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On Our Way

On the road again…..

I am pleased we continued our early thesis time together with a Spiral Journal protocol to help sharpen your perception about your early-stage development of your MA thesis work. I am so glad we took the time to focus a bit on the importance of the Library and the Kean University Learning Commons in terms of resources for developing your thesis. Spending a bit of time in workshops geared towards MA students, and learning about the vast resources at your fingertips, is most certainly an important step for your continual thesis work. I hope you will try a few workshops that might be supportive, and also get to know a librarian or two at Kean, while you work on your thesis overall.

Here are the agenda slides from last class:

After settling the presentation calendar together, we also discussed the concept of an Early Proposal. Hopefully this narrows the focus at the start of your formal journey with this big project. I know each of you has a specific plan now for the next two weeks as your “kick-off” your MA thesis progress.

I will see you next on Wednesday Sept. 28th.

Shaping our Plans

Welcome again to the beginning of your thesis experience. I am glad we have settled this special ENG 5698 I01 section for your developing thesis work.

It was genuinely uplifting for me to see you the other night in order to jump start your thesis work formally. Once again, welcome back to campus! Our conversation, spurned by the image gallery, was very meaningful to me. You are all at different places, with different perspectives, but it is clear to me that this thesis process will be an integral part of your growth this year. I want to state how truly how happy I am to have this chance to work with all of you in this capacity. This thesis journey we are on is the “heart and soul” of good work that matters to me.

Here are the slides from last class for your reference:

Each of you is starting the process of discovery and invention for this thesis project. And some of you have some notion of what you would like to do, you might have some elements “in the can.” But you are all still apprehending the significance and shape of your project.

Remember, each of you can learn a great deal from considering each other’s evolving work. This Independent Study will rely heavily on the peer learning potential within this small group. I look forward to “jump-starting” our collective work together.

For our Next Meeting

  1. Please send me the URL (web address) for your WordPress blog by filling the URL form out by Wednesday, Sept 14th.
  2. Please post you first blog.  In your first blog, please introduce yourself a little bit, let us know how you have been, and then reflect on your thesis plans/progress/ideas.  For some that might mean giving up a brief summary of what you have done thus far, for others it might mean a glimpse of early ideas before your journey begins.  And remember, you can always change your angle on the work, so this is just a thoughtful report on “current status”.
  3. Please consider registering for some library sessions to support research and citation practices in the earlier half of this semester.
  4. See you in our Zoom room next Wednesday at 4:30pm!

Dr. Zamora

Welcome to your Thesis

On the road: The thesis road is yours to map-out and yours to discover.

Writing a thesis is not easy. There are many twists and turns in the road, roadblocks do come up, and there are unforeseen landscapes that cannot be imagined until you cover ground and truly travel. That said, the more time you have on the road, the more of a chance you will have to discover. I have no doubt that each of you will eventually “arrive” at the place of your own design. A place of insight and learning. A place where perhaps the outcomes were not the ones you originally anticipated.

I look forward to working with each of you as you set a course and cover some significant ground on your own terms as you develop your culminating project for your Masters of Arts in Writing Studies degree. I am here to provide suggestions, feedback, resources, and insight; to prompt you to refine your thinking and take your work to another level. Sometimes you surge forth in the process and cover good distance “on the road” due to insightful feedback during a conversation. And sometimes you surge forth due to extended sessions of engaged independent reading & research. Oftentimes, inspiration hits at the most unlikely times ;). I hope you will experience all of this.

The MA in Writing Studies @KeanUniversity is inherently a “customizable” degree, and I encourage each of you to follow a course for which you feel a spark of commitment and passion. I also encourage you to take risks in pursuing forms of learning that matter to you personally. In my own experience, this is the place from which meaningful transformation is born. And if you are going to work hard at something, why not make it both meaningful and transformative on your own terms?

In Fall 2022, we will embark on this journey as an Independent Study. That said, your peer learning process and out sense of community will continue to be significant, and I hope you will lean on each other for both accountability and self-reflection. That said, we will also use our time as a group to enhance and augment the asynchronous/autonomous work that you will shape. Our website here will serve to organize some shared resources for supporting your writing process while connecting our learning. It is also a showcase of your work this year (in progress).

Sincerely,

Dr. Zamora