Do your friends/family read your papers?

posted
27-Apr-10, 12:32
Avatar for Keenbean
posted about 10 years ago
Hey all! My mum and dad love playing the whole 'proud parent' thing right now, and will tell anyone who will listen that I am doing a PhD, have just had a paper published, etc etc. But when it comes to actually reading my papers, they won't! They always ask for a copy but then get halfway down the first page and say it is too complicated/they don't understand it etc, so they don't carry on! I would kind of like them to get an idea of what I'm doing seeing as though they have been so supportive (both emotionally and financially) through my education- I thought it would be nice for them to finally see the rewards of what has been a long and difficult slog, but they're having none of it! Do your friends and family read your work? Best, KB
posted
27-Apr-10, 12:36
edited about 14 seconds later
by sneaks
Avatar for sneaks
posted about 10 years ago
my mum proof reads my papers - as she actually understands grammar rules, which are beyond me. She's also good at thinking of better ways to phrase things. My subject is reasonably 'easy access' but I don't think she reads the content - just looks for mistakes if that makes sense. If I finish work I send it on, but I doubt she ever reads it, even the articles I've done for the press etc which use laymens terms etc and are very easy to read. I guess thats why peopel say the viva can be nice because its a chance to talk to someone who 'gets' your work!
posted
27-Apr-10, 13:02
edited about 29 seconds later
by CeCeF
Avatar for CeCeF
posted about 10 years ago
======= Date Modified 27 Apr 2010 18:35:36 =======
My mum and dad read my most recent article - with some difficulty, I think, but they did try. My dad went through it with a dictionary and wrote the meanings of words in the margin so that my mum could read it without the dictionary! This was very sweet of them, but I wouldn't be upset that your parents haven't, although I completely understand the frustration. My article was in history, and although it had to discuss some complicated philosophical stuff, in some sections it is very accessible. I think it is harder if you are doing something much more technical in the sciences or something like linguistics, and there are even elements of my work in history that I wouldn't subject my parents to.

I think it is important to just realise that your parents are obviously proud just to see your name in print and that whether or not they really understand what you do is irrelevant really. My dad does a very technical job in the finance industry, neither do I really understand what he does! It works both ways - I wouldn't be able (or want) to read one of the reports he writes in the course of his job, but I still respect his knowledge and achievements.
posted
27-Apr-10, 14:13
edited about 11 seconds later
by emmaki
Avatar for emmaki
posted about 10 years ago
They have read the papers that I have published (on an area different than my PhD though) and I had the feeling that they didn't understand them!!!! But they were (and are) very proud of me.
I wish that they could also read what I am doing for my PhD, but since it is in English and their language knowledge is very limited, this is almost impossible! My mum also is very sad every time I present something at a conference, because she can't attend it and she can't watch me, but I always breing her back a lot of comforting photos of me (she has several lbus full of my photos!!!!)
posted
27-Apr-10, 14:37
Avatar for BilboBaggins
posted about 10 years ago
I've given my parents copies of my journal papers, but don't know how much they read them.

However they are both now reading my completed thesis :-) Mum's already commented that it's much more readable than she thought it would be, she is really enjoying it, and it's a fascinating topic (nice to hear after all these years!). And Dad is making excellent progress at reading the thesis, and tells me what he thinks of each chapter after he's finished it.
posted
27-Apr-10, 14:48
edited about 4 seconds later
Avatar for Dispatcher
posted about 10 years ago
I wont try to humiliate my parents(if they were still alive) by giving them a PhD thesis/paper to read...:$ unless they have PhDs themselves.
posted
27-Apr-10, 14:56
Avatar for jinkim65
posted about 10 years ago
My family don't/ won't read my work. I've given my mum copies of my articles and of my thesis... I think the thesis is currently being used as a coaster. The articles were given to work friends, who probably used them to doodle on.

My partner tried to proof read my thesis before giving up half way through chapter 1. That copy became part of the coffee table as a pedestal for piling up mail.

Hmph.



posted
27-Apr-10, 14:59
edited about 4 seconds later
by sneaks
Avatar for sneaks
posted about 10 years ago
it is a bit disheartening, if you don't get round to publishing papers from your PhD, then only about 3 people will ever actually read it through properly. I wonder if anyone would actually notice if you just had a chapter of nonsense in the middle (mines already got a few of them!)
posted
27-Apr-10, 16:09
edited about 13 seconds later
Avatar for BilboBaggins
posted about 10 years ago
Quote From Dispatcher:

I wont try to humiliate my parents(if they were still alive) by giving them a PhD thesis/paper to read...:$ unless they have PhDs themselves.


People don't need PhDs to read my papers or thesis. I'm a history student, and my writing is very accessible.

And my parents asked for hard-bound copies of my thesis. They might just have been to sit on the bookshelf, but they're both keen to read them as well, and are happily charging through.
posted
27-Apr-10, 16:15
edited about 29 seconds later
Avatar for Dispatcher
posted about 10 years ago
Quote From BilboBaggins:

Quote From Dispatcher:

I wont try to humiliate my parents(if they were still alive) by giving them a PhD thesis/paper to read...:$ unless they have PhDs themselves.


People don't need PhDs to read my papers or thesis. I'm a history student, and my writing is very accessible.

And my parents asked for hard-bound copies of my thesis. They might just have been to sit on the bookshelf, but they're both keen to read them as well, and are happily charging through.



Surely they wont be happy reading something like this ofcourse...lol
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heat_equation

posted
27-Apr-10, 16:19
edited about 19 seconds later
Avatar for BilboBaggins
posted about 10 years ago
Quote From Dispatcher:

Surely they wont be happy reading something like this ofcourse...lol
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heat_equation


My Dad would! He's a retired maths/physics teacher.
posted
27-Apr-10, 16:22
Avatar for Dispatcher
posted about 10 years ago
Surely he would have Bilbo(up) ......?
posted
27-Apr-10, 17:24
edited about 9 seconds later
by Claudia
Avatar for Claudia
posted about 10 years ago
I can't remember if I ever told my parents that I have a paper published.... I very much doubt that they would want to read my thesis :p
posted
27-Apr-10, 17:24
edited about 8 seconds later
by Claudia
Avatar for Claudia
posted about 10 years ago
I can't remember if I ever told my parents that I have a paper published.... I very much doubt that they would want to read my thesis :p
posted
27-Apr-10, 17:27
edited about 29 seconds later
by qwert
Avatar for qwert
posted about 10 years ago
I think it always depends on the subject if parents are going to read a thesis and publications, means if it is easily understandable or quite complicated if you are not from that area. My mum and me both proofread the thesis of my sister in social sciences but for my thesis in natural sciences I couldnt ask them to do so as it is not that easily to understand for outsiders. However, they liked me to explain them in other words what I did doing during my thesis and would then even explain to other friends what I am doing. Maybe if they ask you for a copy, give them the copy and try to explain them in words understandable for them what the main idea is behind it.

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