Skip to main content

An organizing schema for organizing


A Writing Club member who was feeling disorganized this week, came up with a nice way to start dealing with this problem. In response to one of the questions on the progress log ("What are your specific goals for tomorrow?"), she made the following list.

Here is my organization strategy for putting that mountain of papers in its place:
  • Step 1: (Create the categories) Create paper folders based on subject/topic (eg: stat notes; emotion articles; pilot analysis; chapter feedback etc)
  • Step 2: (Start filing) Start filing papers into the folder created above.
  • Step 3: (Revise categories) Go through papers that have not found a home and see if you want to create more subfolders or combine some.
  • Step 4: ( Containerize): Now when all papers have found a home, based on sub folders, if any are too large- house them all in a box/ file holder, with sub-categorizations if it helps.
  • Step 5: (Create a reference): List all folders and boxes and stick it where you can see it. This way next time you find a paper lying around you know where to throw it.
  • Step 6 (Create flexibility): Have a folder where you can throw active stuff to be filed later. DO not allow it to overflow.
  • Step 7- Enjoy the fruits of your labor !

Maybe a variation of this schema can be useful for your piles of paper.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

"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 with it …

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 energyMake you irritable and have thoughts of strangling an undergraduateMake you feel like you have nothing more to give. Cr…

Holiday Challenge

Are you going to try to work on your dissertation or publication over the winter break?

I'd like to offer a holiday/winter break challenge to anyone who would like to take me up on it.

Post 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 deadine pressure -- in which case you don't need this challenge in order to get something done! Then you can go back to this post daily, weekly or just at the end of the challenge (shall we say January 15?) to say how you did, to tell us about your problems or to encourage and commiserate with others.

So, to summarize:
Post what you're working onPost your daily time commitmentPost again periodically to tell us how you're doing -- I'll receive all posts as emails and will comment and encourage you!Good luck and happy holidays!