Is your university enforcing hard deadlines for finishing dissertations? Are you getting any signals from your university about what might be ahead for you? Has your advisor become more critical of your work?
Every day I talk with dissertation clients who are trying hard to finish their doctoral degree. This week several people sounded a similarly unsettling concern.
Two people in particular think their advisors are being less than forthcoming. One person over the past seven years has had an emotional personal life with severe physical struggles but has tried to make progress toward her degree. With her advisor’s becoming newly critical of her writing, this person thinks she is being pushed out. Another person has had two extensions and fears that he can’t get a third. He, too, has begun to receive less positive feedback about his writing from his advisor.
Clearly, statistics on completion rates within different departments are being scrutinized more closely. Some clients believe that their universities are actively pushing faculty to advise students to reconsider their plans for finishing their degrees.
As one client said, “My department is putting the screws to people who are taking too long because the numbers might scare away the new students the department wants to attract.”
Have you seen or experienced a shift in your department’s attitude toward the time it’s taking you to finish? Have you seen anything to suggest that some faculty members are choosing to undercut the work of long-time graduate students?
I would appreciate hearing your thoughts on the enforcement of deadlines and also on finishing the dissertation.
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