Signup date: 31 Oct 2011 at 3:18pm
Last login: 10 Jan 2013 at 12:46pm
Post count: 95
Hi PN: I find that when I've read through the thesis I can think of answers to the common questions, but then a few days later I've forgotten all the detail of the thesis! So that makes the answers a lot less detailed and useful. I think I'm going to have to read through the document several times in the next couple of weeks! It's good that you have your Viva date confirmed, but not so good that it's a bit sooner than you thought! Take deep breaths, I'm sure it will turn out well. :-)
======= Date Modified 02 Oct 2012 13:41:13 =======
Welcome Swetchha. I think you have to pick the key papers out of your PhD and know them well. If you have hundreds of references it's clearly not possible to re-read them all or even find them all. But knowing the key facts about the top 10 or 15 papers (e.g. most cited), plus perhaps any others that may match the research interests of the examiners, is helpful I think. One suggestion made earlier in the thread was that you could make a crib note to take in with you of a few points on each of these key papers.
Hi Pinkneuron: That is very frustrating and the uncertainty about when the viva will be must raise your anxiety as well. I guess the positive thing is that you will hopefully have a bit more time to prepare than you might have expected, so more time to look into new literature published since your literature review was completed and also more time to prepare the thesis document. 25 small errors doesn't sound bad to me! I think it is where a whole paragraph doesn't make sense or indeed a whole section or chapter that a problem arises. Apparently in the old days before people were able to prepare their own thesis document and a typist was relied on, final thesis documents in libraries regularly ended up with lots of small errors in them. These days I think they are just tidied up post viva because self computing and printing is so much easier.
You need to make sure your abstract corresponds well to the requirements of the conference, both in terms of the subsections of the abstract you provide (if required), the length and the types of details offered in abstract, but also the academic spirit and requirements of papers for that conference/conference track. Look back at abstracts of conference papers from previous years for that conference if possible or similar conferences. Sometimes you can actually find out who will be assessing abstracts (e.g. the track organiser you are applying to), so you may be able to make sure that your abstract will interest them by looking at their interests and, importantly, that something you write won't cause any offence to them. I would obviously make sure you get feedback on your abstracts from students and your supervisors if possible.
Rowena Murray's book 'Writing for academic journals' provides a lot of detail on how to study abstracts of journal articles so you understand the requirements for that journal and also you understand the type of academic conversation you are joining in it. I found you could apply her lessons to understanding and writing journal abstracts and preparing journal articles for preparing conference abstracts and papers. It's definitely worth having a look at early sections in that book.
======= Date Modified 19 Sep 2012 18:38:06 =======
======= Date Modified 19 Sep 2012 18:37:40 =======
Following advice, I had a look through previous Viva threads. I found the advice on the following thread from Smoobles and Dalmation especially helpful. http://www.postgraduateforum.com/threadViewer.aspx?TID=22690
I especially note the advice about writing a bullet point summary of key literature that you can actually take in with you to the viva - sounds a useful approach.
And also thank you for the feedback on your recent viva Lightyear!
======= Date Modified 18 Sep 2012 03:25:53 =======
Hi TVready. You need to think about your own interests and hobbies and see if there are any opportunities that arise out of those for a business, or otherwise a business opportunity you identified from previous work experience. You need to talk to people doing similar kinds of home based businesses to the one you want to set up - as they can act as role models to you. When starting a business, no one is there to tell you what to do. You have to write your own job description! Plenty of people can offer advice if you ask, but ultimately you're in charge. Also, you don't need to invent something completely original. Most home based businesses are copies of other home based businesses. You could look at the Startup Britain website although this isn't that great. Shell Livewire is a reasonable discussion forum for start-ups. There are a number of good books out there. 'Start your business week by week' by Steve Parks is one of the better ones for starting a small business. And if you want big scale inspiration, read the autobiographies of the household name entrepreneurs. The Stanford Ecorner website has a lot of inspirational talks on from leading American entrepreneurs. There are also all sorts of short courses out there to help you set up a business through universities, colleges etc, of highly varying degrees of quality. Seedcamp is the most aspirational programme for young entrepreneurs who want to grow a sizeable business, but I'm not sure that is necessarily what you're aiming for.
I've got the multi-coloured post-its out now. Which seems to be an essential part of many a PhD student's Viva preparation! Where is everyone else up to?
My supervisor advised me to read critically through the whole thesis to identify points where the examiners may have questions or uncertainties.
======= Date Modified 19 Sep 2012 18:36:04 =======
I'm not sure if my university do a viva pack, but it sounds a good idea - I'm sure the examiners will receive the rules etc even if I don't - so it seems democratic that everyone should get the same materials really. But, yes I have noticed annoying niggling little errors of punctuation, grammar etc, and that can lead to not wanting to re-open the document. And that's before the bigger issues of substance that the examiners may identify, even if I haven't!
Hello to all just about to play the Viva Game!
I wondered if anyone has a Viva in the next week or two? What kind of preparation are you doing at the moment. Mine is in October. Is anyone using Rowena Murray's guide, 'How to survive your viva?'. It has some potentially useful practice viva questions in it.
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