It was a delight to be part of Dr Shelli Ann Garland’s podcast series A Dash of SaLT. Shelli is someone I admire, regard, and love. We met when we both began PhD study in the School of Education, Trinity College, Dublin. Shelli was on the fast track full-time, I am still meandering the slow path, but one advantage is that I can learn from the work Shelli did for her PhD. In particular her representation of the dispositions of volunteers, which helped me greatly get my thinking straight about what TeachMeet particpants have telling me about their involvement.
Zooming out from that part of our shared exeriences, in doing this podcast, I realised and appreciated the care and delicacy with which Shelli curated this process from start to finish. I had noticed when listening her other podcasts to date that she is a Big Picture interviewer with a sharp ear and an empathic x-ray vision. For me, big picture viewpoint is a good thing at two levels – the topic within the PhD, and the PhD itself within real life. The topic (for me, TeachMeet, whose niche I am trying to tease out) is central, but it has to be viewed as part of a broader space-time contiuum. And the PhD, which can attempt to become central to the life in which it has embedded itself, is only one part of that life. In the five years to date of this PhD (with one more to go), real life for me has included many of the ‘momentous events’ happening in parallel. Shelli gets all this woven together, not an easy task.
So if you listen and enjoy, send a hat tip tweet to @shelli_garland
ps – I have not blogged much lately, WordPress is evolving so fast it is making me dizzy.
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