Saturday, February 26, 2011

It's Saturday

It's Saturday and here I am working on my proposal.  I am working on chapter one which is the introduction, background, problem statement, purpose, theoretical framework, research questions, nature of study, significance of study, definitions and summary.

I was able to take the research questions, and definitions straight from the CP.  I think I have the intro and background down good, mostly taken from proposal.  Hope to get the rest of chapter one today.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

A Note to Stacy

Stacy, I got your email but no other contact information.  I am glad my post was able to help you.  If I can be of further assistance, please let me know.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Dissertation Proposal (Part 1)

So, my CP was approved on 17 Feb 11.  That night I utilized the DP template to create my proposal and copied over the easy stuff such as my references, definitions of terms and the literature review.

I'm so glad I decided to utilize the schoold DP template.  I didn't for the CP and the table of contents gave me grief every time I updated it.

Utilizing the school template for the DP has made this much easier.  I recommend using templates to everyone.

I didn't do any work on it on Friday or Saturday except for re-working the timeline.  I will have to take a 4th dissertation course, but they only charge for 1 credit.  I am trying to get the DP ready to turn in by 7 Mar, the start of the second dissertation course.

On Sunday, I worked on the appendices for the DP.  I created the informed consent form and the demographic template as well as the interview questions.

Today I will create the observation guide.  As part of my dissertation I will be doing a multiple case study utilizing interviews, observations and blog analysis.

More later.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Protecting your Identity

I post on  I posted about my timeline there.  Someone on the forum was interested in participating because I promised to protect the participants' identity.  This is what I wrote back.

"As a prepper myself, and someone who doesn't normally blog, participate in forums, give out my number, etc., I completely understand wanting to keep your identity a secret.

I struggled with whether or not I should do my dissertation on this subject, but felt the need to make our voice heard.

Thanks for the consideration. Also part of the process is not only is your identity withheld, you can stop at anytime or not answer a question that makes you uncomfortable. You are in charge of your participation. You will be given a consent form that identifies all these processes. Only I will know your identity."

Because I value anonymity, I have never done a blog before, I don't use facebook and rarely give out personal info.

Your identity will be safe,


Data Collection Timeline

Last night I re-did my timeline to get an approximation on when I would be collecting data.  As of now, I will be collecting data during the months of June and July. 

As time gets closer, I will be making the call for participants.  Again, your identity will be held in the strictist confidence. All participants will be identified by number.  Not even the school, Northcentral University, will have access to your identity.

I am looking for around 10-20 interview participants.  Tentative questions include "what circumstances led you to become a prepper" and "how did prepper social networking influence your decision to become a prepper".

Also, if you live in the New Mexico area, I am looking for 2-4 individuals/families who will be willing to meet face-to-face and possibly be willing to let me observe your prepping activities.  Activities can be as simple as inventorying or other activities.  I would love to participate in your activities and perhaps we can learn from each other.  These meetings will be very informal with specific questions similar to those for the interview participants.  I will take notes and possibly record, with your permission.

Once the data collection is over, I will get with each participant to cross check the results to ensure their information is accurately accounted for.

If you would like to participate, please email me at


Thursday, February 17, 2011

Current Status

I decided to forget about the past and start writing from today forward. 

On 2/9/11 my chair submitted my CP to the school for approval.  Finally, the first time after a long struggle.  I waited patiently.

Today, I found out that my CP was approved the first time.  I was totally shocked and full of disbelief.  They gave me some recommendations for the proposal.

1.  When preparing the proposal, the Learner should insure that the “so what” of this study is very clearly explained.  In all research studies, we must be clear about the importance of the study and why it matters that we understand this phenomenon.  So, when preparing the proposal, please make sure that the importance of understanding this group is clearly stated.
2.  When finalizing the research questions in the proposal, the Learner should insure that all of the main important elements of the movement that this study will uncover are represented in the Research Questions.   What are the key things that the Learner hopes to investigate and analyze?   Include each of these in the research questions.
3.  Both interviews and analyses of blogs are presented as possible sources of data.   In preparing the proposal it is important to fully describe how each will be analyzed and how each will answer the research questions.  Also, how blogs are chosen for analysis and both the internal and external validity of the blogs chosen must be discussed. 
In conclusion, the research discussed in this concept paper is feasible and the methodology chosen is appropriate to the research questions presented.  It is approved.
I also found out today that I got a new committee member.
To completely update you my title is now:

The Preppers:  A Multiple Case Study of Individuals Who Choose a Moderate Survivalist Lifestyle

I had to change from phenomenological to multiple case study, which in essence is the same thing.

So no more goofing off, time to get serious. 

Saturday, February 12, 2011

A Death in the Family

I haven't posted in a while because my beloved girl kitty, Kissy, passed away last Saturday.  She had been eating less and less over the previous 2 weeks.  We took her to the vet on Saturday and she had severe kidney failure, so we had to put my beloved little baby to sleep.  I have no children so this was devestating.  I had her for 11 wonderful years.  

I am completely broken. 

Hug all your kids every day both the 2-legged and the 4-legged ones.