Category Archives: Notes

Formatting 101: New Summer Seminar Series

Students preparing a dissertation, thesis, or report are invited to a new seminar series this summer designed to answer the questions we most commonly see in the Graduate School.  Faculty and staff who assist students are also welcome to attend.  The general format will be a 30 minute presentation with time for your questions.

Our first seminar will be “Formatting 101: Using the Guide and Template.”  We’ll discuss how you can use the Guide to find the formatting rules, and the template for signature/approval pages.  Additional details:

  • Date: May 24, 2017
  • Time: 2:30 – 3:25pm
  • Place: Fisher 138 or live stream

Please register to attend on campus or to view the live stream so that we can plan for your attendance.  Individuals who register for the live stream will receive log in information three hours before the event.

Dates and topics for the remaining two seminars in the series will be announced soon.  All materials (including video when available) from all Graduate School seminars are archived online.


Are You Cited? Find Out With Library’s New Citation Searching Guide

The Van Pelt and Opie Library is pleased to offer a new guide to citation searching, which can be found online. This guide, created specifically for faculty and graduate students at Michigan Tech, contains helpful information for researchers in all academic disciplines.

Save yourself hours of searching time by using the guide to learn how to:

  • Determine if and where your publications have been cited
  • Discover works related to other authors, articles, or topics
  • Assess the relative quality or merit of a publication

If you have a suggestion for a database or other resource that should be added to the guide, please send an e-mail to reflib@mtu.edu or submit your suggestion using the link on the front page of the guide.


Evan Anderson represents Michigan Tech in Distinguished Thesis Competition

Evan Anderson, Michigan Tech’s MAGS nominee
The Graduate School is pleased to announce that Evan Anderson is Michigan Tech’s nominee for the Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools Distinguished Thesis Award.  Mr. Anderson was nominated by his advisor, Dr. Blair Orr of the School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science.  His thesis, “The Impact of Balsamo (Myroxylon Balsamum L. Harms) on Coffee Yield and Household Income in El Balsamar, El Salvador,” investigated sustainable coffee production in El Balsamar.  His work was conducted during his time as a Peace Corps Volunteer, and was developed in response to local community needs.  The thesis integrated the biological, social, and economic role of the tree in the community.  Evan is currently an urban forester with Davey Tree in San Francisco, California.

Three other graduate students were also nominated for consideration.  Jean DeClerck was nominated by her advisors, Dr. M. Ann Brady and Dr. Wendy Anderson of Humanities, and committee member Dr. Victoria Bergvall of Humanities.  Nathan Kelley-Hoskins was nominated by his advisor, Dr. Petra Hüntemeyer of Physics.  Andrew Orthober was nominated by his advisor, Dr. Carol MacLennan of Social Sciences.  All of the nominations were noteworthy for their scholarship, and the evaluation panel had a difficult task in selecting one nominee to represent Michigan Tech.

The Dean’s Advisory Panel, representing each college or school at Michigan Tech, evaluated the nominees.  The faculty on this panel represent a broad range of graduate programs:  J. Gierke (Department of Geological and Mining Engineering and Sciences), S. Martin (Social Sciences), D. Flaspohler (School of Forestry Resources & Environmental Science), X. Wang (School of Technology) and G. Campbell (School of Business and Economics).  Next year’s competition will consider applicants who have completed their degrees between October 1, 2012 and September 30, 2013.  An application consists of an abstract of the thesis, recommendation letter from the advisor, and an electronic copy of the thesis.  Please consider nominating your master’s students next year.


Fair use in academia

Students who wish to use copyrighted materials in a thesis or dissertation must show that they have the ability to republish those materials.  One argument students can use is that their use is “fair use.”  This provision of US Copyright allows the reuse of materials if certain conditions are met.  Students sometimes think that all educational use of materials is fair use, but a recent court case illustrates that this is not true.

In order to use copyrighted materials in a thesis or dissertation, there are three simple steps:

  1. Determine if permission is needed to republish copyrighted materials
  2. Obtain permission for copyrighted materials (if necessary)
  3. Document the ability to republish copyrighted materials.

The Graduate School has helpful resources online, including a seminar from our copyright librarian.  Check them out!


How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Dissertation

This article from Inside Higher Ed’s blog will show you how to love your dissertation (or thesis). Writing can be an overwhelming task, and everyone can use tips on how to manage the writing process and motivate yourself to do just a little bit every day. These tips also apply to any large-scale project, like writing a proposal or journal article.

One of the pieces of advice that we often give students is that the best dissertation is a finished dissertation. Focus on completing your degree and starting the next stage in your career rather than seeking perfection.


The Adviser and Committee

This article from the Chronicle raises some interesting questions about how advisors and committee members can work together to help a student write a dissertation.

  • How often should the committee meet?
  • What type of advice should they give a student?
  • What happens if there is an impasse?

Although written for advisors, students will learn from this overview of different models. The article talks about all fields and the differences between them as well.

Note: A subscription to the Chronicle is required to read the full text of this article. Michigan Tech students, faculty, and staff will have access to the articles if they are logged into the Michigan Tech network.


Seminar: Submitting your Thesis or Dissertation to the Graduate School

Students planning on finishing a thesis or dissertation fall 2011 or spring 2012 are invited a seminar designed to help students understand the submission process and answer questions about it.

Once you register, you will receive a confirmation with the location and a reminder of the date and time.

If you are unable to join us, a taped version of this seminar is available online from our May 19th presentation.

Students who are interested in learning more about the formatting requirements and resources available to assist them should visit our formatting web page and refer to our January 27 seminar.


Thesis and Dissertation Seminars Scheduled

The Graduate School is pleased to announce two seminars to assist students with submitting and formatting their thesis or dissertation.

Submitting a thesis or dissertation

Students planning on finishing a thesis or dissertation spring or summer 2011 are invited a seminar designed to help students understand the submission process and answer questions about it.

Once you register, you will receive a confirmation with the location and a reminder of the date and time.

If you are unable to join us, a taped version of this seminar is available online from our May 18th presentation.

Formatting a thesis or dissertation

Beginning with defenses scheduled January 10, 2011 or later, new formatting requirements are in effect for theses and dissertations.  Students, faculty, and staff are invited to learn the highlights of these new requirements and have an opportunity to ask questions about the new requirements.

Once you register, you will receive a confirmation with the location and a reminder of the date and time.  Space is limited, so register early.

If you are unable to join us, this seminar will be taped and made available for viewing online.


Andrew Willemsen to represent Michigan Tech in MAGS competition

Andrew Willemsen
Andrew Willemsen, Michigan Tech’s representative for the 2011 MAGS Distinguished Thesis Award
The Graduate School is pleased to announce that Andrew Willemsen is Michigan Tech’s nominee for the 2011 Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools Distinguished Thesis Award.  Mr. Willemsen was nominated by his advisor, Dr. M. Rao of the Department of Mechanical Engineering – Engineering Mechanics.

His thesis, “Objective Metric for Assessing the Perceived Annoyance of Impulsive Sounds” developed a new method to objectively quantify the overall sound quality of electro-mechanical devices.  This method could improve the design process for these devices by replacing current subjective sound evaluation methods, which are typically expensive, time-consuming, and difficult to quantify.

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Mark Rowe to represent Michigan Tech for the 2010 Distinguished Dissertation Competition

Mark Rowe will represent Michigan Tech in the 2010 CGS/University Microfilms International Distinguished Dissertation competition.
Mark Rowe will represent Michigan Tech in the 2010 CGS/University Microfilms International Distinguished Dissertation competition.
The Graduate School is pleased to announce that Mark Rowe is Michigan Tech’s nominee for the 2010 CGS/University Microfilms International Distinguished Dissertation Award in the Mathematics, Physical Sciences and Engineering division. Dr. Rowe was advised by Dr. Judith Perlinger, and was awarded a PhD in Environmental Engineering in 2009.

His dissertation, “Development of Measurement and Modeling Techniques to Quantify Atmospheric Deposition of Persistent, Bioaccumulative and Toxic Chemicals in the Great Lakes” developed an improved method, analysis technique, and model, for measuring the concentrations of persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic compounds in the atmosphere.  These compounds impact the health of our ecosystem, and the safety of our food supply. Accurate measurements of these compounds in the atmosphere could yield better solutions to improve the environment.  The measurement technology developed by Rowe and Perlinger is currently under consideration for patenting, with the potential for commercialization.  Dr. Rowe is currently employed as a post-doctoral fellow for the United States Environmental Protection Agency, and is based in lower Michigan.

Mark Griep was selected as a finalist in the competition.  Dr. Griep was advised by Dr. Craig Friedrich and was awarded a PhD in Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics in 2009.  His interdisciplinary research examined the properties of quantam dots coupled with an optical protein with potential uses as a biosensor in medical applications.  Dr. Griep is currently continuing his research as an Associate Fellow at the US Army Research Laboratory.

The committee to evaluate the nominees consisted of graduate faculty representing a broad range of graduate programs:  M. Neuman (Biomedical Engineering), S. Martin (Social Sciences), R. Froese (School of Forestry Resources & Environmental Science), X. Wang (School of Technology) and G. Campbell (School of Business and Economics).  The next competition for Mathematics, Physical Sciences and Engineering or Social Sciences will occur in 2012 and will consider applicants who have completed their degrees between July 1, 2010 to June 30, 2012.  In 2011, the competition will accept nominations from candidates who completed their dissertations between July 1, 2009 to June 30, 2011 in the fields of biological sciences or humanities and fine arts.  Please consider nominating your PhD graduates next year.