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Taming the tiger of the EdD together: the challenges of the professional doctorate in education

Taming the tiger of the EdD together: the challenges of the professional doctorate in education

Jameson, Jill ORCID: 0000-0002-9545-8078 (2011) Taming the tiger of the EdD together: the challenges of the professional doctorate in education. In: 2nd International Conference on Professional Doctorates, 20-21 April 2010, John McIntyre Conference Centre, Edinburgh. (Unpublished)

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The challenges of part-time professional doctoral study for mature students on Education Doctorate (EdD) programmes are considerable. Students may sometimes feel they constantly have to cope with a fiercely demanding situation, riding a ‘tiger’ of combined professional duties, academic assignments and research, in which the ‘complementary and contradictory’ burdens of a complex identity as a ‘student/researcher/practitioner’ (Fenge, 2010) threaten to overwhelm them. The doctoral requirements of the ‘taught’ elements of the first two years of study are, however, facilitated by the cohort delivery approach, in which a group of professional students meet together regularly for lectures, study weekends and writing workshops. As Taylor observes, the ‘sense of group identity and camaraderie’ characteristic of the professional doctoral cohort may be more appealing to students than the pursuit of relatively self-driven lonely study as a part-time PhD research student who meets only occasionally with a supervisor (Taylor, 2008:68).

The combination of academic scholarship, research and applied professional practice on the doctoral programme is also an enabler of success, as many students respond readily to the opportunity to carry out a relevant and empowering research study linked directly to their specialist role as an employee in the workplace and as a member of a professional community (Taylor and Maxwell, 2004; Taylor, 2008; Taysum, 2007). Furthermore, the ‘taught’, formally structured and timetabled nature of professional doctorate programmes is both convenient and appropriate for part-time mature working professionals with busy lives and families. Such students benefit from the opportunity to plan their studies realistically in advance alongside professional commitments over several years, working steadily towards completion in a structured way, as Taylor discusses (2008:68). Good on-line and physical library, supervisory and administrative support are also essential elements that aid students towards successful completion of the doctorate: continuing improvements in 24/7 online access to journals, databases, study guides and other internet-based resources have, for example, greatly facilitated additional remote study by doctoral students during leisure hours and holidays.

Item Type: Conference or Conference Paper (Other)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Doctoral study; doctorate; professional doctorate; education; social sciences doctoral study
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Education, Health & Human Sciences
Faculty of Education, Health & Human Sciences > School of Education (EDU)
Faculty of Education, Health & Human Sciences > Institute for Lifecourse Development > Centre for Professional Workforce Development
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Last Modified: 17 Jan 2022 16:18

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