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 6: Whose doctorate is it anyway? How students and supervisors can work well together

Carol Atkinson and Keith Townsend


Completing a doctorate can involve a variety of routes, not all of them easy. In this chapter, the authors describe how students can work with their supervisors to move the doctoral project towards an easy track. For example, being a self-starter and taking the initiative from the outset by arranging meetings with supervisors makes for a solid beginning to the PhD journey. Maintaining regular contact is also advised, as is establishing a good relationship through being honest about the help required. Managing diverse feedback is encouraged too, not least as a great preparation for a career in publishing. The authors share their thoughts on reading widely, on getting involved in academia, and on publishing research results. The chapter ends with a useful summary of the key learning.

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