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AP

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AP last won the day on February 12

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About AP

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    Mocha

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  1. Congrats on graduating! Double woo! to the first gen, and to your other academic accomplishments. I have done my share of ESL and Social Sciences teaching during/after college. I think you could take advantage of this because part of the PhD is developing teaching skills. Other grad school skills that you can cultivate while teaching are time-management for reading, synthesizing ideas for non-specialist, and using materials (teaching materials or historical sources) in creative ways. Now, how to stay sharp? I don't think any of us is 'sharp' but I kind of get what you mean I'm on several listservs from the US and from the countries I focus on in order to keep up with what's going on. I may not participate in the conference that they send, but if you see there are three local conferences on women and labor, you pick up that there is a common question circulating among scholars. I also follow people on Twitter and read some blogs regularly. Finally, I set up a Google Scholar alert for key words that interest me. Joining the AHA is a good idea if you are going to use its benefits. When I worked as a teacher outside of the US, I preferred being a member of the British counterpart, the Historical Association. It was more oriented to teaching, and I developed great materials with their publications. A subscription to the Chronicle of Higher Ed could also do the trick. Since you are still dubious about your field -which is great- start big and general. Read/keep up with larger issues, don't worry about geography. For example, if you are interested in women and labor, focus on that without trying to pinpoint the theme to a map. That will come along.
  2. I think your social life is important at any stage of your life/career. I do not believe that your social life should begin and/or end in your department though. In my view, a doctoral program in the humanities is a job (which explains why we are fighting for unionization). My own approach to work is that I go there to work, not making friends. If I make friends along the way, awesome. This has resulted in my being a little more selective when making friends. By selective I mean that I wait a couple of months before deciding who I want to hang out more, and in grad school I think I was very conscious about this. It sounds super harsh, but in the end it resulted in very durable friendships (I've met most of my closest friends on the job or grad school) and it has saved me some time from dealing with people in the end I didn't get along with. In history, I would encourage you to prioritize making friends with your caucus because you are going to see them more often than your cohort. They will be the ones that help you with crises, with exam lists, with advisors questions, and the like. I'm not saying don't look for support in your cohort, I'm just reminding you that you will probably grow apart. Of course, this has nothing to do with the professional bonds you cultivate along your career. One thing is to have writing buddies and another thing is to have friends. If you can, try to make friends in sports clubs or other activities. I got a job on campus and that helped me interact a lot with other people (staff and undergrads that I wouldn't have known) and those types of friends helped me just have a little more perspective on my whole PhD experience. In short, do have a social life. (Needless to say, YMMV).
  3. Ok, I've finished editing my own list for my past self and other researchers going into the field. This is specific for archival research (it doesn't include interviews). 1) Have a broad monthly calendar and what you want to achieve each month. Keep in mind this can change, so adjust it accordingly. 2) Have weekly mini-aims, things that you definitely need to get done. It can be research related or not, such as going for three runs. 3) I cannot stress this enough: keep many copies of your files in a cloud, an external drive, another cloud, another external drive, whatever. Be paranoid about this. Things happen and you don't want to delay your research because you need to go back to an archive because you lost everything. 4) Sync periodically. 5) Take your time to have your files organized. This takes time and energy, so plan accordingly. What I do is each day get home, download all the photos into a Dropbox folder, create PDFs of each document I saw (depending how they are organized), then upload the PDF to Dropbox and another cloud, and I have a online database with everything I have seen, reproduced, PDFed, and taken notes of. 6) Write often. This was great advice that I got but I want to clarify something: writing means writing anything. At first I was bummed because all my writing was note taking from files. But then these notes turned into thoughts and then into paragraphs. It takes time, but writing needs to happen. My two cents!
  4. And now that I'm done, I can give in some tips myself!
  5. I don't *need* a PhD. It's just that the job that I want to do -research and teaching- requires a PhD. I'm a walking cliché.
  6. Yes, it's common. And in many programs it is even a requirement to TA/RA for professors/in projects unrelated to your interests. At the least, it shows your ability to adapt. Unfortunately, this is not a valid argument for negotiating a GAship, least of all in your first year. Nobody is forcing you to leave your job to be anything, you are making this decision on your own based on the offer. You are not being offered a job, where you would negotiate a package worth leaving everything for. If you are going to be an impoverished Gard student, that's your call. I don't see any harm in asking, though, if there could be a reassignment based on your interests. That said, everything you do in grad school builds your CV. You can strategize this GAship to serve your career goals. First, it may connect you with people outside your interests who could eventually read drafts of papers, grant applications, chapters, etc. Second, it may expose you to people who are not experts in your field or familiar with your jargon. In the long run, explaining your research and its impact to this audience will help you have a wider readership. Third, it may build research skills. Take advantage of your time there as you could be learning on data recollection, information organization, research management, or whatever that you could apply in your own work. Fourth, it may expose you to other interests that you may consider for your own research or for including as part of your academic conversation. Fifth, being exposed to another research helps you be a better reader of others' work.
  7. Zotero
  8. YAYYYYYY!!!!!!!!!!! I knew it!!!!!!!! CONGRATSSSSS The waiting torture is over!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Now you have the exciting task of planning the move!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So happy for you!
  9. I did this as well.
  10. I did mine for a national conference I attended (but did not present). You use them a lot because you meet people in receptions, book exhibits, poster presentations, and sessions. Sometimes your advisor introduces you to people so a business card comes handy. During research abroad, I have used them in archives, workshops, and bookstores. Like @TakeruK, I've also handed them out in non-academic situations such as hostels/hotels where I've stayed, waiting areas in airports, and the like.
  11. I stored my things with my roommate. We went overseas at the same time but came back at different times. We agreed for 12-month shared unit and after that we said we would take it from there. Since it was on my credit card, I just kept paying until she came back and then she gave me my money back. It was like setting money aside for me hahaha Neither of us knew when we would get back exactly or if we would live together (though it was the plan). As regards the apartment, we both left ours. When she came back, she moved in with her SO (also after a very long period of long distance since he had gone for research the year before) and I moved in with other grads. There is always people wanting to live with grads!
  12. I have seen BA theses published outside of the US, in countries I am familiar with academically. In general, theses publications make up ok books that are useful for general literature reviews or for tracing down archives. I have seen one BA or MA thesis published in the US that was an insult to my time. Badly written and hardly any real research. I sense your field is a book field, thus a book is an important contribution to the scholarship. It is important that you assess exactly how you are contributing to your field so that your book becomes relevant. I'm very surprised that an advisor suggested publishing a book because it takes so long to turn something into a manuscript. I applaud you determination to publish and your ambition to do it in a more professional setting than undergraduate journals. Yet, if you haven't published anything yet, I would consider presenting some of your ideas at a conference and publish an article before the book. You can get great feedback. I didn't publish my BA thesis but it is available online so I get cited
  13. At first glance, I don't see why you'd think that. Many people -international and American- are admitted into US programs every year. That said, it could also depend on your current and future programs. If the one you are at now is not very good and you want to apply to a top 10, it might be harder. But if you are in a very good program, then it becomes an asset. The bottom line, however, is that you chose to go there for a reason, so you should make your case in your SoP if you feel it 'hurts' your profile.
  14. I've only seen the word 'Congress' in large, mostly international conferences. I cannot think of a small conference being a congress.
  15. Oh, I thought 'the other' was in Interdisciplinary Studies. Well, since you have read so much, you probably can tell the difference between research in both departments. In my field, we often get carried away by the Anthro/ethno part of the project and our advisors our always asking: "why is this a history dissertation?" It is not that they don't want us to be interdisciplinary, but at the end of the day we have to be coherent between research and field. So, what type of research do you want to do? [Oh, I know it is easier to ask than to be asked this!!!] Also, have looked into the possibility of certificates within your programs? Finally, I don't know everybody else's but my coursework experience has been intensely interdisciplinary. I'm sure you've had that experience too, given your interests, so it is highly difficult to see you not crossing methodological boundaries What other things can you weight in?