Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Health and Clinical Psychology Research Group

The Curious, Collaborative, Courageous Challenge of Sabbatical! 

Dr Lynne McCormack PhD 

What is the purpose of research if we don’t pass on our findings for others to use and expand for the good of humankind? I couldn’t wait to go on sabbatical because I knew so much of what I had done as a researcher in the last 6 years was still needing a voice. So my sabbatical in the first six months of this year was a great time for forging and securing links with my international research colleagues and getting down to co-writing and future projects, freeing my mind from the everyday administrative and interruptive nature of academic work, and spending endless hours closeted away writing and thinking and submitting to various journals. Though the focus of my overall research is complex trauma and subsequent psychological growth, mostly with veterans, military, and humanitarian personnel, the lot of children whose early and secure sense of self has be thwarted by parental mental health problems, unspeakable abuse and sexual violence, Out-of-Home care cumulative trauma on first-family trauma, are growing research interests thanks to many of my students. In light of the many commissions of enquiry into child abuse throughout the western world, this perhaps, is timely. And so from time out for thinking and writing on sabbatical 10 papers are now in press, 2 are resubmitted with minor corrections, 6 are submitted and under review and 4 others are in preparation for submission. I think this is a grand achievement for my students who tolerate my passion for getting our work published and thus influencing evidence-based practice, their willingness to play-act and squirm learning to interview not counsel so that good rich data is the outcome of their efforts, allow me to undo everything they know about lab report writing for very personal phenomenological investigations, and their humility as I critique their writing and turn them into published psychologists. Out of my sabbatical a further 10 former students are now published, two others are passed the second hurdle, and another 10 should be published sometime in 2017. The VC’s call for a Curious, Collaborative and Courageous new future for our University requires the think tank of Sabbatical.