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olivia 3 star member
Saturday, 8 December 2007 at 8:33pm
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Thread: How do you cope when, just like buses...

posted
29-Mar-11, 09:30
edited about 12 seconds later
by olivia 3 star member
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posted about 6 years ago
Congrats on the job, the relationship and the big move!
I think when making those major changes all at once its important to get grounded somewhere in your life...like in your living space, figure out your nearest grocery store, or coffee shop or local pub or where-ever, and have at least one point in your "new" life that feels familiar.

And then to some extent you take it as it comes--but you can manage a bit by prioritising, ie, as has been posted here, some very good tips about what to sort first!

Well done and congrats, very exciting stuff!

Thread: Anyone looking for accommodation in London???

posted
28-Mar-11, 16:12
by olivia 3 star member
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posted about 6 years ago
Try Spareroom.co.uk--they have a student section where you can find lodging, flats, flat shares etc...

Thread: Help with dissertation methodology please!

posted
28-Mar-11, 16:10
edited about 12 seconds later
by olivia 3 star member
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posted about 6 years ago
I will give it a go....
and of course have to put in the usual recommendation about the Sage Handbook of Qualitative Research :$ even if you aren't doing qualitative work, it still is an excellent source for this kind of stuff...

Paradigm--the big "box", framework, platform, world view ( pick whatever works for you) from which you are doing your work.

Ontology, epistimology and methodology are like the three legs of a stool that make up your paradigm. All three combine to make up your research paradigm.

Methodology is just the "tools" by which you do your research ( ie interviews and how you examine the data, or whatever)

Epistimology--what is knowledge--what is the view on where knowledge comes from, how it is formed ( ie for constructivists, knowledge is formed or constructed through social interactions..) ( or in a positivist framework, knowledge is that which is deduced and proved through appropriately reliable and valid tests)

Ontology--what is truth or what is reality--how do you discern what is "true" within your research? Constructivism might say that reality is socially constructed, positivism asserts that there is a verifiable and universal "truth" to find, etc...

The Sage Handbook has a handy chart that makes all of this very simple and understandable.

Thread: word help

posted
28-Mar-11, 15:55
edited about 4 seconds later
by olivia 3 star member
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posted about 6 years ago
======= Date Modified 28 Mar 2011 15:56:13 =======
influence, feature, aspect, reason, cause, dynamic, element, thing, consideration, circumstance, component, part

courtesy of http://encarta.msn.com/thesaurus_561573197/factor.html

8-)

Thread: Random question- how much sleep do you need?!

posted
25-Mar-11, 18:37
edited about 22 seconds later
by olivia 3 star member
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posted about 6 years ago
======= Date Modified 25 Mar 2011 18:39:26 =======
Optimal for me is like 10! Which I do not often get, but when I can, I feel soo much better. 8 is necessary--9 is more frequent, I can get by a day or two on less than 8, but then I collapse ( well not literally...but nearly!). In the midst of PhD work, I would take one day of the weekend to basically just not ever bother to get out of bed, save for the most necessary reasons! so I could catch up on sleep. I wasn't depressed or ill--I just needed that much sleep to feel OK and rested again! Then I would be raring to go again after my sleep catch up. I don't like having to have that much sleep--it eats into the day and getting things done, etc, but its just a fact of life, and now I just try to get as close to 9 hours as I can manage...with the occasional indulgence of 10 if I can manage it every now and again!

PS

Sounds like have done the most important thing--talk things through...and keep talking. That is what all relationships need!!!! communication! Make the most of the time you have together, and remember, this too shall pass. In the life of the relationship, the shoe may be on the other foot sometime, where he feels as if he is making all the adjustments around your schedule...what goes around inevitably comes around...and so I think the key is what you have already done--TALK it over!

Thread: Supervisors tore my work apart :(

posted
18-Mar-11, 10:22
edited about 28 seconds later
by olivia 3 star member
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posted about 6 years ago
Remember--you are not your writing. And writing is a learned skill, not an innate trait. Some might find it easier than others, but when it is all said and done, its just something you learn to do. Much like riding a bike! Hard and scary in the beginning, easier ( hopefully) and more pleasant after some practice!

I recommend the Bryan Garner, Legal Writing in Plain English, for any kind of academic or professional writing. Don't let the title put you off. The book is full of practical skill building information, that walks you what to edit and how, stages of planning your writing, and that difficult thing--how to structure! It talks about effective use of quotes, clear sentence structure, clear organisation to build flow throughout the document. And the best thing is, you can just immediately put all of this to work--no need to wade through pages and pages of something--just find the particular section of the book you need and then off you go.

Cheap used copies all the time on Amazon for around £4 or £5.

I think one problem is that no one ever gives us ways to write better, and just expect us to "figure it out".

I recommend the Garner book---I recommend it to lots of people--students, colleagues, practicing lawyers, and no one has yet said it was not helpful for them!

It can give you a how to plan and rebuilt confidence in your writing, and a way to deal with supervisor's comments.

Thread: Presentation of Qualitative Findings

posted
15-Mar-11, 17:51
edited about 5 seconds later
by olivia 3 star member
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posted about 6 years ago
Thanks, Ady, I hope that helps. There are lots of good articles out there that both present interview data from grounded theory work, and discuss HOW to present data in grounded theory work. If you need any suggestions let me know ( though this would mean having to --eeek----touch my thesis to look in the bibliography---and one year post PhD award---eeek---I still hate to go near the thing...but if needs must :p )

Thread: Noisy office problems

posted
15-Mar-11, 17:48
edited about 24 seconds later
by olivia 3 star member
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posted about 6 years ago
During my PhD I had a shared office with a part time lecturer...ideal when the other person was not in, a nightmare if they were, as they did not seem to understand my need to work and my disinterest in chat when trying to work. I finally bought large noise cancelling head phones and wore them continiously as the other person seemed to be immune to understanding the need for letting me get on with my work--even after a few conversations to this effect. This did not completely solve the problem, but it did lessen it. And now in my own office the head phones are nice to have to listen to music with.

I think you are well within your rights to raise the issue and ask for a quiet zone for work. If people want to take a break to chat and socialise, then surely there are places they can do that without disturbing people in a work area.

I think your idea of raising this with your supervisor is a good one. After all, they do have some responsibility to make sure the work areas are appropriately suitable--and a word from a supervisor will be taken perhaps differently than a word from you.

Thread: Presentation of Qualitative Findings

posted
15-Mar-11, 11:04
by olivia 3 star member
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posted about 6 years ago
======= Date Modified 15 Mar 2011 11:06:20 =======
Ady, check out if you can get access to it--Kathy Charmaz's book on Constructive Grounded Theory. She has a few chapters about presenting interview findings, which I have found to be very helpful. I myself did qualitative analysis using grounded theory--and I presented my work to support my grounded theory using a Strauss-Corbin tool of "relational statements".

There is some split about whether or not to use "raw" interview data in presenting findings ( ie quotes from interviews rather than your own analysis OF the interview data. Charmaz does use quotes. --others in the field do not. A very helpful article is
Roy Suddaby, 'What Grounded Theory is Not' (2006) 49(2) Academy of Management Journal 633.
Don't be put off by the title of the publication--this article is a gem, and very instructive on how to present grounded theory research findings.
Hope this helps!

Thread: Struggling

posted
09-Mar-11, 16:40
edited about 9 seconds later
by olivia 3 star member
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posted about 6 years ago
I think in some watershed moments in your PhD research, there is an event where you stop being "dependent" upon your supervisor, and began to have the confidence to chart your own way in your work. Sometimes supervisors have helpful ideas, and ( though supervisors would not agree...but...) sometimes they have bad ones which are simply better off ignored. Some supervisors are control freaks that basically want you to produce a piece of writing and research as if they had done it ( ie only their way of doing things works..) and some who are more relaxed and happy to let you spread your wings and fly without being threatened. Take supervisor remarks with a pinch of salt--use what works and do not feel compelled to follow all to the letter...but do be prepared to defend why you have made your own independent researcher choices ( which is what you are meant to be doing/learning to do in a PhD).

It sounds like you have gotten yourself over exhausted. And its in those cycles its hard to stop doing the work, feels like you have no time to quit working and take a time out--but when you feel like that its a big red flag to TAKE the time out. A few days away puts no real dent in your output, but surely is restorative.


As another poster pointed out something as simple as a walk round the campus can help you relax.

If you just need a mental break for a few minutes, I find blogthings.com wonderful. Some quiz about what kind of pinecone you are...and :p its a nice non mentally taxing break!

Take a few days away--totally away. Things likely will feel better after that, and no matter what, you should feel a bit more refreshed. You just sound very burned out right now.

Thread: Which METHODOLOGY???

posted
09-Mar-11, 09:52
edited about 10 seconds later
by olivia 3 star member
Avatar for olivia
posted about 6 years ago
A very helpful ( and authoratative for citation weight!!!! makes supervisors happy!) is the Sage Handbook on Qualitative Research. It has some helpful tables/charts about paradigms and which various methods fall within them. I would give you a page number but I have loaned out the book to a friend doing a PhD, and so hopefully someone else can guide you to those pages. It makes sense of paradigms and methods in very short order :)

Thread: Personality Types

posted
08-Mar-11, 11:13
by olivia 3 star member
Avatar for olivia
posted about 6 years ago
So in one of my distracted quests on the internet, I came across information on Socionics....yet another theory or some say pseudo-theory about personality types. I am an IEE, and at last I know why I do this

"Many IEEs routinely have spur-of-the-moment ideas or curiosities, and may be inclined to look up random information or do arbitrary things that have occurred to them in lieu of whatever they might have been working on previously. ":$:$ http://www.socionics.ws/wiki/index.php?title=IEE

I would be happily puttering along in work and then think....oh, what about---fill in the blank---some random thing and look it up! At least now I know why I do this--I am an IEE! (up):p

Thread: Writing a Lecture Tips

posted
05-Mar-11, 13:41
edited about 22 seconds later
by olivia 3 star member
Avatar for olivia
posted about 6 years ago
Hi!
Will you have access to power point or an overhead projector? Think about whether you want to incorporate that into your presentation. I know there are highly mixed views on using them. Given however that people learn differently and a lecture is likely to have a huge mix of learning styles, I always go for their use if it is an option.
Remember the human brain shuts down after about 20 minutes in a lecture, unless the lecturer does something to change that--get the students to do something--more in a moment--that breaks that cycle to bring their attention span back.

Organising your lecture:
I like to have learning objectives--just three or four bullet points of what the lecture will cover.
Have a beginning, a middle and an end. Try to use the beginning/intro to build an interest in your topic. Can you use an example of a current event, controversy, or even just a made up example to illustrate your points in action?

After about 20 minutes--pose a question. Ask the students to take one minute and turn to the person next to them and exchange views/answers/etc.

Ask some questions then--even if its a large lecture theatre, you can coax a show of hands. Interact with your audience, and then start off again.

After another ten or fifteen minutes--the same again--a quick interchange for students with the person next to them, and then conclude your topic. Revisit the learning objectives in your conclusion and summarise what you have done.
The end!

Notes much better than sentences--nothing is more deadly dull than being read to!
Think of good public speakers--they change the cadence of speech. They pause. They look at the audience. Try to get yourself to do that.

If using power point or OHP--keep your points to about 3 per slide. No more. Use generously large font. Make judicious use of illustrations, clipart, whatever... a few lighthearted illustrations can be worked appropriately into a serious talk and keep audience attention.

Eye contact, eye contact, eye contact. Look at your audience!!!

Let your own personality shine through. Are you funny? Are you very serious but with a sarcastic twist? Are you shy? Whatever your personality is, project it when you speak. Done right, there is no harm telling students--this is my first lecture! I have done that, and said to the audience, and you didn't know you were going to get to play the role of experimental guinea pigs today did you when you came to class? making light of it but also inviting them into the lecture.

And enjoy it.

I know people hate public speaking...but really...if you are a little bit creative and have some fun with it, you can grow to love it!

Good luck, I am sure it will go well!

Thread: I passed! Now for an important question...

posted
03-Mar-11, 10:47
by olivia 3 star member
Avatar for olivia
posted about 6 years ago
For quite some time after getting the PhD I did not use the Dr title much...I used it in academic circumstances such as job applications...that was about it. Then someone pointed out the very useful neutral nature of the title--it gets rid of that hideous ( IMO) Mrs/Ms/Miss title stuff you have to fill out on forms for banks, etc. Men are lucky in having the single choice of Mister. This designation of marital status, for women only, on forms drives me insane. Many places in the UK do not have the Ms. option, so then you have to choose between Miss and Mrs....and I dither. Being divorced and having never changed my name to my (ex) husband's when married, am I a Mrs? a Miss? Dr. solves it all rather nicely. ;-)

Now when someone is filling out a form and asks me, I gave a sweet smile and say as modestly as I can, "Actually, its Dr".

Thread: Oh Dear, I am overworded!

posted
28-Feb-11, 19:40
by olivia 3 star member
Avatar for olivia
posted about 6 years ago
The best source for how to edit ( and get rid of extra words and edit for clarity without losing your meaning) is the Bryan Garner, Legal Writing in Plain English. I know you are not in the legal field, but even so, this book's editing tips and quick instructions on how to immediately begin to edit make it eassssssssyyyyyyyyypeasssyyyyyyyyyyy to edit anything.
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