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Walminskipeasucker
Monday, 4 June 2007 at 2:33am
Wednesday, 3 September 2014 at 10:38am
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page 1 of 133 recent posts

Thread: Research proposal HELP

posted
01-Nov-11, 22:37
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
Really, this is the job of your MSc research project supervisor - you need to ask him/her. Also, why not read around the subject (review papers/research papers), see what has been done and how you can build on it. Choose one little facet of what you want to look at and build on that. I think it is unfair to expect people on this forum to effectively do your work for you. Good luck!

Thread: Anyone else intimidated by very high achievers?

posted
01-Nov-11, 22:29
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
I think that we're all high achievers, so celebrations all round! Seriously though, don't feel intimidated by those you perceive as being super intelligent or amazing multi-taskers of goodness. You've doubtless heard the old saying, 'there's always someone smarter'... Well, there is! The rest of those high achieving, academic dynamos just work insane, anti-social hours to outshine (even if they outwardly deny it) others.

Thread: Signing off from the forum

posted
26-Oct-11, 01:20
edited about 3 seconds later
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
    Hi, Bilbo. Sorry if there's typos - I didn't want to miss wishing you all the very best before you leave the forum, so am typing this on a mobile phone in bed. There's little I can add to what others have already put: wise, generous, kind, helpful, inspirational...
    Without doubt you were the matriarch of this forum, a sort of 'sage-like, other worldly dispenser of advice'.  In other words, as there is a pill for every I'll, there was a Bilbo for every PhD-related no-go. You will be sorely missed here. The next tribe of baby PhDs on this forum will have to find their legs without your wise input. 
    I really hope I don't sound like a mad stalker, but I have checked out the link you've provided and, from that information, did a little search on other work you've done. All I can say is 'flipping heck', you're an academic powerhouse with a wealth of academic experiences. People really will miss you and your knowledge on this forum!

So from me, I really wish you all the very best in you aims and publishing endeavours. I thank you for all the help and advice you gave me as a PhD student, which was everything from allaying fears to helping me prepare for the viva. In fact. I've done a simple sum in my head. In the time I've been on this forum, if you'd have received a pound for every time you'd helped someone on this forum, you'd have made enough money to buy Microsoft (that's what I personally think).

Kindest regards and best wishes,



Walminski x

So from me

Thread: PhD???? Listen to me...Musings from the other side.

posted
24-Oct-11, 23:13
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
The academic job in oz is not looking too good, tbh. The interview was several weeks ago and I've heard nothing back - disappointing. :-( Will aim to update this thread with more work place insights by Wed.

Thread: Viva on Tuesday

posted
24-Oct-11, 00:01
edited about 25 seconds later
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
Some really excellent posts below, Slowmo! As has been mentioned (I think by Bilbo), don't overdo the prep! You've done your research for around 3 years, and you know it better than anyone! For my viva, I actually followed Bilbobaggin's and passed -she's a wise young lady! Know the key references, know you key contributions to knowledge, etc, etc. The examiners are not there to trip you up. They want to make sure that it is your research and you fully understand what you have done (strengths, limitations, further research). Chances are you already do! Just relax, consider each question and answer honestly. After all, it's not an inquisition or death squad - just a debate between a group of people who are all passionate about the same area of research. Good luck (doubt you'll need it)!

Thread: PhD???? Listen to me...Musings from the other side.

posted
23-Oct-11, 23:53
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
Right, sorry for the delay. I've been really busy over this past week, not with wild women or parties though - just work and trying to commute to and from it in a horrible, little car. Let's see what I can impart first wrt working in industry...

Lesson of Sorts 1: You might have innovative approaches to research, but your place of work has its own way.


Yep, tonight I'll cover the first thing that I learnt the hard way. You might have spent 3 or 4 intensive years learning all about a specific area of research, really know it - but don't think that you'll be fully able to institute it when working in industry. I'm worried about how transferable to other PhDs what I am about to say is, so I'll try and keep it as generic as possible...
When I first started at my place of work, I wanted to apply everything I knew about qualitative research, mixed methods and philosophy to the job. I was horrified to learn that the qual research they do was not subjected to the same rigorous standards that you read about in the academic literature. This applies to all the research my workplace do. So I made a lot of recommendations and 'constructive' criticisms (I know, wxxker alert!). However, this is what you'd expect in a academic context. Essentially, everything I do does not share the supposed academic rigour of what you would expect within academia. There's nothing essentially wrong with this because industry is out to make money, but it's something you may have to get used to. All those lofty ideals you may have could possibly have to take a back seat. I realise that I may have made myself seem really bad here, but when it's an area of research you specifically have your PhD in, you are rather passionate about it and it can be hard to make what you perceive to be compromises.
So, yes, it was quite a big slap in the face for me, and I did find myself in a few meetings with the associate director of the business I work for. I did argue that a lot of what we do is not very rigorous, but she did impress that I'm working for a business that is out to make money - that is how we stay employed. She is correct and I've had to get used to this. Therefore, I suppose the moral of this first post is that, if you work for industry, be prepared to 'shift' your expectations. You may have stringent academic standards, but in industry you are working in an applied, money making context. So what Sage (1907) said about the Ideal of Absolute Perfection will possibly not hold water in your work place.

Perhaps this is a naive first post on this thread, but it is the honest initial problem I came across in beginning to work for a consultancy. Maybe it will have relevancy to those of you who go on to begin work in industry? Essentially, just be prepared to adjust you expectations and academic standards. Perhaps, someone else may be able to add to this post?


Next time: Making friends in the workplace after researching all by yourself for around 3 years: sharing, conflict and being nice.

Thread: PhD???? Listen to me...Musings from the other side.

posted
17-Oct-11, 23:19
edited about 15 seconds later
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
The thing about no longer being immersed in the PhD process is that I have found it very difficult to contribute to this forum. If anything, every time I post on this forum, I sort of feel like I am haunting it, like some tragi-comic version of Lady Macbeth, unable to relinquish a tragic act (my PhD) that I was a central part of: 'What, will these hands ne'er be clean?'
So, how to be productive? Well, I'm not quite ready to slip away into the ether. As Rocky Balboa said in Rocky 5: 'I've still got sum stuff in the basement'. Literally, this famous caption translates as, 'I have loads of books and papers in my basement that I can't bring myself to chuck away'. Metaphorically, it means that I hopefully have a few useful insights and experiences that may be useful to those of you considering working in the private sector on completion of your PhDs. In fact, you can learn from all of my mistakes thus far. Like chicks in a nest learning to fly, I'm effectively the first one to jump out and crash land. By dissecting my mistakes, you may end up getting off to a flying start! Over the coming days and weeks, I'll be updating this thread with all of my experiences.
Meh! Have to seriously consider getting some 'zzz's' now, as I'm 'touching base' with my 'line manager' tomorrow regarding my 'TC's' and and an 'IB App' (see, all this new lingo!), but I'll be back.

Thread: B'bye peeps!

posted
17-Oct-11, 22:55
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
PhDbug, all the best for the next chapters of your soon-to-be flourishing career. I'd wish you luck in your academic pursuits but for some reason I don't think you'll need it. Oh, and when I most likely end up living in a bedsit and selling peanuts on Blackpool Beach (my job's not going that bad, really...), bumping into you in your gold horse-drawn ivory tower :-) in the most unlikely of circumstances, make sure you buy some and say hello!

Bug's done,
She had fun,
But now she's gone,
And said 'so long!'

Sorry, that's all I can muster after a 9 hour day of coding and 4 hour commute in the worst little car from hell. (up)

Thread: Carry on PhD vs Take good job

posted
17-Oct-11, 22:42
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
I am in very much the same position where I work: headful of knowledge with limited practical application. Doubtless the skills I have picked up along the way will come in useful at some point. Anyway, I really think your friend ought to take the job for all of the highly relevant reasons given below. I work with people who haven't done PhDs, but their skills and the quality of work they produce is currently what I'm trying to develop - I feel left behind in some ways because of my PhD! Years of experience in a sector will trump a PhD any day in my opinion - and for good reason.

Thread: Guide me on pursuing my M.S

posted
12-Oct-11, 23:22
edited about 2 seconds later
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
As your guide, using advanced electronic processing techniques (0.23 seconds using method of Google search), I found this: http://www.successcds.net/Distance-Education/ANNAMALAI-UNIVERSITY-Directorate-of-Distance-Education.php

The university is not on the Times 100 list (but then neither was mine), but it does say that it is 'globally respected' and for ''global professions'.

Good bye, Satheesh_skl, and good luck!

Thread: Join me if you have a brain

posted
12-Oct-11, 23:15
edited about 3 seconds later
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
I'm sure I must have a brain as a sensate, living creature - but I'm not sure it works like yours...

Universities are actually businesses. Although I think you're working too many hours as recompense for your PhD course, everything you mention on your post has been pointed out time and time again. I had to do 6 hours contact time, per year, when I was doing my PhD - excluding prep. I really enjoyed teaching and it developed me in ways that wouldn't have been possible through just concentrating on my PhD work. I recall that an article on this very subject made it into the Financial Times some time ago. It might not seem like it but you're actually in a very privileged position that a lot of people out there would gladly do right now (excluding those in the 3rd World!). I think even I'd take your place sometimes. If it is too much, then speak to people at your university. Otherwise, drop out and join the sea of people who are unemployed at the moment.

I've been watching too much trash TV of late, so apologies but here's my advice: suck it up!

Thread: MPhil thoughts?

posted
12-Oct-11, 23:03
edited about 5 seconds later
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
An Mphil is a very significant achievement and an end in itself. Although some academics can be snobbish about it, narrow mindedly seeing it as a 'failed PhD', it is a nice qualification to have for research in many areas of the private sector (e.g. consultancies) and shouldn't hold you back. In fact, many of the people I work with, in very high up positions, have an MSc but bags and bags of expertise and experience.

Anyway, what's to say you won't completely finish your PhD!? You'll be fine. :-)

Thread: Need help about gaining a Psychology Masters please!!

posted
12-Oct-11, 22:56
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
To recycle advice I think I've read on this forum a few times previously, there is very little funding available for Masters courses; it tends to be associated with PhD programmes. Have you thought about taking this route. If you have a good first degree (2.1+), you may stand a fair chance. Some charities may offer funding, so it may be worth doing a search online. Good luck. :-)

Thread: Unemployed

posted
12-Oct-11, 22:45
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
Hey Delta, I can only echo the points that others have made. I had to sign on during the write up of my PhD. I'm surprised that they're only giving you 3 months to find a job before they put you on a Work Programme. Usually, this happens after something like 12 months for over 25s (at least it did when I was signed on 6 months ago). There are 4 stages. You'll be on stage 1, which lasts for 13 weeks. You should be able to look for whatever jobs you want during this period. Stage 2 involves weekly signing on every week and a more 'focused' job search (i.e. what jobs they think that you should apply for). Eventually, you get to Stage 4 (New Deal), where they can make you take part in a mandatory work programme. I doubt it will get to this stage for you (even stage 3) because you should have employment by then.

I can really empathise. Going to Job Centre Plus can be a soul destroying experience for most people.

Here are some tips that I used to keep them off my back, while I found suitable employment (sorry if I repeat info provided below):

Keep a record of your job searches and jobs applied for.

Always apply for any jobs they print off for you in the job centre.

You only need to perform 3 positive job-seeking steps a week, so joining two agencies and applying for 1 job could be those steps for a week.

Never be late (they can be right shxts).

Try not to laugh at some of their advice. This one is a gem I was told: 'You should tell your friends you're looking for a job because they'll tell their friends and, by work of mouth, you could find a job' (could actually work in academia).

If you need to use any of the time unemployed for write up or to prepare for a job you really want (a bit naughty but I'm now a legal tax payer with hypocritical morals), then there are means and ways of making sure you don't get that call centre job...

For instance, on your speculative letter (this should get you straight on the reject pile for anything you are made to reply for and don't want):

Dear Miss Shuttlebottom,


I would like to apply for the position of Call Centre Agent.


Best,


Dr Walminski


And on the CV that you send:

Career Objective: Young, ambitious scholar interested in a rewarding career in academia (something along those lines)

Personal Interests: Husserlian Phenomenology (before it was ruined), particle physics, Michael Winner.

Obviously, don't do anything too outrageous because they'll penalise you for it.

Best of luck finding a job, Delta. I'm hopeful that something suited to you will come your way, sooner rather than later.
(up)

Thread: Reflections on finishing

posted
03-Oct-11, 22:36
Avatar for Walminskipeasucker
posted about 8 years ago
Congratulations, Dr Bug! You've stormed through your PhD and you well deserve it! Good luck for your future, though I don't think you'll need it.

Remember us all when you're something like Vice Chancellor of the University of the Whole of the World, or some such.

(up)
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