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Archive for the ‘CMP9200B’ Category

New dissertation chair

Sunday, December 19th, 2010

I now have a new dissertation chair and am excited about Dr. M’s qualifications. According to his bio, he has taught quantitative methods and computer information systems for a number of years. He also enjoys working in the online learning environment. He also publishes on operations management, a field that I enjoy reading about. But what I really like is a statement in his bio, that he is always available to answer questions and provide guidance! And with a rejected CP – you KNOW I have lots of questions!

Over the last few weeks, I have responded to most of the OAR statements by modifying my CP. However, one of the statements is giving me much trouble the more that I think about it. I have asked for help on responding to that question – see, I have already applied Dr. M’s statement about answering questions and providing guidance!!

As I had no chair for two weeks, Northcentral was great to extend the course end date by two weeks. You may have heard about the tuition increase (everyone is SCREAMING about it). I had prepaid tuition a while back in the amount finance recommended, but it won’t be enough to finish out. So the accounting department told me if I pay a certain amount by Dec 28 I can lock in the tuition rate and hopefully finish the classes with that amount.

My education has ended up costing me more than I had originally anticipated. Over the years they have added various fees (like a technology fee) and hiked tuition every year. This is pretty normal in higher education. Unfortunately, I do not get any employer assistance so all of this is coming out of my [empty] pockets.

I haven’t blogged much lately. I was away on family business for a number of days, plus I had some other obligations to attend to. But I am back on track now, working on school work; and hopefully moving ahead. I told Husband yesterday that MAYBE this time NEXT YEAR, I will have graduated…

Passed Comps!

Thursday, September 9th, 2010

I turned in my comps exam on 08/30 and Dr. H had it graded and back to me the next day. I passed! One of the questions that I thought I did poorly on, he commented that it was my best. The question that I thought I did the best with, he commented that it was lacking! I thought this to be pretty strange. However, all I had to do was pass, and I did. So I am very happy!

I checked with my advisor and found out that they do not automatically send out the ABD “All But Dissertation” congratulations letters. I have to enroll in the next class, which is DIS9321B. That queues the letter to be sent out. My grade for comps will not post until after the class ends on 10/24. I plan to start DIS9321B on October 1st, so this weekend I will be working on my concept paper so that I can turn it in on the first day of class.

But for now, I am reveling in knowing I PASSED COMPS!!!

Ready to turn in Comps

Sunday, August 29th, 2010

I re-read Dr. H’s tips note that he sent at the beginning of the course and one of the statements he made about APA formatting is a little confusing. I sent him a note asking for clarification on this point. I have my comps paper all ready to turn in but I will wait until I get back on answer on my question. Today is August 29 – I have 49 days to turn in the paper and I have finished in 29 days.

Now that I am finished the answers to the four questions, I think my papers will be acceptable. I have double-triple-quadruple proofread and checked formatting until I am cross-eyed. I had planned to have the paper finished by this weekend because I am planning a trip to Nashville with the children next weekend (Labor Day). I surely don’t want to be thinking about schoolwork next weekend!

The final period in Comps Q4 paper

Sunday, August 29th, 2010

After working most of the day on Comps Q4, “Ethical Considerations,” I added the final period to the last page just a few minutes ago. My desk is littered with journal articles and my eyes are bloodshot!

I worked on the four Comps questions as individual papers so that I could use StyleEase software for references. Tomorrow I will review all four Comps answers and consolidate them into one paper.

I just looked at the time…and it’s actually tomorrow already (12:16 AM). So I will take a nap and then get up in the morning and pull the paper together. My goal is to turn in my Comps paper tomorrow!

Day 22: 3/4 completed

Sunday, August 22nd, 2010

I finished up comps question #2 today. This question involved comparing qualitative and quantitative methodologies. The most difficult part of the question involved identifying ways in which a researcher would note that his selected methodology was incorrect. I found almost no references regarding that part of the question. I believe I answered it by using statements I found about how research is supposed to turn out, and turning those statements around. For example, I discussed inconsistencies between data collected and the problem statement. I think I worked about 30 hours on that question.

I have one more comps question to work on; this last one is about ethics. It involves perceptions about the fair and ethical treatment of employees. The question mentions the “concept of the fairness heuristic” as it is used as a “gauge of the potential success or failure of a corporate ethics program”…something I know absolutely nothing about! So it looks like most of this week will involve work to ground myself on the topic.

We actually went on a mini-date today. There is a new winery just down the road and we went for a tasting. Of course the wine was good but the best part was talking to the owners about their winery and the wines. For supper we enjoyed the homemade fresh tomato spaghetti sauce I made yesterday.

I have a busy week this week and so it’s pretty unlikely that I can devote a lot of time to writing. My plan is to work on collecting research so that I can complete the final comps question next weekend. Wish me luck!

Comps Q3 in process

Sunday, August 8th, 2010

I skipped Q2 and began work on Q3 right after finishing Q1. The Q3 scenario put me as a consultant to a firm in the service industry that needed to implement a quality program. It took a while to research quality programs and start the paper. I am almost finished – I just have to do the intro and conclusion.

I usually write a skeleton intro and then work on the paper, then come back and re-do the intro and conclusion. I find that this pulls my paper together. If I write a heavy intro first, I find that my papers are stiff and narrow. It also takes me forever to get going on the meat of the paper!

My brain is tired tonight from working hour after hour on these papers. I feel pretty good about my time schedule right now. It’s day 8 of 49 and I have one question finished and another almost complete. My plan is to finish Q3 within a few days (after work) and then start research on question 2. I will start writing Q2 (which is about quantitative and qualitative research) beginning next weekend.

Comps Q1 done, 3 more to go

Friday, August 6th, 2010

Today I finished my comps question #1 today, which was involved applying management theory to a scenario. The question was phrased to put “me” in as CEO of a company. However, I took a third-person instead of first-person approach to format the paper APA and academic style. My paper has 13 pages of text.

Some colleagues have told me that their mentors allow them to turn in their comp exam question by question, but my mentor says to turn in the complete paper (all four answers). I have 49 days to turn in the whole assignment and this is day 6, and the second of two vacation days dedicated to comps.

I am very happy that I have 25% of my comps exam completed!! YIPPEE!! I just celebrated by watching about 10 minutes of TV…yes, my friends, those of us in grad school can’t find time for TV. The final scenes of Max Payne starting Mark Wahlberg were on. I love the dark photography and stunts in that movie which is based on a graphic novel.

I am filing all the documents/journal articles I printed to answer the first question. I plan to work on question 3 next in which I am to assume the role of a quality management consultant and recommend a QM program to a heavy equipment company. I will start looking for journal articles and reading them today, and hopefully, begin writing tomorrow.

Comps begins today

Sunday, August 1st, 2010

The race is on…..the class starts today and I received my four Comps questions!!!!

Questions focus on a specific area:

– Theoretical and conceptual knowledge.
– Research methods and critique.
– Professional application.
– Ethical considerations.

The questions are supposed to related to my content area, management. However, I am only familiar with one of the four subjects addressed – the question about quantitative and qualitative research methods. There is a definite theme of information technology (IT) in two of the other questions, and the remaining question is about quality management (note: I have never had a course on QM). The first question imagines me as a CEO of a chip manufacturer, the third question assumes I am a quality management professional, and the fourth question dealing with ethics involves an IT department.

Each question has a reference included, and the most recent reference is dated 2005! That is 5 YEARS ago! I hope I can find more recent information regarding these topics…So it looks like I will be doing quite a bit of research to answer the questions. I had hoped (and had been led to believe) that the comps questions would be related to my coursework, but that is not the case!

Each question is to be addressed with an essay of 10-15 pages not including cover, question, or reference pages. I have to receive at least an evaluation of 80% on each of the questions. If I do not receive the minimum, I am allowed a rewrite. I will be graded on how well I address the topic, synthesize the research, and use it to support my ideas and interpretation of the answers. I have 49 days to complete all four essays. Yikes!

Today I began work on the first question that puts me as a decision maker for a chip manufacturer who must develop a new product. It involves understanding a particular theory that I have never heard of – so I am digging in the library for information.