• That way madness lies: Doctoral dispositions to critical feedback

    Carlo Morelli (see profile)
    Digital humanities, Research, Methodology, Universities and colleges--Graduate work, Criticism, Criticism, Textual
    Item Type:
    doctoral training, Feedback and assessment, graduate research training, research skills, veneration of feeling
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    Successful doctoral researchers must adopt dispassionate receptivity to critical feedback. The true doctoral scholar’s passion for their studies remains undiminished by negative feedback because they remain objectively remote; their personal feelings, self-confidence and identity are all totally divorced from the severity of peer and faculty feedback. As this essay argues, the true scholar is overjoyed by discovery of flaws. Too often, novice doctoral researchers lack the self-confidence to embrace this impartial mindset (Noonan, 2015). Their relative insecurity and lack of assuredness causes the burgeoning doctoral scholar to erroneously conflate their need for positive affirmation with the feedback they receive on submitted work (Noonan, 2015). When this feedback is critical; when students receive a low grade or when their theses or claims are trounced, novice doctoral researchers take this feedback personally (Noonan, 2015). By contrast, true scholars accept feedback—especially harsh, critical rebuttals—with convivial equanimity (Noonan, 2015). The successful doctoral researcher enthusiastically thirsts after criticism: they crave harsh, critical, vigorous rebuttals; they perceive the main objective of their research is to prove it wrong. Indeed, the aforementioned analogy to scientists is apt: Philosophy is the mother of science; thus, educational scholars and particle physicists are homoplastic—they share many common traits. Thus, the superordinate goal of any researcher should be the same as any scientist: to attempt to disprove their thesis.
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    1 year ago
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