Signup date: 21 Dec 2009 at 4:44pm
Last login: 01 Feb 2014 at 5:15pm
Post count: 200
Mine was a similarly rigorous defence. Present were my two supervisors, we were linked to the third supervisor via a conference call to Australia, and two independent academics. Whereas it sounds like you had to submit a separate report of progress, our institution required submission of a chapter - they felt it was fairer to write & submit something which would eventually count towards the overall thesis, rather than having to write 13,000 additional words which may not be of use.
Other than that, it was very much the same - presentation & 1.5 hour grilling. It felt good that two people from an entirely different discipline were able to add their comments and encouragements & once it was over I could feel confident that the study was as robust as it could be.
It will indeed be interesting to find out about the experiences of others. Mine is a relatively 'new' university; I wonder if there are different approaches in older institutions...
Are your interviews going to cause difficulties to employers in any way? I only ask because it seems like there's tension in your post. If the interviews are not going to cause difficulty I should go to the chief exec., principal or head of the organisation & just ask if it's OK - they can always put something in writing.
I hope that's not too simplistic an answer, I feel maybe I'm missing something in your question!
Would a table help? It sounds like I had a similar experience when writing up the qualitative results from a survey; a table allows you to show heaps of information & demonstrate the repetitive elements visually without having to say the same thing over & over.
Hope that helps!
My proposal (within the discipline of education) was set at a limit of 750 words, though I understand that the university now allows 1000. The 750 included background, proposed methodology & method & a maximum of 6 key references. If there are absolutely no rules from your institution, I should keep the proposal as short as you can and emphasise the originality of your position.
I hope that helps, & good luck!
I guess it depends on whether your PhD is funded, and where you would stand with your current employer if you wanted to study full-time for three years. It is certainly feasible to work full-time and study part-time, obviously it just takes longer!
It also depends on how many times the paper is sent to other reviewers. Sometimes a revise & resubmit is sent to someone new the second time round; then they suggest further changes & so it keeps going. The speed and method of reviewing seems to vary significantly between journals.
I'm sure if, as metaB says, you do all that is asked you have a good chance.
This is how I would read it:
Proposed area of Research: the general field & background
Aim and Focus of the study: what do aim to achieve in the research
Context for the Research: where will your research fit in the current political, philosophical or practical climate
Research Methodology, including data collection and analysis: what is your underpinning philosophy & how do you aim to undertake the research
Research Skills: I guess this is your research experience
Indicative References/publications: speaks for itself!
The size limit is not surprising - I had to fit all of the above into 750 words for my proposal - since they are expecting you to be focused and concise from the outset. You may have a word limit of 80,000 for the whole thesis, but you'll find you need every one of them. There is no room for extraneous waffle!
Good luck with it & let us know how you get on. This is a great forum which has helped any one of us to keep going over the years!
Best of luck, Mog
I would suggest giving yourself two months from this stage. That might seem long but all those last minute jobs seem to take longer than you might expect. I was a whole Sunday afternoon & evening sorting out the final type setting & layout for example, and that was a long time after I started all the proof reading and editing. Then printing took another two evenings!
If you set yourself two months you may well finish early, and that always feels good!
Good luck! There is an end in sight.
Good morning! It's true that the part-time route is a very different animal to a full-time one, and it's a great shame that you know only of those who quit. I completed my PhD in 6 years while working as a full-time teacher in a further education college. A few months before submission I successfully applied for a research post within the NHS & then passed the PhD in May. I've changed the sign on my door to 'Dr. Mog'! I now have the freedom to do independent research within my new role, so though my job isn't in academia per se it does enable me to undertake academic research. I consider myself a very lucky & happy Mog!
I wish you equal success in your venture, it is worth it in the end!
It sounds like this is not an easy time for you. You are close to being an independent researcher so I wonder if your supervisors are stepping back to encourage you towards that independence. I had a similar experience and it did feel a little alarming, but on reflection I'm sure they were giving me the confidence to fly solo. After all, you will be the only one who can defend your work at the viva.
Keep going! You're so nearly there and it is a marvelous feeling to finish.
Best of luck, Mog :)
Sounds normal to me! Doing a PhD is an apprenticeship so you learn how to do these things as part of the process. Talk to fellow students and go to lots of conferences to learn about the topic but also how to present; work out which presentations are good and why.
Read. All the time! It helps you find and polish your own writing style. Don't try to compare your knowledge or progress with other people, this is uniquely your learning experience and it simply won't compare.
This forum is great and has supported loads of us so do keep dropping in.
Good luck, Mog :)
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