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I have been on and off on this forum with another user name, haven't posted myself but have been reading posts of others. This forum has helped me a lot during my depression times when things wouldn't work! And also it is highly motivating to read success stories of people and it makes me think mmm....I will make it too!!
I am an international student into my final year, 2 years and 10 months and still counting. I am doing a PhD in Applied Physics. It has been almost like a roller coaster ride with so many ups and downs and here I am almost at the end of the tunnel. I really love my PhD despite the problems I have faced as it has been a challenging experience. I am still not totally done with my experimental work but aiming to wind up by the end of September. I am supposed to submit my thesis in October but unfortunately as I had quite a lot of issues with an important complex code to run my simulations my supervisors have agreed that I can take another six more months from October to finish my thesis (they have secured funding as well for the extra period for which I am very grateful!!).
I spent most of my third year trouble shooting, validating each and every step of the code and I have managed to solve all the problems now! I am progressing slowly with minor issues of my simulations crashing now and then. I am writing up simultaneously the first two main chapters and I have written bits of it here and there. I do not want to drag it up to March as I really want to finish off by the end of this year and looking forward for something new in 2012.
Anyway sorry about the rambling, I just thought of creating a post to see if there is any one else who is aiming to submit by the end of this year/first week of Jan? I will be using this as an accountability thread until I submit my thesis. Please feel free to join this thread if you are planning for an end of 2011/beginning of 2012 submission!!! :-)
All the very best to everyone!!
Hi Pineapple, I have been following your posts since a long time and you are absolutely incredible!!! Good luck to you for your corrections!!!!!
Delta and Swetcha, all the best guys! Let us get this done :)
P.S: I came to my office to check my simulations and four of them have crashed so gonna submit them again :(
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I am planning to submit next year, but I have to finish all my simulations and experiments by 31st Dec 2011 so that I have enough time to write my thesis next year. The experimental work of the second part of my research is still a disaster but I am planning to wrap up whatever results that I get this week, discuss with my supervisor and move on to the next part of my research. Not sure whether this a right decision or not. But I don't have much time to work on this part anymore. Tik tok tik tok. huhu :-(
Btw, I am also an international student, but not in the UK.
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Pineapple29 - :)
Huhu - Hi Huhu, perhaps your decision to move on to the next part of your research is a good one as you can always go back to the previous part once you finish the rest of it. Also, if something hasn't been working for a while it is better to give it a break and do something else. I have learnt in the last couple of years that the solutions to most of the big problems is simple!! ;) I am sure you will figure it out at some point.
I am going to use this as an accountability thread until I submit my thesis. Please feel free to join me on this thread! The simulations which I resubmitted didn't seem to work well either :( I got to have a look at them first thing in the morning tomorrow. I managed to finish off the analysis part of some measurements which I did last week which did not work out as I expected :( It has been a disastrous day!! I got an email from my secondary supervisor that we will be having our fortnightly tutorial on Wednesday morning. I am really feeling very guilty these days that I am not really being very productive even at the very end of my third year! I just can't believe the amount of entropy I have produced in the last three years! My project is quite a broad one which has three different aspects to it and am sort of jack of all these three but master of none! I feel quite low and lacking confidence :(
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Thank u so much:-)
I really need this thread in the times like this.:-)
Thank you so much for supporting me to move on to the next part of my studies. It is a relief to be able to talk about this with someone else. There are not many people that I can talk with about my studies here- I am the only PhD student in my lab now, most of my other friends seems fine with their studies and my inability to speak the local language (although I've been here for almost 4 years already) limits my communication with other lab members, plus most of them are on summer vacation now, not many come to the lab.
It is good that you managed to finish off the analysis part of some measurements. Congrats on getting it done:-). Yup, I understand the quite low, guilty and unproductive feeling. I feel it too. But at least we are still trying to do it little by little, it is better than not doing anything at all. Someone in this forum wrote, little by little everyday, we can get it done- I am actually telling this to myself :-(. Hope you'll get some improvements in the simulation part tomorrow- it will work fine soon and everything goes smoothly with the meeting with your supervisor on Wednesday.
Actually I have just woke up a few hours ago- happy to read this thread :-),and it is now 12:50pm in here. I went to bed at around 12am but I ended up falling asleep at 5am this morning. So I am cancelling my plan to do experiments today- I bound to make more mistake and damage my mechanism if I didn't sleep well the night before. Today, I would like to write a small part of my paper (I'll just try to send it by the end of this month although I don't think is not much of a value- I need to send it to get some feedback/ external support/ guide because my supervisor doesn't give much comment on my work), then read/ study the 3rd part of my studies, work on a small part of my simulation and sleep well tonight so that I can be alert and fresh to perform my experiments tomorrow.
Sorry for blabbering.
Hi Huhu, no worries. Please feel free to blabber any time :p I can totally understand how lonely you must be feeling. Just think that "THIS TOO SHALL PASS" 8-) Let us virtually support each other and everyone else! Thanks a lot for your positive words and I am very much in need of it at the moment :-) Good luck with your writing and shall get back to you in the evening. Let me know how it goes.
I am going to put together couple of results and have to do a calculation today and also write down points to discuss with my supervisors for tomorrow's tutorial. Cheers and have a productive day!! (up)
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Yes, I have to admit that being in a foreign country without family and close friends around somehow do affect my motivation level and emotional state. But it is the sacrifice for this PhD, and you said "THIS TOO SHALL PASS"- hopefully in this less than 1 year time.
I've finished writing the small part (experimental set up) of the paper. Just got an email saying the submission dateline for the conference is extended for another two weeks, so less pressure due to the paper. I've finished reading about Method A for the 3rd part of my research. At the time being, the formula/ equations do not look so complicated- but need to study this in detail on Thursday/Friday. I couldn't finish the simulations :-( -but maybe it's not so important- lets see how today's experiment goes.
The only plan that I have for today is- experiment of method 1 on motor 2 (from second part of my research). It is already good enough if I can get good results for this today. Hopefully nothing is broken today. Tears!
How was your day? Hopefully everything goes well with the meeting with your supervisor. Is the calculation for fixing the simulation problems?
It's the time to go to the lab downstairs. :-(
Hi Cindrella, I'm aiming to finish by the end of this year too. It's gone on far too long now and I just want to move on. it will be five years if I do get it done by then as I started full time then went part time. Like you (and probably everybody else) it's been a roller coaster with pretty much all the major life experiences going on over that time - bereavement, divorce, moving house, illness, depression, pregnancy (my teenage step daughter not me!). I've got pretty much most of the thesis done to some extent and I'm now going through the methodology and tidying up my analysis so it's presentable. It is doable in 5 months but only if I actually 'do' it! I work part-time so I do have the time but often not the motivation. It's good to know there are others aiming for the same thing.
Well, you and me both, Cinderella. I have a combo simulation and lab-based Ph.D. My Ph.D. experience has been less than wonderful, and I really, really want to get it complete. I have written up ~20% of my first draft in the last two days, but I am now really, really slowing down, as I need to write up a lot more of my individual results, as well as complete a large-scale data mine.
Good luck and godspeed. Everyone on this thread - if we all manage it, beers all round!
Huhu - Well done! for managing to finish off most of what you intended to :-) I'm glad to hear that the deadline has been postponed. They always do don't they ;-) Try to relax a bit and restart. I am sure that will help you. I wish you luck with the rest of your simulations/experiments and am sure everything is gonna work!!.
My meeting went on alright actually, thanks. Despite the fact that my analysis didn't give expected results and my simulations crashing all the time, my supervisors were very positive and gave me few suggestions about how to go from here (I was thinking that probably they are going to fire me or something). They said that I don't have to worry about the funding and also they said that they don't want to put too much pressure on me at this point as I am already undergoing a lot. I am extremely grateful to them and feeling a bit relieved today. I decided to take the afternoon off to begin with :p to refresh my mind.
PamW - Hi Pam, welcome to this thread. Its great to hear that you are almost done with your thesis. It is people like you who multi task and manage family, PhD and work inspire me! Being single, its sometimes difficult for me to manage myself ;-) All the very best to you!!
Havenomouth - We are pretty much sailing on the same boat then! Are you done with you practical part completely? or do you still have some more data collection/analysis to do? 20% of first draft sounds awesomesorous (I learnt this word from a friend of mine :p)!!! Good luck for the rest (up)
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Glad that it went well for you. Enjoy your afternoon :-) Hopefully you can restart fresh tomorrow.
I did the experiments yesterday and the got some good results that I thought were not possible at all 2 weeks ago. I think I already found out why my experiment had low repeatability before this. I now feel a little stronger to perform experiments (not as hopeless as two weeks ago).
I went to meet my supervisor today and the meeting was much better than I had expected. I showed him the results, he was ok with them and asked me to stress in the papers on what are new things that I did in this part of research (which is nothing much actually). We also discussed about few other things and mutually agreed on most of them.
Today I would like to:
1. Borrow a book from the library, buy medicine and set an appointment with the university counsellor - done
2. Meet my supervisor - done
3. Study the equations/ formula in Method A (of the 3rd part of my research) in detail
4. Experiment on motor 1
Despite all the failures, the faster we know the wrong way of doing it, the sooner we can discover the right one...
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