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Overview

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Pjlu
Tuesday, 22 December 2009 at 8:10pm
Monday, 29 January 2018 at 7:37pm
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page 1 of 58 recent posts

Thread: Quitting PhD

posted
13-Apr-17, 02:58
by Pjlu
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posted about 3 years ago
My experience has been that detailed feedback that addresses issues in any depth are only forthcoming at the later or final stages of writing. The PhD is a journey that is considered to be largely independent so responsibility for growth and development is largely on oneself.

I can understand your claim or statement though that if you get limited feedback early on, it is harder. And the quality of supervision is probably uneven. There would be amazing supervisors out there who just really inspire, but I think most of us have 'good enough' supervisors just like we have 'good enough' parents, etc (borrowing a concept from Winnecott). Good luck with it all-it is a tough process and some people (perhaps like yourself) do have it a bit tougher than others unfortunately.

Thread: Final year support thread

posted
08-Apr-17, 22:01
edited about 20 seconds later
by Pjlu
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posted about 3 years ago
Quote From Hindsightless:
Hello Everyone,

I submitted my MSc by Research thesis (25,000 words) 23.01.2017 and still haven't received my results. Just wondered what the average time to receive the results/award is? My experience at this university was not a good one and I'm concerned that they might fail me. Any advice while I sit, wait and worry?

Thanks in advance,

Steven.

Hi there Steven, a few years ago I completed my MEd by Research of Thesis (same length). I submitted it in September 2010 and received the examiner's marks in mid March 2011 to graduate officially in April 2011. I can't remember the actual dates now. It was longer than it should have been and I am not sure why but I think it might have had something to do finding examiners and then once they had them, the examiners had two quite different scores and needed to agree on what the final outcome would be. The outcome was good and the thesis was accepted with no need for revision or change.

The length of time does not mean that you will have failed-universities are large beasts and often move slowly. It can take a long time to go through all of the various checkpoints. If you are worried contact the university's research admin officer or your supervisor and ask how it is going. They should be able to reassure you or move things along if necessary. Well done on your submission and good luck!

Thread: Overthinking while doing a PhD. Is there a solution for this?

posted
08-Apr-17, 09:35
edited about 7 seconds later
by Pjlu
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posted about 3 years ago
Hi there-congratulations on all you have achieved so far-sounds like you are really organised and well on track from what you have written.

I think overthinking comes with the territory (academia and PhD territory that is) but if you think it is becoming a problem then CBT (Cognitive Behaviour Therapy) has many strategies for stopping rumination and similar sorts of obsessive thinking styles.

I don't think using these strategies means that you have a problem necessarily-but the strategies are really helpful for stopping thoughts or downward spirals. There would be many sites or self help books that provide some simple techniques-the other effective tool seems to be the Mindfulness tools and techniques (also widely available online). Good luck and great progress so far!

Thread: PhD student looking for advise regarding supervision

posted
07-Apr-17, 21:29
by Pjlu
Avatar for Pjlu
posted about 3 years ago
Hi there, my perspective is very similar to TQ and ToL. Supervisors listen to you and provide some guidance as to whether what you are planning seems to be in the right direction. This is based on their knowledge-some have a great deal of knowledge in your area, some only a little but you got them as they were the best match for you at the time given the University's staffing.

They become more involved towards the end of the PhD, where they read drafts and critique them before you get ready to submit your thesis. This is very helpful but it comes at a later point in the PhD.

Does your university have postgraduate associations for PhD and Masters students? Sometimes these are not in your subject area but they do provide opportunities to develop friendships with people going through the same processes and this can help with feelings of loneliness or help with listening to ideas.

Thread: Cannot afford PhD

posted
06-Apr-17, 22:28
by Pjlu
Avatar for Pjlu
posted about 3 years ago
Hi S,

You have been given some great advice. I don't live in the UK-so I can't offer any practical comments. My contribution is more to confirm that your situation as outlined is pretty complex (behind the lack of finances-which are obviously a big factor). You have got four major life issues: completing PHD-dream you have been working towards; how to finance this and support this in an extremely expensive city; whether your relationship requires you to take the major responsibility for financing your relationship and an ongoing wellbeing concern that is probably not helped by current circumstances.

Given your issues are pretty significant: are you able to access some form of reliable and trustworthy counsellor-or do you have a mentor who will help you work these through in person?

I know supervisors have been mentioned. My personal experience over the years is that lecturers/supervisors will provide advice and support with academic inquiries but do not offer help with personal or life issues.

So possibly university financial counselling and wellbeing counselling services will be of help-if you do not already have someone to support you while you work through these issues and decisions. If the university support services are fairly ordinary, would there be community based ones that could assist?

I'm also concerned that you seem to be taking on more responsibility in your relationship for managing financial concerns and giving more weight to your partner's dream for a phd than your own. You have worked very hard for this opportunity and deserve to complete your scholarship. Best wishes-hope you can resolve things in a way that helps you realise your dream and is supportive of your relationship.

Thread: What to do after a successful appeal?

posted
02-Apr-17, 01:31
edited about 19 minutes later
by Pjlu
Avatar for Pjlu
posted about 3 years ago
Tru, I am not sure how much universities vary in setting up examiner panels but I know in mine, and several others in Australia, there is no option for the candidate to choose their examiners.

These are set up by the university. There is sometimes consultation with supervisors about who they might be but not with the candidate.

Additionally, the examiners remain anonymous to the candidate until after the examination process is complete and reports have been made, and results set. I think the only option for choice is that you can request certain examiners NOT be appointed.

This would be for example, I might request a certain examiner ( someone who I know openly despises and is scathingly critical of mixed methods research), NOT be appointed to examine my mixed methods research study. That would be the limit of my influence.

I agree with Tru in the value of checking with the appeals panel as to whether you are allowed to make amendments. That is great advice. Did the appeals board give you a timeline for the re-submission?

Thread: What to do after a successful appeal?

posted
01-Apr-17, 22:39
edited about 1 minute later
by Pjlu
Avatar for Pjlu
posted about 3 years ago
Quote From BeHappy:
Thnakyou for your suggestions.

The Panel who gave the Appeal outcome did not give any specific recommendations other than the fact that the thesis is to be resubmitted to a new Panel and treated as first submission. Do they give any specific recommendations?

Also does this judgement mean that no corrections to the thesis are allowed? Considering its a new Panel of examiners the thesis needs to be written/ should be considerate of this new Panel.

Also what if the University goes ahead and appoints a Panel without including me .....ideally they would discuss this with me.... but what if they don't.

Thanks,
BG


Hi there BG, my interpretation, based on what you have written above is that they wouldn't provide any recommendations until they have considered your thesis and re-examined it. It reads as if it is a completely new assessment-it is as if your thesis had not already been examined and it is now going into examination.

Thus, I'm thinking that you and your supervisor cannot have anything to do with who is on the panel, and your supervisor may be distancing him/herself from this process so it is seen as a completely new and fair process. They probably know too much to be able to advise you and not be seen to give you an advantage.

It doesn't read as if they expect you to make any alterations before submitting again just to resubmit.

Once the new panel have assessed your thesis, they would provide recommendations, as usual. This isn't a revise and resubmit or a major corrections-this is a completely new assessment. You are not expected to get advice from your supervisor to rewrite before you submit again-I think you are supposed to just submit again and the new panel will assess and provide you with feedback relevant to the grade or level they award.

*By grade or level I mean, accepted with no revisions, accepted with minor revisions, accepted with major revisions, revise and resubmit, MPhil or other.

Once the panel have made a judgement, you then make your changes, etc and no doubt, would be able to talk to the supervisor regarding any advice again. This is my take on this...not saying it correct...just how I interpret it. Good luck with it all BG-sounds like a very tough process to go through.

Thread: Final year support thread

posted
31-Mar-17, 22:16
edited about 1 minute later
by Pjlu
Avatar for Pjlu
posted about 3 years ago
This weekend:

1 Complete revisions in Chapter 7-plus alignment in Chapter 8 conclusion.
1.1Read reformatted sections for logical flow and meaning.
1.2 Eliminate redundancy or any repeated material
1.3 Add 4 paragraphs of around 300 words a paragraph in Section 7.2.1-7.2.5

2 Ignore anything else as hard as this is...other than necessities.
3. Take a deep breath and gather energy for major push with getting all little items complete during Term break (begins next week)
4 Stop wasting time on trying to change PG forum avatar or on similar time wasters (lol).
.

Good luck and best wishes to any others starting to plan the final miles (or hopefully the final miles).

Thread: Help in Research Article about Decision-Making

posted
31-Mar-17, 22:10
edited about 17 seconds later
by Pjlu
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posted about 3 years ago
Done. Good luck, CM!

Thread: Final year support thread

posted
26-Mar-17, 07:44
edited about 29 seconds later
by Pjlu
Avatar for Pjlu
posted about 3 years ago
it's funny how the desperation to submit and be done with it all seems to increase exponentially towards the end lol. I think we are all feeling it right now. Good luck Z-hope the sups attach the right forms and you can submit and relax!

This week I looked at Chapter 7 and suddenly realised the bleeding obvious with regard to the organisation of my discussion. Thus, I completely reorganised my headings, created yet another word table to help the reader, and started the big job of moving stuff around in this chapter and rewriting the signposting. This requires some further fairly minor revision to data chapters and introduction but, now I can properly reorganise and rework 7. Very few copy edit mistakes in these chapters but quite a bit of clarification and simplification needed. The writer's phrase 'kill your darlings' keeps coming to mind. The plus side though is I don't think it is as confusing and the logic is more rigorous. Back to work work for the week now, with hopefully the rest of the rewriting for 7-and some minor stuff for final chapter 8 to be complete by next Sunday evening. Good luck and best wishes to everyone else on the final year thread.

I am counting down 16 weeks now. Around 3 of these will be full weeks of holiday and the remaining are weekends. Can't wait for it to be done.

Thread: Literature Review Struggles!

posted
20-Mar-17, 20:40
edited about 4 minutes later
by Pjlu
Avatar for Pjlu
posted about 3 years ago
Hi Jenny Penny, sorry I was writing something but on a quick reread of your question thought my response was to what I thought you said and not what you did actually ask-so I have deleted my first response. I am a big fan of conceptual mapping to help organise my thinking, and using ranking and rating to help me with maps, but not sure whether this will be helpful for the situation you are in.

Thread: Final year support thread

posted
19-Mar-17, 09:22
by Pjlu
Avatar for Pjlu
posted about 3 years ago
Wow, thanks for the feedback on the proof reading and copy editing Zutterfly. Definitely will rethink this pathway given your comments on the mistakes introduced...:even for my poxy word tables which need to fit on the page properly ( Good luck though with your days off and the final submission !!! so exciting for you!!)

I've just finished Chapter 6 revisions and now just have Chapter 7. Then for fine tuning items over Easter before giving a polished draft to both supervisors and hoping they will allow me to give notice to submit.

Thread: Final year support thread

posted
11-Mar-17, 21:39
by Pjlu
Avatar for Pjlu
posted about 3 years ago
Chapter 5 revision and edits done. Every sample qualitative quote correctly attributed. Chapter 5 Frequency tables sorted, formatted and aligned and looking good.

Next week Chapter 6 revision and edits (With Chapter 7 looming ahead like a mountain summit) Still on track for notice of intention to submit in May and submission in the middle of the year-huzzah!

Hope everyone else is going really well. It's great reading about everyone submitting or completing...really helps with motivation! Well done to all of you who have!

Thread: Examiner Disagreement

posted
11-Mar-17, 03:52
edited about 14 seconds later
by Pjlu
Avatar for Pjlu
posted about 3 years ago
Congratulations Dr Faded! A terrific result. I'm really pleased for you-well done to you and best wishes. Many congratulations also to TimeforTea for results and Musicspectrum on submission!

Thread: Wanting to quit my PhD

posted
10-Mar-17, 21:16
edited about 5 seconds later
by Pjlu
Avatar for Pjlu
posted about 3 years ago
Hi Stormtrooper, definitely a really difficult situation to be in and I would echo RenaissanceBunnie's comment to perhaps seek out someone who is there to listen to you for a decent period of time more than 15 minutes on the run and help clarify your thinking and what it is you want. I also echo RB's comments reassuring you that you are not a 'failure' and that the confusion regarding direction and your output is common to many of us.

It reads to me that you are saying that if you go for this interview and get this job in two weeks, you will leave (or at least take a break) and try this new path. But if you don't get it, then you will still feel stuck and you need to establish some direction to take in the event that you go for interview, don't get the job, and, in two weeks time still feel as if you are in the same place and nothing has been resolved. (is that right?).

I don't think anyone can make this decision for you. However, it is unfair that your panel team of supervisors/advisers are so busy and not particularly helpful. The thing is, half the time they will be saying just what comes into their brains and out of their mouths...the experience they have, doesn't always mean that the advice they give is accurate, or is based on a thoughtful reflection of your specific situation or what you need at the time. If there are five of them all saying different things-wow-that would be hard.

If...if you had some cohesive direction from your panel, and were not being stretched all the time with regard to your work responsibilities, if this was the case, would you still want to be doing your PhD?

Do you want to leave it at the moment mainly because of the lack of or rather not lack of, but ineffective and confusing support from your panel or anxiety about failure? If you can establish your real feelings about completing the PhD- e.g.-if all was going okay or that you felt confident with at least one or two of your advisors, and that you felt that you could prioritise their directions, then that might help with your decision.

PS: The PhD is really tough at times, there will be challenges and it is really common to have a lot of confusion and despair at specific times and stages, stages that you just sort of have to wait out. However, you deserve to have confidence in some of your panel and you don't need to be being pulled in five different directions at once by a busy panel who are giving ad hoc support on the run. Is it possible to bring this up with one of your advisors so that they can help clarify your next step, and step in to help you manage some of the conflicting communications from the others?
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