Winding Down Before Gearing Back Up.

Posted: December 1, 2008 in Discount Peer Response, meta, Publication, School, writing

The semester is thankfully nearly over. While I do have about 150 pages of grading to do, I get to start that on Friday, giving me plenty of time to work it all out. And while I do have two major papers, drafts for both are finished (thanks to me forgoing Thanksgiving). There will also be a take home exam, but I’ve seen the questions and they are interesting and thought provoking. Plus I have time to gather quotations and write outline before I know which question I’m answering.

So semester break is rapidly approaching. Only it won’t be a break. Yeah, I’ll take a few days off, and take it pretty easy most of the rest of the time, but I’ve got a lot of work to do.

I talked to my adviser, and he thinks that my piece on Discount Peer Response, with some polishing and a bit of additional work, could be published in CCC! and if not there, then the second tier almost definitely. That would be a hell of a triumph for my first year in a PhD program.

There are a few things I need to change. For one, I need a better name than DPR. Something sexier. Something like “Socially Networked Peer Response” or “Computer Assisted Response” or something like that. Shouldn’t be too hard–mostly that’s a find/replace issue.

The other things I need to do are more substantive. For one, I need to change the tone. While I do have a good deal of experience in the classroom (This semester marks my 5th year of teaching at the college level), I don’t have much good EVIDENCE for that experience. So as far as other people know, I may come of as an upstart who doesn’t know any better telling people what they do wrong. I don’t want that. So I’m going to shift into a more exploratory tone, talking about the things I’ve been trying now that I’m teaching, and comparing it with experiences I had and have as a student.

The other major change is in the research. I’ve got a lot of sources in that paper, but some of them are pretty old. There are newer sources saying similar things. I need to look into those for some drive by citations. That will probably take a while.

Overall, my hope is to get a polished new draft done by January 20 (when classes start again).

Next semester, by the way, should be much easier than this one, schedule wise. I am only taking two classes, and they are not both as reading intensive as the three I’m taking now. Also, they meet only once a week each (and hopefully I will be teaching once a week as well), giving me a whole lot of time to use at my own discretion for my own work and research. Which is good: even if I finish the new-DPR, I’ve got at least one other paper I want to work on and try to get published. Plus I need to make sure I know what I’m going to say at the CCCC.

  1. Lee-Ann says:

    Hi Joe,

    I would like to know why you have not talked about the idea of “discount peer review” before? And why would that not be a potential research focus for the project in this course? Speaking as someone who has done a lot of work on peer review and collaboration, I find the idea of discount peer review very intriguing and important. You must be familiar with the concept of “discount usability”? I’d like to hear more!

  2. cogitas says:

    “Discount Peer Review” is based on “discount usability.” It was what I wrote my Master’s Thesis about. I didn’t use it in this course because I had just written the project last year. But, as I said, I plan to work on it again over break.

    Actually, one of your works has been suggested to me for the ‘updating’ part of the process. I don’t remember what it was off the top of my head.

    If you’d like to read the thesis in its current form, I’d be happy to share.

  3. Michelle says:

    Joe, I must say I understand now as I have read your blog why you didn’t have time to devote to the now-defunct creative writing society at WIU. You are in much more deeply with your studies and rightly so! I also appreciate your efforts with this blog, since I’m a new grad student this year. I’m mining places like this for ideas to assist me in my own endeavors. Keep plugging and typing away.

  4. cogitas says:

    Michelle, the best advice I can give you is the advice Bradley Dilger gave me: write reviews of whatever you read, including citations. That way, you can reread what you wrote, rather than the original piece, to help jog your memory. That’s a large part of what this is, after all.

  5. Michelle says:

    Will do!

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