Sunday, January 22, 2017

FAO CAA Yr 3: Friday's Dissertation Hand-In / Some Reminders

Friday 27th January is your Dissertation Hand-in.  More usually, this auspicious moment in a third year's life would find me posted outside the Campus Registry office in readiness to welcome you and clap you on your backs in congratulation.  Past years have also seen me dashing after latecomers and dragging them into the office before the deadline expires!  

This year, I'm away in Poland, so won't be there to ensure you've all hand-in in okay and everything is fine and dandy.  For this reason, I'm offering up these reminders in terms of your submission so no one does the wrong thing, or self-sabotages, or simply underestimates the seriousness of the deadline.

  • FRIDAY 27th JANUARY 2017
  • 4pm – 5pm to the Campus Registry, Ground floor

Campus Registry will not accept your submission at 1 minute past 5pm.  They're not allowed and they will not do it, and it doesn't matter how much you plead or cry.  There will be nothing that I or anyone else can do if you submit late.  Campus Registry have to be meticulous about hand-ins to ensure parity of practice across all of UCA.  If you miss the 4 - 5pm deadline, it's a non-submission and that is the end of it.  Short version: DON'T RISK IT; get your dissertations submitted before 5pm.  You can always submit earlier than 4pm.  This is what I would try and do - submit for 4pm or earlier.

  • You're submitting 2 printed copies to Campus Registry
  • Your printed copies must be paginated (have page numbers!).
  • Your printed copied must be bound.

You purchase the binding mechanism in the UCA Shop (there's a range of types) and there are binding machines in the library.  Do not leave binding your dissertation to the last minute, as there are a number of ways this process can cause you last-minute grief - queues of students trying to do the same thing, and binding mistakes requiring reprints of your dissertation.  There are simpler binding options - those involving a simple gripping binder not requiring perforation of your pages - but be aware this binding isn't ultimately as secure.  Whatever your choice, do not hand-in unbound piles of paper - your dissertation may not be accepted.

You shouldn't be binding your dissertation in the 4 - 5pm submission window.  This is high-risk behaviour because it dials up the probability of something administrative or practical going wrong and costing you time.  Remember - Campus Registry will NOT accept your dissertation even one minute after 5pm. 

  • You need to submit your dissertation through Turnitin.
  • You need to add your Turnitin ID number to the assessment cover sheet.
  • An assessment cover sheet must accompany both printed dissertations (i.e. you need to complete 2!).
  • The assessment cover sheet is on myUCA/Dissertation.

There are a few house-keeping 'must haves' too in terms of the presentation of your written documents:

  • Dissertation should be 1.5 or double-spaced.
  • Text should be justified.
  • Font should be sized at 12pt.
  • Dissertation must include a title page and a contents page.
  • Dissertation must include bibliography and illustration list.
  • Dissertation to be printed as single-sided pages.
  • Any images should be at high-quality resolution and in colour where necessary.

And finally... I know you're all frazzled, but just keep going.  In a week's time it will be done and dusted.  Remember to save your work often and keep your structures in mind.  Keep asking yourself if your chapters are delivering what they need to in order for the reader to follow your line of argument effortlessly and feel confident that you know what you're doing and where you're taking them.  Remember too it is quite normal - even preferable - to (re)write your introduction at the very end of this process if you need to re-focus it to reflect more accurately what you've written or what you've ultimately concluded.

I don't want to see anyone tomorrow for third year major project tutorials. You should be working on your dissertations. I'm not expecting to see any one anyway, but some of you turn up because you think you have to... You don't.  Just get this done and get this done right.  Also, we won't be releasing minor project feedback until after you've handed in your dissertation and enjoyed a restful and restorative weekend, so put all of that out of your minds too.   Just focus on the task in hand and get it done to the very best of your ability.  Good luck - and go channel your inner-Mulan - everyone sing-a-long now!

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