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Monthly Archives: July 2015

Where Mel escapes her desk again with a trusty sidekick – Submission Lady

Pic one Hocken

Once again I found myself sitting at my desk and feeling a bit restless.  Blame it on the lack of sunshine,  moonlight, good times or lack of boogie, or whatever. I decided to make a dash and escape the clocktower. This time I didn’t want to go it alone so I dragged Katherine with me (aka submissions lady to you) I took Donald’s advice and headed to the Hocken Collections where Katherine Milburn took us for a tour.  Man there is some brialliant stuff there.

After dodging the many football fans heading to the stadium to watch the footie we made it to the Hocken.  Formerly the Otago Dairy Co-operative Company the Hocken Collections has bounced round campus a bit over the years (oldies will know that the Richardson building was first and foremost the Hocken building) before setting up shop here and an impressive shop it is.  The reason for all the moves – space my dear friends.  There are a lot of things in the Hocken Collections.  A note hastily scribbled in my notebook reads fun facts like 10km of archive material, over 1 million images, 200,000 books.  You get the picture there is a lot of awesome resource material living here.

Hocken

So how did the Hocken Collections begin?  The brain child behind the collection is  Dr Thomas Morland Hocken (1836-1910) who settled in Dunedin from 1862 and collected like a mad thing  – books, newspapers, maps, photos, artifacts and much more  – all related to New Zealand, Pacific and early Austrialia.  This is the basis of the Hocken collection.  The awesome thing to note is that Dr Hocken used this material for his own research – as  part of the tour we were shown his hand written notes on a poster he had collected.  He was a very devoted man to his collecting

Dr Hocken’s reason for collecting is still a founding basis behind the Hocken collection today and it means that there is a wealth of interesting items within its walls.  Hocken offered his collection to Dunedin and the people of NZ  –  based on this the Collections is open to both Uni folk and the general public ( a lot of folk including myself have used the Hocken for family research – check out these awesome research guides).

etieruteruteop

Katherine (our tour guide although the other Katherine would be very keen to help) is responsible for the Ephemera collection which started to become a focus of collecting from the mid 60s.  The Ephemera collection is made up of things that in most cases we would think are rubbish that you throw away. However, Katherine views these items slightly differently.  The premise behind the Ephemera collection is to provide a snap shot of our society at a given time.  Best example, the little box filled with funeral programmes over the past 100 years.  The earliest is a beautiful word press item, mid 70s is an old school typewritten version while those from the 21st century are often a collage of images and stories.  It all tells a story about how society has changed over the years.

So as I hit my word limit on this little tale, I realise that this blog post is kinda like the Hocken Collections, there is a lot there to cover and not a lot of space for it all.  There is so much awesome material to look at(often restricted due to its delicate nature but it is there), so why not pay a visit and take a tour (it’s got 4.5 out of 5 stars on Tripadvisor) or visit the latest exhibition . If you prefer to stay put you can always  read  Ka Taka Hakena: Treasures from the Hocken Collections  or view some of the amazing images online via the Hakena Heritage collection or have a peek at the Hocken Snapshop to see what  Dunedin was like in the olden days.  They even have a blog!

Take the Copyright Quiz for Research Students

Back in the day when there were only three ideas and four pictures in the world, no one had to worry about copyright. By the time there was six ideas and eight pictures, lawyers got in on the act and came up with the notion of copyright. Naturally enough, they copyrighted copyright.*

Now the academic terrain is full of terrifying possibilities for inadvertently violating some litigious dude’s distribution rights. Fear not, Richard White, Copyright and Open Access Superman and One-of-a-Kind helpful chap, is here to help. Richard knows copyright inside and out and he’s not afraid to share his knowledge. Check out his quiz and contact him at richard.white@otago.ac.nz if you have any copyright questions.

copyright-free-photos-afd-111349

Copyright is complex. In the digital age we all deal with copyright every day, even if we’re not really aware of it.  Did you take a photo on your phone today?  Did you tweet something?  Who owns that photo or the text in the Tweet?  What can other people do with these things?  As research students you really need to know at least some basics of copyright: yours and that of other people whose works you want to build on. 

So, try this quick copyright quiz.  This is something I use in my face-to-face sessions as a quick way to learn a few basic concepts, ones that are especially relevant to research students.

http://goo.gl/forms/A1sdolbvQX

Ok.  You’re back.  Wasn’t that fun?  Hopefully you did OK.  Of course, whether you thought about it or not, by using a Google form both I and Google now have copies of your answers.

Hopefully the quiz raised a few questions for you about your work and the work of others that you’d like to use.  I cover some of those questions in my face-to-face sessions so look out for them when they’re advertised – but I’ll also cover some of them in future blog posts, so watch this space.

For now, you can review some of the basic points covered in the quiz by reading our page on copyright for students.

Richard White, Manager, Copyright and Open Access

*As usual, this is completely false.

Backs Against the Walls – A Witty Ditty from Brian

It is a little known fact that when Brian is not busy coaching thesis candidates and helping them to realise their goals, he dabbles in a spot of poetry. Unlike me, who thinks all poetry should start, there was a young man from Dundee, Brian breathes iambic pentameter, rhyming couplets and the occasional spot of assonance. So here’s a wee mid-winter delight to warm the cockles of your heart.

Pic one for Brian

A Witty Ditty when you’re feeling a bit…..

 Backs Against the Wall!

Life is full of troubles

They come both large and small

But it’s the itsy, bitsy, bits

That get you most of all.

When the cash machine is broken

Friends don’t return your call

You don’t know who to turn to

Your back’s against the wall!

So……..

Pic two Brian

Buy yourself a tiny houseplant

A little piece of life

A haven of tranquility

In the midst of all this strife.

Buy a shiny green companion

To tell your troubles to

No matter what your worries are

It will always listen to you.

Lit Review

Winter, spring and autumn

And in the summer too

PhD and other stuff

Can really get to you

When that Lit Review is pending

Chapter four’s no use at all

You’re already at your wit’s end

And your back’s against the wall.

So…..

Plants 22

Buy yourself a tiny houseplant

A little piece of life

A haven of tranquility

In the midst of all this strife.

Give your plant a selfish earful

It helps ease your stress away

Your tiny plant will always be

Your loyal friend each day!

Brian Johnston, Personal Performance Coach, Graduate Research School

No Worries: a Sweet As Guide to Sussing Out New Zild

sweet asHas your supervisor asked you over to their house and asked you to bring a plate?  Did a technician question you about the flux capacitor being pakaru? Have you noticed that the chapter in your thesis is awesome when it really doesn’t seem like it is to you?  Has your flatmate suggested you lux the lounge?

When Lisa isn’t sussing out your dough so that you get paid sweet as, she does the hard yards by delving into the bewildering world of New Zealand speech. 

Chur Lisa! 

As if the English language wasn’t hard enough, the Kiwi’s had to go one step further.

What do the words choice, mean, mint and sweet have in common? In the kiwi language they all mean the same thing! (Translation: good, great, cool, awesome).

Words for blog 2

You might find navigating the kiwi slang hard yakka (hard work), or it might be a piece of cake (really easy), either way don’t bust a gut (make a big effort). Gizza (give us/me a…) moment, have a smoko (break, usually morning/afternoon tea) and I’ll spin a yarn (tell a story) for you about the mysteries of the Kiwi language.

Have you been invited to a bash (party) in the wop-wops (middle of nowhere, countryside), with togs (bathing suit, swimming clothes) and jandals (type of sandal, called thongs in Australia) standard attire? You’re one lucky son of a gun if you have! Maybe you’ll grab a cold one (cold beverage, usually a bottle or can of beer) from the dairy (local convenience store) and put a snarler on the barbie (cook a sausage on the barbeque) tonight. Let’s just hope it’s not hosing down (raining) by tea time (dinner, meal eaten in the evening).

 

Untitsfnjksdfjsd

If this all sounds like gobbledegook (nonsense) to you then no worries, grab a cuppa (cup of tea/coffee) and I’ll guide you through the mysteries of the kiwi language.

There are words with double meanings: stubby is a beer, or short shorts worn by a male.

We use adjectives such as dear (expensive), wee (small), heaps (lots). Used in a sentence it looks something like: “That was a dear steak for such a wee amount, I expected heaps more for that price.”

So don’t be a wet blanket (fun spoiler), pike out (pull out of doing something), or spit the dummy (throw a tantrum) and give the Kiwi language a go. She’ll be right (it will be okay). And if all else fails, just smile and nod .

Lisa Beckingsale, Scholarships Office, Graduate Research School

The Art of the Form: a Re-Enrolment of Two Halves

One of the reasons I became the Manager of the Graduate Research School is because I am atrocious at filling in forms.  Every time I go near a form (be it online or paper) I manage to get myself caught in a wormhole of confusion, fear and panic.

Either I do not understand the questions, I object to the style in which they are written or they violate some moral principle that I hitherto had not realised I was committed to.

The Doctoral Office are a crack-team-of-awesome when it comes to helping fill in forms and so when I am faced with some bewildering bureaucracy, Tina kindly takes me by the hand and gently asks, “don’t you remember, Claire, we did it like this last year?”

No!  I don’t remember!!  I never remember!!!

I would like to blame the form-designers of the world, but given the repeated nature of this problem and the fact that there must be more than one person designing all these forms that I fail at filling in, reason would suggest that I’m the common denominator here.  I seem to have a rare and peculiar debilitating condition called Formus Blindicus cum Incompetencia.

This week I tackled my re-enrolment and all was going well until I went to Study Link to apply for a student loan.  I checked out whether or not part-timers could still get their fees paid (and they can) and I started to churn through the questions feeling almost competent.

Sure, I had to reread a few of the questions, sure I may or may not have cursed at the screen a few times, but I was feeling truly hopeful as I pressed the final Eligibility radio button.

YOU ARE NOT ELIGIBLE FOR A STUDENT LOAN

YOU ARE ELIGIBLE FOR CHILD DISABILITY ALLOWANCE

I know I’m perky for my age, but a child disability allowance?  Really?

SIGH.

After going back through every screen with a fine-tooth comb, I unclicked the offending buttons.  I undid all my answers to the questions I’d misinterpreted.  I no longer accidently identified as a child/felon/bankrupt/in loan arrears.

Then booya!  Just like that I was all sorted.

Easy as.

Personal and prolonged form-incompetence aside, all this is by way of reminding you that if you weren’t enrolled for second semester, it’s time to do it now.  Go on, if I can manage it, anyone can!

Sarah will help you….

Claire Gallop, Graduate Research School

Re-enrol

It’s that time of year, people! If you only have a Semester One (part-year) enrolment, and you’re still busy beavering away on your thesis, then you’ll need to re-enrol for the remainder of the 2015 academic year.

How do I re-enrol?

Please email us at phd@otago.ac.nz, with your name and ID number, requesting enrolment for semester two, and we’ll update this in the system for you. Once complete, a message confirming the change to your enrolment and an invoice for semester two fees will appear in your eVision portal.

If you’re wanting to make a change from full-time to part-time or vice versa, you’ll need to fill out form for that instead, which can be found here: http://www.otago.ac.nz/OTAGO089636

REMEMBER… you need to be enrolled to submit your thesis for examination, so if you didn’t quite make it for a semester one submission but you still want to submit this year (and don’t have a current full-year enrolment), then flick us an email!

Re-enrol3

Speaking of beavering away, we’ve also been busy little bees here in the Doctoral Office processing all of your glorious hard bounds theses! Please bear with us while we get everything sorted for those graduating in August, we’ll get to any of your queries as soon as we can 🙂

Sarah McGregor, Doctoral Office, Graduate Research School