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Ashlea Kellner

A short vignette about maintaining contacts and gaining access to organisations to collect data. Access issues can be extremely challenging and disheartening, but the key is to remain open minded and flexible to change.

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Edited by Keith Townsend and Mark N.K. Saunders

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Kenneth Cafferkey

This vignette briefly discusses an altercation regarding a comma between a PhD student and a Professor at a first-year PhD progress review.

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Polly Black

This chapter looks at what happens when a student’s director of studies changes universities, and the consequent considerations around following or not following. This is the story of a student to whom this happened twice, and the upheavals that it entailed, not least starting over.

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Neve Isaeva

This is the story of a roller-coster journey of charging into a full search for finding my epistemology. It outlines my transformation from a person who was not sure about her own epistemology to becoming a strong advocator for every researcher to explicitly reflect on their own epistemology.

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Jennifer Kilroy

I finished my research project, but that isn’t the story. This chapter evokes a moment of self-doubt, followed swiftly by a personal affirmation that my life has no idle space. Research projects live in the mind at all times. This story tells of the moment in a car park before an All Ireland Gaelic football final where the research needed to take priority over all other priorities.

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Heather Short

This chapter examines how to find the truth during research. It begins by discussing what truth is, before exploring the difficulties encountered in the pursuit of this in research settings, particularly during the author’s PhD. Recommendations for other researchers which are drawn from this exploration are listed at the end of the chapter.

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Kiran Trehan, Alex Kevill and Jane Glover

This chapter illuminates the relationship between emotions, politics and disappointment in developing and maintaining research projects. The chapter elucidates the lived reality of developing research projects as an emotional endeavour. Using illustrations from the field, the dynamics that underpin research projects are explored. We conclude with reflections for future researchers.

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How to Keep Your Research Project on Track

Insights from When Things Go Wrong

Edited by Keith Townsend and Mark N.K. Saunders

Research can be a lonely path and there are myriad challenges and problems to face with any research project. In this research methods book, novice and experienced researchers tell stories of when things went wrong in their research projects. Drawing on real life experiences, researchers from post graduate research students to experienced professors will benefit from these insider insights, advice and lessons about the practical difficulties and how they may be addressed. The result is an engaging read and a helpful and reassuring guide to the research process. Arranged as a series of chapters interspersed with vignettes the researchers’ stories provide the reader with insights into different facets and stages of the research process from finding a supervisor thorough designing surveys and conducting interviews and analysing data, to re-writing and dealing with feedback. It will be invaluable for doctoral and more experienced researchers grappling with the realities of undertaking research.
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Ilenia Bregoli

In my vignette I introduce the process that led me to move from ‘pen and paper’ coding of interviews to CAQDAS software. This allowed me to become more efficient when coding qualitative interviews by reducing the number of duplications in my codes that existed when I was using pen and paper.