The Routledge Doctoral Student's Companion: Getting to Grips with Research in Education and the Social Sciences

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It is clear that, in the contemporary world, a wide range of practitioners in diverse professional settings need to study beyond master level. Students across the world are choosing doctorates not only to become career academics, but to go beyond the academic arena, in order to make a personal and educational, as well as an economic investment, in their workplace careers and their lives. However,s for many doctoral students, both full-time and part-time, navigating the literature and key issues surrounding doctoral research can often be a challenge.

Bringing together contributions from key names in the international education arena, The Routledge Doctoral Student's Companion is a comprehensive guide to the literature surrounding doctorates, bringing together questions, challenges and solutions normally scattered over a wide range of texts. Accessible and wide-ranging, it covers all doctoral students need to know about:

What doctoral education means in contemporary practice

forming an identity and knowledge as a doctoral student

the big questions that run throughout doctoral practice

becoming a researcher

the skills needed to conduct research

integrating oneself into a scholarly community.

Offering an extensive and rounded guide to undertaking doctoral research in a single volume, this book is essential reading for all full-time and part-time doctoral students in education and related disciplines.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780415484121
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 6/2/2010
  • Series: Companions for PhD and DPhil Research Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 446
  • Sales rank: 1,131,347
  • Product dimensions: 6.80 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Pat Thomson is Professor of Education at the University of Nottingham, and an Adjunct Professor at the University of South Australia and a Visiting Professor at Deakin University, Victoria, Australia.

Melanie Walker is Professor of Higher Education at the University of Nottingham, and is also Extraordinary Professor at the University of the Western Cape, South Africa.

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Table of Contents

List of figures ix

List of tables x

Notes on contributors xi

Part 1 Introduction Why The Doctoral Companions? P. Thomson M. Walker 1

1 Doctoral education in context The changing nature of the doctorate and doctoral students P. Thomson M. Walker 9

Part 2 Becoming and being a doctoral student M. Walker P. Thomson 27

2 Ignorance in educational research How not knowing shapes new knowledge J. Wagner 31

3 When qualitative meets quantitative Conversations about the nature of knowledge E. McWilliam J. Tan 43

4 Interdisciplinarity and transdisciplinarity Diverse purposes of research: theory-oriented, situation-oriented, policy-oriented D. Gasper 52

5 The necessity and violence of theory S. J. Ball 68

6 Bringing theory to doctoral research K. N. Gulson R. J. Parkes 76

7 Seeking the single thread The Conceptual Quest F. Su J. Nixon B. Adamson 85

8 Theory and narrative in the production of knowledge J. Barr 96

9 Making sense of supervision Deciphering feedback A. Paré 107

10 Entering the gates of the elect Obtaining the doctorate in education in South Africa C. Soudien 116

11 Weaving the threads of doctoral research journeys J. Wellington 128

Part 3 Coming to terms with research practice M. Walker P. Thomson 143

12 It's been said before and we'll say it again - research is writing P. Thomson B. Kamler 149

13 Constructing research questions: focus, methodology and theorisation J. Pryor 161

14 Research questions What's worth asking and why? A. Brown 172

15 'There is no golden key' Overcoming problems with data analysis in qualitative research H. Colley 183

16 Dealing with data analysis A.-M. Bathmaker 200

17 Researching with large datasets: learning to think big when small is beautiful A. Noyes 213

18 Doing data analysis S. Gorard 221

19 Argumentation and the doctoral thesis: theory and practice M. McLean 231

20 Writing research M. Piantanida N. B. Garman 244

21 'Guilty knowledge' The (im)possibility of ethical security in social science research K. Williams 256

22 Dangerous reflexivity Rigour, responsibility and reflexivity in qualitative research W. S. Pillow 270

23 Emotions and being a doctoral student C. Herman 283

Part 4 Making a contribution to knowledge M. Walker P. Thomson 295

24 Quality agendas and doctoral work The tacit, the new agendas, the changing contexts L. Yates 299

25 Generating practitioner knowledge through practitioner action research Moving from local to public knowledge G. L. Anderson K. Herr 311

26 Coyote and Raven talk about equivalency of other/ed knowledges in research P. Cole P. O'Riley 323

27 Knowledge in context Whose knowledge and for what context? Q. Gu 335

28 Open access and the ongoing transformation of scholarly publishing A guide for doctoral students P. Lucas J. Willinsky 344

29 Inner university, knowledge workers and liminality T. Szkudlarek 356

30 Global students for global education research? I. Menter J. Da Silveira Duarte R. Gorur 368

31 The impact of research on education policy The relevance for doctoral researchers B. Lingard 377

32 Last words Why doctoral study? P. Thomson M. Walker 390

Index 403

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