In December 2014 I held six exploratory interviews with participants in the PhD programme at the International Institute of Modern Letters (IIML) at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, to explore the relationships between the critical and creative components of the PhD as understood by these particular individuals. The results of these interviews are available in two papers.
“Opportunity, fixed points and the space in-between: the creative writing PhD at the International Institute of Modern Letters”, a 4000 word paper, is now available in the refereed Critical Papers section of the proceedings of the 2016 Conference of the Australasian Association of Writing Programs.
The full research report “Opportunity and Uncertainty: Supervisors, examiners and graduates describe the Critical/Creative Nexus in practice in the Creative Writing PhD at the International Institute of Modern Letters (University of Victoria, Wellington, New Zealand)” is available below.
Author: Lynn Jenner
Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
Key words: Critical/creative nexus, Creative Writing PhD, reflective practice, community of practice, craft-focused research, research question, critical component, writerly idea of critical work, learner agency.
In December 2014 I held six exploratory interviews with participants in the PhD programme at the International Institute of Modern Letters (IIML) at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, to explore the relationships between the critical and creative components of the PhD as understood by these particular individuals. The interviews show a range of opinions regarding the purpose of the critical component, its form, the assessment of the critical and creative components and the degree structure.
My aim for this research was to create a feedback loop of information about the critical/creative nexus from people who are members of the IIML community of practice. I hoped also to collect and share practical ideas from graduates, supervisors and examiners on how to work through or with the tensions surrounding the critical/creative nexus. In the interviews a number of suggestions were made that could prove useful to students and supervisors. Participants describe these in their own terms. I would go further towards pedagogical discourse and suggest that ‘learner agency’, or a socially mediated, considered form of confidence, is the meta-cognitive dimension around which these practical suggestions coalesce.
The purpose of this research report is to make available the whole content of the six interviews so that readers can investigate issues which might be of particular interest to them.
I have previously reported on practical suggestions made in the interviews in a conference paper titled “Opportunity, Fixed Points and the Space In-between: The Creative Writing PhD at the International Institute of Modern Letters (Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand)”. This paper is not available at the time of writing (February 2017) but will appear in the refereed section of the 2016 AAWP conference proceedings.
The full research report, containing a description of the context of the research, the research method, the interview data and my own reflections on the data, is HERE.
To download the research report as a PDF, click HERE.