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  1. #1
    Hille is offline Registered User
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    Thumbs up Question about PHD through publication

    Good Morning,

    A relative wrote a book about a true adventure. Is there anyway this can be applied to a Graduate or PHD program US or out of country.

    Thanks for thoughts on this.

  2. #2
    Neuhaus is offline Registered User
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    PhD by publication is not a clear cut process. Only a handful of schools offer it and the only info we have seen on this board has been from people who, basically, didn't succeed in it.

    You don't just show up at a school and say "Hey, I wrote a book, gimme a doctorate."

    With PhD by publication you're looking at a volume of published works in acceptable peer reviewed journals. From what I understand what constitutes "acceptable" varies from school to school but can be a high bar. Entire bodies of works in peer reviewed journals have been written off during this process because they didn't appear in a journal held in high enough esteem.

    Then, with all of the work, the candidate writes a paper that ties it all together and explains how this contributes to the field.

    I think there is a reasonable claim to be made that pursuing a research only doctorate is a more straightforward path. Your friend is certainly able to contact the schools that offer these programs and get an idea where they would stand. But it doesn't sound like it would be sufficient.

    And there are no PhD by publication programs in the U.S. that are accredited by any USDOE recognized body to my knowledge at this time.
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  3. #3
    Kizmet is offline Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hille View Post
    . . . Is there anyway . . .
    I'm guessing the answer is that it could conceivably be a component in a dissertation but perhaps not a large component. After all, if it was that easy then every novelist in the world would have a PhD.

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  4. #4
    FTFaculty is offline Registered User
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    There are schools where a book might form the basis for a PhD by Publications, a few in the UK, typically not the highest ranked schools; for example, the former polytechnics and glass plate schools offer some routes for outside candidates where one might be able to use a book. Typically, though, you're looking at 4+ pubs in peer-reviewed journals comprising at least some element of quantitative research and a cohesive body of research, not just a scattering of unrelated articles like my (currently, hopefully not forever) substandard academic publishing record. In other words, generally, you need a body of research that goes where no one has gone before, covering some topic that advances knowledge, and it needs to be tied together with a writing that summarizes everything, does an extensive literature review, and makes an excellent case that what you've done is original and at least relatively important to your field.

    My guess is this is why many who write here about experiences with attempting to get a PhD by Publications through have failed, because they just had some articles and thought that should do it. No, it has to be focused, progressive research that moves the field forward by some measurable amount--essentially, the same as a traditional PhD dissertation that makes it through review. Typically, mid career academics who don't yet possess a doctorate are in the sweet spot for these opportunities, people who have a legitimate academic publication record.

    A book about a "true adventure" does not sound like it would fit even the single book only paradigm, though. Academic research is a very particular thing, it takes some time to get the hang of it. Here's my story: I started attending conferences when I was just a small college adjunct teaching for three or four different schools, scraping together as many classes as I could, trying to get the experience to slide into full time academia. An area department chair told me: "You need some research experience or you won't make it into academia." So started checking online to figure out what research was, saw some examples, then found out about some conferences in the general area and started working on the basics of articles, which I then presented at a couple conferences. Then volunteered to review papers for a journal, and learned more there going over others' work. From the time I first presented an article at a conference to the time I actually got an article published in a peer reviewed journal was three years. That took a lot of work and rejection and some help from a more seasoned academic. It's not like writing an adventure book, it's very different stuff, and for many of us, pretty boring, tiresome stuff.

    Take a look at some academic articles and tell me if they're anything like a book of light reading and fun--definitely not. Ugh!
    Last edited by FTFaculty; 07-18-2017 at 10:13 AM.

  5. #5
    FTFaculty is offline Registered User
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    There are schools where a book might form the basis for a PhD by Publications, a few in the UK, typically not the highest ranked schools; for example, the former polytechnics and glass plate schools offer some routes for outside candidates where one might be able to use a book. Typically, though, you're looking at 4+ pubs in peer-reviewed journals comprising at least some element of quantitative research. Typically, mid career academics who don't yet possess a doctorate are in the sweet spot for these opportunities, people who have a legitimate academic publication record.

    A book about a "true adventure" does not sound like it would fit even the single book only paradigm, though. Academic research is a very particular thing, it takes some time to get the hang of it. Here's my story: I started attending conferences when I was just a small college adjunct teaching for three or four different schools, scraping together as many classes as I could, trying to get the experience to horn into full time academia. An area department chair told me: "You need some research experience or you won't make it into academia." So started checking online to figure out what research was, saw some examples, then found out about some conferences in the general area and started working on the basics of articles, which I then presented at a couple conferences. Then volunteered to review papers for a journal, and learned more there going over others' work. From the time I first presented an article at a conference to the time I actually got an article published in a peer reviewed journal was three years. That took a lot of work and rejection and some help from a more seasoned academic. It's not like writing an adventure book, it's very different stuff, and for many of us, pretty boring, tiresome stuff.

    Take a look at some academic articles and tell me if they're anything like a book of light reading and fun--definitely not. Ugh!

  6. #6
    RFValve is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hille View Post
    Good Morning,

    A relative wrote a book about a true adventure. Is there anyway this can be applied to a Graduate or PHD program US or out of country.

    Thanks for thoughts on this.
    Short answer is "No". A book is not a peer reviewed publication and not eligible for most of these programs.

    Most of these programs require 3 to 5 publications in top tier academic journals. Books might count if they are edited and reviewed by an academic publisher like Springer, etc.

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