A brief respite from PhD writing to reflect on the section I’ve just completed. Some people see the Ethical Issues section as a bolt on, something that you have to pay lip service to. I disagree strongly, and whilst I was pleased that I got the ethical approval through first time through, this simply confirmed what I intended to do.
Now that I’m writing the ethical part of the thesis, I’m able to look back at what I intended to so, and what I have done (so far). I’m pleased to note that all the guidelines that I said I would follow I have done. I’ve gone back to basics, and used four principles described by Denscombe in the book I’ve been using for nearly ten years now as the bible for small-scale research.
I’ve also balanced this with some thoughts by David Gray about ethical issues specifically relating to action research, my chosen research methodology.
Overall, the thesis word count is now hitting 11% of my overall target, I know word count isn’t everything, it’s quality not quantity of words after all but this little-by-little approach works for me. I’m also working even at this early stage to identify an external examiner for the dreaded viva, though it’s probably eighteen months away. I’m working with my supervisor, and we have shared some initial thoughts.
I am probably still behind, on my ideal schedule, by about six weeks at a rough guess, and being realistic in the next week I’ve got so much going on that it’s going to be hard to catch up anytime soon. But I do have a good long break planned in December, which should help me get back on track.