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  • Writer's pictureallisonjolester

The Practitioner Researcher's "Now What?" Survival Guide



Hello, fellow knowledge voyagers, truth-seekers, and the brave adventurers who've just stepped off the rocky boat of a practitioner research project. You did it! You scaled the mountain, conquered the beast, baked the metaphorical research cake. But now, as the confetti settles, the adrenaline wanes, and you find yourself in the deafening silence of a finished project, you ask, "Now what?"

Well, buckle up, my dear post-research pals, for we are about to navigate the often-overlooked landscape of "After the Afterglow."


1. The Post-Research Purge

First up, we have the "Post-Research Purge". This step is akin to cleaning your room after a wild party: discarding empty pizza boxes, random paper bits, and wondering why there's a pineapple in your closet.


Now's the time to organize your notes, categorize your data, and generally find a place for everything and put everything in its place. If you've gone digital, don't forget the 'delete' button is your friend—yes, even for that rough draft version 37 you swore you'd revisit.


2. Reflection Roulette

Once the debris of data and information has been dealt with, it's time for "Reflection Roulette."

Remember, your practitioner research project is more than just a trophy on your mantle (or a paperweight on your desk). Reflect on the journey you've taken, the skills you've acquired, and the number of coffees you've consumed. Who knows, you may discover a newfound love for data analysis or a talent for thesis writing. Or, at the very least, that you never want to see another pie chart again.


3. The Unveiling Unraveling

Step three on our post-research journey is the "Unveiling Unraveling". This is where you present your shiny new research to the world, be it colleagues, students, or your dog who's probably wondering why you're talking to a PowerPoint slide at midnight.

The key here is to celebrate your hard work and share your findings. Whether you're applauded as a genius or left with awkward silence and polite clapping, remember, it's all part of the journey.


4. The Pondering of the Pathways

Once you've braved the world with your findings, you reach the "Pondering of the Pathways" stage. It's time to figure out how you're going to use this newly minted research. Will it inform your teaching practices? Transform your curriculum? Inspire a sequel project?

Deciding your research's future is like choosing the next Netflix series after a binge-watch. Take your time and choose wisely. This research is your baby; don't let it just sit there and gather dust!


5. The Rest and Recharge Retreat

Finally, it's time for the "Rest and Recharge Retreat". Research is exhausting; it's an energy-draining, coffee-guzzling monster. Now, it's time to kick back, relax, and take a well-deserved break.

Go read a novel (that isn't about your research topic), take a long walk (that doesn't involve pacing around your desk), or simply sleep (without dreaming about thesis statements). Recharge your batteries, because guess what? The next mountain is waiting!


Congratulations, my fellow post-research comrades! You've survived the daunting "Now What?" of the practitioner research journey. Remember, every end is a new beginning. So, celebrate your achievements, ponder your next steps, and enjoy the lull before the next adventure. And remember, there's no problem that a good night's sleep (and maybe a slice of celebratory cake) can't solve.

Happy researching!

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