Academic Help

Academic Consultation

We provide a series of 3-5 individual consultations to help you get or keep your academic work on track. We work with you on the obstacles to progress, developing strategies to overcome them. These consultations have been very successful and popular.

The Dissertation Group

We offer ongoing groups that meet once weekly throughout the academic year. The Dissertation Group addresses problems in working on and completing the dissertation. In a safe and confidential atmosphere, students have a chance to share their experiences and the group works toward finding solutions to obstacles.

Dissertation Web Resources

University of North Carolina Chapel Hill - Writing Center:
http://www.unc.edu/depts/wcweb/handouts/dissertation.html

The following websites all advertise for-fee dissertation coaching, but they also provide free articles and advice about doing the dissertation:

Successfulacademic.com
Newsletter (you can subscribe for free) and dissertation tips

Thedissertationcoach.com
Under “Resources,” articles on mastering aspects of the dissertation

Dissertationworkshop.com
Many useful comments and suggestions for doing the dissertation, created by two of the Wellness Center’s outside workshop consultants

Dissertation Book Resources

There are many good books on writing the dissertation. Here are some that students have found especially helpful:

Writing the Dissertation in 15 Minutes a Day
Joan Bolker. Holt McDougal, 1998.
Buy It (Barnes & Noble)
Written by the co-founder of the Harvard Writing Center. Advice on disciplining yourself to work at least 15 minutes a day, choosing a topic and advisor, setting short-term deadlines, and planning life after the dissertation. Helps you to view the project in positive terms, reminding students that their interest in their thesis can make it a pleasurable adventure rather than a dreaded chore. Offers suggestions for discovering your own individual work strategies that can promote productivity.

Finishing Your Dissertation Once and for All
Alison B. Miller. American Psychological Association, 2008.
Buy It (Amazon)
Combines psychological support with a project management approach that breaks tasks into small, manageable chunks. Suggestions for overcoming anxiety, self-doubt, procrastination and perfectionism, all of which impede progress on the dissertation. Tips for working productively, interacting with advisors and committees and taking care of yourself along the way. Includes exercises to reinforce the strategies described.

Destination Dissertation
Sonja K. Foss & William Waters. Rowman & Littlefield, 2007.
Buy It (Barnes & Noble)
This book takes you through the dissertation journey by outlining concrete and efficient steps for completing each part. Gives many useful examples from throughout the dissertation process, including how to create a proposal and how to approach data collection and coding.

How to Complete and Survive a Doctoral Dissertation
David Sternberg. St. Martin’s Press, 1981.
Buy It (Barnes & Noble)
Topics include: refuting the “magnum opus myth” to selecting a topic, choosing an advisor and committee, thinking about publication, and looking beyond the dissertation. Offers concrete suggestions for time management, dealing with procrastination and negativity, and more.

Writing the Winning Thesis or Dissertation
Randy L. Joyner & Allan A. Glatthorn (Editors). SAGE Publications, 2005.
Buy It (Amazon)
Demystifies the dissertation writing process by providing clear directions for structuring the project. Chapters on laying the groundwork, organizing and scheduling your work, peer collaboration, defending the dissertation, preparing for publication, and solving problems that come up along the way.