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TreeofLife
Tuesday, 12 April 2011 at 3:58pm
Thursday, 9 August 2018 at 1:56pm
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page 1 of 188 recent posts

Thread: PhD depressed partner - how can I help?

posted
30-Aug-18, 09:13
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posted about 3 weeks ago
No you're not desperate. It's hard for an outside observer to know what your relationship is like, but I do know what a PhD can be like. It sounds like he's struggling to cope with his PhD and everything else combined. I would tell him that you still what to be with him but that you'll give him some space at the moment. Tell him you'll still go to the city he's in as planned and he can see how he feels then.

Of course, there's always the thing that he didn't want to be with you and he is using this as an excuse, or that he has met someone else, but if you don't think these are options then I would do the above.

Thread: 3rd yeard PhD and I feel hopeless

posted
29-Aug-18, 12:18
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posted about 3 weeks ago
Sounds good, best of luck with it!

Thread: Online or Blended Learning Masters Nutrition?

posted
29-Aug-18, 12:14
edited about 10 seconds later
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posted about 3 weeks ago
What's your purpose for undertaking the masters?

Thread: PhD dropout - finding jobs :(

posted
29-Aug-18, 12:13
edited about 16 seconds later
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posted about 3 weeks ago
Quote From iwan:


1st company (STEM): i mentioned about lack of guidance and ironically i was called in for second interview. I later declined it because i find that i dont have the chemistry-related lab expertise to perform well on the job. (is this a legit better reason to give- i was told to not state any negative aspects of my time there but for this situation, i went with my gut feeling).

But for research related jobs, i may need to give a slightly different reason. I really need help on this part, hope i can get valuable feedback on this.


Personally I wouldn't mention lack of guidance as that can be a red flag for some, e.g. if they want to you to be independent and not need hand holding (not saying you did). And yes, avoid the word 'overwhelming' lol.

For research related jobs, maybe say you realise you really enjoy bench work and working in labs, but you realised academic life with all the trimmings wasn't for you? You might then be asked what you perceive the differences to be outside of academia, so be prepared to have an answer for this.

Thread: Short survey

posted
29-Aug-18, 12:06
edited about 21 seconds later
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posted about 3 weeks ago
I did it because of rewt's comment! It was interesting. No horses though!

Thread: 3rd yeard PhD and I feel hopeless

posted
29-Aug-18, 11:47
edited about 18 seconds later
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posted about 3 weeks ago
Ok, seems your main issue is overcoming writers block. There are many techniques for overcoming this. Have you tried some of them? Like telling yourself you're going to write for 5 minutes without editing? Or saying you're going to write rubbish but it's ok because you're going to delete it after (and then don't)? Or just making some bullet points? Or pomodoros where you work for 20 mins then take a 10 minute break?

I've tried all of these things and they all work for me (although sometimes it's like pulling teeth). My general daily technique though is clearing all the little things I have to do, until there's nothing else to do, but start work. Even then sometimes I can't face it, so I start by formatting things. Once I've got a nicely formatted title/headings or table or something, then I'm motivated to start writing something. For the last 2-3 months, my work procrastination has been terrible. I think it's because my deadlines seem so far away. It's starting to pick up now finally (probably because I have 3000 words to write by Monday and I haven't written one word yet!).

Thread: How to include all. Phd application critical writing, cover letter and CV.

posted
22-Aug-18, 15:03
edited about 27 seconds later
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posted about 1 month ago
Attach your cover letter as with the other things they have asked for. There's almost a standard format for these, so make sure you google that.

I've not seen critical writing asked for. Do you have something you've already done for a master's thesis or something? If you've done some research, your discussion should have been critical. If you're writing something from scratch, then pick a relevant topic and write a short analysis of it comparing and contrasting different theories or results.

Thread: Mphil scenario

posted
21-Aug-18, 18:05
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posted about 1 month ago
Quote From Tudor_Queen:

Would you still recommend just submit the thesis anyway since it should pass (on the basis of its content - not on the basis of that person's learning and development through the whole process)? Or would you consider recommending the MPhil is a viable option here... if that person can manage to secure funding elsewhere for another PhD?

No comment? :-)


Yes I would still recommend submitting it anyway. At the end of the day, whatever lofty ideals we may have, a PhD is about an individual presenting a thesis containing an original contribution to knowledge worthy of publication and who has the ability to pursue independent original research. If someone has met these criteria, then they should be awarded a PhD.

It feels kind of wrong if someone has just ticked a few boxes to get a PhD (and I know a few of these), but not when they did their best to have a great PhD experience and it didn't work out, like you're saying. I really don't see the point in submitting for an MPhil when you've done enough work for a PhD.

Thread: Notice period stopping PhD

posted
21-Aug-18, 11:56
edited a moment later
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posted about 1 month ago
Sorry to hear this. What a horrible situation to be in. Maybe try and suspend studies instead of withdrawing? Then if it works out ok, you could come back to it.

Thread: Mphil scenario

posted
21-Aug-18, 11:53
edited about 4 seconds later
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posted about 1 month ago
Quote From pm133:


Secondly, your second paragraph sounds horrendous. I could never work amongst such people. By the way, as regards you talking about a gap between how knowledgable you are compared to how knowledgable your students THINK you are, I would say the following. When I started delivering tutorials I felt a huge pressure to hide that gap as well until I realised that I was not there to prove myself to the students. I had my first class degree and I was well on the way to a PhD. My gaps came from not scoring 100% but everyone is in that boat. I stopped worrying about trying to hide any gaps and it became much less stressful. Students dont lose respect for a tutor with gaps in their knowledge. They lose respect for a tutor trying to bullshit their way through it using time honoured nonsense like asking the students to research it for the following week.


You're right, it's not nice to work in that environment, but thankfully it's not all people and it's not all the time as I learn to avoid those that do it.

You're right about the bullshitting thing too. I don't do that. Gaps in knowledge are fine, but at the same time, there's a certain level of knowledge students expect, so if I say 'I don't know' right off the bat, then obviously they are going to get the impression that I don't know anything, rather than I don't know that particular thing. I get this feedback from them about PhD students a lot. "We don't want our work marked by PhD students because they don't have a clue what they are talking about when we ask them questions in practicals". I overcome this myself by trying to appear knowledgeable in lectures, and setting work in tutorials that I am very familiar with.

Thread: Am i eligible for PhD? Help!!

posted
20-Aug-18, 11:33
edited about 5 seconds later
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posted about 1 month ago
I know an Italian who was in a similar position. He got an Erasmus scholarship in the UK for 3 months, made a bunch of contacts via his supervisor and from going to conferences etc, and then got on to a fully funded PhD in Life Sciences. So, it's more than possible.

I wouldn't worry about publications at this stage. In the UK, this isn't expected before PhD level.

If you need English improvement, maybe come to the UK and take a language course if that's an option? Live with English people and you should improve quickly.

But before doing a PhD, think about the future. What do you want to do afterwards? Are you prepared to move around chasing short term contracts with no guarantee of a job at the end of it?

Thread: Mphil scenario

posted
20-Aug-18, 11:28
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posted about 1 month ago
Just for clarification, I think I did my PhD the right way. I threw myself into it and gave it everything I had. I didn't just write up my thesis as quickly as I could, I read widely and deeply, like a proper scholar should, and that's why it took me a whole year to write up working 60-70 hour weeks.. I could have done it a lot quicker if I was just churning out results with a superficial intro and discussion (like many people do). I published 3 papers from my PhD, plus a popular science article (all written completely myself, just reviewed by my supervisors). And one of those papers just won paper of the year from the journal it was published in.

I'm interested in learning for learning's sake. I wanted the Dr title, but it would be meaningless to me if I didn't feel like I had earned it.

My point about faking it, is about impostor syndrome, but also about being realistic. Do I think I'm as knowledge as my former PhD supervisors? No. Do my students think I am? Yes. So I have to fake it to some extent. Also, many senior academics are so arrogant (and many technicians are very condescending), so I often feel like people are trying to catch me out, show up my gaps in knowledge if you like. Academia is a dog eat dog world and showing weakness is not advantageous.

Thread: Distance Diploma/pgCert in molecular biology

posted
20-Aug-18, 11:10
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posted about 1 month ago
Is something wrong with this forum today? Because it keeps deleting my text.

Don't do this. Molecular Biology is a practical science. You learn by doing. Just read a text book if you want the background, or something like AddGene Plasmid 101 if it's relevant.

Thread: Distance Diploma/pgCert in molecular biology

posted
20-Aug-18, 11:07
edited about 1 minute later
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posted about 1 month ago
Don't this. Molecular Biology is a practical science. You learn by doing. Just read a text book if you want the background, or something like this if it's relevant for what you want: info.addgene.org/download-addgenes-ebook-plasmids-101-3rd-edition

Thread: Where to do my PhD Studies?

posted
18-Aug-18, 09:28
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posted about 1 month ago
Quote From Loubigher:


That sounds a bit more disappointing as the tuition fees are super expensive for international students, considering the fact I will need a 4th year to finish my PhD sounds tremendous, I think I could focus and concentrate on finishing up in 3 years as much as I could. Otherwise I wont be able to afford it.


Whether or not you pay tuition fees depends on what your supervisor/department agrees on. I've known international students do both - generally, if you're just writing up in your fourth year you don't need to pay fees - there's a writing up fee of £500 or something. I was only funded for 3 years and I didn't pay anything for my 4th year.

You have to make it clear from the outset what you intend to do with your supervisors.

It probably is discipline specific - I'm in Life Sciences and you are basically in the lab all day for 3 years, so it's very hard to write up during that time as well.
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