Interview with Kadydja Chagas: the PhD time

Kadydja Chagas studies the PhD time and its meanings. The professor at the Federal Institute of Education, Science and Technology of Rio Grande do Norte (IFRN) is currently developing a postdoctoral project about this subject. With the research, she hopes to contribute to the “development of strategies that articulate the time lived and the scientific production in the PhD”.

E- Can you tell us a little about your academic background?
K- I am Kadydja Karla Nascimento Chagas, PhD and Master in Education, Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte. I study methodological strategies to facilitate the process of teaching-learning by way of playfulness. After so many successful experiences with different audiences, I propose a systematic methodology based on the perspective of sensitive education, whose theoretical basis is playfulness, creativity and sensitivity. This study is the result of 20 years of work in the classroom, from Early Childhood to Postgraduate, which was developed based on the historical and experiential reflexivity between my teaching experience and coexistence with the processes of formation and self-training of the students.

E- What is the main topic of your postdoctoral research?
K- The theme of my research is “PhD time and its meanings: expectations, experiences and strategic development”, under the guidance of Professor Emília Rodrigues Araújo, from CECS.
In this research, I intend to understand the doctoral term and its meanings for the students of the University of Minho (Portugal) and the Federal Institute of Science and Technology of Rio Grande do Norte (Brazil).
It is a relevant study due to the scarcity of reflections that address the doctoral time and lived time. The perception of temporality, in this doctoral perspective, can be considered as a way to broaden the issues and concerns peculiar to the academic development in the stricto sensu postgraduate course.

E- You refer several times in your work that flexibility is relevant to the quality of an academic work. Can you explain?
K- It is noticed that there is an idea that the academic works with quality and scientific rigor go along with the inflexibility. This understanding causes a series of negative reactions in the scientific production process. It is understood that we can associate the academic demands with the historical and experiential reflexivity of each student who is in the process of formation. In this way, we have been able to identify which aspects in the orientation need adjustments and greater attention so that they do not compromise a quality academic work. In this sense, we associate scientific rigor with empathy and sensitivity in the process of scientific production, with the necessary and possible flexibility for the finalization of the academic-scientific process, promoting empathy, motivation and involvement with research in development.

E- In what way does the research you develop contributes to the change of practices?
K- The contribution of research to change of practices occurs with the development of strategies that articulate the time lived and the scientific production in the doctorate, attending to the expectations of the orientandos and advisers.

E- Given the work you do, what would be the advice you would give to students preparing master’s and doctoral projects today?
K- Be motivated with what you want to research; to allow oneself to the new, to the unusual, to deconstruction; be objective and determined; have an empathetic relationship with the counselor; promote the habit of reading and writing science; invest in strategies for time management in the process of scientific production and experience a sensitive education in the process of scientific development.
I will use a piece of advice that my doctoral advisor, Dr. Rosário Carvalho told me on the first day of orientation: the thesis is a way of life and not death. Therefore, use the time in the way you think best to produce knowledge. If you do not produce anything in the first year or two, there are no problems, but know that the deadline is in three years and you will have to complete the process.
This made me reflect and invest in a time management that always favored me in scientific production.