Doctoral Research in 100 Words

Are you doing doctoral research and want a valuable experience that is far harder (and even more rewarding) than it seems? Summarize your research in 100 words. I had this as a voluntary assignment, and cannot believe how many weeks of angst thinking about it with 3 straight hours working on it that it took. While I still have a lot of work to do (like analyze my data and actually start to write!), here is my first round:

Working Title:
Navigating Liminality: The Experience of Distance in Doctoral Education

100 Word Abstract:
This research explores the experiences of doctoral students who study at a distance and whose postgraduate activities involve passing through liminal¬†or troublesome periods in understanding concepts or processes. These thresholds commonly involve ontological or epistemological shifts, resulting in transformed ways of seeing one’s self and/or one’s research. The challenges posed through using technology in such doctoral supervision are often not acknowledged. Twenty-one interdisciplinary doctoral researchers from around the world were interviewed, with narrative inquiry as informed by grounded and actor-network approaches being used for the analysis. This research seeks to provide insights for tutors who engage in remote supervision.

Insights, encouragement, and gentle recommendations will be appreciated.

7 thoughts on “Doctoral Research in 100 Words

  1. That sounds very interesting Jeffrey. Amongst other things I tutor for the Open Uni (undergraduate) and would be really interested in your findings.

    1. I am interested in the findings as well; that is my #1 job for the spring! I think my data is very valuable, and have been taking notes along the way while engaging in the transcription.

      Thinking about this, it seems perhaps this 100-word challenge will develop as our work’s progress, or understanding of it, develops over time.

      Thanks for the comment and encouragement. This gives me another idea . . .


    1. Thanks for the feedback. I envision this developing as I start writing and analyzing the data. The encouragement I am getting for this process and for sharing it has certainly helped me continue to believe that my research may actually be valuable or helpful for somebody, somewhere. Nothing like the sense that research may actually help somebody do something (whether in theory or in practice)! I need to remember this when the times get dark and I feel I am working alone.


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