Instead of producing a traditional, four-chapter dissertation, I propose to convert the three chapters I have written for my project into an alternative dissertation format. Specifically, I propose to create an online Open Educational Resource. To do so would accomplish several goals:
- It would align my project’s theories of interactive readership and the open reuse of texts with my dissertation’s form.
- It would tap into a broader call to re-imagine the format and purpose of dissertations in the humanities writ large.
- It would link my project to initiatives to produce interactive, digital, and open-access projects in nineteenth-century studies, something that might allow me to join conversations with some of the scholars I most admire in my field.
- It would also align my PhD completion process with my own professional goals, which have shifted away from tenure-track professorship and toward teaching-oriented public humanities and faculty development work.
The process of generating a dissertation project is as important as the products that Ph.D. candidates produce over the years. This alternative dissertation project would allow me to prioritize, refine, and demonstrate the following skills and values:
- The ability to connect my research to my teaching. My proposed format connects to this broader goal both because of its affiliation with broader open education and open scholarship initiatives and through the series of pedagogical materials I seek to incorporate into this project.
- A commitment to inclusive forms of writing, research, and teaching. As I write and revise this dissertation, I intend to learn about and observe Universal Design best practices.
Interacting With This Text
I have created this proposal document as a way to articulate my goals both for myself and for members of my committee.
This Pressbook is rife with hyperlinks for a reason: it’s not my intention to ask anyone to read this document in its entirety. Instead, I hope that people interacting with this text will wander non-sequentially, digging deeper as the hyperlinks answer questions they may have for me, and then leave as they wish. You can also find a Table of Contents drop-down pane on the left-hand side of your screen.
Please feel free to enter into a conversation with me in the margins of this text, if you desire! You can use the Hypothes.is annotation sidebar to leave comments on individual sections of text.
You can also contribute feedback using the Google documents embedded at the bottom of some of the pages of this text.
- Note that in many cases, a current NetID is required to access these Google documents. If you’d like access to these Google documents but would prefer not to log into Google Drive using your NetID, please contact me and I will add your non-Wisc email to the list.