Research into doctoral student learning has focused on stages of the learning journey (Wisker, Morris, Cheng, Masika, Warnes, Lilly, Trafford & Robinson, 2010), communities (Wisker, G., Robinson, G., Trafford, V., Warnes, M., & Creighton, E., 2003; Vekkaila, Pyhältö & Lonka, 2013; Wisker & Morris, 2010; Holbrook, Dally, Cantwell, Scevak, Bourke & Lovat, 2003) and doctoral ‘orphans' (Wisker & Robinson, 2012). Building on that earlier work, this research is concerned with how doctoral students identify and deal with two kinds of blockage in their research learning journey: problems with the supervisor, and a struggle with writing or articulation. Students report silencing, loss of confidence and paralysis in their work with each of these blockages, but offer evidence of strategies which can overcome the problems so that they move on in their research and writing. Identifying and tackling the issues with changed behaviours and ownership of their work are, I argue, often evidence of conceptual threshold crossings (Wisker & Kiley, 2009). Re-scrutiny of the data from three earlier projects and new data gathered for this project involving face-to-face and email interviews offers insights into the ways in which doctoral students identify blockages and meet and cross conceptual thresholds in their work. It indicates how they evidence and articulate their awareness of moving forward to the achievement of their doctoral learning journeys and identities as researchers and writers, through ownership, agency and articulation.
|Title of host publication||Threshold Concepts in Practice|
|Editors||R. Land, J.H.F. Meyer, M.T. Flanagan|
|Place of Publication||Rotterdam|
|Number of pages||14|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Apr 2016|
|Name||Educational Futures: Rethinking Theory and Practice|