The musings of an Aboriginal researcher: disrupting the thesis template

Hogarth, Melitta (2018) The musings of an Aboriginal researcher: disrupting the thesis template. In: Annual International Australian Association for Research in Education Conference 2018 (AARE 2018), 3-6 Dec 2018, Sydney, Australia.

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The thesis template is the guiding document for higher degree researchers to assist their transition into research. But what happens when the template does not mirror your ways of knowing, being and doing? How do we speak back to an institutionalised structure that advocates support and yet, feels like a boa constrictor squeezing you into conformity? If I was to embark on and isolate myself for such an extended length of time, it needed to be a reflection of me. I have never seen myself as an activist. I like to sit back and observe my surroundings and ascertain the landscape before inserting myself. In my PhD, I introduced each chapter with a narrative using the metaphor, ‘Research is an ocean’. In this paper, I share a selection of those entries to illustrate the struggles with the chasms of identity and dominant social norms and how I navigated the undulating mountains and valleys of policy discourse on the land prior to entering my boat. I provide insight to the waves of achievement and the troughs of isolation as a PhD candidate. Articulation of the ethical rogue waves that saw my data disappear below the waves is presented. This paper aims to encourage Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander HDR students to further take up the challenge to disrupt the thesis and to challenge the institutional structures so that the thesis template can start reflecting our voices rather than making us fit the box.

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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: No
Item Status: Live Archive
Faculty / Department / School: Current - College for Indigenous Studies, Education and Research
Date Deposited: 08 Jan 2019 05:55
Last Modified: 16 Jan 2019 01:51
Uncontrolled Keywords: resistant discourses, higher degree research, Indigenous students
Fields of Research : 16 Studies in Human Society > 1608 Sociology > 160807 Sociological Methodology and Research Methods
13 Education > 1301 Education Systems > 130103 Higher Education
13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130301 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education

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