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rewt
Friday, 3 November 2017 at 1:37pm
Saturday, 25 August 2018 at 1:55pm
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page 1 of 9 recent posts

Thread: PhD application waiting time

posted
19-Sep-18, 14:27
edited about 13 seconds later
by rewt
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posted about 3 days ago
It can take a while to get replies, supervisors are busy people. I wouldn't be worried unless it is a month at which point I would drop a second email asking if the place is still available.

Don't be disheartened though as it sounds like you are inquiring early in the process which looks good. Some supervisors like to wait until they get a few replies before moving forward or they are busy with term starting.

Thread: Feeling stupid after a month

posted
18-Sep-18, 13:46
edited about 28 seconds later
by rewt
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posted about 4 days ago
Quote From chantedsnicker:
Different supervisors will have different methods, I know some who were getting their students to write review papers in their first few months


I got something better. Day 2 of my PhD, my supervisor gives me a huge spreadsheet of data and I was asked to help interpret it/ write the discussion part of the paper. I have no clue on the area and spend forever trying to get some conclusions.

After 3 months of feeling so stupid, my supervisor tells me that she doesn't understand the results either. And that none of the co-authors have any idea. So I spent 3 months thinking that this was a mundane thing and that I was problem. Talk about starting with an inferiority complex.

Thread: Perfectionism, procrastination and thesis writing

posted
18-Sep-18, 13:40
by rewt
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posted about 4 days ago
I agree with pm133, breaking it down can make it far less daunting. One of the things I do is, write sub sections as separate documents. Where I know that no-one else will read it but I try to cover that little area in as much detail as possible, far more than I will ever need it to be. So that I have 2000 words of okay-ish writing on a topic, that I can then refer to. Most of the writing isn't useful and I can probably fit it into 500 words but it gets me writing and lets me see what is actually important. Because one of my problems is that there is so much I want to mention but in fact doesn't add to the work

It is not efficient but can gets you writing and I want to help people in similar positions

Thread: Feeling stupid after a month

posted
18-Sep-18, 10:28
edited about 3 seconds later
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 4 days ago
We all feel the same, including them! No matter your prior experience, you all deserve to be there. You all passed the entrance interviews and a supervisor sees potential in you to succeed. What you have done before means nothing, you are starting over and you have just as right to be there as them.

You are suffering from impostor syndrome, and it is very common in PhD students. You can find a lot of help out there and on here to help. So don't feel alone

Just do something or say something with confidence and people will think you know what you are doing. It doesn't matter if you have no clue because a PhD is a training program were a uni is a safe space to fail. I know it is hard to contemplate but just doing stuff will help you get past this.

Thread: I am forced to Quit Although Performing well

posted
12-Sep-18, 13:53
edited about 14 seconds later
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 1 week ago
That sounds absolutely horrible. Some people should not be supervisors.

Though is there anyone else in the department you can talk to? Like a PhD coordinator or another friendly academic? Talk with them and explain the issue, I bet your supervisor has a reputation. Frame it as you want a new supervisor because he is not supportive. As you have won grants and awards you should be seen as capable and someone might help.

Did they fail you at all?

Thread: Ways to get postdoc funding to go abroad?

posted
11-Sep-18, 10:54
edited about 17 seconds later
by rewt
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posted about 1 week ago
Quote From Tudor_Queen:
OK... I've had a bit more time to search now, and I think basically that it is pretty hard or near impossible to get funding to do a postdoc in the States unless the funding money already exists over there, and you are hired by the PI (either through formally applying or being named as one on a grant - in which case they'd have to demonstrate why you were significantly better for the position than a US postdoc). Just sharing what I've found!


Just marry an American :) Marrying someone to get post-doc funding is a legitimate reason.

Quote From eng77:
I think the major problem in science (and maybe everything) is money. Applying for fund is difficult and applying for a funded Postdoc/PhD is competitive. Also when you become an experienced researcher/ PI you have to apply for your own fund. I think instituions and research bodies need to invest more in science.


You can get post-doc funding as PhD student it is just very competitive. It is the entire post-doc sector that is competitive as there are not enough post-doc jobs for every PhD student. And to be honest it is better that way, only so many people can become lecturers, and we need to get fresh PhD holders out into the real world.

Thread: Applying for PhD this or next year

posted
11-Sep-18, 10:50
edited about 21 seconds later
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 1 week ago
You lose nothing by applying for next September. They don't go "we rejected you last year therefore we will automatically reject you now". So if you fail you can always reapply.

Supervisors are busy and funding is limited so don't be disheartened by the first pseudo-rejection. Keep checking university website and applying. There will soon be another batch of funded places advertised. This time of year is like a lull in PhD advertisements. (in my opinion).

About your experience. You have a paper and relevant research experience, that is a lot more than most PhD applicants. Get a good MPhil result and your CV will be even better. You sound demoralized but from here it sounds like you half a good shot at a PhD.

Goodluck!

Thread: Supervisor blocking studentship contract

posted
10-Sep-18, 13:22
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 1 week ago
Can you change supervisor? You have external funding and a business support, you have all the cards. Email your current supervisor that this is a deal breaker and that you would look for other supervisors. Then immediately call/email department head explaining your position and ask for recommendations for another supervisor. You have moved made a lot of commitment to stop now over a supervisor.

Also does the supervisor have issues with defense in particular or certain countries?

Thread: Ways to get postdoc funding to go abroad?

posted
09-Sep-18, 16:43
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 1 week ago
Not sure if this 100% relevant but I will share this story.

There was an international post-doc from Italy at my Uni. He got his PhD at a partner university and he applied for a special international post-doc grant in Italy. Basically an Italian research council, similar to the leverhulme trust, agreed to pay half his post-doc abroad if he could get funding for the other half. He then said it was easy to get the rest of the funding as he was effectively a half-price post-doc.

Not sure if that is 100% helpful but might be an option.

Thread: Finding a PhD with 2.2 in undergrad

posted
06-Sep-18, 15:37
edited about 10 seconds later
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 2 weeks ago
Normally, I would say a 2:2 would rule you out. However 2 publications in decent journals might make it possible. You should tailor your application and CV about those publications and all the work you have done during the RA. Show them the researcher skills you already have and nail down some good references.

But funding for international students in the EU can be VERY competitive. Goodluck!

Thread: Published in new peer-reviewed open access online journal: something to celebrate?

posted
06-Sep-18, 15:33
edited about 5 minutes later
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 2 weeks ago
Quote From pm133:
There should be a special place in hell for those who re-open posts which are nearly a decade old, for no particular reason :-D


Thread necromancy is an art form that must be appreciated and savored. Without it, we cannot see how we have developed over the years as a forum. ie we keep posting the same shit over and over again because no knows what a search function is.

Thread: Quitting PhD after four years

posted
06-Sep-18, 13:07
edited about 1 minute later
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 2 weeks ago
What else will you do?

Literally, 6 months to go. You have done 4 years of work so far and it sounds like you and your supervisor don't believe in your abilities. But you have an extension and have 6 months to finish. I repeat, 6 months to finish.

You can finish now or try your absolute best in full knowledge that you probably won't pass. Yet you can say that you tried your best and produced a final thesis. You won't enjoy it and may regret not quitting earlier, but you will have closure on this. The PhD will be over knowing you couldn't do any better, not that you quit

This is a hard question but I would spend 6 months to produce my absolute best and plan my future starting in February. Unless you have something else better to do?

Thread: Msc Students and Interns

posted
05-Sep-18, 21:31
edited about 12 seconds later
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 2 weeks ago
Hi guys,

So I am in engineering, were there are for some reason lots of Msc students and interns who want to help with research. Normally the lecturer will give them work and guide them with the PhD student helping. My supervisor has recruited got both an international student intern and a full Msc student while not really having a plan for them. Instead she has offloaded them onto me and says "use them to help with your research". Plus I literally got told as they came, no warning.

The problem is how do you manage these people? I supposed to give them experimental work and let them be independent. Yet I planned a very linear PhD project assuming that I was doing all the work. At the minute I have them reading background papers with the intention of giving them some off topic work that might last 2-3w weeks. But I am struggling to find them a project for both of them that could last a few months and be useful.

I asked supervisor on what to work to give them and she said "I want them to focus on helping you as much as possible". To be honest I have never seen my supervisor in the lab, but I would at least expect her to have some idea on what to do. But no, I am supposed to find work for them, train them and supervise their work. It is so not my job, and yes I have supervisor issues.

Anyone else have any advice on how to manage these students? Or how much work to give them? Or how to even structure work for them? I have never assigned work to anyone or been an intern, I really have no idea what to do. Literally anything will be helpful.

Thread: (Please Respond!) Ph.D (and funding) in English Literature with a pass/merit Master's

posted
05-Sep-18, 15:47
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 2 weeks ago
I don't have experience in humanities funding , so take what I say with a pinch of salt.

Funding is going to very very hard to find. I honestly would say you need to make yourself and your proposal stand out among the crowd of other applicants. You have great undergrad results but your masters results doesn't look good. So you need to make your CV and proposal sound absolutely amazing.

I take it you know were to look for funding. But there are loans you can get as well teaching contracts if you want to self fund. You have talked with supervisors about your proposal but are any of them willing to be your supervisor? Or do they have any advice on funding?

Also, how many buzzwords are in your proposal? There are so called "sexy" topics that people like to fund and if you can morph your work to cover those buzzwords it can help. It might be really interesting but the research councils have their own goals

Just my honest thoughts, hopefully someone more informed than me can also help.

Thread: Applying for a new PhD after having to leave of old one?

posted
05-Sep-18, 15:36
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 2 weeks ago
There isn't a good answer to the question. The minute you mention harassment things get messy, so I would avoid saying too many details. Be vague and don't trash anyone's' reputation even if it is true. Somehow victims come out worse in cases like this.

However you have publications which is good and established research project. Play to your strengths and if ever asked pivot the answer towards your success or future plans. You can't avoid the question but in an interview you can make it sound like you have moved on. You will proejcet an aura of condfidence that there wasn't an issue. In interviews issues like this are about first impressions; be confident, don't be to evasive but don't linger on topic.

I would recommend contacting your old supervisor/ department and try and get a good reference. Say things have changed and that you want to move on and would like a reference about your work. If you can get a reference about your work it is a positive and avoids talking about why you left or them lying about your relationship. It will look very good if you have some reference from them.

On the actual answer for why you left. Go with something like what pm133 said. Or that after so many years of uni+ masters without a break had caused burnout and you now refound your passion. Or say that there were a multitude of issues going on and that you weren't informed that you could take a suspension of studies for health reasons.

Quitting a PhD is a massive red flag for any application. I feel so sorry that you were put in this position. I can only wish you goodluck
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