Overview of Pjlu

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: Post-PhD employment anxiety

posted
13-Jan-18, 16:15
edited about 50 seconds later
by Pjlu
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posted about 1 year ago
Would you be interested in senior science teaching perhaps? I don't always suggest education as you have to either really like young people or your subject or be passionate about educating in general or educating about your subject or discipline at least...however if you think you might tick one of these boxes...it might be worth thinking about. It is a very varied type of work once you get into it and science teachers with Phds are not that unusual. You have some choice about where you live and holidays are really excellent.

It's only a thought. We do need talented and informed young teachers especially females to excite girls about science as an area of study. You probably would need to do a further year of educational studies which you could easily manage with some part time hospitality work to help make ends meet.

Thread: Advice wanted - Feeling hopeless in PhD and wanting to quit

posted
12-Jan-18, 22:26
by Pjlu
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posted about 1 year ago
Melodie are you receiving any support to assist with the low mood and anxiety you're experiencing? Not from supervisors but from others? Friends, counsellor or GP or someone? It reads as though you have a lot of hardship in your life at the moment and could use some practical support or similar, while you work through some of the Phd issues.

Supervisors understand that many of us get overwhelmed and over it at various points in the journey but they may not understand or recognise when this goes beyond the usual doctoral blues and needs more consistent and appropriate professional support or empathy. Is there someone who you can turn to who can provide this in person? Perhaps a counsellor?

Thread: To stay or to go?

posted
12-Jan-18, 22:04
edited about 2 minutes later
by Pjlu
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posted about 1 year ago
Hi there, how much data do you have from your lab work and experiments? It reads as though your supervisors think you have enough to start writing up some of it?
Have you any chapter drafts so far? I'm thinking introduction chapter and lit review chapter and some parts of methods. Not necessarily write ups of data.

Sorry if this seems like a million questions but just trying to ascertain where you might be with regard to a product. The supervisor situation sounds incredibly frustrating and it's understandable that this is impacting on your work. However, finally it is your work and your Phd not that of your second supervisor (who has left for pastures new.) Are you able to take up the Dean's offer of supervising as your first sup and ignore how your second sup feels about it...it might be a way forward. Also perhaps once you have done this, perhaps trying to tune out the supervisors while you focus on writing up what you have done so far. They'll criticise the drafts but that's all part of it. However, you'll perhaps feel like you are progressing more once you have a few chapter drafts to polish. Just ignore this comment though if it doesn't seem televant to your current situation.

Thread: Major corrections and no financial support! :-(

posted
12-Jan-18, 17:59
by Pjlu
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posted about 1 year ago
Hope 2018 brings hope and a healthy income. Sorry to learn of how tough it is. Hoping your mother's health improves. I know it must be really difficult at the moment. You are so close to finishing. Wishing you some positive opportunities to come.

Thread: Examiner's reports and results.

posted
03-Jan-18, 07:15
by Pjlu
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posted about 1 year ago
Thanks Chickpea and Risfy. Appreciate your kind words and thoughts. ☺

Thread: Major corrections and no financial support! :-(

posted
03-Jan-18, 07:07
edited about 13 seconds later
by Pjlu
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posted about 1 year ago
Hi Jamie_Wizard, I'm really sorry to learn about your difficulties and hope you can find some reasonable work while you go through the corrections stage. Other posters have offered some very supportive and helpful advice. I'm actually in Bournemouth right at this moment tapping this message on my phone in my sister's spare bedroom so please excuse typos and punctuation. I'm visiting the UK not living here so my practical advice would be pretty limited i think. However , I do hope you can find suitable work and those corrections are less onerous in practice than they first appear.

When i first read my second examiners corrections they seemed significant and disheartening , but after a few days distance from them , well they are not as overwhelming they first seem. I'm wondering if this is how it will be with you. Once you have some work and are settled financially it might not take as long as you think to do them? Anyway best of luck with the financial situation and hope the new year is a happy and prosperous one which results in a great Phd. P.

Thread: Examiner's reports and results.

posted
24-Dec-17, 20:37
edited about 23 seconds later
by Pjlu
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posted about 2 years ago
Thanks Kamali, it is a pass from both examiners not a revise and resubmit, so the examiners do not need to see my thesis again.

However, I will meet with my supervisors and will address every point carefully either completing a correction or explaining why a specific suggestion does not apply and will ensure the corrected thesis and table of listed adjustments goes to the panel chair as soon as I have had a break.

Cheers and thanks :)

Thread: So many changes in my PhD and seriously fed up.

posted
22-Dec-17, 23:01
edited about 12 seconds later
by Pjlu
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posted about 2 years ago
Hi Nova, this sounds like a really difficult situation. It has gone on for such a long time and having to learn the 'style' of different supervisors and how to adjust one's self to their different expectations and ways of delivering feedback-well it isn't easy. For what it is worth, I am a backwards planner with my writing as well and I know when I work with people like your current supervisor (those who write 'perfectly' first go), I have to accept and gear myself up for very forthright and sometimes almost abrasive criticism at times. While I cope with it relatively well now, once upon a time this could be crushing and sometimes it still hurts somewhat. The hurt feelings though and lack of confidence are temporary states. They are not related to your intrinsic worth as a person and/or as a PhD candidate. You might be able to look up and work with some CBT (Cognitive Behaviour Therapy) techniques to help with managing these feelings. CBT is a really helpful therapy technique I find-having used it at various difficult times in my own life.

Having to constantly re-write when you are so close to the end can feel like it is heartbreaking at times and it is stressful. My experience has not been any where near as stressful but I have had to work with supervisors with quite different styles and my submission was much later than I had initially hoped, due to extended waits for feedback and having to wait for one very busy supervisor, and that was hard, so I can only imagine how much more stressful your experience might be right now.

I support Tudor's advice in that if you can change your phone number, that might sort out the problem of being phoned by your ex-supervisor with the early stages of dementia and it might be the kindest thing to do in the short term.

Have you given this current chapter (the one you have to re-write) to your newest supervisor for feedback. She sounds like a good person for you, (you have already said that her feedback is constructive).

Your current constellation of 'events' does sound unusual but overall supervision issues are not uncommon and neither is having your submission dates delayed due to circumstances beyond your control. Best wishes and hope the vent has helped.

Thread: Know anyone with two PhDs?

posted
21-Dec-17, 11:04
edited about 5 minutes later
by Pjlu
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posted about 2 years ago
A colleague teacher has a PhD in Science from some years ago and more recently gained a Doctorate in Education that assesses how a specific statistical model predicts how certain types of literacy and numeracy gains in students are enhanced by specific teaching strategies. I believe he worked as a lecturer at the regional university for a while but did not enjoy academia and returned to secondary school teaching. He is a very intelligent person who loves science, research and theory.

Many years ago I was also taught by a very good and well published lecturer in History, who on taking a form of early retirement (after some brutal cutbacks at my old university of undergrad days), then spent part of her 'retirement' (if that is what you could call it) completing another doctorate in another area of research in a much larger university and centre.

I think both people genuinely love research and found that the doctorates provided them with some funding and support to run extensive projects.

Thread: Examiner's reports and results.

posted
20-Dec-17, 21:46
edited about 17 seconds later
by Pjlu
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posted about 2 years ago
Thank you all very much for your kind words and thoughts. They are very much appreciated. I must confess that I feel much better this morning than I did yesterday afternoon (after the initial reading of results and reports). I won't quite be Dr until corrections and that graduation ceremony but not long now.

Thread: Examiner's reports and results.

posted
20-Dec-17, 09:16
edited about 8 minutes later
by Pjlu
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posted about 2 years ago
Today after a fairly long wait, the graduate research administrators passed on my examiners' reports and the official results declared by the Chair of Examiners.

One external report was Pass-No corrections- the other Pass-Major Corrections. Quite different reports from the examiners so I am presuming they have very different backgrounds. My supervisor was very happy with the first report and said she thought the other person was possibly a bit overly zealous. However, the feedback is useful from both externals.

The Chair of Examiners has given me 6 months to complete corrections but stipulated that she would accept these as soon as I had completed them and I did not need to use all of the time given. So the process now is:

Holiday for everyone-including me-I'm heading off to the UK for 3 weeks to see family and the place I was born! Me and the sups meet late January and decide which changes and revisions we will do and which we will ignore or refute.

I lose my all weekends and the Easter break (again, sigh!) and do the corrections, then submit it and, all being well, should graduate next August 17th of 2018-which is the earliest graduation at my university for the next round come what may, so what the heck!

I'm happy (somewhat) disappointed (somewhat), surprised (no I knew I would get corrections), over it (somewhat). It is all okay though with some rigorous but useful feedback from the second examiner, except the comments on some APA mistakes. I would have sworn that I got every APA issue out-and am wondering whether I have still got combinations of APA 5 and 6 going on!

I've tabled this as most of us who have not gone through this point yet are usually interested in the examination process. (PS, I'm in Australia and did not do a viva voce but did have to make a range of presentations and defences earlier on).

Thread: Help!! PHD

posted
19-Dec-17, 20:35
edited about 2 minutes later
by Pjlu
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posted about 2 years ago
Quote From Peachypie:
Hi all,
Im currently studying a MSC in Criminology, and after this I very much hope to undertake a PHD.
Quite straightforward - or so I thought...
Choose a supervisor based on their field of interest.. Identify the university based on their productivity.. AARRRGGGGGHH!!!!!

All I want, is to find any courses that offer funding, in an area of research relevant to myself - is that so hard?

All suggestions and contributions gratefully received..
Liz


Hi Liz, this response is with reference to your last 2 comments regarding supervisor and university. Not being in the UK I can't comment on the various funding packages it offers, and you have already received some good suggestions from Tol and BN.

Was thinking about this the other day while reading the comments of others and thinking about my own choices...your supervisor is a really important piece of your success in the doctorate and you also want to be happy with the university you have chosen. I think though it can also depend on your preferences and projected pathway and when you know these and how you prioritise them-this can make a difference in your order of priorities.

Eg: I was fairly well aware that when I undertook my phd that it was not likely to lead to academia (given my life stage and financial commitments) and that for me, the supervisor came second to the university, proximity, being able to interact with people physically if I needed, etc. Given that I work with a range of different people in my fulltime work, not all of whom would be regarded as easy to work with and have learned to do this and shrug off issues, having a university with both an excellent reputation and one that I could access regularly (in person) was really important. More important than having a particular supervisor or being enrolled in any university or having to only visit occasionally.

However, in an earlier life, if completing the PhD in my original discipline full time, I think the supervisor would have been far more important. I was lucky and my main supervisor has been amazingly supportive and caring, but had she not been, I would have coped as I did in my Masters (with a nice but very different supervisor whose working style was very different to mine and at times the relationship had its tensions). It might be very different situation though if I had a difficult supervisor and spent more time with this person or they abused their power. Plus, if this person's reputation might help me with an academic career, then this also would be an important factor.

I think finally when it comes down to these choices (beyond funding as this is often a legitimate dealmaker or breaker-we have to eat and live), then they are very personal and they relate very much to what you are hoping your PhD will lead to in the future and what you value most.

Thread: Advice on supervisor's strange behavior

posted
18-Dec-17, 19:53
edited about 17 seconds later
by Pjlu
Avatar for Pjlu
posted about 2 years ago
Hi Ceylan, this is a very unsettling situation to be in. Are you able to seek advice from university or student representatives as to your official status at the university?

My take on what you have written about your supervisor's advice is that he has promised far more than he can deliver and now his behaviour is:

a way of either covering up and finding fault perhaps so he has an excuse not to provide you with a PhD or funding,
or perhaps believing in his own rhetoric and convincing himself that your actions are the reason he is not able to provide a PhD.

My belief is that you need to seek advice from your university as to what your options are. I think also, that as Tudor has said, if you can get that letter of recommendation and any documentation of what your supervisor has promised that this would be helpful for your case.

Best wishes-I hope you get this resolved soon and can start the Phd properly in 2018.

Thread: Accepting an offer

posted
17-Dec-17, 21:07
edited about 1 minute later
by Pjlu
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posted about 2 years ago
The Director of Studies sounds like an administrative staff member whose role is to process and make decisions about students, etc. The decision may have been made by a panel or group including academics, or it may have been made by this person who has been given the authority to make these decisions on behalf of the research dean (or head). This person would not be your supervisor. That person/s will be appointed presumably once you have accepted your offer and would be an academic who has some research interests or form of experience that might match up with your application.

It sounds like a good idea to be cautious and you ultimately need to do what is right for you in your circumstances. However, I don't think that the university would be doing anything untoward (either financially or with regard to study, supervision and starting time) and would imagine that this is a genuine offer.

Universities who have large numbers of PhD and Masters students applying to study every year have to have these sorts of processes to manage their student enrolments. They do not really process each enrolment on a personal level (in my experience). The personal element comes later once you have a supervisor and begin to develop a formal relationship with this person.

Thread: Loans for PhD students

posted
17-Dec-17, 19:44
edited about 12 minutes later
by Pjlu
Avatar for Pjlu
posted about 2 years ago
Hi Nige,

People are always going to have their opinions and these are:
1 Informed by their own personal and cultural life experiences and values
2 Often not going to agree with yours
3 Not necessarily be correct (or wrong) just different

I don't think the moral argument that your family member makes is necessarily accurate but it is understandable. Helebon's point about research needing to continue is a good one. Research is an important contributor to intellectual, scientific and cultural capital and it relies on the postgraduate research student and academic as much as it does on big business and other funding bodies. We need a range of people and bodies to research matters and generate ideas-intellectual freedom depends on this as much as anything.

If you legitimately qualify for this loan (according to the rules outlined), have looked into where it will place you financially, and believe you can manage this and are willing to pay the costs and you dearly wish to do a doctoral study then this decision is yours to make, not that of your family member.
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