Skip to main content

Academic Distraction Disorder (Google Subtype)



  1. but if i resist the can i check this blog? :)

  2. Hi Kathryn,

    Yes, it is a sneaky thing. I sometimes feel like I'm coming out of a trance when I realize what I've been doing.

    I agree that there is something like productive procrastination, if you don't let it run away with you. You are a pretty prolific writer, and have been doing a good job of moving towards your goals, so I guess you're allowed!

  3. Anonymous4:51 PM

    Hi Gina, one thing I do is to write in places where I would otherwise have to pay to surf, like Barnes and Noble or Starbucks, although you have to watch out for overlapping free zones. When I know I can surf for free at home or at school, it keeps me from paying.

  4. Good idea, Jon. In the future, when there is free Internet access everywhere, it will take much longer to get a Ph.D.!

  5. Anonymous4:19 PM

    I've already thanked Gina personally for this cartoon--it's hilarious and a little sad for those of us living in this reality! But it gave me some perspective on how prevalent this problem is.

    I have a suggestion that could be time-saving or time-consuming, so use with caution. If you use regular Google, you are likely to waste time wading through spam and scrolling through irrelevant content. A much more helpful resource is, which is still in beta form but is a vast repository for finding scholarly articles and books, esp for those of us writing away from our home campus.

    Hope this helps, but set a timer before going there (telling myself this advice also!).

  6. Thanks for the link and the reminder about Google Scholar, Nan! You've encouraged me to try my hand at another cartoon.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Academic Exhaustion Syndrome: Four Recovery Strategies

The semester’s over. If you’re anything like the academics I coach, you feel like death warmed over.  Those last stacks of grading got done on sheer will, determination and fumes. And this is before considering your writing deadlines, committee responsibilities, and other demands.  You are suffering from Academic Exhaustion Syndrome.  Academic Exhaustion Syndrome (an advanced, more scholarly state of burn out) is a state of emotional, and physical exhaustion caused by prolonged stress, ending with grading, over the course of the semester and academic year. As the stress continues, you begin to lose interest and motivation to work, you have fantasies of standing up and screaming in the middle of a meeting, and you wonder what temporary loss of reality testing made you decide to become an academic.  This dreaded Syndrome can: Reduce your productivity and saps your energy Make you irritable and have thoughts of strangling an undergraduate Make you feel like you have nothing more to g

"ABD" -- what does it really mean?

I thought I knew what the definition of ABD was. It was exactly the same as defined here in Carnegie Mellon's University Doctoral Candidate Policies for All But Dissertation (ABD) : After the completion of all formal degree requirements other than the completion of and approval of the doctoral dissertation and the public final examination, doctoral candidates shall be regarded as All But Dissertation(ABD). I have, though, occasionally run into the term ABD being used as a somewhat disparaging designation for one who fulfills the formal degree requirements of the Ph.D. but never finishes the dissertation, and then quits the program. Most recently, I saw it in What They Didn' t Teach You in Graduate School: 199 Helpful Hints for Success in Your Academic Career , by Paul Gray and David E. Drew. Number 9 of their helpful hints is one that I strongly agree with: "Remember that a Ph.D. is primarily an indication of survivorship." They go on to say, "You stuck wi

The Second Holiday Writing Challenge for Academics

Here's a little boost for those who need a little kickstart to write over the holidays.  I first offered a Holiday Writing Challenge  back in 2005, so I'd say it's about time to do it again. Here's what you do: Post in the comment section: what you'd like to work on (if anything) over the holidays, and the maximum amount of time you'd like to spend on it daily . Please keep this time limit reasonable and low unless you're under huge deadline pressure -- in which case you don't need this challenge in order to get something done! Whether you're a professor or a grad student, make sure you get a copy of the Dissertation Toolkit.  These tools will give you more information and tips for productive and creative writing.  For those of you who have had trouble making yourself write, you may want to start with VERY short writing goals . Even 5 or 10 minutes will be enough to get you jumpstarted.  Don't go more than 25 or 30 minutes withou