Publication: PhD Training


An article that I wrote with my colleagues Adrienne Hobbs and Jackie S. McGloughlin has been published in GeoJournal. It is part of a Geojournal Special Issue entitled “Rethinking the PhD in Geography”, which examines international PhD programs in geography. Seventeen papers are included in this Special Issue which critique PhD programmes and examine the impact of neoliberalism on the PhD degree. Our article explores PhD training in Ireland, with specific reference to Maynooth University. The abstract is below and the full paper is available here.

Improving formal research training: developments at NUI Maynooth, Ireland

Abstract: As elsewhere, Irish universities are now actively rethinking the PhD degree and striving for improved student experiences and outcomes. We present here a student perspective on reform in the Irish system, using the case of the Department of Geography at the National University of Ireland Maynooth for illustration. Specifically we focus upon the introduction of compulsory and formal graduate education modules. We argue that formalised research training is worthwhile; however, we call attention to the importance of the student’s autonomy and stress the importance of maintaining flexibility for the individual researcher.