How to Keep your Doctorate on Track
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How to Keep your Doctorate on Track

Insights from Students’ and Supervisors’ Experiences

Edited by Keith Townsend, Mark N.K. Saunders, Rebecca Loudoun and Emily A. Morrison

The path of a doctoral student can feel challenging and isolating. This guide provides doctoral students with key ideas and support to kick-start a doctoral journey, inspire progress and complete their thesis or dissertation. Featuring observations from experienced supervisors, as well as the reflections of current and recent postgraduate researchers, this intimate and entertaining book offers vital insights into the critical moments in any doctoral experience.
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Chapter 4: ‘I want to do it because I want to do it’: boarding flight PhD

Jemma J. Saunders


‘I want to do it because I want to do it.’ Thus spoke Amelia Earhart, the celebrated aviatrix whose ambition was ultimately her downfall. Thus did I write at the end of the personal statement I recently submitted as part of my application to undertake a part-time PhD. Which I’m now starting in two weeks. Writing this now and reflecting on Earhart’s mysterious disappearance in 1937 (during an attempt to circumnavigate the globe by air) I realise that choosing to quote her could be perceived as a little ominous and perhaps rather bolshy. Let me be frank: while I am knowingly embarking on a voyage with numerous uncertainties, it is with a definite goal in mind and a challenge that, after much thought, I’ve concluded I’m entitled to attempt.

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