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Showing posts from 2010

One Professor's Fantasy

What kind of help do upper level administrators need? (Dept chairs, Deans, Provosts and Presidents)

My colleague and friend, Hillary Hutchison , has an expertise in working with high level university administrators, helping them with leadership skills, life balance, career goal-setting and other issues.  In order to improve her practice, she's asking other professionals who work with academics to poll their readers and clients to get more ideas of the kinds of problems that these administrators grapple with. So could you please help by listing what you, as an administrator, would potentially need help with.  If you know any administrators, what do you think they need help with?  What issues plague these people? You will be helping not only Hillary, but helping academic administrators.

My last newsletter in a Wordle

I don't know why, but I love playing with Word Clouds.  Here is my last newsletter, which you can read here , in a Word Cloud, using Wordle . I don't know why the word "Pussyfooting" isn't in there.  If you don't know what I'm talking about, you'll just have to read the article !

What I Wish I Had Known About Writing A Dissertation: Win a Flip Ultra Video Camcorder!

First Annual "What I Wish I Had Known About Writing a Dissertation" Contest -- ends tonight, May 21, 2010 Win a Flip Ultra Video Camera for your dissertation writing hints! Our First Annual "Inspirational Quotes for Writers" Contest was a big success, allowing us to turn it into an ebook for you.  So we have instituted our second First Annual Contest:  "What I wish I had known about writing a dissertation." Here's what you could win from the raffle of entries.  And you can increase your chances with high-level multiple entries! The Flip Ultra Video Camera How to Enter -- it's quick and easy All you need to do to enter the contest is go to , and become a Fan of (or I think now you need to "Like") the Academic Ladder page, and post your favorite tips on the wall. Note that this is not my personal page -- many of you have friended me, but for this contest you just need to "Like" the pag

"You're in my dissertation acknowledgments" - 5 words I love to hear!

Elizabeth Gritter, a who earned her doctorate from UNC-Chapel Hill on Wednesday, wrote me today. She is a long-time subscriber to my newsletter. "Though I have not contacted you individually before, I wanted to let you know that I mentioned you in my acknowledgments.  I've also recommended your web site to others."  In her acknowledgment, she not only thanked the person who had told her about "the web site of academic writing coach Gina Hiatt," but added "I have benefited from Ms. Hiatt's advice about writing, and her generosity in making these communications and documents free."* I have to say that this made my day. I (along with other Academic Writing Club coaches) have been mentioned in dissertation and book acknowledgments before, but usually by people we have coached directly or through the Writing Club. It's nice to know that my newsletters can be that helpful in and of themselves, and are actually influencing others' lives.

The Academic Life: Making It

Professors: Running Fast and Getting Nowhere? The clock is ticking.  Will you get tenure? The Academic Life: Making It

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Is Time Your Enemy? Conquer Time with an "Unschedule"!

Time can be your friend or your enemy. For many academics, it is a merciless tyrant. Academia can provide the luxury of not having to punch a clock. Unfortunately, this luxury makes it easy to allow that all-important project (usually writing, hereafter referred to as the Project) to slide, as you fill in your day with the humdrum and the emergencies. The Enemy You Don't Know CAN Hurt You In Procrastination: Why You Do It; What to Do About It by Jane Burka and Lenor Yuen, the authors suggest that procrastinators (which I'm convinced means most of us) have a strange relationship with time. They engage in "wishful thinking" -- they believe that they can magically pull and stretch time to meet their needs. They act as if time is not finite and limited. So if time perpetually controls you, it may be because you don't understand it. You either think that: Small tasks will be endless (so you put off doing them) Big tasks will just take an hour or two (so you don't

What is your WORD for 2010?

I don't know about you, but 2009 was a very tough year for me. I'm glad to kiss it goodbye and welcome the New Year/New Decade. In that spirit, here's a post from Jayne London, my Associate Coach and the Manager of the Academic Writing Club . This letter was sent to members of the Writing Club, but I thought I'd make it available to all. Happy New Year! Wow --- 2010! It's time to turn a new page on a new decade. This is an opportunity that won't come along again for another 10 years. Imagine back to 2000 and what you thought you would be doing 10 years later. I hope you can acknowledge all your accomplishments from the past 10 years and enjoy that feeling in the days to come. There will be many opportunities for you in this new decade. Are you ready for them? For this upcoming year, a simple but powerful suggestion was offered by a graduate student in the Writing Club. She calls it ONE LITTLE WORD TO LIVE WITH. She wrote: "About this time last year, a