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The  Dissertation House-On Campus will be an extended on-campus experience .  The Dissertation House Retreat provides a full weekend experience.   Both versions of the Dissertation House facilitate students’ progression through the doctoral dissertation process by providing the professional consultation, guidance, and support necessary for scholarly research and writing. The Dissertation House is based on the successful Scholars’ Retreat at the University of Colorado at Denver, the PROMISE Dissertation House (est. 2006), the UMBC & UMCP Dissertation Houses On-Campus, and Dr. Wendy Carter’s Thesis and Dissertation Accomplished – TADA® books and materials from the ABD Solution Company, LLC.

Dissertation House Application Procedures
Both the on-campus setting and the retreat setting provide Dissertation House participants with productive and rewarding scholastic engagement.  Students who participate in this program will spend each day thinking, writing, and sharing ideas about their doctoral dissertations.  Students will learn effective time-management skills; learn how to set small manageable goals, and will meet with a dissertation coach in one-on-one consultations to discuss and address obstacles that might prevent them completing their degrees.

The Dissertation House period can span either a Tuesday – Friday (9 a.m. – 5 p.m., non-residential) or a Friday – Sunday weekend (includes evening sessions) commitment to focus on the doctoral dissertation.  The Dissertation House activities focus on areas where students typically have difficulty: conceptualizing a topic, writing a literature review, transitioning from a proposal to a dissertation, analyzing data, writing the last chapter, and editing.
Students may apply to attend the next Dissertation House during open application enrollment, by submitting two parts of an application.

PART I:

I. Submit a brief description (maximum 2 pages, font size 11-12 point 1 inch margins) that describes the project that you wish to accomplish during the Dissertation House period.  Applications will neither be reviewed nor accepted outside of the application enrollment period.

PART II:

II. Please use the following guidelines  for the application:

(1) Summary of the project, including research question(s), data or texts, and method

(2) Amount completed on the project to date

(3) Any obstacles that you are encountering that hinder completion of the dissertation.

(4) Include the following header information with the description:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Telephone numbers (home, office, and fax)
  • E-mail address
  • Academic Program and Year in the program


Dates/Location: Dates and locations vary.  Past locations have included UMBC, UM Baltimore, UM College Park, Rocky Gap Conference Center (Cumberland, MD), and Coolfont Conference Center (Berkeley Springs, West VA)

Application Enrollment Period: Application can be submitted within a designated 2-week period, usually scheduled 1-2 months prior to the next Dissertation House session.  Email applications to promisestaff@gmail.com.  Please use the words “Dissertation House” in the subject line of your email.

Selection Process: Eighteen participants will be selected for participation in the Dissertation House.  The following applicants will have priority:  (1) Applicants who plan to finish the Ph.D. within the next 6 months; (2) Individuals who are working on dissertations and theses rather than a proposal; (3) Applicants who submit earliest; and (4) Individuals who appear most able to benefit from the services offered at the Dissertation House.

If your application is accepted, you will receive an acceptance notice via email and additional details about the Dissertation House.  All students, including those who have not applied or those who are not selected, have the option to participate in the next online challenge, a virtual version of the Dissertation House.

36 Responses to Apply

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