By Scott Hibbard, August 2015
When asked what study resources grad students relied on some might list 'time', 'peers', or 'program advisor' among the most useful resources in their program. However, program or topic-specific tools, apps, books, and other resources can also provide important resources for grad students in their program. This blog details some resources I found particularly useful while enrolled in Utica College's MS in Economic Crime Management (now the MS in Financial Crime and Compliance Management) program.
Websites can be particularly beneficial reference tools. Some websites may be relevant for both class and for work particularly when asked to reply to forum posts in ways that relate experiences or ECM knowledge.
Purdue OWL: https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/section/2/10/
Cornell University Legal Institute (LMI): https://www.law.cornell.edu/
US Government Printing Office (GPO): http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/search/advanced/advsearchpage.action
Purdue OWL is an indispensable APA guide. Between it and APA-published guides you'll likely be able to resolve APA citation questions in any class. LMI and GPO websites were particularly useful for ECM 622 - Criminal Concepts of Fraud where grad ECM students are expected to perform basic legal research to understand criminal law concepts. I used LMI to get a summarized version of a US Code statute then I would go to GPO to obtain the original or amended statute text which is generally much lengthier. Note that there is a selection for USC searches under the 'advanced search' option. LMI and GPO are credible academic citations also.
I am a technologist but I hesitate to throw technology at problems unless I'm reasonably certain technology won't create new problems like busy-work from fiddling around with the supposed 'fix'. I found that citation management software can be a real time saver. I happen to use EndNote. However, using citation management software in no way implies that the student won't have to learn APA style. More frequently than not citation management software imperfectly cites sources which means the student has to know enough APA to correct citation errors.
The ECM grad textbooks are a great resource. Some texts may speak more to your current professional role than others but I'd suggest keeping your texts. It is difficult to suggest books because of personal reading preferences and interest levels but I will suggest three books all of which I've read and admired:
- :: 'Illicit' by Moses Naim
- :: 'Treasury's War' by Juan Zarate
- :: 'Thieves of State' by Sarah Chayes
In Illicit, Moises Naim describes how globalization has helped to undermine governmental enforcement powers and aided a range of illicit activities. Illicit is a text for ECM 601 also. In Treasury's War, Zarate writes about his experiences coordinating US economic warfare response to international terrorism and other international relations challenges. In Thieves of State, Chayes writes about her experiences with grand corruption in Iraq and Afghanistan and studies variations in six other countries which are acutely affected by grand corruption.
At some point or another a graduate-level student will feel the need to back away from the textbook or computer keyboard and engage in some kind of physical activity. Physical activity does not need to be high-impact and may simply be walking around the block. Or swimming. Or biking. Or a regular gym program. Physical activity gives you a break from your academic role. I've had many 'ah-ha' moments when weightlifting, on the elliptical, or while running that paid-off in terms of assignment and project ideas and grades.
Best of luck in your future studies!
About the Author
Scott Hibbard is a second-year Utica College ECM Grad Student (ABT). He is scheduled to submit his ECM thesis by December 2015.