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Graduate Student Thesis & Dissertation and Senior Thesis Camp

About the Graduate Student Camp

The Hesburgh Libraries proudly offers a research and writing program co-sponsored with the University Writing Center and the Graduate School. The purpose of the camp is to help scholars focus on their own research and writing as they work toward completion of their dissertation or thesis. Please read below for more information and how to register for the workshops being planned.

The Graduate Dissertation Camp is designed to assist graduate students at all stages of their research and writing toward their degree or completion of a large scale writing project. Participants will have the opportunity to:

  • jumpstart or move forward in their research and writing process
  • work in dedicated spaces in the Hesburgh Library
  • consult with their subject librarians
  • consult with University Writing Center tutors about their work
  • engage with colleagues in their own and other graduate divisions to learn best practices from peers
  • form communities of practice to engage in the camp process after its conclusion

Camp Schedule

Times Activities
  • Daily check-in and arrival
  • Breakfast
  • Early morning community building and conversation
  • Meet your Subject Librarian
  • Convene for goal setting.
  • Participate in goal setting activity and discussion
    • Monday: Abby
    • Tuesday: Abby
    • Wednesday: Abby
    • Thursday: Abby
    • Friday: Abby
  • Morning research and writing session
  • Lunch service
  • Community building
  • Break
  • Half hour topical workshops encouraged
  • Fresh air break
  • Early afternoon research and writing time
  • Writing Center consultations offered
  • Come up for air afternoon break
  • You will fight wanting to stop, but take time to get a snack and take a walk
  • Your final push in research and writing
  • Daily wrap-up
    • Monday: Abby
    • Tuesday: Abby
    • Wednesday: Abby
    • Thursday: Abby
    • Friday: Abby
  • Gather to discuss your work for the day in community

Topical Workshop Schedule

The following Special Topics workshops are offered for our 2017 camp. All workshops are held in the Hesburgh Library.

Times & Locations Speaker Topics & Outcomes
Monday, March 13th
Room 248
Abigail Jorgensen
University Writing Center Consultant
The Dissertation Log
Want to understand how you work best and when? You need data to analyze! This session will cover more detail on how you can use paper or electronic tools to plan, organize, schedule, track and analyze your progress on your large research and writing project. Leave the session with tools and tips that you can put to work right away, including a peer information exchange on best practices. Find out what works from other graduate students in addition to the expert Writing Center staff.
Tuesday, March 14th
Room 248
Rita Donley, Ph.D.
University Counseling Center
Stress Management for the Researcher
In this session for all of our camp participants, you will learn about some triggers for stress and walk away with practical tips that will help you:
  • Understand what the impact of stress is on a student researcher
  • Overview of ways to mitigate the stress
  • Identify services where students can get help
Wednesday, March 15th
Room 248
Mandy Havert
Hesburgh Libraries
How to Break a Bad Habit
Time management is impacted by habits, both good and bad. Do you have bad habits that impede your progress? Come with a habit you'd like to break and workshop a plan to break that habit in seven steps. You'll need your computer or notebook to work through the steps. Then, transfer your plan into your schedule and dissertation log.

Mandy is the Graduate Research and Outreach Librarian for the Hesburgh Libraries. She dedicates her time to helping others be the best they can be when conducting research and growing in their professional practice.
Thursday, March 16th
Room 248
Monica Moore,
Mandy Havert
Hesburgh Libraries
Citation and Research Management: A Practicum
You have your system down, or you're working on getting a system to track your research, notes, data and information that supports your scholarship. Bring your laptop, get an overview, and tell us your roadblocks. We'll work with you to find the solution.
Thursday, March 16th
Room 247
Shari Hill Sweet
Dissertation and Thesis Editor
the Graduate School
Microsoft Word: Using Word for Your Academic Writing Projects
(Dissertation & thesis formatting workshop)
Using exercises based on the Graduate School's dissertation template, participants will learn how to simplify formatting, and apply advanced techniques like section breaks, automated contents lists, landscape pages, cross-references, and continued tables.

If you have not mastered the use of styles, please do yourself a favor and attend this workshop. Save time and frustration by investing now.


Friday, March 17th
Room 248
Nathan Elliot, Rector
University Village

Abigail Jorgensen
Writing Accountability Group member
Accountability Writing Groups
Are you interested in keeping this week's energy going? There are many different ways to do this. Mimi will join us to talk about accountability groups and partnerships, what it takes to form a group, and, if you're a graduate student, how she can pick up the tab for a coffee and snack break or two with your group.