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Drowning in the shallows: an Australian study of the PhD experience of wellbeing

Beasy, K ORCID: 0000-0002-5998-1419, Emery, S and Crawford, JA ORCID: 0000-0002-2191-6216 2019 , 'Drowning in the shallows: an Australian study of the PhD experience of wellbeing' , Teaching in Higher Education , pp. 1-21 , doi: 10.1080/13562517.2019.1669014.

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The number of students undertaking PhD studies is growing substantially; however, recent research indicates that doctoral students experience poor wellbeing outcomes during candidature. A study of doctoral student experiences at a regional Australianuniversity (n = 222) explored some of the challenges that PhD students experience during their studies. Doctoral study requires deep sustained engagement to successfully contribute to a scholarly field, yet findings suggested that many PhD students experienced shallow supports, which they perceived as insufficient to meet their candidature needs. PhD student experiences are visualised through Bronfenbrenner’s bioecological systems modeland the authors draw upon Bauman’s liquid modernity to trouble impacts of contemporary accountability and performative practices in postgraduate research. The authors propose that liquid institutional support encourages PhD student success to rest largely on self-navigation, individual resourcefulness and the ability to locate anchoring ports.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Beasy, K and Emery, S and Crawford, JA
Keywords: higher education, ecological model, qualitative, wellbeing, PhD candidate experience
Journal or Publication Title: Teaching in Higher Education
Publisher: Routledge
ISSN: 1356-2517
DOI / ID Number: 10.1080/13562517.2019.1669014
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© 2019 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group

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