Introducing the Psychology Doc Drop In: Help for Completing Your Dissertation
By Guest Blogger, Lisa Faille, PhD
Assistant Professor, College of Psychology and Behavioral Sciences
Dissertation research can sometimes seem like a daunting task even among our highly motivated doctoral students. So, how do we ease the concerns of students about the dissertation process? Enter the Doc Drop In—an informal, monthly meeting for doctoral students to address research questions and obtain key information on the dissertation process.
The Purpose of the Doc Drop In
Earning your doctoral degree is a prestigious accomplishment, and, according to data provided by the U.S. Census, only around 3% of adults hold a doctoral degree. Getting this doctoral degree, however, takes both time and dedication, and the dissertation component is probably the most rigorous part of a doctoral program. Even before beginning one of our programs, many students have apprehension about writing a dissertation. The Doc Drop In was born out of a need to inform doctoral students on how to complete a dissertation and what to expect as they do so, while also calming any anxieties along the way.
What You'll Learn When You Attend
The premise for the Doc Drop In is simple: the best way to learn is by exposure. Much of the dissertation process is counterintuitive, which means that dissertations can’t be written on instinct. Learning what to do and not do is essential. At the Doc Drop In, students hear about other doctoral students’ successes as well as the roadblocks they’ve encountered, while the faculty hosts also readily share their own dissertation experiences.
Each Doc Drop In focuses on a different topic, so that every stage of the dissertation process is discussed, including choosing a topic, writing a literature review, understanding research methodology and obtaining approval from the Internal Review Board (IRB). Around 15-20 students typically attend the monthly sessions, and feedback from them has been overwhelmingly positive.
The Doc Drop In is held on the second Tuesday of each month throughout the year, and it is open to all Counseling Psychology and Pastoral Community Counseling doctoral students. Students at all stages of the dissertation processor as well as students who have not yet begun the dissertation are encouraged to attend!