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ePortfolio of Anjali Thomas

Introduction

I am a PhD student in the Centre for Education Studies at the University of Warwick. My research is super vised by Emily Henderson and Ian Abbott. My Ph.D. at the University of Warwick is being supported by the Fair Chance Foundation(FCF)and is situated within a five-year project exploring gendered pathways to educational success in Haryana, India. The findings from my doctoral research study will be used to develop a programme to encourage more students to enrol in colleges in Haryana.

I have a B.A. in English Literature from Lady Shri Ram College, University of Delhi; an M.A. in Social Work from Delhi School of Social Work, Department of Social Work, University of Delhi; and an M.Phil. in Social Sciences from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai. My M.Phil. dissertation studied the narratives and experiences of undergraduate students in a college in Delhi University. This study tried to understand the conscious and unconscious forms of caste-based social discrimination and prejudices.

Research

My doctoral research studies the role of families in the gendered educational trajectories of undergraduate students in Haryana, India.  The study explores the narratives of undergraduate students and members of their families and social networks. These narratives will be analysed to study how higher education is accessed by male and female students and the role of families in this brief but tenuous period of transition from school to higher education. The narratives will be further analysed to examine how they have been influenced by gender with caste as a significant intersecting factor. This analysis will also focus on how participants’ agencies within families are gendered and how they influence educational choices and decisions. 

Work Experience

I have worked with CORD(Collaborative Research and Dissemination) and ICRW (International Centre for Research on Women) on a research project on how a long term conditional cash transfer social scheme might have changed the value of the girl child within the families and societies in Haryana. I was involved in field research, conducted team debriefs and coordinated between the CORD and ICRW teams on the field.

I have also worked as a Project Executive at New Concept Information Systems Pvt. Ltd. where I was involved in identifying opportunities and writing (Technical and Financial) proposals for various national and international government and non-governmental organisations such as UNICEF and World Bank.

The Field Work Practicum during my M.A. in Social Work has provided me with supervised experience in NGOs such as Pratidhi (an NGO for Crime victims), ANHAD (Act Now for Harmony and Democracy) and in an integrated school Akshay Pratishthan where I have worked with young children and their families and contributed to research on Communal violence and Minority Issues.

Conference Presentations

  • Presented a paper on “Democratic Access to Higher Education: A study of how students and families perceive and access higher education in Haryana, India” on 13thJune 2019 at the Global Research Priorities on International Development Postgraduate Conference 2019, on The Politics of Hope – Reviving the dream of Democracy and Development at the University of Warwick.
  • Presented a paper on “ A Qualitative researcher’s positionality in higher education spaces: Reflections from the field in government colleges in Haryana, India.” on 11thMay 2019 at the Centre for Education Studies 7thAnnual Interdisciplinary Postgraduate Conference on Education in Unequal Societies, at University of Warwick.
  • Conducted a seminar on “Inequalities of Access: Intersectional barriers to higher education in the Indian and the International context” on 11thApril 2019 at International Institute for Higher Education Research and Capacity Building and the Centre for Comparative and Global Education, O.P. Jindal University, Sonipat, Haryana, India.
  • Presented a paper on “Role of Families in the educational trajectories of undergraduate students” on 22ndFebruary, 2019 at the For the Third Fair Chance to Education Project Consultative Group Meeting, Delhi
  • Presented a paper on “Unequal experiences and discourses from Higher Education Institutions in Indiaon 10thOctober 2018 at, Higher Education in India: Institutional and Social Hierarchies, SRHE, London.
  • Presented a paper on “Inequalities of Access: Intersectional barriers to higher education in the Indian and the International context” on 6thJuly 2018, at Perspectives on understanding the relationship between Intersectionality and the Student Experience in Higher Education: How might it inform our research and our educational practice?, SRHE, London
  • Presented a paper with Emily Henderson on, “Gendering access to Higher Education in Haryana, India: A comparative caste study of two government colleges” on 19thJune 2018 atCEID Annual Conference 2018: Higher Education and International Development, Institute of Education, UCL, London
  • An Invited Panel Speaker at 'Activism, Gender and Higher Education: decolonising the research agenda'a CEID Pre-Conference workshopon 18thJune 2018 atInstitute of Education, UCL, London
  • Presented a paper on “Inequalities of Access: Intersectional barriers to higher education in the Indian and the International context” on 15thJune 2018 at the Global Research Priorities on International Development Postgraduate Conference 2018, on Reassessing Poverty and Inequality: Theories, Representations and Approaches at the University of Warwick.
  • Presented a paper on “Inequalities of Access: Intersectional barriers to higher education in the Indian and the International context” on 5thMay 2018 at the Centre for Education Studies 6thAnnual Interdisciplinary Postgraduate Conference on Education in Unequal Societies, at University of Warwick.
  • Presented a paper with Emily Henderson titled, “Deconstructing Haryana: Dis/order in representations of Gender, Caste and Education” on 27thApril 2018 at the ‘Dis/order’ Conference in the University of Warwick (Warwick-Shiv Nadar University Global Partnership Award, Another India).
  • Presented a paper on “International Perspectives on Access to higher education: Barriers shaped by Social Class Background, Gender and Race” on 19thFebruary, 2018 at the For the Second Fair Chance to Education Project Consultative Group Meeting, at the Department of Education, University of Delhi
  • Presented a paper titled, ““Changing Discourses and Experiences of Caste based Discrimination in Higher Education” based on Mphil Dissertation at University of Birmingham on 25thNovember 2017 in the New Challenges in Education: Doctoral Research Conference 2017.
  • Presented a paper titled, “Changing Discourses and Experiences of Caste based Discrimination in Higher Education” based on Mphil Dissertation at TISS Tuljapur on 30 June 2015 in the National Conference on “Exclusion and Atrocities on Dalits in India” sponsored by ICSSR, New Delhi.