Out With The Old; In With the New

>> Monday, May 3, 2010

So ... my dissertation.

My original plan was to focus on the use of fiction in therapeutic recreation programs for children & youth with emotional & behavioural challenges. I am still working on that project - but on my own, rather than as my dissertation topic. Doing it AS a dissertation - particularly within a Canadian Studies PhD - was meaning that I had to modify what I wanted to do to make it fit. What I WANT to do is to write a textbook for Child & Youth Workers ... not an academic dissertation.

So, when a new topic that fits better into the Canadian Studies area - and that still uses my specific batch of skills (Child & Youth Work, Computer Programming & English - public texts) - caught my attention, I began to think about changing.

I did a 30 page research paper based on the new topic and felt that - even though it is a good paper, and I did well on it - I had barely scratched the surface. There are still so many questions I want to address. It took a while before I was ready to commit to the change - in part because I really really like the advisor I was going to be working with on the first one, and will have to find a new advisor for the second. But I got there.

So now, I will be spending the next 3 years working on issues of surveillance in Canadian prisons - especially, for the most part, on facilities for women, although I am planning, at this point, to do a chapter about issues of surveillance and male prisoners, as well.

I became interested as a result of the case of Ashley Smith - and that is where I am starting. Stay tuned....


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