My world is not my doctoral program. Or is it? Female students' perceptions of well-being

Cliff Haynes, Marievic Bulosan, Jeff Citty, Michelle Grant-Harris, Jo Cynda Hudson, Mirka Koro-Ljungberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


As the number of women who earn doctoral degrees increases, research suggests that female doc-toral students struggle with their well-being, including managing role conflict due to multiple roles, developing coping skills, and maintaining social support. The goal of the study is to illumi-nate different aspects of women's well-being that can add increased understandings related to student stress levels, academic achievement, and personal life fulfillment. Semi-structured inter-views were conducted with eight current doctoral students who study at a research-intensive uni-versity. Furthermore, metaphorical analysis was used to describe the women's perceptions of well-being. The results indicate that female doctoral students perceive well-being as an individual and social process that is constantly evolving and unique to each woman. During this process, female doctoral students can develop realistic social, economic, and personal expectations associ-ated with their studies in order to determine the best personal balance of the multiple roles they play. Implications for practice and future research are included.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Doctoral Studies
StatePublished - Sep 19 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Doctoral studies
  • Female graduate students
  • Metaphorical analysis
  • Well-being

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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