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International Journal of Education and Practice

April 2017, Volume 5, 4, pp 61-68

Hidden Experiences of Doctoral Students in Research Courses

Fatemeh-Al-Sadat Robati


Forouzan Tonkaboni

Fatemeh-Al-Sadat Robati 1
Forouzan Tonkaboni 2

  1. Department of Education, Rafsanjan Branch, Islamic Azad University, Rafsanjan, Iran 1

  2. Ph.D. in curriculum studies, Payame Noor University (PNU), Tehran, Iran. 2

Pages: 61-68

DOI: 10.18488/journal.61.2017.54.61.68

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Article History:

Received: 09 January, 2017
Revised: 28 February, 2017
Accepted: 16 March, 2017
Published: 20 April, 2017


The present study investigates the hidden experiences of students in the doctoral programs. This qualitative study was performed using the phenomenological method. The data were collected through the interview. The population consists of PhD graduates whose study period had passed. Using normal purposeful sampling, 45 graduates were interviewed. Strauss and Corbin method of data analysis was used for the analysis. 252 thematic phrases were divided to the five main themes: "The lack of cross-border communications", "failure in doing the main task", "lack of social justice", "lack of economic justice", "non-equality of universities" and "lack of equal opportunities".

Contribution/ Originality
This study is one of very few studies which have investigated the experiences that PhD students acquire in universities while passing research courses and conducted by authors. 


Hidden curriculum, Phenomenology, Ph.D. research course, Experiences, Doctoral students, University.



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This study received no specific financial support.

Competing Interests:

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.


Both authors contributed equally to the conception and design of the study.

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