March 29th, 2006

Fishy Circumstances

Data Maintenance/Joys of Graduate School

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I am delighted that a fair handful of you have very positive graduate school experiences. One of the best things to which blogs* opened my eyes over the past several years was the pervasiveness of graduate student discontent, the flaws and merits of academia, and how it's a very good thing to leave a graduate program which is hurting more than helping. While I was very glad to have read all those posts and discussions along the way, I was beginning to feel as if all the real positives I was hearing about graduate school were coming from public relations efforts, not once-or-current students themselves.

My pool of data is very small, but more of you found glad satisfacton in MAs than in PhDs. I suspect** part of that is because regular coursework allows for greater contact and discussion with colleagues, a chance to have a fairly immersive intellectually-stimulating environment in which to work. PhDs are usually more isolating, although it's also a time when many students try out a different kind of social activity: teaching.

Personally, I've been content with graduate school. I've learned a great deal and gained all sorts of good friends and colleagues whom I look forward to seeing again at our annual reunions academic conferences and while travelling. I've written a book-length manuscript (!) and I've become an independent scholar in the process. I'm still working on my time management skills, but I'd like to think they're better than they used to be.

As for "best days" - I'm not one for labeling my past in that way, for I've yet to discover what excitement and wonderfulness the future holds.

* Especially the much-missed Invisible Adjunct and also Caveat Lector (yarinareth2).
** Actually, this observation partially came from my father, responding to yesterday's comment thread.
Fishy Circumstances

Going with the Trustflow (meme-ish)

Trustflow lists LJers not on ones friendslist for whom the highest percentage of people on ones f'list appears.

Of the people on this list, six of them are LJs that I browse regularly, eleven I've met in person, and approximately twenty-five are ones whose LJs I can place (i.e. where I've seen them commenting, how they're connected) even if we don't otherwise have much to do with each other. (Those numbers have partial overlap.)

This toy is another interesting way to use LJ as a way of tracking interconnecting acquaintanceship circles.

From all over the place...

TrustFlow II for LiveJournal. The following people not on the friends list for owlfish are "close by": Collapse )