Signup date: 14 Dec 2007 at 9:59pm
Last login: 10 Apr 2011 at 9:34pm
Post count: 2276
Clashes over methodology between stats people and psycologists (and others) applying the stats to real data with all it's messiness and constraints is a recurring problem and one I have had throughout my PhD. I've also had wildly differing feedback on my methodology. I was feeling fairly confident but then I just got a total roasting from someone over a draft paper I've just written, largely over the data analysis. Now I know what the weakness in my analysis is and I have done what I can and that's that. It is often about being able to see the bigger picture without getting bogged down in the actual indiviual numbers and confidece intervals. I still feel on the verge of tears over it though. Some people are entirely by-the-book data driven and heaven help you if you stray from The Path.
Keep the faith Keenbean:-x
I think you're right that quant/psycometrics is in some demand because of the heavy math load. Which are you more interested in - econ or psych, that's the important thing? A PhD is a long slog and you will need some enthusiasm for your subject. If I had a background in econ - I would get into game theory as applied to behavioural research. I still might one day - when I have a spare year or so to learn the math :p
Once you are embroiled in psychometrics or similar it seems that you do tend to stay with that in some form or other.
I've just submitted my PhD which was partly quant psych based. I did a masters first - which I would advise, not so much because of the gap since your first degree but because, like me, you will be changing fields. You might find it difficult to get accepted, even self-funding, without a masters in psychology. I did my masters at 39.
Psychology is very competitive (becaue it's a very popular subject) but I am not finding age to be any factor in getting post-PhD employment.
I know how you feel about letting your sup down. I really didn't get anything in the way of supervision but I still feel like that a bit as I am now hoping to get a postdoc in another dept and I know there is an aspect of my work he would like to keep within the dept. Won't stop me though 8-)
Take the job and be happy! You don't owe your supervisor a postdoc - and there is absolutely no point unless you actually want to stay in academia.
My childminder will need to know by Augustish as she will get a lot of enquiries from parents before the school year starts in Sep. I think I will be optimistic and book an extra day's after school care.
Tried to start another paper today but it just isn't coming - worked on my daughter's birthday party invites instead....
I submitted in April but my viva is not until end July. I've circulated the first draft paper but suspect it will take a LONG time for my co-authors to deal with it. I'm starting on a postdoc grant but have no idea what the realistic timescale is - and don't like to press it since I haven't had my viva yet. But I'm anxious about what childcare to book for Sep and whether I need to fork out to keep our childminder on retainer.
I'm just steadily increasing in anxiety like a frog in boiling water.
Anyone else in the twilight zone?
Do you have any idea what kind of response you will get? There must have been other pregnancies in the dept surely? After a few too many drinks I actually told my supervisor I was planning to have a baby (I had just started my second year - dd arrived the next July). He was very encorouging and it has never been a problem.
I was sick as a dog and very sleepy for the first three months - but high as a kite for the middle three. Then huge and lumpen at the end. It was not my most productive year.
Well I only have one child born during my PhD. I submitted in April and she starts school in Sep. I agree that there has to be very little procrastination or dawdling - your work time just has to be fairly intense. I've had childcare (nursery then childminder which was better) 2 then 3 days/week - I prefer some long days rather than 5 short days. I cook double meals and freeze. My husband works long hours and also travels a lot but when he was here he took our daughter out on saturdays while I worked. I did evenings sometimes but not usually - too tired, evenings too short, and you need time with your partner as well as your kids. I went sort of part-time so that although I officially finished in 3.5 years it was actually 5.5 years. When deadlines were intense, I carried work with me in the changing bag and have been known to work while she slept in the car outside a softplay etc. Not sure what the equivalent for you would be but you probably taxi your kids around a lot to stuff.
For me, I found I needed really regular ring-fenced core work time every week. School days are actaully quite short in that regard. Could get a cleaner (if you don't already)? I couldn't afford that but we do have our ironing done - every little bit helps!
Do you have any personal preferences woth regard to the projects themsleves (which are all greek to me!). I agree some regular supervisory support is important (speaking as one who didn't get any) and 25 students is rather a lot!
You are in a very specialist field so it may well be that your project and publications will counter any ranking of the uiversity (and that is not always the case, espeically if you apply further up the food chain for a postdoc). Is it the OU position you are espcially concerned about? Can you current supervisor give you any idea how a OU PhD would be considered if he were recruiting for his dept, for example? I honestly don't know and I would wonder about that if it were me. I know there are some top reseachers there in some fields and someone I know has left Cambridge and gone to the OU - I just have no idea how that would work in reverse.
Teaching is useful but 25% of your time unpaid is a lot - I did find it tough in my final year (about 33% of my time in term time and although paid, not by choice). Do the other positions have the possibility of some teaching?
Might seem relatively trivial but I would also consider how you feel about spending 3-4 years in any of these places.
I followed convention as Joyce describes. Although some papers are bucking the trend - I would take a more conservative approach with a thesis largely for the reason Joyce gives - external examiners are generally senior, older academics and I wouldn't want to take any chances.
There are a few of us around who are doing this second time around. I only did one year the first time and would not have been allowed to continue. There was a very long gap before trying again - it really broke confidence, and not just for the PhD but in general. After a while I just edited the whole experience out of my CV completely - easier with one year than two. Perhaps getting a masters (which I didn't) would be useful as for any other application process it automatically accounts for the time without having to go into details.
Something a bit like this happened with my masters project (same supervisor as PhD). I wrote the paper and it just languished in a draw for a year! Then when I started the PhD he mentioned that he accepted that students needed some publications as sole author and I said - well, how about this one then? I also realised what the problem was - he fundamentally disagrees with the conclusion from that project (and all the others of that type). He agreed that this was indeed the problem and I submitted and published it with light editorial feedback.
So I think you should try it - but better tell your supervisor first and find some way to sell the idea. You could say as I did - that since we clearly can't agree on this issue it would be better if I just published on my own.
I don't know if it is the same for international students, but the Cambridge trusts give out domestic awards a few at a time throughout the summer - right into September. Domestic students are updated every so often on their place in the queue - it can be a long and nail-biting wait and around 2/3 of those on the short list do not get funding. If you are not short-listed you hear straight away (late spring). If it's not clear from the online system then call BOGS and ask for clarification on the process - i.e. how and when will you be notified of the outcome - is it an ongoing process over the summer for shortlisted candidates or is there one deadline. I know BOGS are increasingly fending off enquiries in favour of their online system but the online system is not always that clear - I would call and ask.
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