Signup date: 10 Jan 2012 at 4:37pm
Last login: 21 Oct 2020 at 9:50am
Post count: 154
You should have recieved a list of the corrections that had to be made to your thesis after your viva. If all of these have been carried out to both their instructions and your supervisors were happy with it you should have passed no problem.
If this external has added something to the correction list you should have it documented by email etc. If you have nothing from him about this section then you should be able to win your appeal.
You need to show at your appeal that you have done everything that was asked of you post viva and that what he failed you on was never brought to your attention in writing or during the viva.
How close are you to writing up? PhDs don't have to be conclusions to work, but you need to show what you are doing and the results you have will or can impact your research area.
I know its a lot of hard work that supervisors don't seem to understand or care about your life beyond the research but in this day and age especially for the biosciences, a PhD will work for you getting a job in industry or academic research. Without it your starting salary can be much lower without years of experience to back you up and your fighting PhD students for those jobs.
If at all possible I'd tell you to do as much bench work as possible while you can as long as it's relevent to getting you results for your thesis and then if money is an issue look for a job while writing up.
From my own experience my supervisors expected me to write up full time after my funding had ended. That just wasn't possible for me so I took a job to pay my bills while writing up instead. They weren't happy with that but you're the only one that can balance what you need to do money wise with what you can do writing up.
Use your remaining leave entitlement. Everyone can keep working but it can add to stress levels and anxiety. You sound like you know what you're doing now, have a working sample set and new cell line due in a few weeks. Take a break.
Down time is important to decompress and be able to get going again with a good outlook.
A phd is training. You aren't expected to master everything. Yet.
The blotting will come with practise, do two a day for a week and you'd have the technique down. As for the cell line, find out who else has used them, ask them for advice, or tips. If they can't help that's what research is about.
If you have your test model ready and working by the 8-12 month mark consider yourself ahead of the curve. Good luck and don't stress too much.
My university didn't pay for stationary or printing either, and printing was more than I would have liked, consider investing in a printer of your own. Also I had to buy a laptop. My travel expenses where out of my own pocket but my supervisors/departments pot covered accommodation. I paid for food. And I lived in a different city to my uni so petrol and car costs were something I hadn't considered but managed to cover. Parking was also expensive although at a discount. We also had department lunches and dinners once or twice a month and those I didn't budget for prior to starting. There's also the cost of group lunches within your peers, and maybe events - my group tried to organise a group activity every other month, cinema, camping, hill walking, go karting etc
I know some of these cost can be removed if you don't take part but a lot of the social events really helped bond my research group. It made it a relaxing place to work. I've worked in the polar opposite and I have to tell you that I'd rather spend the money and keeping a relaxed atmosphere in the lab I was in.
Just to add that should you take additional work will studying if they don't use the normal tax code something 10 which means you don't pay tax below 10k per tax year, just keep your pay slips and apply for a refund at the end of the tax year. Your stipend has nothing to do with your taxable earnings. If you only ever work casual jobs (a few hours a week) even if you do that for the whole year you'll unlikely earn enough to be taxed so remember to claim it back.
Did you buy the instrument second hand without the computer and software?
I have used it but it came with the Spectrum software, buying it separately will cost several thousand US$ unless your university has a discount from the company.
I don't know of any free version, I'm not sure there would be with such specialist software, unless developed by another university.
I accepted one of the phds I'd applied to once I'd finished my MSc. I would have preferred to work in industry at the time but couldn't find a lot of well paid jobs that didn't involve moving to the other side of my country. My phd is in a field of research that is expanding and that opens up wider job prospects for me.
These are things you have to consider once you start and complete your MSc. Have an idea of where you want to end up, and try and do the preparation for that now with your MSc and then more extensively with a phd if you want.
I'm happy with where I've ended up but I honestly wish I'd planned a little better earlier on in my education. Good luck!
Your supervisor for the project should have an idea if s/he will get funding. These things are very rarely last minute decisions. Send a polite enquiry about the position and ask if you can have assurances that the funding will be granted and be honest, say you can't self-fund and are considering other offers.
There's no point in accepting if the supervisor is already aware there won't be funding for the research. My current department and previous one where I did my phd have knowledge of how much funding they'll likely have which dicates how many phds/postdocs and research assistants they can hire for specific projects.
Don't put all your hopes on this one project as much as you want it to happen, it would be best to keep your options open and apply to other positions that interest you.
Is it possible to have more theoretical chapters on what you aim to achieve and back it up with extensive literature reviews. Then propose a few pilot experiments which would show some of your objectives? You may have to organise equipment use yourself, it can be good networking and grease wheels with 'collaboration' papers.
Not all phds show ground breaking experimental results. You just have to show what you are trying to do is new to the field of research and has the possibility to advance knowledge. Good luck!
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