilities,clubs, and Harvard community at large for the Extension School. I am not a part of administration, I'm just a student, but suffice to say I feel like there are things that could be changed for the better and how better to exact change than to present viable options. It's nice to know that there are places where you can find others who are on the same road as you are, albeit you're in the Grad program, as we all are in the boat together. Don't hesitate to message me. I'd love to hear about your research and your thoughts about the school and other matters.

Regards,
Brandon Ruse
brandon_ruse@Hotmail.com

ian said...

Thanks for your message, Brandon. I am very happy with the amount of progress the Extension School and the student community has made in terms of getting benefits and respect from the larger University community (e.g., ID cards, inclusion in the Harvard Graduate Council, etc.), but I agree that more needs to be done.

I also think that the Extension School community should work on building itself up. The school and HESA do a lot in terms of organizing activities, but students should try to make more of an effort to take advantage of them, and interact with each other beyond seeing classmates at Sever or whereever. I know it's hard, considering the distributed nature of the student body and our formidable, existing work/life commitments. Perhaps a dedicated online community would help, either a subset of an existing community (such as Facebook) or a new community site?

Brandon, future MD said...

Do you have an email I could correspond with you about certain ideas I have?