So I went to Greenville, SC on April 2, 2007 to give my “final defense” of my dissertation. At 3:00 p.m. EDT, I began to go through my presentation. During the presentation, it became obvious that I had used a term in a technical sense that I had not defined. The two committee members that were unfamiliar with qualitative research really got “hung up” with my use of the term “meaning unit.” By the end of the presentation and questioning, I think they understood, but I also understood that a lot of other people reading the dissertation (whoever that may be!) would also get “hung up” on that phrase.
So I had to find a good definition of the term (you can’t make up anything in a dissertation) and also consistently use the term throughout the paper. I also thought, and it was suggested to include all the “meaning units” that I had used in four appendixes of the paper.
Well, on Monday, April 2, 2007, my paper was 125 pages long. This morning April 9, 2007, I sent what I believe is a finally fully finished dissertation — 235 pages long. It’s been a long and tense week. Now, most of those pages were simply copy and paste, but they did need to be formatted and proofed.
A long time ago, I was told that once I had successfully defended my dissertation, I could be called “Doctor.” Thank you to all who cared to pay attention or pray for me. I appreciate it.
Jeff Voegtlin, Ed.D