Signup date: 14 Dec 2007 at 9:59pm
Last login: 10 Apr 2011 at 9:34pm
Post count: 2276
I'm having a very blah and irritable time too. I think it must be post-holiday blues - the break was very disruptive.
That, and my big cat is spraying all round my house because of a new cat in the neighborhood and the smell is driving me CRAZY. I can't exactly figure out all the places but I sprayed for it this morning and when I came home it was worse than ever.
I'm really going off my cat.
Do you need to apply for your own funding as opposed to already funded PhD places? The latter is much easier for one in your position. If you could get an interview for a funded place then you just need to click with that particular supervisor. That seems like a good option for you.
Applying for funding alone is MUCH much tougher as it is all down to paperwork and references and usually no interview. My understanding is, that if you are applying to a research council for your own funding and you do not have a first for your first degree - you need an exceptional first at masters level to stand a chance. Don't know about other specialist funding bodies - that might be different.
How good were their MScs? If they had very good distinctions they might be able to get funding - otherwise not.
If I were them, I would apply for funded positions as advertised and just play on the good MSc and try to impress at interview.
Otherwise, self-funding, maybe by part-time with working - is the other option, as you say.
Certainly there's more money in industry. If you are concerned about your salary then that is an option. But you might do better still to do further afield - like banking. Really though, no-one should do a PhD is they are after a big salary - that's just not going to happen. There are much better ways to acheive that.
How do you know that? Why not complain to the institution itself - there must be someone who deals with complaints.
I can see how this might happen but I've never come across it myself - even though I've come across many, many other kinds of problems.
As a general note of caution. Unless a supervisor already has funding in place, no-one can ever guarentee that they can apply for funding and get it. Absolutely no-one.
Frankly, London is not the friendliest place to move to in the whole world. You cannot rely on people making an effort because you are new - you really have to be prepared to be make an effort and sometimes be rebuffed. There's quite a fraternity of Australians though and other overseas visitors might be a good source fo companionship.
I lived in teh middle east for 5 years and people their are so friendly you almost have to barricade your door to get some time alone! Living overseas really made me understand why some people say the Brits are unfriendly. Doesn't seem like that to me because it's my culture and I know how to work it.
Well if you are self-funding your own proposal this is really unacceptable! My friend was also self-funding and I think when you come with your own funding form whatever source people can be very excited to get a 'free' pair of hands to collect data. My friend is also in neuroscience and ended up contributing too much data to the collective project and not enough for her own.
You need to decide how much of his suggestions are really relevant to you and take a stand. I know it's hard. I should have been more demanding of my supervisor and I've put up with too much neglect for too long. And my friend should have been firmer from the start but I think she lacked the confidence. Don't do as we have done!
I've seen this happen a lot - its' the norm in fact for many lab-based phDs. A friend of mine who I think is in a similarish field to you has had this problem in it's extreme form and has not had a good experience.
I have the opposite problem - I wrote my own proposal and have my own funding and didn't realise how much a would miss having a supervisor more involved my area. I'm really out on my own - sometimes I wonder if I've been given too much rope.
There has to be a compromise bewteen these two positions. Do you think you could talk to your supervisor and actually explain that you need to have more input into your project and perhaps discuss areas that could become more directly your responsibility?
I've moved around a lot, including 4 overseas moves. There are always times ,in the first few weeks especialy, where you are a bit adrift - especially in the evenings when it is harder to go out alone, especially as a women - especially in some places. You might feel a bit lonely - but that's just a normal part of settling in so don't let it get you down.
As for culture shock - that is the part I enjoy and the more of it the better. It's fascinating. I think people moving between UK, US and Australia often don't expect it so much but then always experience it. I think people are often shocked at how run-down and grotty London is, for example. That's just typical old-world vs new-world.
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