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Jack - did you have any expecations of where the PhD might lead?
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Name: Jack
PhD discipline: Theology
Area(s) of work: University teaching; religious ministry
Year of graduation: 1995
Date of Interview: 29/07/2009

Now Playing: Jack - did you have any expecations of where the PhD might lead?
Jack outlines his reasons for doing a PhD.

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Transcript:

So your undergraduate degree was in theology as well? 

Yeah that's right

And at the point you go into your DPhil in theology it's with a very open mind about what's going to happen next

Yeah. I think so. I mean I think at that point, if you'd asked me, you see, I was very young when I started my doctorate because I was still in the old system. I was in the last year in fact in the old system in Oxford where you could go straight from your bachelor's degree into your doctorate, so the old system of doing what we called three and three. A three year undergraduate degree and three more years and you had a PhD, so I finished my DPhil when I was 25 which used to be of course reasonably normal in Oxford and now it's very, very rare. And looking back on that time I realise that although intellectually I was bright, I wasn't terribly mature and I don't think, I don't think I had enough information really to make what you might call broadly informed decisions about anything other than following a particular direction. You know, the only thing I was sure about was that the direction I had to be following was something to do with the church. And if when I'd started my doctorate, when I was 22, 21 or 22, you'd said to me 'if you could do anything you want, what would it be' I think I probably would just have said 'I'd like to stay in the Oxford for the rest of my life and be a don' because I was very starry eyed about the whole of academia and that sort of thing. And I did quite a lot of teaching when I was a DPhil student and enjoyed that and thought that this is something I would like to do at some point in the future. That's one of the obvious aspects of ministering in the Church – there is a lot of teaching involved in any context so that was quite useful.

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