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Saturday, 7 June 2014 at 10:37am
Saturday, 9 February 2019 at 9:38am
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page 1 of 8 recent posts

Thread: Pregnancy during PhD: dealing with chemicals and advisor

09-Feb-19, 09:54
edited about 53 seconds later
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 1 week ago
Quote From pm133:
There will be risks to your baby if you continue working in a lab-based environment.

There MAY be measurable risks!

Quote From newlease36:
i It is definitely illegal to make someone work in conditions that would adversely affect their health.

It is illegal to make anyone work in any conditions- that is slavery!!

Quote From newlease36:

but in the case you had no rights (which you do) and you could be forced to work in an environment that would adversely affect your child's health... would you still do it????

Like I honestly don't what your asking here? should I continue to work in environment that has the potential to harm my unborn child? not a difficult question to answer.

This hyperbole is unhelpful- everything job has potential risks, and individuals need to weigh up risks (once they have been reduced as far as possible) for themselves based on their individual values and circumstances. The employer/ university has a role in this as well. For example, an individual who had had recurrent miscarriages may view any risk as unacceptable (even if viewed as reasonable by others).

The sensible (and measured advice) advice is:

You need to ask for the Health and safety risk assessment. You need to flag your pregnancy health and safety adviser and seek advice.

No work place is without risk and there will always be unknown risks- key thing is about recognising known risks, and controlling them.

I doubt the supervisor is recklessly endangering the OP!

I doubt the OP is the first person in the lab to get pregnant- a risk assessment may have been done last time which identified that use of chemicals under a hood was acceptable.

Thread: ETHICS HELP! Urgent

09-Feb-19, 09:35
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 1 week ago
1) Phone committee and ask

2) Sounds long, but might be reasonable if extremely complex/ significant ethical issues.

Thread: Presentations - obligations?

26-Jan-19, 20:35
edited about 24 seconds later
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 3 weeks ago
Quote From nanbob:

My PhD involved conducting a piece of research that was part funded by a local council; as part of that I've published my first 'first author' paper in an international peer reviewed journal, presented the work internationally, nationally and locally and done a load of poster presentations and written up a report for local organisations to share.

One of my supervisors who is based at the council organisation sort of signed me up to speak at a conference without asking me about it first/letting me know any details. She's not been very 'present' within the PhD (I basically get the idea that she's there to have her name on something - she doesn't come to any meetings and didn't even proof read my final manuscript). I've been struggling with my mental health recently, having a recent bereavement and coming towards the end of my PhD funding and the stresses that involves. I think it will take a lot of time to prepare for the presentation and most of the audience will be aware of the work already, it's getting published and I just don't feel like I could cope with the anxiety of presenting at the moment so it's not something I want to do right now. I emailed my supervisor to say I wouldn't be able to attend but I'm more than happy if she (who is also presenting) wanted some of my slides and she can include it in her talk. She sent me a pretty arsey email after that and copied in my other two supervisors (one of them agreed I shouldn't present; the other more senior supervisor wasn't aware of it)...

Was I out of line in cancelling? I know they part funded the work but I feel I've done quite a lot of research dissemination already to make it worthwhile!

Hmmmm... you need to take your relationship with your supervisor out of this!

Essentially- you have been asked by a research funder to present your findings to them.
I accept the timing may not be perfect- but, if it were me, I would do it unless I actually couldn't do that date.

From a self-interest angle, they have funded previous research, perhaps they will fund your next project.

Thread: Terminally ill parent during PhD

07-Jan-19, 12:03
edited about 15 seconds later
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 1 month ago
In part, I think this depends on your relationship with your family and the condition of your mum?

If you take a temporary withdrawal, what will you do?

If my mother didn't need much care at the moment, I would tempted to carry on at present, but work quite flexibly so I could take regular trips to see her- e.g. long weekends Friday to Monday. There will be many other people wanting to spend time with her so need to be careful about over-burdening her. It is the quality, not quantity, of time that matters.

Depending on your funding, your relationship with your university may be akin to an employer-employee in which case you need to understand the relevant HR policies re: unpaid leave etc.

Thread: How can i find any proofreading job after university?

28-Dec-18, 10:16
edited about 9 seconds later
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 2 months ago
Quote From noplag:
Hi there! I graduate now, and looking for some proofreading career. Can you advice me on how can i work as a proofreader on the internet?

I'm not sure proofreading is the right career for you.

Thread: Disagreement with supervisor about a journal paper

30-Oct-18, 18:21
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 4 months ago
Quote From rewt:
You are right, I should start the paper now. I think most of the interesting results will be ready by the time I finish writing the first draft of my current stuff (I am a slow writer). I will include them if they are ready but will submit anyway. Though I am going to make clear that I am doing the extra work anyway, even if just for my appendix.

My supervisor wants to go for a relatively good journal that readily accepts this work but is notoriously slow. So I can just include the later data in the revisions. I just feel a bit uncomfortable submitting something I know is not my best work and has clear flaws, just to speed up the process. Unfortunately that is academia, got to make compromises somewhere.

Thanks for the advice, sometimes I get stuck in my won thought chamber.

Throughout your career, there will always be unanswered research questions- you just need to find the point at which you publish.

By flagging research gaps in your paper, you can set the scene for your next paper.

Thread: Messed up masters big time - options?

30-Oct-18, 18:07
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 4 months ago

I am genuinely surprised that your first thought is to look to defend the OP rather than their fellow students who didn't cheat. Is there a reason for that?

Where did I defend them?

In my university role, I regularly investigate accusations of plagiarism. My comments were based on that experience.

Thread: Messed up masters big time - options?

30-Oct-18, 14:55
edited about 10 seconds later
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 4 months ago
There is a lot of unpleasantness on this thread- the OP has asked for general advice. They have been quite upfront about the fact that they made an error.

There is a huge difference between poor academic practice and a deliberate intent to cheat (e.g. buying essays on the internet). I do not know where this lies, but the fact that the OP remains in the programme suggests it wasn't a deliberate intent to cheat. As for the fraud issue, no such accusation seems to have been made against the OP.

There is also a huge difference in the way that depression affects people- some people live with it relatively well, some commit suicide, others do stupid things. It is ridiculous to say that just because depression didn't affect me in x way, then it would not have that effect in anyone.
If this is an allowable point in mitigation then it is right that the OP refers to it.

At the university where I work, the most common decisions are a reduction in marks or a requirement to re-submit for a capped mark. I am confused by how a score of 0 can be given without an opportunity to re-submit as if they don't meet the requirements for the module, they will not attain enough points for the award.

Thread: How do people end up disseminating results on radio, in newspapers, etc?

23-Oct-18, 08:16
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 4 months ago
Universities will typically have press offices who co-ordinate this type of thing.

If your research is 'sexy' enough they will do a press release which may or may not create media interest. At other time, journal publications or conference presentations will create interest.
Other times, stuff goes 'viral ' on social media (e.g. CERN guy with comments on women).

I would write something generic about your three audiences: public, policy makers, other researchers.
You could say that will liaise with press office.

Thread: Writing a grant - how it works

07-Oct-18, 07:19
edited about 5 seconds later
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 4 months ago
Quote From Tudor_Queen:
Hi postdocs

I have some questions about writing grants - more the application side of things than the actual writing. Do you need to be affiliated with a university / institution? I am just wondering how this sort of thing happens in reality. Might it be that you are working as a postdoc and at the same time putting together a fellowship application to do a postdoc at the same or another university? Do you need to have named supervisors on it etc, a bit like with a PhD application? Or can you apply for a fellowship AT a university - so you don't necessarily need to have that stuff sorted already (a bit like if you were applying for a PhD scholarship at a university with your own idea for the project but not much more than that?)

Hopefully my questions make some sort of sense.


A post-doctoral fellowship is iprimarily intended to fund a researcher's development. As part of this, it will usually fund a programme of research.

A key part of the funder's review is ensuring that the host university and mentorship arrangements are sufficient to support this development.

Thread: ScholaOne Manuscripts

24-Aug-18, 23:09
edited about 14 seconds later
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 6 months ago
Quote From nike_one:
Hi guys,
Thank you very much for accepting me in the forum. I would like to ask a question about my submission, maybe someone has had a similar experience. My status has gone directly from "Awaiting Rewievers scores" to "Awaiting decision". I have seen that some people have gone through "Awaiting Recommendations".
Does this mean that my article has no recommendations and is likely to be rejected? Thank you very much everyone!

It means nothing... Just wait for the email.

Thread: e Journals with no fees

04-Aug-18, 10:44
edited about 8 seconds later
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 6 months ago
Not many that publish muniscripts!

Lots that publish manuscripts, but unlikely to be open access.
Impossible to advise without knowing discipline and quality of journal you are aiming for.

Thread: PowerPoint Presentation

03-Aug-18, 19:00
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 6 months ago
Given the question was posed 8 years ago, suspect the OP has made their decision by now!

Thread: What is a double-baseline design?

01-Aug-18, 19:24
edited about 24 seconds later
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 6 months ago
I am not sure I understand the point of either of these study designs.

The example by tudor_queen sounds like something between a glorified before-after study and a rather pathetic interrupted time series.

The example by abababa sounds like an extremely poor/ basic stepped wedge design.

Both approaches seem to have extremely significant limitations!!

Thread: Enough data for a PhD?

16-Jul-18, 20:09
Avatar for Thesisfun
posted about 7 months ago
Quote From MissyL:
Hey guys,

I'm due to submit my thesis in lab-based science ASAP.
I'm sure this is a common feeling amongst PhD students, but I am concerned that I don't have enough data.
Funny enough the data I do have is interesting, and I'm confident that it adds to my field, but I'm concerned about the quantity and that I might be deemed as having not done enough.
I've been lucky and have managed to do a fairly low number of experiments (in comparison to my peers) but gained nice data. I have a few other experiments that I planned not to include in my thesis, mainly as they didn't work or are negative data that doesn't add much. Therefore, its main purpose would be proof of myself having done other work.
From the point of the examiners, what's the best thing to do, keep my three small chapters of interesting results with good controls etc, or add some of my non interesting/ possibly bad experimental design results in order to bulk things out ??
Common sense tells me to just write up the good stuff, but I could do with reassurance from people in a similar boat.

Thanks for any replies in advance!

So... you have generated hypotheses, tested them, and decided not to disseminate them!

This is why we have a problem with publication bias and research waste!!
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