A co/autoethnography of peer support and PhDs: being, doing, and sharing in academia

McPhail-Bell, Karen, and Redman-MacLaren, Michelle Louise (2019) A co/autoethnography of peer support and PhDs: being, doing, and sharing in academia. The Qualitative Report, 24 (5). 12.

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Abstract

As doctoral students, we were well aware of the social, cultural, and economic isolation experienced by many students working towards a PhD. In this paper, we provide an account of an informal peer support model that assisted us to successfully complete our PhDs. We used co/autoethnography to write into each other’s story, seeking to improve our research practice through creative reflection. Data included over 215 emails generated through our “weekly check-ins” during our PhDs, for a period of over 18 months. Following the iterative nature of co/autoethnography, we generated further data through collaborative analysis and reflexive, creative writing. Analysis involved each of us conducting inductive analysis of the data separately, followed by a collaborative process of checking and co-identifying themes, and collaborative writing of the co/ autoethnography. We identified three major themes in the data: Being an Academic, Doing Academia, and Sharing in Academia. We continue to transform through the co/autoethnography and lay bare our experience of peer support for the purpose of supporting others undertaking a PhD, including ways to approach writing (or support writing), and ways to navigate the corporate university setting.

Item ID: 58446
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2160-3715
Keywords: co/autoethnography, PhD, peer support, mentoring, critical reflection, higher degree research, doctoral, reflective journaling
Copyright Information: © 2019: Karen McPhail-Bell, Michelle Redman-MacLaren, and Nova Southeastern University.
Date Deposited: 21 Jan 2020 21:08
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111799 Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920499 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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