Episode 16

David D. Perrodin

My dear fellow applied linguistics researcher friends… At the end of Episode 15, I asked you to stay tuned for the next episode when I would share with you the challenges of keeping IT together. So, away we go….

Now, what is IT? And how can we keep IT together? No, I am not referring to Pennywise the Dancing Clown. I am talking about being well-prepared and organized, especially mentally and physically, for your PhD journey.

I am in the final year of my PhD program. Like most of my classmates, I have a lot of plates spinning between taking care of my family, working a full-time job and a part-time job, and pursuing a full-time research-oriented postgraduate degree. As you can imagine, I am starting to feel pressure to meet all the program requirements by the end of this year.

In addition to writing my dissertation, my program requires that we have three publications before graduation. Yes, three! The one major publication must be in an international Scopus indexed journal, and the two minor publications can be in national journals or conference proceedings.

A few months ago, I submitted one of the minor publications as a conference proceeding. I was recently notified that it should be published within the next couple of weeks. And just this morning, I received an email from an international publisher stating that my major publication in a Q1 Scopus indexed journal has been accepted and will be published soon. So only one minor publication to go, and it is in the works now.

Fortunately, my supervisor helped me create a plan at the beginning of my PhD journey. And he helps me stick to the plan. So at the end of this month, I will have completed my second minor publication. Then, I will begin writing my dissertation.

Sure, sometimes I am overwhelmed by everything I have to complete in a short time. But that’s all part of the fun of pursuing a PhD as an adult with an established life. We all have things going on in our lives. We have different family situations that we have to take care of, and at the same time, we have our jobs consuming most of the hours in a day.

I want to let you know that you can handle everything simultaneously with proper planning and preparation. I am of the opinion that if I face challenges and paradoxical issues in pursuit of a postgraduate degree, others in the same position may be facing similar issues. Sometimes life is challenging. Don’t be afraid to turn to your challenges or even your supervisor when you feel overwhelmed. Remember, you are not alone.

Stay tuned for the next episode of ‘From the Mind of a Developing Researcher,’ when I will share the challenges of being physically isolated from everyone in your PhD program. Stay tuned…

My Favorite References

Holliday, A. (2013). The struggle to teach English as an international language. Oxford University Press.

Jones, S. H., Adams, T. E., & Ellis, C. (Eds.). Handbook of autoethnography. Routledge.

Klevan, T., & Grant, A. (2022). An autoethnography of becoming a qualitative researcher: A dialogic view of academic development. Routledge.

Phillipson, R. (1992). Linguistic Imperialism. Oxford University Press.

Yazan, B., & Rudolph, N. (2018). Criticality, teacher identity, and (in)equity in English language teaching. Springer.

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