We are delighted to share this contribution from Mary Jane Curry who is an associate professor in the Warner Graduate School of Education and Human Development at the University of Rochester, New York. She is co-author or co-editor of six books, including Global academic publishing: Policies, perspectives and pedagogies (2018), Language, literacy, and learning in STEM education: Research methods and perspectives from applied linguistics (2014), A scholar’s guide to getting published in English: Critical choices and practical strategies (2013) and with six doctoral students is currently writing “An A-W of academic literacy: A reference for graduate students” (2021). With Theresa Lillis, Mary Jane co-edits the book series Studies in Knowledge Production and Participation (Multilingual Matters).
Like marathon runners, students at the end stages of writing the doctoral dissertation/thesis often struggle with exhaustion and motivation. While I have never run a marathon, 20 years ago I completed my dissertation, and have thought deeply about how to support doctoral students. Recently I asked some former advisees—now graduated—to identify the strategies and practices that helped them. Like many students in our school of education, all of them had children/families, many were part-time students, and most were working, even the full-time students. Some also cared for aging parents and other relatives. Two students had to move away from Rochester for family reasons before finishing. Continue reading