Succeeding at Writing a Theoretical PhD Thesis

My dissertation contains no interview or survey data, even though I was a journalist and should be good at interviewing. This option – a theoretical study – appeared to be a relatively rare one among my PhD colleagues. It certainly has its own perks: you don’t need to worry about travel plans and other fieldwork problems, and your friends will probably be jealous of you, because to them you are just sitting in a library all day.

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The Challenges of Research Access and Accessible Research

My experiences with the US education system and my positioning in American society as a biracial woman of color, who is often identified as Black, have shaped and influenced my research interests and how I approach my work. As a researcher, I am interested in the concept of intelligence; it is a quality often viewed as necessary for success in virtually all facets of life — social, economic, political, and educational. Rooted in a history deeply tied to eugenic, classist, and racialized discourses, intelligence and its study have long offered scientific ways of making sense of human diversity and of classifying individuals in terms of ‘ability.’

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A PhD and The Art of Procrastination

In a classic PhD-style move, I have attempted to analyse why this particular choice of work avoidance has stuck with me longer than some other techniques. Probably unsurprisingly the “intensive kitchen-cleaning” habit I developed during my undergraduate finals didn’t last too long; definitely a good thing reflecting on the amount of cleaning fluids I used to use, and no doubt also to inhale, I have come to the conclusion that baking is, in some way, an attempt to assuage guilt about my lack of productivity by engaging in another activity which also has a final “end product”… albeit one less likely to be accepted by an academic journal.

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Survey: State School Teachers Say Much of Their Work Is Meaningless

My recent survey of more than 800 teachers from across England investigates what schools can do to improve teachers’ job satisfaction. The survey report compares working conditions in England’s state and independent schools. I wanted to identify what contributes to teachers’ job satisfaction, and what each sector can learn from the other in order to improve working conditions and address the national teacher retention crisis.

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Painting Your “Unconscious” Voice : A Look Through a Researcher’s Art Book

I am not a painter. I am not a photographer either. However, the PhD research experience was so intense for me that I had to find a way of getting out all the thoughts, feelings and stress of writing a PhD on Higher Education (HE) in the Gaza Strip. Painting was one of the things I enjoyed when I was very little. For years it disappeared from my life as my voice became silenced, witnessing and listening to narratives of oppression on a daily basis, of which I was a part. In this art book, I share some of the sketches I produced through the process of researching HE under occupation in Gaza.

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