The Rest of the (Dissertation) Story

Now that our defense-ready drafts are on their way to Asbury (see last post), the countdown to the end of the journey officially begins. The finish line is now in sight!

So, what’s next? We’re certainly not done yet, but our to-do list is getting much shorter …

  • Our mentor will receive our drafts this evening. He’s going to look over them one more time, then deliver them to the doctor of ministry office by Friday.
  • Once the doctor of ministry office receives them, they will begin scheduling our defenses, which should be somewhere around 6 weeks from now (around the end of our parental leave).
  • When the doctor of ministry office receives our drafts, they’ll go immediately to an editor, who will use a lot of red ink on them (like last time).
  • While we wait for the edits to be returned to us, we both plan to develop the literature review section (which is never really done till the end).
  • We’ll get the edited copies back in a couple weeks, and will have another couple weeks to make the corrections and edits.
  • After making corrections and edits, we will mail 3 defense-ready copies of our drafts to the doctor of ministry office (one for each member of our dissertation committee).
  • At the time of our defenses, we will travel to the Asbury campus in Wilmore, KY.
  • If our defenses are successful, we will have 2 weeks to make further, final revisions (changes recommended by our dissertation committee at our defenses).
  • Our post-defense drafts will be edited by an editor one final time, which means we will have to make corrections one more time.
  • Finally, at the end of the process, we will submit final copies, a minimum of 5 printed copies of our final drafts (for binding), plus any extras we want, I suppose.

The list still looks long, but it will keep moving and it should be manageable (with God’s help). The light at the end of the tunnel continues to get brighter and brighter!

And our gratitude to God, who continues to work out all the details, keeps getting stronger and stronger as well!

2 thoughts on “The Rest of the (Dissertation) Story”

  1. O man, does that bring back memories.

    I had run out of extension time. The director of my DMin program had put a gun to my head and had given me a hard, and I mean hard, deadline. At the same time, I was trying to plant a church and get our house ready to sell ( another hard deadline).

    I still remember the utter despair when what my draft was sent back after the second reader/editor ( my primary advisor ) and it was awash with red ink. I thought that , at this point, it would be ‘tweaked’. However, the whole line of questions and comments in the margins made it clear that she was not tracking with me. She wanted substantial revisions. What seemed fine to the first reader was not at all fine with her, and she was the one I had to have onside. We were nearly out of time.

    She gave me 48 hours over the weekend ( during which time, I still had church services to do and teams of volunteer house revovators to lead ) to make it right.

    I repeated softly to myself ” I am doomed… I am doomed…”

    Anyway, somehow, the Red Sea parted. I don’t remember the details, anymore. Sort of a post-trauma thing set in. It’s all blurry now, but God heard my strangled cry…

    When I read your account of your final steps, I can only encourage you. It’s a good pace. May God open up the way before you.


  2. Thanks, Robb. It’s always good to know we’re not alone! 🙂

    Actually, we should be in pretty good shape, at this point. But the big question for us will be how many revisions we will have after our defenses (which we will work on around the time we go back to work).

    We *hope* the worst is behind us, but we’re not letting down our guard just yet!


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