Bookside Press

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By Dr. Jeffrey T. Evans

IR Rating:
Full of clumsily-written phrases and misused words, CONSIDERING THE JOURNEY does not reflect well on author Dr. Jeffrey T. Evans's academic accomplishments.
Contains advice and cautions for those considering pursuing a Ph.D. or doctorate, including advice on financing, balancing study and personal life, and the evaluation process for the degree.

The sub-title for CONSIDERING THE JOURNEY by Dr. Jeffrey T. Evans is “One Doctor’s Perspective.” The average reader would naturally conclude that the author is a medical doctor, but the sub-title is misleading. Throughout the book, Evans uses the word “doctor” as a synonym for “Ph.D” and “doctorate.” This may or may not be deliberate. On the one hand, he displays confusion about the English Language in general, writing about “didactive studies” because he thinks “didactic” means “educational” whereas it really means “polemical.” He also writes that his book is aimed at a “perspective doctoral candidate” rather than a prospective one, and describes something as being “contradictive” and a “rite of passion.”

Unsurprisingly, Evans’ prose style is less-than-pedestrian: typical sentences are “The intent of this book is to give the reader a perspective answer to the question of considering the journey,” and “If I accomplish that I have met the reason why I put this book in your hand and library.” But, while his command of English is less than stellar, Evans also writes that he “had an ambition to become a doctor someday” and the “entrance tests to go to medical school” and reveals that he works in a hospital. This suggests that he well understands the difference between calling oneself a doctor and having a doctorate or Ph.D.

The 104-page book has seven chapters but only Chapter Three, which is 17 pages long, deals with the practicalities of pursuing a PhD, such as finances, time management, and personal life. Chapter Five describes the dissertation process, but never goes beyond the superficial. Moreover, all this is pretty much Evans’ immediate knowledge, since he eschews even the most basic research on his topic, such as how many Americans have doctorates (1.2 percent) or which doctorates earn the most money (chemical engineering, organic chemistry, computer science). Evans never even reveals the subject of his own dissertation, so the reader lacks any context by which to judge the particular challenges he faced. This is a particularly curious omission since he does inform the reader that he has an Associate degree in Environmental Health, a Bachelor’s in Business Management, and a Master’s in Health Services Management. In fact, Evans’ autobiographical information—he was in the Navy and didn’t start his doctorate until he was 52 years old—provides the most interesting parts of the book. This is understandable since his accomplishment appears to be his real focus, not helping the tiny cohort of people who want to become “doctors.”

Full of clumsily-written phrases and misused words, CONSIDERING THE JOURNEY does not reflect well on author Dr. Jeffrey T. Evans’s academic accomplishments.

~Kevin Baldeosingh for IndieReader

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