Thesis Research


SPRING SEMESTER 2017  Thesis Research Dates and Times




The first Spring term class marks the MIDTERM for Thesis Research Yearlong Seminar

Wednesday February 22                                                                                                          

Joint Group Seminars    1-4 pm  

Semester Overview                                                                                                                                             

Critical Investigations and Thesis Research Dates                                                                                                                                

Mark Moscone Director of Galleries and the MA Thesis Show                                        

Connor Phillips Thesis Summary

Wednesday March 1      6:30-9:30 pm

Small Group Updates 

Come only to your group time.

6:30 to 7:45                       Farrah, Rachel Dean, Colleen, Dandi

8:00 to 9:15                       Charity, Juri, Chenge, Cathy

Wednesday March 8     6:30-9:30 pm

 Small Group Updates    Come only to your group time

6:30 to 7:45                      Adeline, Stephanie, Rachel, Mudita, Regina

8:00 to 9:15                      Chaitra, Sarah, Zoe, Wenjing


Wednesday, March 22  6:30-9:30 pm

Individual Meetings/Readings (you may switch times if needed)

corrected times:

5:30 Juri
6:00 Cathy
6:30 Chaitra
7:00 Colleen
7:30 Regina
8:00 Charity
8:30 Dandi
9:00 Chenge



Wednesday, April 5 

Joint Group Seminars    1 – 4 pm

Chapter Briefs                                                                                                                                                            

5-minute individual presentations.

Have computer loaded/prepared before class with pdf or ppt.

Present a succinct survey of thesis chapters


Wednesday April 12    6:30-9:30 pm

Individual Meetings/Readings (you may switch times if needed)

6:10 Rachel Deane
6:30 Adeline
6:50 Stephanie
7:10 Rachel Dranoff
7:30 Mudita
7:50 Farah
8:10 Sarah
8:30 Zoe
8:50 Wenjing

Please feel free to send me any chapters to read ahead of time or at any point for my comments.  Please include a Table of Contents so with any reading.

 I am available Wednesdays between 11 and 12 or Thursdays from 12 to 1 for appointments in my office.


see schedule and syllabus


Wednesday May 3

Ready to print to allow two weeks for publishing.

Wednesday May 17

Joint Group Seminars   1-6pm

Thesis Summations and Signings                                                                                                          

15-minute individual presentations

Have computer loaded/prepared before class with pdf or ppt.

Focus around the conclusions and recommendations evolving from your progressive research.

Friday May 19

Joint Seminars

No Group or Individual Meetings

Signed TLAD MA Theses delivered to Fleet Library By Graduate Director/Departmnet Head









Recap of Assessment Criteria

The Thesis Committee is looking for the following characteristics in a candidate’s thesis:

  • Evidence of thoroughness of research
  • Evidence of ability to structure thoughts.
  • Evidence of an investigation that examines multiple sources – – from the fields of art, art education, education, and related disciplines.
  • Evidence of insightful interpretations.
  • Evidence that discussion and writing transcends unsubstantiated personal opinions.
  • Evidence of a comprehensive grasp of the significant issues in current visual arts education.
  • Evidence of risk taking.

(Paul, R., & Elder, L., 2007, p.20) in the book “The miniature guide to critical thinking concepts and tools” provide a very valuable template with which to analyze and assess the quality of a research project or paper. The authors’ identify the following characteristics of effective research, which MAs are encouraged to consider as their own work develops:

  1. All research has a fundamental purpose and goal.
  1. All research addresses a fundamental question, problem, or issue.
  1. All research identifies data, information, and evidence relevant to its fundamental question and purpose.
  1. All research contains inferences or interpretations by which conclusions are drawn.
  1. All research is conducted from some point of view or frame of reference.
  1. All research is based on assumptions.
  1. All research is expressed through, and shaped by concepts and ideas.
  2. All research leads to somewhere i.e. has implications and consequences.




2016 Schedule, Plan and Due Dates


2016 Thesis Research Seminar Syllabus


Memoir Assignment



Past Memoirs, Annotated Bibliographies, Questions + Proposals

Jillian Friedman

Jillian Suzanne Memoir

Jillian Suzanne Annotated Bibliography

John Chamberlain

Jonathan Chamberlain Memoir

Elisabeth Stace

Liza Stace Memoir

Erin Poindexter

Erin Pointdexter Annotated Bibliography

Erin Pointdexter Memoir


Thesis Research  Presentations Wed. November 2

Wednesday November 2 is the mid-term Memoir Presentations for your joint seminars. Please summarize your 10-page art and design education memoir paper in visuals, powerpoint, and text. Carry it into current interests/topics and three preliminary questions you will be investigating forward to declare  a Thesis Research Proposal (Proposal Presentation Wed. Dec 7th, PDF due Wed. Dec. 14th.)

Please do not present a full thesis proposal at the November 2 presentation as we are doing an annotated bibliography next which will alert you to new ideas in forming a first draft proposal by the Dec. 7 presentation date. I will hand out the annotated bibliography and proposal assignment on Nov 2.

You  have read  Kathe Kollwitz’s memoir excerpt and the Craft of Research pages moving  interests to questions to topics before your Wed. November 2 presentation also. Please email and/or post your memoir in pdf format by Wed. Nov. 9th.

Presentation Schedule (we will switch the order for the final Proposal Presentation.)

Wednesday November 2,  1-7:00 pm 10 minutes each with 5 min follow-up Observations and Suggestions.

1:15 to 1:30 Adeline

1:30 to 1:45 Catherine

1:45 to 2:00 Chaitra

2:00 to 2:15 Charity

2:15 to 2:30 Break

2:30 to 2:45 Chenge

2;45 to 3;00 Colleen

3:00 to 3:15 Connor

3:15 to 3:30 Dandi

3:30 to 3:45 Farah

4:00 to 4:30 pm Break

4:30 to 4:45 Juri

4:45 to 5:00 Mudita

5:00 to 5:15 Rachel Deane

5:15 to 5:30 Rachel Dranoff

5:30 to 5:45 Regina

5:45 to 6:00 Break

6:00 to 6:15 Sarah

6:15 to 6:30 Stephanie

6:30 to 6:45 Wenjing

6:45 to 7:00 Zoe

Be sure to prepare ahead of time for your presentation….with technology and timing. Please be familiar with the presentation projector and connection in the classroom ahead of time. Make sure you have the connector you need if a PC.

The setting for your presentation of the memoir will be a group seminar setting. Each student will have a total of fifteen minutes to present and receive feedback. There will be a five‐minute comment period after each presentation within the total 15 minutes. Count on 10 minutes for the presentation and 5 minutes for feedback and transition to the next presenter.

The goal is for the presentation is to bring the group up to date in terms of your past experiences right up to your current history and how your interests  evolved into  3 preliminary thesis questions in art and design education. Spend part of your time explaining the nuance of these questions.

The outcome of this joint seminar will be a broad spectrum knowledge base around art and design education as well as a graduate-level group dynamic of empathy, exchange and growth.

You may use powerpoint, handouts, quotes, literature references, visual aids or videos as you need to support your memoir. Please have your memoir timed perfectly and test out any equipment setup or material before the presentation. Open your presentation with your name and state the goals and objectives of the presentation. Think of the goals as a way of presenting a short agenda for your presentation. The presentations will be timed carefully and one cannot go over each allotted  time period,

Briefly engaging the group in rhetorical questions or reflections is often effective even in a short presentation. Form a beginning, a middle and an ending and rephrase or summarize content where needed. Speak to the audience, making eye contact with your peers and faculty instead of speaking to the screen.  Make sure all can hear your voice Move around the room as you please. This is a short presentation yet it can have form and be dynamic with thoughtful content and presentation skills. Your information is valuable.

Peer and faculty comments regarding your presentation will be noted on a hard copy form that is given to each presenter at the end of his/her presentation. These comments will be in bullet format and be clustered in observations and suggestions areas.

You may exchange or switch your designated times amongst yourselves if need be.

If you have any questions, please let me know. I am unable to set up an accessible digication site forThesis Research because it is not an official credit class for the fall. Criteria For Presentations

Lucid overview of experiences and evidence of past art and design interests.

Development of interests or topics into questions in art and design education.

Cogent and purposeful stream of ideas and transitions of thoughts.

Visuals that have meaning and are presented well.

Citations are done in proper form if and when used.



CRAFT OF RESEARCH Moving/interests/questions   _______________________________________________________

Individual Meetings November 16th is cancelled.

Individual Meetings Tuesday November 29 (this is instead of November 16)
6:20 Farah
6:40 Dandi
7:00 Connor
7:20 Colleen
7:40 Chenge
8:00 Charity
8:20 Chaitra
8:40 Catherine
9:00 Adeline

Individual Meetings Wednesday November 30 (longstanding date scheduled)
6:20 Zoe
6:40 Wenjing
7:00 Stephanie
7:20 Sarah
7:40 Regina
8:00 Rachel Dranoff
8:20 Rachel Deane
8:40 Mudita
9:00 Juri

Please bring an annotated bibliography of ten citations to the individual meeting.

We will

  1. go over the steps to creating a thesis proposal
  2. the Dec. 7 final presentation guide and schedule
  3. thesis reader thoughts.

Future Assignments and Resources:

Literature Resources: Creating an Annotated Bibliography

After the November 2 Memoir/Three Questions Presentations the next assignment is to develop an annotated bibliography of ten meaningful resources.



Thesis Proposal Guides and Definitions


Case study refers to the collection and presentation of detailed information about a particular participant or small group, frequently including the accounts of subjects themselves. A form of qualitative descriptive research, the case study looks intensely at an individual or small participant pool, drawing conclusions only about that participant or group and only in that specific context. Researchers do not focus on the discovery of a universal, generalizable truth, nor do they typically look for cause-effect relationships; instead, emphasis is placed on exploration and description

Oral Interviews     Writing Interview Protocols and Conducting Interviews: Tips for Students New to the Field of Qualitative Research



argument-essay                     Seven Case Study Examples