Signup date: 02 Nov 2007 at 4:45pm
Last login: 21 Nov 2009 at 2:05pm
Post count: 266
Yep--data collection is the best bit! It's a great feeling when you get home with a pile of articles and books. They then sit on your desk/floor for the next month collecting dust! I've collected so much that I've yet to get through, but it was satisfying to collect it.
Actually, the drop out rate is exceptionally high for the PhD and far exceeds the figures for other degrees. I mentioned this in a previous post--according to several sources I've read (including 'Getting Your PhD') 40% complete on-time while 60% either miss their completion deadline or drop out altogether. I'm not fond of percentages, but this one seems to appear in several recent sources.
I really admire those people who have a balanced life during their PhDs, finding a way to get everything in--healthy diets, exercising, socialising, etc. Unfortunately, I'm not one of those people--wish I was! I think they manage to keep saner than the rest of us. I'm not surprised at my weight gain, with the copious amounts of sugared coffees and choc I consume on a daily basis, and living a sedentary life. Well done to the people who manage to get some exercise!
Hi eddi--I know that one of the biggest frustrations of PhD students regarding their first year is often the amount of time wasted. This is so common, and I'm sure you'd hear it from most. You're just trying to get your bearings and understand how you fit into the PhD and how it fits you. I seriously wouldn't beat yourself up about that. Instead, now that you've realised you've wasted time, from now on you can change that.
olivia, You're going to love this one. This is what I listen to every day while I'm working--mikesradioworld.com. They've got listings of radio stations in the States and what type of music the station plays, so you could even listen to a station from your hometown if it's listed! Enjoy...
I know it sounds cliche, but have you thought about just writing down precisely what you're feeling? I know you probably don't have any time spare, but it might give some clarity, and make you see where the real problems lie. During the PhD, we are expected to take training sessions, research methodologies, etc. But, there is no course provided which explores the emotional pitfalls of doing a PhD (though I know some unis do this). I think sometimes people forget that life goes on during the PhD--3/4 years is a considerable period of development in someone's life. If someone were to write down the changes that have occured in their life in four years, it would be quite enlightening. Add a PhD on top of all this, and what a rollercoaster.
I was reading over a PhD journal I've been keeping for some time, which I've specifically kept to record how I'm feeling throughout the PhD. It's all over the place, going from brief moments of elation to the utter depths. Alot has happened in my personal life since I started the PhD. Like shani mentioned, I think the PhD actually makes you face yourself, and I think I read this in one of the guides on getting a PhD. I'm sorry jojo, sounds like you're going through one of those times when everything seems to be going wrong. It will change, and things will get better.
chrisrolinki, I know exactly what you mean. I'm worried that I won't have the hyper ambition and drive that it takes to make it in academia these days due to the ever-increasing demands. I sometimes feel I missed the boat, that I'm a PhD student at the wrong time. I seem to be more suited to the 1970s academic approach. My supervisor was telling me that things have changed dramatically since he was a researcher, and he's finding it difficult to keep up.
Oh, and sorry for such a boring thread! I'm just curious if the ever-changing face of academic life is putting anyone off? I came into the PhD with a romantic view of life as a researcher (as I'm sure most of us do), and with each passing day, I'm starting to fear that I won't be able to meet the demands. I guess I had that naive 'ivory tower' view of academia, and my bubble's been burst.
Hello all! I just wanted to share something with you that put the hairs on my neck up, and get your feedback. I attended a panel discussion yesterday about the future of academia, and what was revealed was quite scary. Basically, the panel members talked about how demands being placed upon universities are dramatically increasing with each academic year. There is a major push for unis to 'produce results' in order to receive funding. In terms of how this cascades down to PhD students, this is manifesting in greater pressure upon PhDers to 'justify' their research, and produce results for their departments alongside their already laborious PhD projects. I was wondering if the increasing 'commercialisation' of academia is affecting how you view your future prospects in academia?
pineapple, it sounds like you've come a long way. You're doing fieldwork on another project, teaching, and have just submitted your thesis. I think you should be feeling well proud of yourself. Why don't you pamper yourself today for submitting the thesis. I'm sure you're feeling crap because of the pressures of submission, so I think this is normal. You've reached a point that alot of people never get to. I was reading 'Getting Your PhD' yesterday, and apparently only 40% of PhD students submit by deadline, with 60% either missing the deadline or dropping out altogether. So give yourself a big hug pineapple! You've done it!
Hey Smilodon--it sounds like you're dealing with jealous people here, definitely. I've experienced similar things. I had a friend who kept asking inane questions like 'So, when are you going to get a real job?' and 'How long is 'this course' you're doing? A year?' I was thinking yesterday that there is no possible way to convey the intensity and rigour of the PhD to people who haven't done one. They will simply never understand, even if you go through the intricacies with them. My mom doesn't have a clue either, bless her. She keeps asking me 'So, what do you plan to do with this?' I love it, one minute she's telling me to not worry about the future and focus on the present, the next she's weighing down on me asking questions about my long term direction!
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