… It was hard.
I felt that my preparation wasn’t good enough and despite reading loads of questions and articulating possible answers, I didn’t perform as well as I wanted to. I wasn’t happy with how I did.
It was super hard.
Was it so hard because I knew the mock examiners? Well, we work together closely…
During the mock viva, I didn’t have time to write anything down or search through my notes. The sticky notes on the thesis were also problematic… maybe I had too many…
- The visualisations of the research design,
- the outcome space and
- the framework
I should have added the page number to the above pages I had printed separately so that I can take the examiners to the exact pages in the thesis quickly. I have done this now.
I felt that one additional diagram (not in the thesis) I had prepared around the literature review was useful but I will need to add the gaps I had identified to each section for a quick reference.
Also, I felt that having my findings, mainly the categories of description and their variations in front of me (not just the outcome space), would be useful as well as my summary sheet with my responses to the research questions (the table I had created).
I am grateful to my colleagues who organised this mock viva. They both said it was like a typical viva. I felt dreadful until it was over… They told me that I sounded at times defensive (I even said “I have evidence of this”) kept talking after I had answered the question launching into other areas… also that I wasn’t enthusiastic enough… It was an uncomfortable experience… but an extremely useful one…
Less is more, I was told..
I need to get better at this viva thing!
First, I will need a few days to recover. Then I will continue my preparation. I can’t wait to jump in the deep blue sea!!! I need to fill my batteries with fresh energy to get through this…