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Abstract

Although much has been written about the challenging writing process associated with autobiographical research, little is known about the post-publications consequences of using personal experience as a primary source of data. This psychology honour’s project used an online survey to investigate the question: What are researchers’ experiences and perspectives after publishing research that used autobiographical materials as the primary source of data? The participants were 13 individuals who had published at least two autobiographical peer-reviewed articles and the method was qualitative description using content analysis. Primarily positive findings were identified (e.g., career advancement, professional and personal validation, perceived strengthened relationships with others) although some participants continued to wonder about decisions related to their autobiographical publications (e.g., privacy of third parties, what content to include or exclude) and about the reactions of others (e.g., readers, loved ones). Findings underscore how using personal experience as data blurs the borders of scholarship and personal growth, and directly impacts audiences. Implications include tips for those interesting in doing autobiographical research.

Keywords

Autobiographical Data, Post-Publication Consequences, Qualitative Description, Content Analysis

Author Bio(s)

Rachelle Harder is a Graduate of the Department of Psychology at the University of Saskatchewan, Canada. This study was completed as part of her Honours Thesis. Correspondence regarding this article can be addressed directly to: rnh263@mail.usask.ca

Jennifer Nicol is Professor Emerita, Registered Doctoral Psychologist, and Accredited Music Therapist at the University of Saskatchewan, Canada. She has expertise in qualitative methodology and an active research program in music, health, coping, and well-being. Correspondence regarding this article can also be addressed directly to: jennifer.nicol@usask.ca

Stephanie Martin is Professor and Registered Doctoral Psychologist at the University of Saskatchewan, Canada. She has expertise in qualitative methodology and an active research program in counselling/psychotherapy, professional practice, ethics, and gender. Correspondence regarding this article can also be addressed directly to: stephanie.martin@usask.ca

Publication Date

1-25-2020

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License.

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