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Researcher Positionality in the Dissertation in Practice

Researcher Positionality in the Dissertation in Practice
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Author(s): Jess Smith (Baylor University, USA), Brooke Blevins (Baylor University, USA), Nicholas R. Werse (Baylor University, USA) and Sandra Talbert (Baylor University, USA)
Copyright: 2021
Pages: 21
Source title: Practice-Based and Practice-Led Research for Dissertation Development
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Robin Throne (Independent Researcher, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-6664-0.ch003


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This chapter explores first the role of researcher perspective in the research process, then the unique nuances of the researcher positionality in dissertations in practice, followed by a discussion of the advantages and limitations of the unique positionality assumed by dissertations in practice. This chapter concludes by noting the importance of constructing conceptual coherence between the implications of the scholarly-practitioner's positionality statement and the discussion of the dissertation's ethical considerations and limitations. The dissertation in practice, more so than with traditional Ph.D. dissertations, assumes that the researcher holds close personal connections to the research site, participants, and contexts. Far from envisioning the researcher as an objective outside observer, the dissertation in practice assumes that the researcher has a vested interest in solving the professional problem of practice within their place of employment in the presence of colleagues. For this reason, the full disclosure of the researcher's positionality becomes all the more important.

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