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Links to my published articles online
List of Publications with Full Citations

Language Networks on LiveJournal (pdf)

Adolescent Diary Weblogs and the Unseen Audience (pdf)

A Longitudinal Analysis of Weblogs: 2003-2004

Conversations in the Blogosphere: An Analysis "from the Bottom Up" (pdf). Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS-38) Best Paper Nominee.

Weblogs as a bridging genre (pdf)

Bridging the Gap: A Genre Analysis of Weblogs. Winner of the 2004 EduBlog Awards as best paper.

Common Visual Design Elements of Weblogs

Women and Children Last: The Discursive Construction of Weblogs

Time until my next publication submission deadline
I do not plan on submitting articles for publication until I have defended my qualifying paper - expected to happen during Spring Semester 2008.

Links to my conference papers online
The Performativity of Naming: Adolescent Weblog Names as Metaphor

Buxom Girls and Boys in Baseball Hats: Adolescent Avatars in Graphical Chat Spaces

Time until my next conference submission deadline
1 December 2007 23:59:59 UTC-0500

Adolescents and Teens Online Bibiliography
Last updated July 8, 2005.

Weblog and Blog Bibliography
Last Updated November 22, 2005.

A weblog to gather quotations from my academic reading.

My CiteULike Page

My Book2
New books are added but reading status is rarely accurate.

October 31, 2007

Carl J. Couch Internet Research Award 2008

Sponsored by the Carl Couch Center for Social and Internet Research

The Carl Couch Center issues an annual call for student-authored papers to be considered for Carl J. Couch Internet Research Award. The Couch Center welcomes both theoretical and empirical papers that (1) apply symbolic interactionist approaches to Internet studies, (2) demonstrate interactive relationships between social interaction and communication technologies as advocated by Couch, and/or (3) develop symbolic interactionist concepts in new directions. Papers will be evaluated based on the quality of (1) mastery of Symbolic Interactionist approaches and concepts and Couch's theses, (2) originality, (3) organization, (4) presentation, and (5) advancement of knowledge.

Evaluation will be administered by a Review Committee of four:

Dr. Mark D. Johns, Luther College, Decorah, Iowa
Dr. Lori Kendall, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Dr. Annette Markham, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee
Dr. Dennis Waskul, Minnesota State University, Mankato

Competition is open to graduate or undergraduate students of all disciplines. Works that are published or accepted for publication are not eligible for award consideration. Entries should not exceed 30 pages (approximately 7500 words) in length, including references and appendices. Limit of one entry per student per year.

The top three papers will receive Couch Awards to be presented at the 2008 meeting of the Association of Internet Researchers ( at the IT University of Copenhagen, Denmark. The top paper will be awarded a certificate and a cash prize of $500 US, runner up will receive a certificate and a cash prize of $300 US, and a third paper will receive a certificate and a cash prize of $100 US. All three authors will be invited to present their work at a session of the AoIR conference, October 15-19, 2008 in Copenhagen.

Those interested should send a copy of their paper, with a 100-word abstract, electronically to Mark D. Johns at [email protected] Application deadline is April 28, 2008. Notification of award will be sent by June 16.

Those with questions or comments about Couch Award application, please contact:

Mark D. Johns
Dept. of Communication Studies
Luther College, Decorah, IA 52101 USA
Tel: (563) 387-1347
E-mail: [email protected]

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Posted by prolurkr at 07:38 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

CFP - Space = Interaction = Discourse

International conference

Plenary speakers:
* John A. Dixon, Lancaster University, UK
* Ole B. Jensen, Aalborg University, Denmark
* Elizabeth Keating, University of Texas at Austin, USA
* Lorenza Mondada, Université Lumière Lyon2, France
* Ron Scollon, Alaska, USA

Dates: 12th - 14th November 2008

Location: Aalborg University, Aalborg, Denmark

Web site:

The aim of this international conference entitled "Space = Interaction = Discourse" is to bring together researchers who investigate space, mediated discourse and embodied interaction from different perspectives.

The conference will highlight interdisciplinary research that explores how embodied and virtual social actors communicate, interact and coordinate their activities in complex multimodal environments, with a special focus on place, mobility and the body. Thus, this conference welcomes contributions by scholars and doctoral students in a range of disciplines and fields of inquiry, including discourse studies, conversation analysis, discursive psychology, critical discourse analysis, interaction analysis, architecture, design, geography, sociology, anthropology, environmental psychology, mobility studies, ubiquitous computing, computer-supported
cooperative work and computer-supported cooperative learning. Please see the online call for papers for more details.

The conference will take place at Aalborg University, and it will consist of invited keynote lectures, parallel paper sessions and a workshop. The topics of the keynote lectures and workshop will be announced later.

Submissions are solicited for paper presentations (30 minutes including question time). Please submit an abstract and register on the website. The deadline for submission of abstracts is 1st February 2008. All submissions will be reviewed by the scientific committee. Notification of acceptance by 1st March 2008.

The registration fee is 1500 DKK (approx. 200 euro), which includes participation in the conference, a conference folder, the reception, three lunches and two coffee/tea breaks each day over the three days.

The conference is international and open to researchers, doctoral and graduate students.

If you would like to take part in this exciting conference, then please visit our website for further details:

For more information, contact the organiser: Paul McIlvenny

This conference is supported by the "PlaceME" Nordic research network (funded by NordForsk) and the Department of Language & Culture, Aalborg University.

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For those of us who have to deal with Sakai products

Well they are making it better, though I'm totally unsure how much of that is Sakai and how much is Indiana University. Either way there is a new addition to the platform on the way, from CampusTechnology

Live! Integration Coming to Sakai Open-Source LMS


By David Nagel
Education technology developer Elluminate is bringing its Live! collaboration suite to the Sakai Collaboration and Learning Environment, an open-source learning management system. The move is part of a new alliance with Unicon, a company that specializes in providing support and services for open-source software to education.

Elluminate Live! is an e-learning, conferencing, and online collaboration tool designed for use in education, providing support for a variety of learning management systems, including Blackboard, Moodle, Sakai, WebCT, and eCollege. It includes features like note taking, two-way interactive video (up to 640 x 480), archiving and automatic indexing of e-learning sessions, various tools for teachers (timers, pop-up announcements, sorting of participants by hand raising, etc.), whiteboarding, and various other collaboration tools.

The plans for the new Sakai integration include adding synchronous content for distance learning; creating Live! sessions for delivery to live classroom environments; adding recordings of live sessions for review; recorded tutorials for assignments; the creation of virtual rooms in which students can collaborate; the ability to invite guest speakers to attend and moderate sessions; and the ability for instructors to create virtual offices.

The integration is expected to be completed and available for the public in spring 2008. Sakai supports Mac OS X, Windows, and various flavors of Unix.

Posted by prolurkr at 01:07 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Google Announces the OpenSocial API

At AoIR this year, there was a lot of talk about the desire (should I say "need"?, for a tool that crosses social utility boundaries.  Well it looks like some progress has been made to that end with the release of the OpenSocial API on November 1, 2007. 

We can all play with it tomorrow and see if it really does work that well, or if it's just another new tool for spam - as I fear.  Come on, how many Brazilian propositions should one girl have to refuse?  LOL

No doubt this creates some interesting possibilities for research projects.  Autoethnography of your social network anyone?

Google has announced OpenSocial, a new open API for social networks. The new standard will allow developers to create Facebook-like apps on any social network site that implements it with the same calls.

The open API will have three parts

* People
* Storage
* Activity stream

All of these calls will have a GData counterpart and they will use HTML and Javascript only. Google is considering adding OAuth (Radar post) to the API.

On Thursday the following links should go live:

* -- the documentation for OpenSocial
* - a sandbox for testing apps

Google's launch partners are hi5, iLike, Slide, LinkedIn, Plaxo, Ning and SixApart (the largest). Check out Techmeme, Techcrunch, and the New York Times for more coverage.

Google will be holding the first of their developer CampFires at the GooglePlex this Friday to explain OpenSocial. A CampFire is Google's new method of disseminating information to developers. These events will be invite-only and will include about thirty developers. Video of the event will be available in the days following.

Google's OpenSocial API will gain traction with a lot of social networks, but I doubt that we will see Facebook or MySpace supporting it. Both are large enough to require their own API. I'll be curious to see how each site extends the OpenSocial API and how that affects adoption and app creation.

Posted by prolurkr at 01:01 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

October 26, 2007

CFP - Ethics, Technology and Identity

Ethics, Technology and Identity
Delft/The Hague, June 18 - 20, 2008

This conference aims to discuss the theme of 'ethics and identity' in light of new (information) technology. Key-note speakers include: David Velleman, Oscar Gandy, Robin Dillon, David Shoemaker.

Authors should submit an electronic version of an extended abstract (total word count 800-1000 words). The extended abstract submission deadline is Friday 7th December 2007.  Please submit to: [email protected]

For more information:

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Posted by prolurkr at 11:39 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

CFP - The International Society for the Empirical Study of Literature and Media

The International Society for the Empirical Study of Literature and Media will hold its 11th International Conference in the FedEx Institute of Technology at the University of Memphis July 8-11, 2008 (


IGEL Conference: July 8-11, 2008
IGEL Summer Institute: July 5-8, 2008

Deadline papers IGEL Conference: February 8, 2008.


The International Society for the Empirical Study of Literature and Media (German acronym IGEL) is aimed at the advancement of empirical literary research through international and interdisciplinary cooperation ( IGEL was founded in 1987. Biennual meetings of the society have been hosted in Siegen (Germany), Amsterdam (Netherlands), Memphis, Budapest (Hungary), Nakoda (Canada), Utrecht (Netherlands), Toronto (Canada), Pécs (Hungary), Edmonton (Canada) and Munich (Germany).


The 11th International Conference of the Society will be held in the FedEx Institute of Technology at the University of Memphis July 8-11, 2008. Keynote speakers include Douglas Biber and Roz Picard. Doug Biber ( is internationally known for his computational techniques to analyze the linguistic characteristics of spoken and written genres and registers. Roz Picard ( is the international authority on affective computing.

The IGEL Conference will follow the IGEL Summer Institute, July 5-7. The Program of the Summer Institute is concerned with the cooperation of Humanities and Social Science students in order to develop adequate methods for the empirical investigation of literature and the media.

The IGEL Conference will precede the Society for Text and Discourse workshop (July 11-12) and the 18th Annual Meeting of the Society for Text and Discourse (July 12-15), also held in the FedEx Institute of Technology at the University of Memphis (


Presentations of the 11th International Conference can be in the form of posters or spoken papers. The deadline for submitting proposals for both presentation formats is February 8, 2008. A Review Committee will review the proposals, and authors will be notified regarding acceptance by the end of March 2008.

Please submit proposals in English to the website that will be made available towards the submission deadline (please see

Papers will be scheduled for 20 minutes, with an additional 5 minutes for questions and discussion. Posters are scheduled for a poster session on the second night of the conference.

Proposals for symposia (sessions with multiple papers on one particular topic) should be discussed with the conference organizers prior to submission and follow the same procedure as proposals for papers ([email protected]). Their review process is the same as that or full papers.


Examples of topics for papers, posters, symposia and workshops include:


Proposals should include the following information:
  1. The title of the presentation
  2. Names and institutional affiliations all authors, including email addresses of all authors
  3. Contact Address for presenting author
  4. Presentation Preference (Poster, Paper or Either)
  5. A 75-word abstract of the presentation for publication in the abstracts booklet.
  6. A summary of the presentation with a title but no author information (max. 1000 words, including bibliographic references). 

The FedEx Institute of Technology (FIT) is a versatile, high-tech facility. The Institute is home to cutting-edge research teams working in areas such as artificial intelligence, biotechnology, geospatial analysis, multimedia arts and nanotechnology. It also serves as a gateway for businesses to collaborate with University of Memphis researchers. In all, the Institute is home to over 150 faculty members, researchers and staff.

The FIT is a state-of-the-art facility with a 190 seat tiered amphitheater boasting the second largest implementation of digital congress units outside the United Nations, and 17 meeting rooms. Large projection screens, web cams, touch panel screens, laptop computers, totally wireless network, SIM cards, poly-vision and video teleconferencing, and interactive white boards are just some of the cutting-edge features of the facility.


A block of hotel rooms has been reserved in The Holiday Inn Hotel at the University of Memphis and the DoubleTree Hotel Memphis. Announcements for reservations will follow.

The Holiday Inn Hotel at the University of Memphis is an all-suite hotel centrally located in the heart of Memphis and easily accessible to downtown, the airport, and shopping. The hotel is adjacent to the University of Memphis. Prices for the reserved block of rooms are $109 per night.

The Doubletree Memphis provides lodging in Memphis near the University of Memphis and Memphis International Airport. It is surrounded by a variety of entertainment, recreation, theater and restaurants. The hotel has a complementary shuttle service to and from the airport. Prices for the reserved block of rooms are $104 per night.

In addition, dormitory rooms (2 persons sharing rooms) have been made available for discount rates in the Richardson Tower dormitory rooms accommodations at the University of Memphis campus. Prices are $35 per night.


For questions or suggestions, please contact [email protected] . The IGEL website will be updated regularly with the latest information on the conference (

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CFP - Exploring New Media Worlds: Changing Technologies, Industries, Cultures, and Audiences in Global and Historical Context

An international conference hosted by Texas A&M University,
February 29 to March 2, 2008

Integrating fields of study in a time of change; setting a new agenda for media studies.

Papers and proposals are invited on any aspect of the conference themes, offering reports of new research, position-taking conceptual essays, discussions of media and telecommunication policy, and both international and historical comparisons on changing technologies, industries, cultures, and audiences.

The program will include keynote speakers, roundtable discussions, thematic panels, prominent scholars as respondents, and time for interaction.  A wide selection of papers from the conference will be published.  Travel grants are available for student members of the National Communication Association (see our webpage for more information).

Keynote speakers: Lawrence Grossberg; Steve Jones; Vincent Mosco; and Ellen Seiter.

Confirmed participants: Carole Blair, Sandra Braman, Celeste Condit, Bruce Gronbeck, Andrea Press, Ronald Rice, Paddy Scannell, Arvind Singhal, Joseph Turow, Angharad Valdivia.

Send papers or proposals (abstracts or annotated outlines) with a 50 word professional biography by email attachment to [email protected]  Panel proposals are also acceptable. Deadline: November 20, 2007.

For more information see or email [email protected] or [email protected]

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October 25, 2007

CFP - Applying and Extending Qualitative Inquiry to Internet Research

As the number of academic studies utilizing qualitative research methods on internet data has increased, so have the questions and issues surrounding how one does research in/on online sites. Experienced researchers and novices grapple with multiple issues as they adapt, modify, and develop various research methods to online venues including chatrooms, instant messaging, blogs, social utilities, webpages, games, and 3-D virtual worlds such as Second Life. How does one identify sites for one's study? What sampling procedures work best? What software is to be used in internet research? What are the benefits and weaknesses of using particular methods?  What issues arise when adapting a particular qualitative method for use in/on an online site?

We call for abstracts and papers that address these issues for a panel or series of panels, at The Fourth International Congress of Qualitative Inquiry (QI2008) - Ethics, Evidence and Social Justice ( that will take place at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign from May 14-17, 2008. In particular, we are interested in presentations that look at qualitative methods and the difficulties researchers encounter as they do or have done internet research. Our focus is not on results; rather we are looking for colleagues interested in sharing knowledge and discussing challenges of the "nuts and bolts" of internet research.

The list of qualitative methods to consider includes but is not limited to:

Interested parties should email 1000 character (approximately 150 words) abstracts for each paper or presentation by November 15, 2007 to the organizers.

Please include the following information for each author with your submission:  Author's Name, Department, University, Address including City, State/Province, ZIP/Post Code, Country (if not US, please specify if you need a visa for travel), Telephone/Fax, E-mail.

Lois Ann Scheidt and Inna Kouper (Organizers)
Doctoral Students
School of Library and Information Science
Indiana University
lscheidt at indiana dot edu
inkouper at indiana dot edu

Posted by prolurkr at 11:48 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Defining Wisdom post-doctoral fellowships at Chicago University

The Arete Initiative of the University of Chicago have announced a 2 million dollar research program on 'the nature and benefits of Wisdom'. They are going to award 20 two-year research grants to people who have received their PhDs within the past 10 years. They will also give out research grants averaging 100,000 dollars. Letters of Intent are required by 19 November.  They write:

Although it has been neglected in the past, a new and scholarly study of Wisdom has the potential to raise new questions, challenge assumptions, and develop new theoretical and empirical models that will enliven debate within and across disciplines. We are looking for highly original, methodologically rigorous projects from a broad range of disciplines.
They list a range of disciplines including neuroscience, psychology, genetics, evolutionary biology, sociology, anthropology, history, ethics, theology etc etc.

Details: or contact directly John Cacioppo and Howard Nusbaum at [email protected]

Posted by prolurkr at 11:34 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Illinois Qualitative Dissertation Award

DEADLINE: February 1, 2008

The International Center for Qualitative Inquiry is pleased to announce the third annual Illinois Qualitative Dissertation Award, for excellence in qualitative research in a doctoral dissertation. Eligible dissertations will use and advance qualitative methods to investigate any topic. Applications for the award will be judged by the following criteria: clarity of writing; willingness to experiment with new and traditional writing forms; advocacy, promotion, development, and use of qualitative research methodologies and practices in new fields of study, and in policy arenas involving issues of social justice.

For more information, please visit our website:

Posted by prolurkr at 11:14 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

October 14, 2007

A head-smacking against the wall day

Have you ever had one of those days where you are traveling along a chain of links, just checking out the new information that will help you with a current or a future project, and there buried among the links is a captivating piece of information YOU SHOULD HAVE ALREADY KNOWN.  My morning has been like that.  *sigh*

I added a CFP to my 2008 Academic Activities file in UltraRecall which had me looking at other CFPs I have listed by submission date.  This took me to Lifewriting Annual for which I have their 2006 inaugural issue's CFP archived under January doubt they have had so many submissions that further CFP's have been unnecessary. 

Well from Lifewriting Annual I went to International Auto/Biography Association whose CFP for their upcoming conference I posted on prolurker.  From there I took a look at some of the sites that link from IABA to universities with a special interest in this type of research.  Among those listed is LaTrobe University, Bundoora, AU and their Unit for Studies in Biography and Autobiography.  I'm always interested in what universities support the kind of research I do, never know if it might mean a future job or at least future collaboration opportunities.

On the Unit for Studies in Biography and Autobiography site I found a list Corresponding Members from around the world.  I was pleased to see that one of their CM's is from Indiana...John Eakin.  So, of course, I popped his name into a Google search and found his university bio. 

At that point I nearly fell out of my chair, you see "John Eakin" is "Paul John Eakin" an Indiana University English Professor Emeritus who is one of the movers and shakers behind the auto/biography community.  I simply had no idea that the work I've been reading for a couple of years now, was written by an Indiana University professor.  As I said in my email to him, I need to pay much more attention to the biographical information found on journal articles and books I read and reread.

I immediately sent him an email asking him to lunch or for coffee to discuss electronic lifewriting.  Good thing I had his book How Our Lives Become Stories set out to take along for reading on the plane.  I hope he accepts and I can pick his brain for insight that will help my work from quals through dissertation.

Life can be simply amazing sometimes, I had no idea when I started working this morning that I would end up writing an email to a professor whose work I admire.

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CFP - 6th Biennial International Auto/Biography Association Conference

The 6th Biennial International Auto/Biography Association ConferenceHonolulu, Hawai‘i
June 23-26, 2008
Conference Topic: Life Writing and Translations

The Center for Biographical Research and the International Auto/Biography Association invite scholars from around the world to attend the 6th IABA conference, which will be held at the East-West Center, next to the campus of the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, in Honolulu.

Translation is central to all forms of representation; the theme for this conference is Life Writing and Translations, in the widest sense of the term. We welcome papers dealing with the following kinds of translation, and others as well:

Because our primary concern will be striking up and sustaining conversations between conference participants, papers should be limited to fifteen minutes in length, to insure time in all sessions for questions and full discussion. Panels on a single topic and submitted together are welcome. (Panels and sessions will have three presenters.) Given the theme of the conference, panels and individual papers may be conducted or delivered in the language of the participant’s choice—various arrangements will be made well before the conference to allow other conference attendees to participate. All participants should also inform the organizers about media requirements for presentations—DVD, live internet, visual projection, audio, and so on.

Abstracts for papers should be @300 words long. There should be an abstract for each paper in a panel presentation. The deadline for abstracts will be November 1, 2007. Though e-mail is preferred, abstracts can be submitted by mail or fax to the following numbers and addresses.
* * *
IABA Conference Call for Papers
c/o The Center for Biographical Research
Department of English
1733 Donaggho Road
University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa
Honolulu, Hawai‘i 96822
Fax number: 1-808-956-3774
e-mail: [email protected]

We would be happy to answer questions. Contact the CBR at the same numbers and addresses.
Craig Howes
Director, Center for Biographical Research
Co-Editor, Biography: An Interdisciplinary Quarterly
Professor of English

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October 13, 2007

Note Taking: University Style - long post warning

Note Taking must be on the communal species conscientiousness these days.  I took the following from D*I*Y Planner who, in turn, took it from My Creative Adventures.  So it may be third-hand but it's still very good stuff even for grad students.

When you first go to university, you are suddenly expected to do much more work than in school, and with much less help and guidance than you are used to. After all, you are an adult now, and you should be capable of managing your own affairs. Sadly, no one has ever told you how to do that. How do you plan for writing papers, giving presentations and studying for exams. And how can you manage to get good grades without too much stress and still have time for a job and a social life? I want to share some things I learned, and which I would have loved to hear at my first day of lectures.

First I will name some of the tools and supplies I used a lot. Then I will take a look at different aspects of the student life. I don't mention computer and printer, as every university has those for use.

Tools and stuff

* A planner/calendar. I think that you should use one planner for school and social stuff, to avoid planning a party the night before an important exam.
* Wire-bound notebooks with pre-punched paper. You can take the pages out and put them in a binder. In this way you can carry one notebook around to lectures, and later at home take the pages out and put them in the appropriate section in the binder.
* Binders and tabs. I use one binder per semester, with a tab for each course. Behind each tab you can put all the notes, and also the course outline or any other papers that get passed around. At the end of the semester I label the binder and take out a new one.
* Pens, pencils, post-it notes and flags. You can mark up your reading and put notes in it without writing in the book itself.
* Something to take notes in while you are out. I used my planner for this, but index cards or a small notebook will work too. You never know when you have a good idea for your next paper.
* Good dictionaries and reference works. Speaks for itself I think. You need these for writing.

To get the most from your time spent listening to lectures, it is important to prepare yourself. Read the assigned texts and print the handouts (if any). Now you will understand much more of what the professor is saying, and you know if there are any questions or things you donít understand. Ask if your questions are not answered during the lecture.

The other important thing is to take good notes. These will help you remember important things and they will come in handy when studying for exams. Good note taking takes practice, but a few tips can help:

* Use keywords and short sentences
* Underline or highlight important things
* Note things you want too look up later too
* Make references to page numbers in the textbook or handout to save time writing

If you then go through your notes shortly after the class, you'll have a lot of the material already in your head.

Sometimes exams can be scary, especially oral exams. But if you have prepared for all lectures and taken notes, it will not be too hard to study for the exam. The first thing I recommend is to try and find some old exams or examples of questions. Knowing what to expect makes it easier to prepare and feel confident.

Also, it is important to schedule your studying at times when your energy level and concentration are at its best. Donít forget to schedule breaks too. I study best in a quiet environment, like the library, but at least put off the phone and computer. Distractions donít help.

The last thing that I found helpful is to o over old exams and hard parts of the course with a few classmates. We would always do this with three or four people a few days before the exam. I then there are still things unclear, you can still find time to visit the professor.

All this should prepare you well for the exam. Remember to eat and sleep well, and if you can take something to eat and drink to the room. This helps to relax a bit when you are stuck, and keeps your energy up.

After exams, I believe papers are the hardest part of studying. However, there are a few tricks to make writing papers a little bit easier. The first thing is to set intermediate due dates for the individual steps needed to complete a paper: identify subject or research question, search for literature, read and take notes, draft, research remaining points, and revise. Try to really keep to those due dates, and plan to finish at least a few day before the official due date. Setting due dates for smaller parts does also work for other assignments than papers.

After you have thought of some subject or question, you must start to look for literature. A good starting point is wikipedia or google scholar. (But never ever cite wikipedia in the paper!) Here you will find at lest some background info and some references. For many fields there are also databases with publications you can search by keyword (like MathSciNet for maths). Or look at the bibliography on the course website of the textbook. Once you have found a few good recent publications on your subject, the bibliographies in there will lead you further.

Now you have your literature, it is time to read it. I do this in two steps: first I read everything one time, quickly and in chronological order, without taking notes. Now I now roughly what is in what paper or book, and I read the interesting things, taking notes and underlining as I go. For the notes I use the same notebooks as for the lecture notes, so these notes can go in the binder too. I try to relate everything I read to the research question in some way, and make sure to put a reference to the paper or book on every page.

Then, when I have read everything I want to read, I make an outline and start writing. This is the first draft, so it does not have to be perfect right away. While writing, some points may come up that are not clear and need a bit more research. I note these down for now, and go back to all these points after the draft is finished. I do the remaining research, and rewrite the draft. Then print it out for proofreading. In the printout, I check all spelling, grammar and references. After that, it is ready to be handed in.

Two last things: make sure to backup your work regularly, for example by sending it to yourself by email every night. And try to use a nice layout; this is an easy way to make a good first impression.

Now you know all the things you need to do, but not how to plan for them. That is the next subject. I plan in my calendar. I write all the deadlines, exams and such in another ink colour than the other things so that they stand out. The same goes for the deadlines for individual steps in papers I set myself. I donít write down regular things to do like laundry and grocery shopping; I just do those as they come up.

In my calendar, I first put in all time-specific things like lectures, appointments and work. Then, in the remaining space, I plan the time with studying. I plan this mostly in the morning and afternoon, because I am not that good at working in the evening. Make sure you don't plan your days too full with studying. Plan some fun things to do and some downtime too.

If you do all this, you will probably have an easier time managing all your classes and assignments. I know I did. But the reason to manage your time and stuff in a good way is not only to get good grades, but also to free up time for a social life and all the college activities there are. Your years at university should be fun, so make time for that.

Posted by prolurkr at 10:00 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

AoIR 8.0 Tag Cloud

Alex Halavais posted a cool tag cloud that shows the self-selected tags each attendee gave for their Internet Research interests. Click on the pic to go to Alex's HTML version, where you can actually read the fine print.

Posted by prolurkr at 09:42 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

October 11, 2007

Time tested notetaking method, a la Edison

Ok today must be my day to find cool stuff for the blog...either that or I really am getting back to full steam. *S*

Following is a long quote from's article How to Take Notes like Thomas Edison. Definitely valuable insight into notetaking for research purposes.

Edison’s system was developed to support his life work and was very successful in doing so. The main elements of his system are as follows:
  1. Any useful or important development was recorded so that no effort was wasted in repeating experiments or efforts unnecessarily. Edison’s method was once described as an “empirical dragnet” by Nikola Tesla, another famous inventor who worked for Edison for some time. Combining Edison’s hard working and hard thinking methods with an effective record creation and retention system was a very important aspect of his work.
  2. Forward-looking. Edison’s notes included the forward-looking things we tend to incorporate in many of our modern personal planners. Things like lists of contacts, appointments, “to do” lists, and actionable items for follow up or later review were all contained within his comprehensive system.
  3. Rearward-looking. The ability to go back and check his written record was useful in several ways. He was able to use his records in various lawsuits filed against him and by him against others as evidence and to substantiate his claims. His competitors were often unable to compete with his records so he often came out victorious in these legal battles. He was always able to review past work and avoid repeatedly going down dead-end roads. He could always review whatever he had said or was told. He never had to remember most things as long as he could remember how to look it up later.
  4. The record system was searchable. Sometimes, from among millions of pages, there would be a key document that would prove invaluable. Unfortunately, with his manual system, he often spent considerable time searching through these records looking for the key item. He did however have a fairly good system of archiving his records by a combination of chronological and subject matter based systems. He created numerous groupings, files, folders, etc. which helped him to get to the right part of his records in a reasonably short time.
  5. Who, what, where, when and how much. These details could be fairly easily retrieved from Edison’s system in relation to any aspect of whatever he was involved with. These included financial records and they formed an important part of his note-taking system. He kept all his incoming as well as copies of all his outgoing correspondence. This was not necessarily easy to do before the invention of the modern office copier.
  6. How and why. Edison’s research laboratory work was a focal point for much of his record system. Patent applications and reviews were based in large part on his notes that needed to include the how and why aspects in sufficient detail so that the patents themselves would be complete and able to withstand any legal challenges. Edison often used his records to defend his position from competitors in his day when patents and technologies were becoming very fashionable and important as they remain today. His system of experimentation and related record keeping has become the basis of the modern industrial research institution – which he is widely credited with having invented.
  7. Extremely powerful memory aid. Edison had an amazing memory. He was well informed on a wide range of topics and always seemed to be able to recall what he told someone or what he was told. Much of this is due to his system of notes. By writing everything down that he thought was worth writing, he was able to free himself of the burden of having to remember it. A strange and almost unexpected thing occurs. The process of writing things down aids in the mental memory retention. The combination of having the confidence in knowing the information is on record and easily retrievable combined with the improved retention from the process of writing it down, creates a winning combination when it comes to memory.

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Have you got what they want to hire?

The following long quote was taken from Inside Higher Ed's article The Graduate Education Mismatch. While few of us hit all the notes listed here, it's really useful to know what notes are expected, or at least highly desirable.  You can't be competitive if you don't know the game.  *w*  And to win you have to be ahead of the pack.

The results show that many hiring departments that do not offer doctorates would value the kinds of training that are far from uniform — and in some cases rare — in the departments training new Ph.D.’s. In almost all of the cases, skills related to teaching were much more valued at institutions other than those that train doctoral students.

Training vs. Hiring Priorities

Type of Training

% of Graduate Departments Offering

% of Bachelor’s Institutions Finding It Desirable for New Faculty

% of Master’s Institutions Finding It Desirable for New Faculty

% of Doctoral Institutions Finding It Desirable for New Faculty

Course on teaching undergraduates





Faculty mentor to train graduate students





Opportunity to teach intro courses independently





Workshops on teaching writing to undergraduates





Workshops on using simulations and film in teaching





Training as an undergraduate adviser





Workshop on how to retain students





At first glance, the data would appear to reinforce the views of those who say that undergraduate oriented institutions are the ones these days that care about teaching, and consider teaching issues in hiring. But as the study notes, the researchers also found evidence that undergraduate institutions may be almost as focused on research output — when it comes to faculty hiring — as are graduate institutions.

The chairs were asked if three measures of research quality would make candidates more desirable to hire for faculty jobs.

Preferences for Faculty Hiring

Research experience

% of Bachelor’s Institutions Finding It Desirable for New Faculty

% of Master’s Institutions Finding It Desirable for New Faculty

% of Doctoral Institutions Finding It Desirable for New Faculty

Presented one or more papers at professional conferences




Published one or more articles in professional journals




Published one or more books




The paper on the study was written by John M. Rothgreb Jr., professor of political science at Miami University; Annemarie Spadafore, a graduate student at Miami; and Betsy Burger, an administrative assistant at Miami.

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CFP - The Long History of New Media: Contemporary and Future Developments Contextualized

The Long History of New Media: Contemporary and Future Developments Contextualized

International Communication Association Communication History Interest Group Pre-conference Workshop
Montreal, 21 May 2008

This ICA pre-conference explores the historical dimension of new media with regard to theoretical foundations, methodological approaches, and contemporary developments. The historical dimension of these facets of new media scholarship is all too often inadequately addressed. The purpose of this pre-conference, then, is to bring together scholars with a common interest in exploring the historical contextualization of new media. This purpose is situated within a wider celebration of the 10th anniversary of New Media & Society as a leading journal for scholarly exploration of new forms of mediated communication. This anniversary will culminate in a special issue of the journal drawing from papers submitted to this pre-conference.

We welcome papers on a wide array of historically-grounded themes. The following illustrations of topics suggest - but are not intended to limit - topics suitable for paper submissions:
* Theoretical constructs such as 'interactivity' and 'digital divide' as applied to computer-mediated communication as well as mass media within different historical contexts;
* Contemporary 'promises' of the Internet (e.g., facilitation of political discourse and engagement) compared with the promises of other media (e.g., radio, television) in previous historical periods;
* Ethical considerations in conducting online ethnography as compared to such considerations during early anthropological studies;
* Aspects of Web survey methods (e.g., sampling, instrument design and deployment) compared to social survey research initiatives in the 1940s-50s;
* Comparison of Internet Studies, Cyberinfrastructure, and e-Science developments from an history of science perspective;
* Examination of the purposes of social networking sites (e.g., Friendster, MySpace) for youth as compared to social activities of young people prior to the 'Internet era';
* The Web browser 'wars' compared to the tumultuous introduction of other communication technologies.
* Issues relating to the methodology of the history of new media.

Abstracts of ca. 300 words should be submitted no later than 1 November. Send abstracts to: David Park, Chair of the ICA Communication History Interest Group, at [email protected] Authors will be informed whether abstracts have been accepted by 21 November 2007. Papers will be due by May 1, 2008. The program for this re-conference will take place in the afternoon of Wednesday 21 May 2008, the date established for ICA pre-conferences. The available time allows for three consecutive blocks of short presentations and roundtable-style discussions.

The pre-conference is a joint initiative by the Communication History Interest Group of the ICA and New Media & Society. The pre-conference will be held at McGill University, which is walking distance from the ICA conference venue.

Organized by
* David W. Park, Chair of ICA Communication History Interest
* Nicholas Jankowski and Steve Jones, co-editors New Media &

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I'm making a commitment to Twitter. So add me to your lists, I'm Lois_S. Let's see if this system has research potential or not.

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Planning for your tenure and promotion process

I am a huge believer in visualization and planning.  If you want something then you need to plan a process to get it...and one of the best ways to do that is to act as though you have achieved your goal already.  The brain is a really dumb piece of meatware...if you smile your brain releases the proper hormones and boom you feel happier.  In other words, fake a smile and dance now, then shortly you will be smiling and dancing for real.  Well the same works here...act like you are where you want to be and you feel like you are there, then because you both act consciously and unconsciously like you have already reached your goal(s), others well see you as being at the end of the path, not the beginning.

I found a great tool to help me, and now you, along our road.  IUPUI Office of Professional Development has some very useful discussions and checklists for new and established faculty in their Resource Center.  While the specifics would be limited to IUPUI positions, the general ideas should be applicable to most any major U.S. university.  Check out your universities and see if they have a similar office and site, for more specifics that you can immediately relate too...and share those addys in comments.

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