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Research Associate vs Research Fellow

Hi guys,

It's been a while since I posted. I hope you're all well! Life has been chaotic, moving cities, etc. I start my post doc in a weeks time, and just had a question...

When I was first offered the job, it was just before I submitted and got viva'd etc. When I got my contract through (just after passing my viva), my job title was that of a research associate, but there was a clause to say if I completed my PhD, my pay scale would be adjusted. So, obviously, I got my evidence of completion and sent it off to HR so they could adjust my salary. I got my revised contract through yesterday and my pay has increased (YAY!!), but my title has now changed to research fellow. What's the difference between a research associate and a research fellow??

Thanks 8-)

Being a smartarse

Quote From Slizor:

The actual joke was some off-the-cuff dry-as-sawdust remark, like:
Me: I've got some pubs lined up
Her: What about clubs?
Me: Nah, only slags go to clubs
Her: I go to clubs!
Me: Explains a lot

As a female, I would actually find that joke funny. In fact I did a little laugh just reading it. It's the kind of off the cuff humour I use, and most of the time people are able to figure that no harm was intended and it was a joke. I agree with others that she probably is the over-sensitive type, and maybe an apology is needed. Don't apologise for being you though, just for the fact that you offended her unknowingly and explain that it was only intended as a bit of banter and nothing hurtful.

Can dating and postgraduate studying ever really mix properly?!

Hi Natassia,

I thought I too would give my two cents. My situation was quite different to yours in that my partner and I were together long before i even considered doing my PhD, but I still think it's relevant. You seem worried that you're not going to have the time to see him and make a go of your relationship. Like Algaequeen, I've noticed that several people on this forum believe that the PhD/ masters must take up your whole life or you will inevitably fail / take a million years to complete. This doesn't have to be the case.

I finished my PhD in 2 and a half years. I was also  able to maintain my relationship, spending quality time with my boyfriend several times a week, keep up my social life, work part time (2 full days a week) and maintain my training which averaged about 4/5 times a week. The key is to know when to stop thinking about the PhD. My first year I spent quite a bit of time in the evenings doing work, and it made me miserable. I couldn't see anyone or do anything I wanted to do and that's no way to live. So from about the 7 month point, the PhD became like a job. I worked on it for the 3 days I had available in the week (9 - 4:30) and after that point I stopped and concentrated on my life. It remained that way right up until submission, although I will admit that 6 months before submitting I left my part time job to focus on writing up 5 days a week.

Basically, all I'm trying to say is that it is completely possible to have a life (including boyfriend) outside of a PhD/ masters/ anything. You have to be able to switch off and do other things or you'll go crazy and regret what could have been. Obviously different people work in different ways, and you have to take that into account, but don't think that you have to spend 3 years locked away in a room, isolated from the rest of humanity because you're doing a PhD.

In direct relation to your original post, I think you need to just explain your situation to your boyfriend, so he is aware of it allowing you both the opportunity to discuss it openly. Good luck with it all and I hope it turns out for the best! :-)

last minute accountability thread: final thesis calendar of proccedings! stuff left to do!

my last 2 weels were spent waiting for my supervisors to finish reading the final draft. The day I met with them to get feedback they said it was fine, so I did last minute checks, printed, got it signed and bound, and submitted. Job done.

I'd say your list is pretty comprehensive and looks like it's definitely do-able. I think proofing at this stage is vital because typo's can be uber frustrating when preparing for the viva!!

Good luck!! :-)

Passed with minor changes

Congrats Kellykel!!! Enjoy the freedom... you've deserved it!

Inevitable World Cup thread

I'm planning on sleeping until it's over. Failing that, I will do my usual see-how-many-people-want-to-beat-me-up-by-rooting-for-the-opposing-team thing.

Staying fit while doing a PhD

I'm a competitive athlete, so that keeps me fit. I train at least 5 nights a week, but have to admit near the end of writing up/ preparing for viva, etc I did let my training slip and stopped racing as much. Back on it now...

My partner tends to cook most of the time to make sure I eat properly, or I'd just have a slice of toast! :$ That helps a lot!!

Viva less than 24 hours!!!

Good luck Kellykel!!! Chill out today... like you said there isn't much more you can do! Tomorrow will fly by... enjoy it!! It's a terrifying experience until you get in the room. Remember you are the expert in your research!

Fingers crossed for a positive verdict!! I'm now off to pick up my hardbound copies of my thesis...

Beyond a joke now...

I'm with Stressed. Belford is the way forward. I hear they have a 2 for 1 offer on at the mo! haha

Alfie and Fudge

awww they're so cute!!

I want a gerbil. I saw one at the pet shop a few months ago and I swear he was the spitting image of Mr Miyagi from Karate Kid. I fell in love. He will be mine one day...:-x

Postgrad Forum Hall of Fame

(up) Sneaks!!

I passed my viva on the 24/05/2010, so am just over a week into Dr-hood. :-)

VIVA next week Friday

My preparation involved re-reading my thesis, and making little notes here and there about how certain points related to the questions Bilbo highlighted. I also did some extra reading on different theoretical positions knowing one of my examiners was big on theory (lucky I did as well as one of my questions was about what other theories I could have used!).

Other than that, a lot of my preparation was mental... asking myself questions and thinking up answers/ taking to myself about the research (in my head, not out loud). I don't find much use in writing stuff down as I have a good memory, so it depends on what works for you really.

I didn't have a mock viva... just a chat with my supervisor, and pretty much just chilled for the 3 days before my viva. Again though, it depends on what works best for you!

When I was asked why I embarked on the research I was completely honest. One aspect was the fact that I have a family history in the main area of my research, and the other area of the research was something I found challenging as it was a topic I'd never been interested in at all and had always avoided. I liked that it was a challenge at the same time as being tied to something I was really interested in.

My questions were a mix of both theory and practicality... we did spend a lot of time talking about methods though

I wouldn't say I prepared on my examiners research, but one of my examiners featured highly in my thesis and so I suppose that helped. Otherwise, I'd say its fine to see what their interests are, but the viva is about your research, not theirs so don't fret about it.

58 minutes and counting

Thanks guys!! I've just finished my amendments :-) Sooooo looking forward to getting it hardbound and seeing my name in gold on the side. Yay!

VIVA next week Friday


I had my viva yesterday, and know exactly how you're feeling. Yesterday before my viva, I honestly wanted to cry. I felt completely unprepared (having sunbathed instead of done prep over the weekend), and honestly thought I was going to make an idiot of myself.

Needless to say, I didn't. The viva isn't half as scary as people think. I found it enjoyable, but it was challenging. As long as you know your research (which I'm sure you do), you will be fine. You're examiners aren't there to attack you but to judge how well you know your are and your work. I think it's impossible to prepare for specific questions because you never know what your examiners will pick up on. The key is to just be confident in your own ability and in your work.

Good luck next week, and I hope to hear of a positive outcome for you!! :-)

58 minutes and counting

I was hoping to take the place of Dr Linda Papadopoulos as the most widely recognised TV psychological analyst. I reckon she's had enough time in the lime-light. Time to move over and make space for a new face (that rhymed...). Although I would have to change my name to something most people couldn't pronounce without speaking really slowly. I'll work on that one once the amendments are done...