Signup date: 13 Apr 2007 at 1:11pm
Last login: 12 Dec 2008 at 7:07am
Post count: 148
Congratulations Dr K. I am another Dr K. What a coincidence! I also passed my viva today. I was utterly terrified beforehand and have been dreading it for a while but after 1 hour 15 I was congratulated and given minor corrections and 3 very minor edits - a couple of sentences to add for each. All up I can do this in half a day. After 4 years of extreme stress, sometimes severe frustration, a number of extra kilos..... I'm there. It has been a really tough journey and I nearly gave up so many times.
Keep the faith everyone. I really never thought I'd see this day. If I can do it, I'm sure you all can too!
Dr K (the second) :)
Hi Pineapple, rather than stressing about it why don't you call or e-mail your supervisor? Find out from her what she thought rather than trying to read between the lines. With e-mail it can be so difficult to get at what someone was thinking. Best of luck!
I think that writing up is one of those things that takes as much time as you've got. It can be always be done more slowly or more quickly. I found it quite a challenge and took over a year but could have done it quicker if I had less time. Try and plan out what you still have to do and set deadlines across your year leaving time at the end to go over the whole draft. I'm sure you can do it!
You will reach a point where you need to stop reading to get a chapter down. it's not really until you write that you realise clearly what your arguments are and if you need to read more. But, once you've got a chapter drafted and a thesis structure in place, it's much easier to see your argument and add more literature if necessary. Also it's much easier to assess what's relevant at this stage rather than just reading loads of stuff inteh general area of your thesis. Good luck!
Good luck to everyone working today! This thread has kept me sane even though I've been a lurker rather than a poster. I printed out my thesis today and will take it for binding tomorrow morning. I thought I'd never make it - it has been such a long, hard and stressful 4 years. But here I am with 450 pages of printed thesis! I keep reading my work and don't think it's great but my supervisor seems to think it's good!
What I want to say is that doing a PhD makes you full of self-doubt but don't let this get you down. You CAN do it. Keep going Lara and soon your weekends will be soooo much more relaxed.
I know how you feel. I printed out my thesis today and will take it to get bound tomorrow morning. I just couldn't look at it anymore because even thoguh my supervisor said it's fine, I keep seeing the weaknesses. I feared that I would make it worse by going over it again so just hit the print button. I had loads of tables and graphs in my thesis so one check I did was to make sure that the pagination was ok - i.e. that diagrams and tables didn't go over more than one page etc. If you've checked your references, page numbers, table of contents, appendices, footnotes then I reckon yo should just print it out and try and forget about it! Good luck! Keep us posted with how it goes.
I'm totally with you on this one. I feel like for so long I haven't really been bothering to look at myself properly in the mirror - my mind has been so occupied. Today I looked properly and really didn't like what I saw. Loads of tiny white hairs starting to grow :( and I have put on soooo much weight doing this thesis. If you're a drama queen then so am I!
I'm finding this really tough too! Everytime I look at my analysis and discussion chapters I can think of weaknesses in my arguments and want to change things. It is hard for us to know when 'good enough is good enough'. Maybe not a very reliable strategy but I'm working on gut instinct and my supervisor telling me when it's ok.
The drop and roll thing reminds me of a story my supervisor told me. A student of hers felt that he'd done so badly after his first year viva that he came into her office and literally rolled around the floor hysterically crying! I reckon as long as you avoid this you'll be fine!
Seriously though I was a bundle of nerves beforehand but ended up surprised at how quickly the time passed and even at how little of the report we managed to discuss in the time allowed.
It is terrifying at the start - the only way around it is practice so dive right in! For my first presentation I found myself willing to get run over by a bus in the morning. Seemed logical at the time but as soon as the presentation was over, the stupidity of this thinking was clear! I think that it's only through practice that you become clear about how to contain nerves and what style best suits you etc. We're all nervous starting out so don't let that stop you - just go for it.
You may want to spend quite a bit of time planning your chapters rather than just diving straight into the writing. That way it will be more focused and hopefully you will not waste as much. Just a suggestion but you may find that with more time you go down more dead ends. You should focus of buildign an overall argument, one that is sustained across all chapters. Maybe spend a lot of time going through the key findings from your data and start from there?
I tend to have cooking sessions where I cook stuff in bulk so that I can fill my freezer up. Soups, curries, casseroles... Ok so not as good as made fresh but still a quick and healthy home-made option for those busy evenings when you have nothing fresh in the fridge. I also try to buy lots of fresh, fruit and vege. I then make smoothies from the fruit and cook the fresh vege to go with casseroles etc.
A couple of years ago I spent half an hour in the morning furiously rubbing marks on my forehead - I thought I'd done a rubbish job with my foundation and couldn't understand why it wasn't coming off.
Alas, that was my introduction to forehad wrinkles! Boohoo!
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