Signup date: 15 Jan 2013 at 7:08pm
Last login: 26 Feb 2014 at 11:42pm
Post count: 25
Hi Charlottehad91, welcome to the forum!
I started my PhD the same time as you, so I know exactly how you feel. I think I am a *little* closer, I still haven't got it exactly but I managed to narrow my topic down a bit - I don't feel as lost as I did when I started this thread. The new topic I discovered 2/3 weeks back seems more promising than what I was looking at before, so I wish I'd spotted it right at the beginning. All we can do is keep reading; don't give up and I hope you find something soon.
And thank you for the advice incognito, hopefully I'll find something good soon!
It's already been suggested, but I recommend using Mendeley too. I don't think I could have organised my reading material as efficiently without it!
It's comforting to hear that it's common, I know I probably shouldn't stress about it but I tend to be a worrier! Thanks for the suggestion about the annual reports Fled; I think I'm going to have a search for some reviews in my own field. Hopefully I'll find something soon.
Thank you both for your comments :).
Happy birthday! Sorry to hear you're having trouble finding work; I know it's easier said than done but try not to get depressed, I'm sure something will come up eventually.
It definitely sounds like you need a small break to unwind; DrJeckyll's suggestion of going somewhere sunny is good. Perhaps you could get together with friends and do something fun? Personally, I would take a few days off and just spend time doing other things I enjoy, even if they're not particularly special :).
I hope this helps.
Hey guys, I hope you've all had a wonderful Christmas and New Year!
I’d like to ask for some advice. I have been reading for three months now and I don’t feel much closer to a definite project. My supervisor and I agreed that I would abandon my original proposal, however, coming up with something new is proving to be quite hard. I suggested something else to him a month ago but he told me that it would take too long. I am mentally exhausted and already burnt out – I feel like I have been going round in circles, and I'm very aware of time trickling away.
A few days ago I found something different that I’d like to read about - closer to what I might like to do - and it made me aware that I may have been reading papers that are slightly off-topic for the past three months (but not completely irrelevant). My supervisor doesn't seem to be able to help; I asked him a while back if I was reading the correct material, and he told me that he didn't know. We haven’t really been having meetings, just a couple here and there, so it looks like I'm tackling this on my own. But, after three months of going nowhere I am feeling demotivated and quite lost. I guess all I can do is keep reading, but could anyone offer any advice that would help me along, or has anyone else experienced something similar to this?
Thanks in advance. :)
my advice would be to keep on sending out emails; and as HazyJane said, follow up on ones that have had no reply. It can be tedious but you will eventually get a hit if you keep searching.
When I was an undergraduate I chose to do a research project in my final year, and part of this entailed emailing academics to ask if they had any footage I could use to help with my research. I must have sent out a good forty emails or so. Only a very small minority of the academics I emailed were able to help (if I recall rightly, five or six).
Basically, it might be a long search, but you will find someone who is interested if you keep looking.
Hi TreeofLife and incognito,
thank you both for your great advice and encouragement. Honestly, you've both helped me to feel better about the situation and I really appreciate your support. I'm reading as much as I can to build up my knowledge, so I'm hoping in the next meeting to contribute to the discussion a little more, and make use of the tips you've given me! My supervisor seems so busy these days, but I will talk to him about it as well.
Thanks again. :)
Hi guys. I just started my PhD last week. I'm part of a team which is working on an overall bigger project. The team is composed of a couple of PIs, CIs and post-docs; I am the only PhD student.
We had a meeting recently and I was silent through almost the entirety of it. I feel disappointed with myself. They were discussing the project, the ideas that have been rolling around for months (that I know nothing about), using the subject terminology perfectly. I'm not completely comfortable with the terminology (and not really that eloquent). They all demonstrated that they know so much more than me, so I stayed quiet as they continued their discussion. My confidence is really low, and in front of these intelligent people I feel moronic and out of place, like if I spoke up then I would be speaking out of line. I feel my viewpoint is worthless.
I am friends with my supervisor; he’s a nice person. He noticed my being quiet and so he started prodding me for responses near the end of the meeting. It didn't help that he directed the topic of conversation away from the project, reinforcing that I know nothing about it. After the meeting he gave me some books to read and asked me if I was feeling overwhelmed. I think he already knew the answer.
I'm probably overreacting, but I just feel terrible. It’s like we came to the first hurdle and I fell flat on my face. I should have been more vocal during the meeting but I wasn't. I feel like I'm already letting myself and my supervisor down. I think he is disappointed with me too. I know it’s just the initial PhD blues and I have to deal with it… but I still feel bad. I want to be confident and eloquent. I wish I could show my supervisor impressive ideas and assist the rest of the team. Instead I feel like a burden on them all. :’(
Hi Waggy, nice to meet you. I have just started my PhD :). I find there is a lot to learn from the discussions on this forum, I agree it's nice to be able to share highs and lows with other postgrads who understand!
That's wonderful news! Many congratulations, and best of luck for the future!
I usually read through my work on the computer first (several times!) and then print when I believe I have my final. Then I read the paper copy, find mistakes and have to reprint certain pages. ;)
I'm not *entirely* certain about this, but I'm sure you can rewrite the title of your thesis - in fact I don't think it's set in stone until the very last minute! New results and papers are published all the time; it would make no sense to not be able to change your idea if someone else has recently invalidated it. So I'm sure you can change topic. But if you can't, could you rethink your argument and change it to build on what has recently been discovered? Perhaps this new evidence could work in your favour? :)
Hi Thomas, welcome to the forum! I'd just like to add that, although there are no lectures, depending on experience and field you may be asked to assist in teaching. I know PhD students who help out undergraduate lab classes. But it absolutely isn't compulsory, and may not even happen within your institution.
Unfortunately, there will always be those people who put you down and try to make you feel stupid for asking questions. But it seems to me like your classmate is very insecure. If I were in your position, I would probably have to send a few emails out - his behaviour is affecting you, so it's not a case of something you can just ignore. Emailing your supervisor or course tutor is a good place to start.
Masters DegreesSearch For Masters Degrees
An active and supportive community.
Support and advice from your peers.
Your postgraduate questions answered.
Use your experience to help others.
Enter your email address below to get started with your forum account
Enter your username below to login to your account
An email has been sent to your email account along with instructions on how to reset your password. If you do not recieve your email, or have any futher problems accessing your account, then please contact our customer support.
or continue as guest