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Full time Phd with kids

  • 21-02-2021 3:40pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 196 ✭✭ Skibunny77


    Have an opportunity to apply for a full time PHD scholarship in social work. I have four children and will be able to complete bulk of the PhD from home. My question is: am I essentially committing myself to no life for the next few years?! I'm academic and interested, my only reservations relate to time and not wanting my kids to have a very stressed mother. Any advice from other parents welcome


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,171 ✭✭✭✭ fits


    What do you hope to gain with a PhD? Will it improve your prospects significantly?


  • Registered Users Posts: 196 ✭✭ Skibunny77


    fits wrote: »
    What do you hope to gain with a PhD? Will it improve your prospects significantly?

    Genuine interest in topic, would help influence policy. Not particularly looking for additional prospects, working from home would suit my lifestyle over next few years..


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,014 ✭✭✭ brainboru1104


    I know people who've done a PhD while working full time. So it's possible I would say


  • Registered Users Posts: 16,892 ✭✭✭✭ kippy


    Skibunny77 wrote: »
    Genuine interest in topic, would help influence policy. Not particularly looking for additional prospects, working from home would suit my lifestyle over next few years..

    Whats in it for you and ultimately your family. You say you have an interest in the topic and it would help influence policy. Do you need to do a PHD to actually learn more about the topic? Can you look at other options?
    Is it possible to influence policy without one?


  • Registered Users Posts: 23,263 ✭✭✭✭ Tom Dunne


    Skibunny77 wrote: »
    Have an opportunity to apply for a full time PHD scholarship in social work. I have four children and will be able to complete bulk of the PhD from home. My question is: am I essentially committing myself to no life for the next few years?! I'm academic and interested, my only reservations relate to time and not wanting my kids to have a very stressed mother. Any advice from other parents welcome

    Stress can be managed, and you owe it to yourself and your family to do so.

    If you treat the PhD like a full-time job, that's the question you have to answer - can you fit 40+ hours around your family commitments? Also factor in conferences, travel and the like.

    On the question of having no life, it is in your own interest to ensure you have a life. One of the big things is managing the guilt - when you are working on your PhD, you'll be guilty you aren't with your family. When you are with your family, you'll feel guilty you aren't working on your PhD. :D

    I know of a woman who has five kids (for some reason I'm assuming you are a woman) and a full time job in academia who recently completed her viva successfully, so it can be done.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 9,130 ✭✭✭ Murph_D


    kippy wrote: »
    Whats in it for you and ultimately your family. You say you have an interest in the topic and it would help influence policy. Do you need to do a PHD to actually learn more about the topic? Can you look at other options?
    Is it possible to influence policy without one?

    A PhD is a formidable undertaking and not to be taken lightly. Most people I know, myself included, experienced long periods of despair and despondency. There are times when you seriously doubt yourself, and when the size of the task ahead, especially when writing it up, appears insurmountable. That said, the sense of achievement when complete is immense, because of the knowledge that you’ve made it through the setbacks (and not everyone does). So think hard about it. It can be extremely stressful and if you are doing it properly, it will consume your life for most of the duration, with the exception of the ‘honeymoon period’ first year. Talk to your potential supervisor, and if you can, talk to people who’ve been through the process in the department you’re considering joining.

    Good luck!


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