During this time of ‘working backwards’ [Backward Steps], I’ve been tracking my citation creation to see how things are developing. I’m doing this for a few reasons, but mostly to ensure that I can provide evidence of reading widely and researching broadly as well as deeply. My citation folders in Zotero are evidence of key topics and areas of interest.
My progress is steadily showing results as I step back and review all the articles and research information I’ve collected over the previous year of study. I’ve added a few new folders into the collection, nested under each of these main categories. This may reflect the corpus of the research I do for this dissertation, but may also iterate as I move closer to my comprehensive portfolio review.
Under the How to do Research, the sub folders include related works on ethics.
Under the Open OER, OEM, OEP, there are sub folders for issues & critique, practices and pedagogies, and one for ‘open self’ that started with writing from Helen Crump.
Under the Research Methodology folder are nested folders for digital research and ethnography. I may need to include one on phenomenology soon.
My progress is steadily showing results as I step back and review all the articles and research information I’ve collected over the previous year of study. With a steady addition of 10-15 citations each day from my collected folders of articles, I’ve moved the total in my library from 327 citations on May 10th up to 475 on May 23rd. There are still many more articles to include into this Zotero collection – ones I’ve already read, others I will need to read, and yet more that I need to acquire and read.
In order to track my progress on where I am with each of these articles and research papers, I’ve gone to colour coding the articles which I have on my computer hard drive. I may need to redesign these codes as I move further into the confusion of citations, but for now – green means I’ve read it and made notes (four sentence summaries and BIN additions); purple means I’ve added the citation to Zotero; orange means the article has limited connection to my potential dissertation direction (while it may be worthy of a second look at a future date). I can still add blue, red, yellow or gray into this coding mix, and may need to do so in future. Zotero is the full collection of citations and my BINS process is segmented into key categories – researching, theory, open, media and digital literacies, teacher education and generic or non-specific articles or information.
This is my citation creation process this month, this year, at this point in my PhD program. This may change and iterate as I move deeper into the work, as needs will dictate the citation creation direction.