Below is a Q & A with our very own Writing Advisor, Jeff McMahon. Read below for advice on writing, particularly the final papers everyone is facing right now. Both Matt and I met with Jeff last year and benefited from his advice and the opportunity to talk through our own writing blockage.
Exactly a year ago, I went into Jeff’s office for help with a 20 page paper on 3 different objects and left about 30 minutes later, tired but optimistic, with 1 cohesive argument. Remember, too, that you can meet with Jeff to discuss papers, the thesis, and principles of argument throughout the year.
Winter is here. Ned Stark warned us and now that it has arrived, we must face the cold, cold truth.
Although the Chicago winter is tough, it doesn’t have to be entirely horrible. Below I have compiled Maph Central’s V.I.I. (Very Important Items) for the winter as well as some more general tips for the cold weather. Chicagoans, feel free to post additional advice in the comments!
We will all become The Winter Soldier
Very Important Items:
Sarah: Scarves! “In Chicago it’s not the actual temperature that gets you, but the wind-chill. A scarf makes all the difference.”
Maren: Fleece-lined tights (or fleece-lined anything) and Glogg Winter Drink.
Kerri: Puffy Jacket. It may not look as cool as your wool peacoat, but it is time to embrace the sleeping-bag look. Continue reading
You may be solely focused on completing your finals right now. That is fine and, in that case, feel free to return to this post in the future.
However, if you are also starting to think about the thesis, read on!
Late November feels like a weird time, or at least it did for me last year. Mostly because we’re encouraged to think about the thesis, but without taking any action. Meaning, I was told to think about potential advisors, but not to approach them. Or to think about my object, but not to write about it yet. All of this felt somewhat confusing and frustrating… but it was all excellent advice. Continue reading
Eat, Sleep, Read is a three-part series on wellness in grad school. MAPH is a challenging year in a lot of ways, but you can make it way easier physically, mentally, and emotionally by taking care of yourself and managing your workload. For Part III, we’ll cover some academic tips that might help you manage your workload and deal with school-related stressors.
Obviously, one of the biggest stressors in grad school is the workload. In fact, it’s probably the biggest stressor. Getting enough sleep, exercising regularly, eating well—all these important aspects of wellness become difficult to maintain because there’s constantly so much to get done. So we’ve come to the last (and perhaps most important) post of this wellness series: how to manage your academic workload and find some balance in grad school!
Eat, Sleep, Read is a three-part series on wellness in grad school. MAPH is a challenging year in a lot of ways, but you can make it way easier physically, mentally, and emotionally by taking care of yourself and managing your workload. For Part II, we’ll cover some tips that may help you get better, more restful sleep during your time in MAPH.
“Methought I heard a voice cry ‘Sleep no more!” – Grad Students (or Shakespeare, I guess)
Sleep and grad school don’t always mix well. Between classes, writing, reading, and other demands, there aren’t enough hours in the day, and it will inevitably seem like there aren’t enough hours to get a full night’s sleep. But keeping a regular, healthy sleep schedule in grad school will make you so, so much happier. As someone who pulled all-nighters all through undergrad, I can attest that the best life change I implemented during my MAPH year was committing to being better about sleep (I only pulled one all-nighter during MAPH, by accident—long story). Below find some tips that might help you get more restful sleep on a more regular basis!
Dear MAPHers: below, you will find a guest post from Bill Hutchison (MAPH ’12, Mentor ’13), who is a current PhD in the English Department and an avid patron of the UChicago library system. We’re happy to present this MAPHtastic classic, as it is full of sage wisdom about how to navigate the vast troves of knowledge in the Reg, Mansueto, and beyond. Enjoy!
“Libraries raised me.”
The UChicago library system is—as it should be—a labyrinthine construct with countless treasures, secrets, and codes. Discovering what it holds and how to access it can be one of the great pleasures of graduate school. If you, like me, take tremendous joy from learning how to wield your library to your own wild, intellectual ends, take note: herein I will share with you some of my discoveries. Continue reading
Eat, Sleep, Read is a three-part series on wellness in grad school. MAPH is a challenging year in a lot of ways, but you can make it easier physically, mentally, and emotionally by taking care of yourself and managing your workload. For Part I, we’ll look at the best ways to eat well during grad school.
Eating well in grad school can be tough. It often seems like there aren’t enough hours in the day to plan out, cook, and actually eat a balanced diet. But even some small efforts in this area of your life can pay huge dividends when it comes to keeping you happy and energized throughout the year. Here are a few tips on how to fit a healthy, frugal diet into your life:
Colloquium went by so quickly. I blinked, it passed, and now all I have is a series of blurred images containing bagels, farmer’s markets, and power point presentations.
Fair warning- this quarter will pass by just as quickly. The quarter is only ten weeks, which is kind of terrifying when you look at a syllabus. But Fall Quarter also provides an established schedule and, mostly importantly, we get to enjoy free food and drink at social hour every Friday!
Most of you have probably registered for classes by now- congrats! Please keep stopping by and telling us what classes you’re taking and how you like them! It is always fun to hear about new courses, different departments, and overall life at U of C.
Before the Fall Quarter officially begins next Monday, here are a couple of things to keep in mind:
*Volunteer Referral: Fall is a great time to start volunteering. Although this quarter sees you adjusting to UChicago and life as a graduate student, this quarter also has a lighter course load than the Winter (and better weather).
Get in touch with the University of Chicago Service Center to set up an appointment- it is low key and low stakes. They will talk with you about your interests and then recommend service partners for you. Don’t miss on the opportunity to leave the ivory tower and get to know a different side of Chicago.