Giant Leaps - Symposium on Electronic Theses and Dissertations: Program

TimeRoomSession
8:30 - 9:00WALC 1121Registration and coffee
9:00 - 9:15WALC 1132Welcome & Overview
9:15 - 10:15 WALC 1132ETD Plus: When Non-traditional is the New Normal, What's the Norm for ETD Programs? - Opening keynote
Martin Halbert

The 2014-2017 ETDplus project brought together a diverse range of national stakeholders in the ETD curation process (professors, libraries, and service providers) to improve ETD policies and practices around research data and complex digital object management. The project research pivoted on the question “How will institutions ensure the longevity and availability of ETD research data and complex digital objects (e.g., software, multimedia files) that comprise an integral component of student theses and dissertations?” The research conducted in the course of the project revealed many emerging trends regarding ETDs, illuminating a significantly changed landscape of ETD curation needs in the 21st century. This presentation will review project findings and discuss future directions for ETD programs.

10:15 - 10:45WALC 1132Purdue Graduate School Thesis and Dissertation Policy Changes: Giant Leaps Forward
James Mohler & Ashlee Messersmith

Inspired by the University of Iowa’s Beyond the PDF event last year, the Purdue Graduate School evaluated their policies pertaining to theses and dissertations. The evaluation concluded last summer and found that existing policies were unclear regarding acceptable types of theses, in particular, requiring submission in the PDF format. As students continue to utilize emerging technologies and publish journal articles to supplement their research, policies were rewritten to include non-traditional formats and types of theses. The challenges, motivations, and inspirations for the new policies will be shared as well as early indications of their impacts.

10:45 - 11:00WALC 1121Coffee break
11:00 - 11:30WALC 1132The Landscape of Modern Theses
Matthew Hannah

Central to current debates about the future of graduate education are calls for models of scholarship attendant to new labor markets. These debates will be contextualized with the argument that we must innovate traditional modes of scholarly engagement in an effort to supply graduate students with important skills for the 21st-century workplace. The topography of current developments in alternative theses and dissertations will be mapped, providing an overview of contemporary models for graduate education with an eye toward future possibilities for higher education.

11:30 - 12:00WALC 1132Beyond the PDF
Heidi Arbisi-Kelm

It started with a question: how would we collect a museum exhibit, a blog, or a borne-digital dissertation? Three years later, the University of Iowa Graduate College and University Libraries collaborated to organize a regional meeting on the future of the dissertation and applied lessons from three fine arts, non-monograph, thesis pilots to ingest our first borne-digital dissertation. Insights will be shared from these experiences as well as advancements in our thesis and dissertation policies and practices.

12:00 - 1:00WALC 1121Lunch
1:00 - 2:00WALC1132Panel: Challenges and Culture

2:30 - 3:00WALC 1132Guiding Graduate Students in Data Management in Practice
Michael Witt

The Purdue University Research Repository service takes a lifecycle approach to help university researchers plan and implement effective data management plans, share and manage their data with collaborators while the research is taking place, publish their data in a scholarly context, archive data for the long-term, and measure the impact of sharing their data. New functionality, instruction, and outreach have been done in the last year to adapt the service to better support the needs of graduate students and the data that support their theses and dissertations. A description of the service, its workflows, and supporting materials will be shared to promote discussion about research data management in the context of ETDs.

2:00 - 2:30WALC 1132Collaboration & Innovation: Preserving Complex Digital Objects
Carly Dearborn

Purdue University Libraries and School of Information Studies, like many other libraries and archives, collects, preserves, and provides access to dissertations as original works of student scholarship in conjunction with degrees awarded by the University. The processes of collecting and preserving student scholarship becomes difficult as new ETD models and formats force existing workflows and platforms to adapt. This talk will identify emerging preservation and long-term access challenges associated with new forms of scholarship and will borrow from the digital preservation field to identify innovative and collaborative approaches for addressing these challenges.

3:00 - 3:15WALC 1121Coffee break
3:15 - 3:45WALC 1132Lightning talks: Examples of Non-traditional Theses and Dissertations from a Variety of Disciplines

  • English - Erika Findley & Kim Fleshman, Bowling Green State University
  • Chemistry - David Zwicky, Purdue University
  • English - Daniel Johnson, University of Notre Dame
  • Geographic Information Systems - Nicole Kong, Purdue University
  • Engineering - Austin McLean, ProQuest
  • Visual Arts - Jere Odell, IUPUI
3:45 - 4:30WALC 1132The Doctoral Dissertation: Observations, Perspectives, Protean Nature? - Closing keynote
Jean-Pierre Hérubel

Dissertations represent different doctoral cultures as well as artifacts of research achievement. Beyond general contours identifiable as contribution to knowledge, the dissertation is as much symbol as acculturation within disciplinary cultures. Each dissertation represents training, discovery, unique contribution, as well as the acculturative properties inherent to the dissertation’s liminal process and raison d'être. This exploratory presentation challenges us to consider what the dissertation is and how it may vary in purpose and form.