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Failed my 1st year viva, Is it possible Transferring another uni?

All the best, Hana.

One more thing to consider - supervisor. If you win this case, it would be best to get a different supervisor. I highly doubt the current one will be willing to guide you to completion nor give you a good reference. This relationship is dead. And I am sure that you can read up on bad supervisor stories in this forum.

Advice sincerely needed for the next step of my PhD

Why didn't your first supervisor let you finish with a MPhil before he left? You had done two years there and had one paper. You could have gotten a Masters rather than just quit. That's so irresponsible of him.

Your supervisor B is using you as a cheap staff to set his lab up. From what you describe, the current environment is not good for you. Might be best to cut your losses and finish up with a Masters. If you do want a PhD in future, may I suggest that you take a break in between your current studies and the future. Take a job in a company in the field that you want and see if there is an opportunity to get sponsored PhD. That way, you get two things - sponsored PhD + job security. I have seen it happen to my friends and they are in a very very good place now.

moving from doctorate into business, mid-career

Whenever you change to a new career, you don't know much about it and so climbing up from the very bottom is necessary. It also means significant pay cut.

It is a big gamble as the change may not work out and you will have lost precious time while your peers continue to gain seniority and promotions because they continued to stay in the same career. This was what you saw with your marketing friends.

I would suggest you consider this your last career change. You have definitely jumped around a lot and it is absolutely essential for you to choose and stay in the same career now so you can build relevant experience and climb up the ladder. Otherwise, you will probably end up as a jack of all trade (with bits of experience here and there) but master of none.

Another thing to consider is age. In your 40s, less employers are willing to give you a chance at entry level position for a new career compared to when you are in your 20s. And your CV with many career switches will be less appealing to many employers too. Nothing wrong with changing career at your age, but know that you face significant head winds.

Lost after PhD

Write down a list of journals that you want to approach. Then on LinkedIn, see if you can find someone working in those journals and arrnage a meeting to ask them how they got in and what the criteria are.

Start from the bottom, maybe as an intern or publishing assistant. You don't know anything about the publication cycle and process and will need to learn from scratch. Apply through Job sites or through the people you talk to.

All the best!

moving from doctorate into business, mid-career

There is nothing wrong with changing career at whatever age, as long as you are prepared to start all over from the very bottom.

Why don't approach the startup company and get a full time job there? That will be a good start.

Lost after PhD

May I suggest a redirection? Have you thought about science communication, journal editorial/publishing roles, etc? If this door closes, then look at a different door. You have many skills that can be repurposed for a different role. May you be open to change.

Failed my 1st year viva, Is it possible Transferring another uni?

Dear Hana,

I am so sorry to hear of all the trials and tribulations that you went through.

No, I don't think you can transfer to another uni after failing your upgrade viva. What you can do though is finish up as a Master and use that master to apply for PhD in future, if that is what you wish.

If you want to fight your outcome, approach your students union and see if there is anything they can do for you. Maybe ask them to challenge the verdict or waive the payment.

Otherwise, all I can say is academia where the competition is strong and funding is tight has no compassion for anyone. It might be a blessing in disguise for you to get out of academia and get a job in industry in the long run.

What if a relevant potential supervisor is going to have a maternal leave?

The potential supervisor is a responsible person for rejecting you. She may extend her maternity leave beyond the first year if needed. You can ask her but she may be hesitate to commit with you. Additionally, having a small child to mind on top of normal research is hard and she may not be wanting to have a PhD student for a while

doctor's note , MH, department or supervisors?

Why do you need to provide doctor's note to your college and department? Your medical situation is your privacy unless you needed something from your uni. If you do need something from uni and they need your supervisor to keep an eye on you to keep you safe because of your medical situation, then yes, they will be notified.

RnR Correction Phase

Dear Starsister87,

Why is your supervisor insisting that the RnR will take 12 months to address? If it is something that can be done sooner, you are right in pushing for an earlier submission. But is it a doable time frame?

You have made right decision in returning to your stable industry job. A PhD qualification is not a guarantee of future job prospect. I know of so many PhD graduates who remain jobless and some had to settle for a position of research assistant which does not even require a PhD. Many postdocs I know want to leave the broken academia system.

It has been a very heavy sacrifice on you to had to sacrifice your relationships for this PhD. I completely understand your needs to want a stable future, financial stability and get on with your personal life and family at your age.

I suggest that you be frank about wanting to complete in X months and reasons why to your supervisor. They may disagree and not support your re-submission. Depending on your uni policy, you may or may not be able to resubmit without their approval. So check. Another matter is can you resubmit without any input from them? If yes, go ahead. It is not easy to resubmit without approval from supervisors and have a chance of being knocked back and downgraded to Master, but it is not impossible. Do you have a postdoc who is willing to be your pseudo supervisor if your supervisor refuses to help you?

Your position is difficult. i hope that your supervisor will come around after you explain your needs to them. If they don't, you will have to submit on your own.

I was threatened by my supervisor for termination

Hi, Zeryan, I would suggest that you wait until your two other papers are published. How much longer do you have to wait? Lay low and do not show any signal that you want to go. Regarding recommendations, I will not be asking the awful one for it. If your other supervisor is nice and trustworthy, you can ask him for recommendations as long as he doesn't tell the awful one. What you don't want is for your awful supervisor knowing where you are gong and sabotaging you. Alternatively, you can ask a postdoc or senior research fellow who knows your work to be your referee instead of supervisors.

Hi, Chinnu, what motivates your supervisor to behave in this manner? Jealousy? Wanting to give the PhD project and your data to another favourite student or other researcher? Wanting to be the first author of your papers? You have put in 4 years of work so you do have a lot of data. I hope that you are saving your work in an external hard drive because if they are as toxic as you say, they may 1) stop your access to group drive where you store your data and 2) terminate you and use your saved data to publish without you. How much longer do you have before you can wrap up this PhD? Do you have a postdoc or senior research fellow who knows your work to be your referee instead of supervisors in future?

Hi, dotdottung. If you are an experienced research assistant, have you thought about working in a company instead of academia? Companies do prefer experienced researcher and it's easier to transition at research assistant level.

Hi, Walter_Opera. Sorry to hear that your situation is so awful. However, it isn't a competition of whose case is worse. I can hear your frustration at work as a fully funded postdoc doing these menial, inappropriate tasks. However, if you are fully funded, is it possible to move to another lab and take your grant with you? Have you explored that? Additionally, have you ever stood up for yourself and said no to your supervisor? I would suggest that you document all these "requests" with details on date, time, venue, sequence of events etc and even emails as evidence and lodge a complain with HR.

I was threatened by my supervisor for termination

Hi, zeryan

The decision is ultimately yours, but a few things to consider:

1) If you push on, do you think he will change for the better and let you pass you PhD? What you don't want is for him to fail you at the last step and give all your PhD data to another person eg his wife
2) Will this supervisor write a good reference letter for you for your future work and graduate route visa? You will need an outstanding letter for both and if he can't, you will be in trouble.
3) Are you first authors in your research papers? Or will he swap you with someone else? My friend lost all her PhD papers to her co-supervisor who insisted on becoming first author because he wanted to progress his career. My friend was an international student and the graduate school sided her co-supervisor.

There is quite an imbalance of power in a PhD study. My suggestion is that considering the amount of power that a supervisor has over your future and you only get to do a PhD once, choose a good one. You will need reference letter and also collaborate in future.

There are three potential route if you want to quit this PhD

(A) Downgrade to Master
If you have two research papers published already, then you could graduate with a Master. If it's still at manuscript, then it's a bit precarious and you may want to wait until you got them published before you downgrade to Master. Then you are free to find a new PhD supervisor

(B) Change supervisor
If you don't think you will get any support, then maybe consider quickly switching to another lab. Speak to students of the lab you are interested in to know the real personality of the supervisor and if they are a good fit. Talk to your postgrad coordinator or graduate school in confidence and read the process on your uni website. DO NOT warn your supervisor you want to change. If your new supervisor is happy to receive you, initiate the PhD change. For now, save all your data into your external hard drive and not your uni or group folder.

(C) Just quit
Quitting immediately may be an option if your mental is so severely impacted. You will have to explain the gap of 18 months to future PhD supervisor or employer but that will be better than the 3 years gap if your supervisor fails your PhD. Given it has been Covid for the last two years, you actually can use that as an excuse for inactivity for the 18 months if you do decide to just quit. If you quit, NEVER mention your supervisor in any resume or to anyone in future.

It's challenging, particularly if you are an international student. All the best.

still haven't found a postdoc position, feeling disheartened

Have you checked out an online resource called Friends of Sarah?


Need advice about appeal procedures against the results of the university examination

There’s an online resource for women called Friends of Sarah.


Need advice about appeal procedures against the results of the university examination

Quote From Withhope:
Thank you for sharing your experience Tru. It is really helpful. I can learn a lot from your case. You are really lucky to win the case and I hope I will be lucky too. Do you have any ideas about which factors caused people to fail or win the appeal? If you have any interesting cases, please kindly advise, I want to study.

Excellent record-keeping as proof of bias and irregularity, a lawyer from student union and a supporting academic researcher despite most people closing ranks were the success factors to my case. I honestly don't think you will be a able to study cases of student challenging their supervisor. No one wants to talk about it in detail because it is a very painful experience. I still cannot open my thesis after all my experience. I just feel sick in the stomach. My fight took many many months. The most you can do now is probably scan through old posts in this forum to read what happened to others.

Sounds like you have major irregularity in your PhD process which you can use to argue. Maybe get a lawyer who specialises in student cases. If you do decide to fight, you'll be in for a long hard road. And if you win, you will never get the supervisor's reference letter ever for future job so ask someone else instead.