Graduation Day Edition

The day is finally here, guys! Today is my Graduation Day!!!

This morning my diploma and transcript finally arrived and it feels so surreal to hold it in my hands. I’ve been doing a happy dance all morning, though opening a DHL letter at work is a bit less glamorous than attending an actual cap and gown graduation ceremony.

I knew last week that I’d graduate summa cum laude, but I found out today I also made the Dean’s List with a final GPA of 3.97.

Now, Germany doesn’t use the GPA system, so that number does not mean anything here, but converting it to the German system (where 1.0 is the very best grade and 6.0 is the worst, with 4.0  a fail) it works out at 1.09!

That’s right. It’s a very narrow margin, but I made it with a 1.0!!! I didn’t even have grades like these in primary school!

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Since I handed in my thesis in September, a few friends, neighbours, relatives and colleagues have given me small graduation gifts with instructions to only open them when I had my diploma. So today I did.

Next to 2 bottles of my favourite red wine (Gallo Summer Red), I got copies of Dr Seuss’ Oh, the places you’ll go, Tim Winton’s Eyrie, and Dirt Music, a collection of Australian Short Stories and a guide to Australian Language and Culture, a personal library kit, a Raydori in London Red, a kangaroo necklace pendant, a copy of the DVD The Graduate, a sticky calendar and write-on planner/mouse pad, Literary Listography, Australian map puzzle as fridge magnets, tea tree oil, Australian tea and the obligatory Graduate rubber duck.

I love them! And this also finally explain a couple of weird questions I have been asked. I also love the “Quintessentially Australian” items one of my friends got me including the tea and tea tree oil.

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I still can’t believe that this regular Monday at work is actually my Graduation Day. Because my mother can’t be trusted with a camera to take a decent picture to mark the occasion, I’m reduced to a Graduation Selfie. Ah well.

Now that that’s done, I’ll be cracking open one of those bottles of wine. Tonight I fully intend to celebrate my result. I worked my butt off for those grades. Tomorrow I’ll once again be looking for a new job and possible PhD programmes. But for now, I’m enjoying being a graduate.

 

Cin cin!

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Bibliographies

I’ve spent the weekend doing a different kind of reading: academic.

Yes, the research books are (almost all) here, and my M.A. thesis research can start. Whenever I have to write a long course paper or dissertation, I start at the end. The very first thing I write is my bibliography.

I have several reasons for working my way through from the back. First of all, I may not own copies of all the books and library books will be time-limited. By adding those books to the reference list right away, I’m sure not to forget one. As long as I keep photocopies of the pages I need stapled together, and hand-write a note which book they’re from, I can return the book on time.

By adding every book, journal or chapter as I get it – in alphabetical order and listed according to APA style – I will have a complete list from the start, because print-outs can be misplaced.

But most importantly, once I’m all done with the writing and everything has been proofread, I just need to go through the citations and simply delete the ones I didn’t end up using. That way, everything is already in the right order and formatted to university standard. A simple  Ctrl + F8 search will show whether I cited an author or not. I find this saves a lot of time, as the end of a project can be on a tight deadline and references can be overlooked or simply forgotten in the scramble to submit the project on time.

Is anyone else doing this?

It may be just me and my obsession with books and lists, but I like to have them all in one place so I know what I’ve got to work with and I’ll have all the doi addresses and URLs handy as I go along (if I don’t have hard copies to hand).

As of right now, my list is 7 pages and 1,400 words long in Arial, 12pt, double-spaced (as per university guidelines).

MA Bibliography

First draft of my M.A. thesis bibliography ©Literati Girl