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Article find request


Does anyone have access to Bilingual Research Journal: The Journal of the National Association for Bilingual Education, Volume 30, Issue 2, 2006, Sook Lee and Oxelson?

“It's Not My Job”: K–12 Teacher Attitudes Toward Students' Heritage Language Maintenance"

Fingers crossed that someone can help - I know that York, Leeds and York St John libraries have no online access!!

Please take part in this survey!

I'd have to agree. Some of your responses also don't tie in with the question asked.
And it definitely didn't take me 20 minutes so don't let that bit put your respondents off...

Had my PhD viva

Well done Walminskipeas! A fantastic result.

How do you concentrate on study when your personal life is a mess?

Thank you so much to all of you who responded to this, especially such quick responses. You stopped me feeling guilty that I should be managing. So instead of reading stuff for PhD, I spent all yesterday morning reading advice and counselling stuff online. It was such a good morning that I went to lunch feeling actually positive about us and what we can achieve - almost excited at the opportunity in fact.

I told this all to my husband when I got home and although he was slightly bemused, he was also pretty positive about it all and we both had a normal night's sleep for the first time in ten days! That's in large part due to advice here not to stress about study but to look after myself. So thank you so much. Just hope I can keep that positivity going until we're in a state when we can move forward from this.

And then I'll be able to study again!

How do you concentrate on study when your personal life is a mess?

I've been trying with no success at all to put in some work on the PhD over the last week. My husband broke the news to me last Monday that he'd been having an affair (fairly short-lived 6/7 weeks) with a close friend of his who he met last September. So, of course, it's been difficult for us both, and I'm not necessarily asking for comfort or advice on that personal front. We're staying together and planning on working things out - he's been very straight-up about everything from when he told me and he is being good with me in my varying stages of coping. We know it's going to take time but we've got that, I guess...

However, I just can't concentrate - teaching isn't so bad as you simply have no choice. But what about PhD work - I'm at the reading and organising research visits stage. Now the organising bit isn't so bad but I've done no worthwhile reading since last Monday now.

Has anyone had to deal with a similar situation and have any advice on how I can get back on track?



As a tutor in English for academic purposes on the side when I'm not PhDing, I get asked by many students how they can be more critical in their reading and writing. I've used a chapter from a Stella Cottrell study skills session in my classes and it's brilliant - it basically teaches you how to do it.

If you'd like me to email you the chapter, PM me your email address and I'll get it to you.

Hope that might help a bit and happy reading!

Presenting PhD work to date to fellow students

Hi guys!

Well thank all three of you for your kind support and encouragement. My presentation went really well! I slightly lost my way in the middle but think it just looked like a pause to the audience!

I got a couple of bits of feedback but nothing awful at all! Just suggestions and ideas (all ones I've thought about and have either decided against or will do if possible, so could easily chat) and one a tiny tweak to one of my RQs, which was really useful.

And then, my second supervisor, who was there, asked me if I'd like to do some paid RA work in the autumn! Funding dependent but on a really interesting topic (MFL uptake in Yr 9 UK schools or lack thereof), saying she was asking me because she knows she could trust me! How nice is that?!

So, it's fair to say I'm in a good mood now!


Interviews as primary data source - good idea?


I understand this dilemma - I think it's probably especially the case if your not a full participant in their setting (I can't tell whether you are or not, of course, but I've certainly been a stranger in some of my research settings and it takes a while), as for this kind of questioning a huge amount of trust will be needed, I would have thought.

Are your interviews being conducted in an environment that your participants know well or will it be feeling a bit strange for them - is it worth thinking about where you do it and whether they should be structured or more meandering?

I'm not a fan of focus groups but that's probably cos I always seem to have had overbearing types who take over and there's always the jumping on the bandwagon thing that concerns me about peer pressure. But I may be being unfair - look forward to others' thoughts on that aspect.

Additionally, I recently read this article and thought it was very interesting. It's in Applied Linguistics so social science although certainly not your discipline, but it may have some thoughts on the process you hadn't considered.

Talmy, Steven (2010) 'Qualitative Interviews in Applied Linguistics: From Research Instrument to Social Practice', Annual Review of Applied Linguistics 30 (pp128-148).

Hope some of that helps. But good luck getting more out of your participants.

Presenting PhD work to date to fellow students

That's quite funny, Catalinbond, as I went for lunch with a friend today and he suggested the same thing. I might see who's up for something afterwards - good idea!

And now, I seem to have far too much to say! Going to run it through with my long-suffering husband tonight and see what I should be a bit more vague on!

Thanks to both of you for your help today. :-)

Presenting PhD work to date to fellow students

Thank you Ady and Catalinbond

It's good to know that it's fairly standard practice to start on these things early on - just that the only other meetings I'd been too people were much further on.

I've gone with a bit of what you both suggest, so we've got:

Intro - who am I, my motivation for the research and professional and educational background
The funded research project - I'm presenting it as a kind of environmental analysis for my PhD pilot study so it should lead in well
PhD to date:
Key themes - focusing on three key areas and introducing some of the key figures and theories
Research questions - taken straight from my proposal - will expand on in presentation
Research design and methodology - being forced in a presentation is really good, actually, as it pressures you into commitment too and focuses the mind! I've decided I'm a constructivist and hoping that my recent reading on qual methods will help me justify this and my mixed methods case study (which I'll also talk about from a practical point of view)

And beyond that, I've just made it look pretty...!

Presenting PhD work to date to fellow students


I was just going to come in and post on the One Goal Thread and get on with it. But then I thought I could use some advice and expertise from you lovely people.

Tomorrow lunchtime I'm presenting at our departmental Research Group - I have about 15-20 minutes. I've only been to one other group meeting as yet, and the presentations were from people much further on in the PhD process than me so it didn't help.

Now, I don't mind presenting, I'm not nervous in that respect particularly. Well only the kind of nerves that are useful, anyway! It's the fact that I really feel I've nothing to say at the moment.

So far, I've got as far as a 3,000 word research proposal, which is a little pie in the sky, anyway (especially where methodology is concerned), that we decided was useful as a starting point. I've done a fair bit of reading around my key issues but it's only background. I'm also working on a project for which I got a research award (due in Sept) that is only tangentially relevant. But I'd stand a better chance presenting that.

Oh why did the Graduate Leader think it was fair to ask me to do it after only 4 and a half months part time...?

So you can see I don't really know where to go with it. I guess some expectation setting will be a good move but from then on? Any ideas?

Urgent help needed


Sorry to hear your news. I don't want to be the bearer of bad news but my understanding is that it's unusual for universities to let students join at this stage. It involves APEL (accreditation for prior experience or learning) all your other modules and they get little benefit from letting you do the dissertation in isolation.

I hope I'm wrong and that you find somewhere where you can try again for the dissertation. Good luck!

Project Management Software

Hi Bilbobaggins. You are sooo right - Merlin is total over-kill for a one-woman project. I'm seeing it as developing a 'transferable skill' at the same time though, and it is quite pretty! Saying that, I've not opened it in about two weeks, so presumably everything will be red now...

Project Management Software

I've gone with Merlin, which is the Mac equivalent of MS Project. It's fully compatible with Project too, and apparently looks and feels similar. I found it pretty user-friendly so far.

It's also quite a clever demo. It's fairly pricey to buy (only saw it in dollars but it was like $140) but the demo is not time limited, just task limited. It's limited to 40 activities, so I'm thinking I may need to split my PhD project at the pilot study or confirmation of registration stage, but it's great cos it does mean it can stay free.

I looked at Gantt project (free, open-source program) but didn't think much of it having already played with Merlin.

Have you ever privately wondered...

Hey Milly_Cat
I'm only four months in too, so I can't come at this with any wise words, really. Just understanding. My guess is that most people will get project envy at some point so doubt that you're unusual!

You don't say what discipline you're in and whether, therefore, you got to choose the project yourself. I did, and I am really into it, of course, but I often think I'd be just as into a few other aspects of language education (esp. when I get really scared at the idea of researching with kids...!).

I think you probably feel your project is a bit dull just because it's not new to you, like other people's projects are. I agree that your sups would be unlikely to support something that isn't worthy of it. And, possibly more important, you're (and I am) only four months in, so our projects WILL change. And yours can be as exciting as you can make it - maybe investigate if you can tweak to give you the right feel.

Definitely don't quit - that's pretty poor advice, I think!