Signup date: 21 Jan 2018 at 6:52am
Last login: 30 Mar 2021 at 10:09pm
Post count: 19
I am a mature age woman, and your supervisor is sexually harassing you. Looks and marital status has nothing to do with this. One of my fellow candidates is drop dead gorgeous, and yet no male staff members have tried to sexually harass her.
His behaviour is based on the inherent power imbalance between the two of you, and he is behaving like this because he can. He is relying on your fear and his control over your thesis. It would seem that your only recourse would be to insist that his office door remain open during meetings, or arrange to meet in the cafe. If his behaviour continues, report him to the Dean or HR. You're unlikely to be the first woman he has sexually harassed.
I am so sorry for what has happened to you.
I have experienced several health problems during my own PhD. I was recently hospitalised with hypertension, amongst other things.
Does your institution provide counselling and support services? I encourage you to seek out support from people who have experience with your particular needs.
Hi, I really hope that someone can help me understand the examination results. Today I received my results from my examination (I am based in Australia), and I have been told that I have major revisions to make to my thesis. The university has given me six months to get these amendments done.
What I am confused about is that my supervisory panel has written to me, congratulating me on a good outcome and that I have not long to go now. I thought that a" good outcome" would be either no amendments necessary or minor revisions. How exactly are major revisions a good outcome? And does a six-month deadline for the changes to be made indicate how bad my thesis was? My stomach has been hurting since I read the email.
My PhD has ruined my physical health. I fell seriously ill with whooping cough after my submission. I had to take antibiotics to get rid of it, which killed off my appetite and digestive system. When the cough would not go away, I was given an asthma inhaler which was infused with steroids and caused me to lose my voice.
I am currently struggling with acid reflux, but the digestive system is slowly recovering.
I remember the time when I wanted to quit my PhD too. I had a supervisor I hated, I felt like my research was going nowhere and I stated losing my hair due to extreme stress. What stopped me from quitting was the fact that this was MY research, not my supervisor's. So I went back and grabbed the bull by both horns, got rid of the troublesome supervisor and found a better one kept my head down and tail up for the next 3 years, wrote like crazy ( and it did make me!). I submitted my 4th and final draft for examination a month ago.
I recently submitted my thesis for examination, and it is my 4th draft too. The feedback from your supervisors is based upon what an examiner might ask when he/she reads your thesis. Writing for an audience is difficult, and your supervisors are helping you navigate these treacherous waters. Remember, since you have conducted the field work and read all of the literature, everything you rite makes perfect sense to you but not to an outsider. There's nothing wrong with you or your ability to write. Keep your eye on the prize, which is completion. Good luck!
I have been exactly where you are. Four years ago, I thought I struck gold when I had a "star" supervisor. Unfortunately, I was sorely mistaken. My "star" supervisor paid most of his attention on his "favourite" PhD student (not me!). He then caused delays in my formalisation of candidature and my ethics application. Overall, I lost 12 months progress because of his maleficence, but by the time I realised what was going on it was too late to prevent him from damaging my research (and me). While I could have been more forceful, I was assured that everything was fine and I do not need to chase him up for things.
I ended up having him removed from my panel, which is the only option you sound like you have. I also suggest talking to past students of his to find out if he has done this before, and you should file a complaint against him too. Make sure that you have documentation to prove his apathy towards you.
I have since found out that my former supervisor had numerous complaints levelled against him and he was on the verge of being fired before he became my supervisor and he has since bullied another 4 postgraduate students, hence my suggestion that you contact other past students. He's chummy with the Dean, hence the reason he was allowed to stay and violate students. Find out if this "star" supervisor has someone covering up his poor conduct
You need to consider what your undergraduate and post graduate qualifications are (ie. which sub-discipline of social sciences you studied). You also need to think of what are you passionate about, for example, is it refugee rights that you care about? That is what you should use to guide your choice of topic and think about how you will make an original contribution.
Always beware of "star" supervisors, because these people talk a good game but there is nothing behind the mask. I started with a "golden haired boy" supervisor, thinking that all will be well and I will sail through. NO SUCH LUCK. That jerk made my life a living hell, by bullying and harassing me to within an inch of my sanity.
Get out and away from this supervisor as fast as you can!
My goodness! Congratulations on such a happy outcome (the one we all hope for, by the way!).
I have also heard it said that minor things do not have to necessarily be changed because this is your research and you are the expert on this topic. So you should know better than anyone else if a suggested change is appropriate or not. Have confidence in your expertise.
The final stretch is going to be stressful, no matter who you are.
Could some of your procrastination be due to uncertainty about what will follow once you have submitted? Having to take a little longer to complete does not make you a failure, and no doubt the mental health issues you have mentioned would not be helpful. Perhaps you could make an appointment to see the campus counsellor to help you.
A strategy that helped me is to keep a log book of all of my writing. This was based on having a goal of writing 500 words per day. Each day that you write, make a note of the date, time you finished writing and how many words. You should really only count new words added each writing session you have (my rule, not binding!), I personally never counted copy and paste. This will also help you identify the time of day when you are at your most productive, which will help you maximise your output.
I am so sorry for what you have experienced, but I also congratulate you for finding the courage to change supervisor and hope that it has been working out for you.
As for your current dilemma, it's normal to feel apprehensive having to see your former supervisor, rather like running into an ex after you have broken up, yes? I have been exactly where you are, and this is an unfortunate inevitability. The first few times that you run into your former supervisor can be awkward, but as you move forward with your progress your stress and apprehension will decrease in time.
Give yourself some time and eventually try and be courteous by nodding in acknowledgement at their presence. You are not under any obligation to be friendly or warm towards this person, as you do not owe them anything. However, you do owe it to yourself to be better and be professional. When I have been asked by others what happened between me and my former supervisor (who bullied me to the point my hair started to fall out) I simply state "conduct not becoming of a PhD supervisor". But I make clear my boundaries that this is not for discussion. Concentrate on yourself and your research, take charge of your thesis and you will have taken back control over your life away from this person.
Best of luck!
Calling the bluff is the correct expression. :)
I find it impossible to believe that with sufficient written evidence to support your claim that the university cannot enable you to find a new supervisor. Like all educational institutions, they must have an anti-bullying policy, and this woman is abusing her position of power.
Universities should not grant senior academics too much autonomy, because this paves the way for abuses of power to pass unchecked. There must be greater accountability for PhD supervisors who misbehave and for the institution itself to provide a safe environment for studying.
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