I’ve entered the world of Prospectus.
Prospectus is the first step toward dissertation. During prospectus, each student must bring their research thoughts and ideas together into a cohesive document that synthesizes all the information and explains why the research they have chosen to undertake for dissertation is important. Every doctoral student must pass Prospectus in order to advance toward candidacy. In other words,
if you don’t pass, you don’t become a doctor!
This is where the rubber meets the road. Until now, I’ve been a doctoral student, which has been fairly similar to any other kind of student. You have an assignment, you complete the assignment, and you turn it in. The assignments may require a different level of analysis or effort, but essentially, they are schoolwork. I can do school!
Prospectus is different. This is the first step toward becoming an expert in my field. This is where I set myself out as being different – as having something important to say on the subject. Entering into this stage of my journey, I realize it’s no longer simply about the work. It’s not even about becoming a transformational leader. Within the field of education, my research will become how I am known – my identity as an academic. It’s an important next step.
I have been struck with the realization of just how important this next step is to me. It’s exciting and terrifying at the same time. But, I am ready. I have been well prepared as a skilled leader and a confident professional. This is just the next step in the journey.