Today’s tutor in the spotlight is Alicia.
Alicia is a third year doctoral student in the Fine Arts Doctoral Program School of Theatre & Dance. Her tracks are Arts Administration and Theatre History/Theory/Criticism. Her dissertation is about arts management practices in Bermuda. Alicia joined the Graduate Student Writing Center Team in the spring of 2017, but she has previously tutored at the Marsha Sharp Center for Student Athletes and worked as an English teacher in Japan. When she isn’t tutoring or working on her dissertation, Alicia loves playing with her dachshund, biking, and running. When you come into the GSWC, you will recognize Alicia thanks to her love of brightly colored lipstick.
A writing struggle that Alicia has overcome is organizing ideas and research. When she is writing a paper, Alicia often has many ideas and can get overwhelmed when trying to organize and focus. A solution she found that can help is post-it note idea mapping. She will write each new idea on a different post-it note, but all will be in the same color. She will also write down sources she wants to use on separate post-it notes, which are a different color from the ideas. Then, she will put the post-its on a wall and match sources that can support her ideas. This method allows her to build ideas in a visual way. Once she has ideas and sources on the wall, she can arrange them into an outline. Once completed, Alicia will get another set of post-its in a third color and will add supporting ideas on the wall. If needed, a fourth set will be added and so on. By the end of brainstorming, the wall above Alicia’s desk looks like an 8-bit rainbow! She likes using sticky post-it notes because it is easy to rearrange ideas. While writing her paper, Alicia will pull the post-its off the wall so she can see what ideas she has (or has not) used. This prevents repetition or the possibility of forgetting something she wished to write about.
Do you have a method you use to organize your ideas? Have you tried the post-it idea mapping? Show us a photo in the comments below!