Thursday, February 14, 2013

Staying sane in insane spaces; waiting for a phd to be marked

I'm beginning to suffer post phd submission blues.

Having had serial anticlimatic events involving the submission of the penultimate draft, then the the resubmissions of the same. Then finally the point at which I actually meet a deadline to submit the thesis to be marked, I now have the anxiety associated with it being marked and possibly being found wanting. This is not a hold your breath moment.

The amount of energy i am used to pushing into writing every day comes to a stand still.
I know i should be turning this into academic articles but my academic voice has deserted me.

In the what happens in HDR examination flow charts, is an indication of 6 weeks with external examiners and a round process of approximately 10 weeks.
Meantime, the FAQ section regarding the examination process at my learning institution it tells me that:
the average examination takes between 4 and 5 months (from the time you submit the examination copy of the thesis until you are advised about the final outcome). Please be aware that your examination may take longer than this.
While the University does its best to minimize the length of examinations, the process is not entirely within our control.
Not all examiners start the examination at the same time, and not all complete it at the same time.

They go on to outline reasons for lengthy examinations:

Examiners not nominated at time of submission
Examiners are tardy
Time of year of submission
Examiners travelling or being unwell.
Thesis exceeds word limit (50,000 words for masters; 100,000 for doctoral)
Thesis of poor quality

And having been in contact with the HDR office, i have been told it's a timing, travelling, and illness concern.
I still cant help but assume they did not find it a bodice ripping, never to be put down type of read.
So I'm a bit disappointed.

Today is day 124, and I am still checking my emails with this semi fear of actually having a message their that i both would and would not want to open.
I wonder if they have thought this through.
Maybe a phone call, maybe checking out if you have others around... wonder what the protocol is when the news isnt good?

Meantime i have immersed myself in hobbies, reminiscent of occupational therapy, I've made a quilt...a block a day

And still wondering what to do with myself, today i made a paper crane out of the first page of chapter 6

Unable to write to disseminate my findings, i find myself wishing the pretties might still fly.


  1. So much feeling for where you are now. The limboland of waiting, hoping, wondering...

    I submitted my thesis 6 weeks ago and am awaiting a viva date, which I may not get for another month or two...

    In the meantime, there are lots of things I could be doing, but difficult to build up any enthusiasm. I have dug out my lace pillow and made a couple of small pieces - and I seem to have a production line in scarfs - but the writing I want to do - and probably should be doing - is just not being addressed.

    Stay sane!

  2. We share a common space. Best wishes with your viva prep :)

  3. Mary Pierre6:28 PM

    You would be called a PhD degree holder without getting the actual proof of it, and waiting for a phd to be marked can really be stressing. Good thing that your journey is about to end rather than worrying about where to find thesis help desk that can assist you on your journey. Anyway, I do hope everything went well with your degree.