Category Archives: academic writing

PhD by publication

I’ve been asked a few times recently about the text that accompanies published papers for the PhD by publication. So who am I to refuse? This is a slide show that I use to raise some key questions that people … Continue reading

Posted in academic writing, examiner, journal article, journal publication, PhD by publication, viva | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

the joys of creative re-description

Working with data is a creative process. Yes I know data word has got to be systematic and thorough. You can’t make up your results. But working with data is also always about interpretation. And interpretation, at some point, is … Continue reading

Posted in academic writing, creativity, data, data analysis, redescription | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

a thesis (often) needs A Big Idea

Everyone knows that the thesis has to make a contribution. No probs. Well yes, there are actually probs. At the end of the research it can be hard to find one. Contribution, where is it? You’re exhausted from generating all … Continue reading

Posted in academic writing, argument, Big Idea, contribution, thesis | 5 Comments

writing targets – word count, time spent, or chunks?

Many people swear by writing goals. Perhaps it’s all about time. Timers allocate a given number of minutes for each writing session – say thirty minutes each morning, or a couple of hours two or three times a week. Or … Continue reading

Posted in academic writing, chunking, productivity, targets, writing in chunks | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

don’t give your thesis examiner a bad first impression

My hunch is that I’m a lot like most thesis examiners. When we get sent a thesis we often don’t plunge in straight away. We have a bit of a look around first. That’s not an unusual response to a … Continue reading

Posted in academic writing, examiner, proofreading, thesis, thesis abstract | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

safety and research

Every now and then you read papers* by someone who has experienced violence during their fieldwork. Karen Ross, for instance, wrote about sexual violence in the field. She described the ways in which protecting herself from harassment and assault meant … Continue reading

Posted in academic writing, ethics, ethics of care, trauma | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

what is “measured” writing?

I was recently part of a small discussion on another social media platform where someone reported that their supervisor had said their writing wasn’t sufficiently “measured’. Without seeing the actual work it was pretty hard to understand what the supervisor … Continue reading

Posted in academic writing, argument, boosters, disciplines, hedges, measured writing, nominalisation, passive voice, stance, thingification | Tagged , , , , | 9 Comments