Signup date: 11 Sep 2014 at 9:03pm
Last login: 13 Nov 2017 at 10:00am
Post count: 279
Thank you all for your reassurance.
It is not too long now, and I think it is fear of the unknown and I have often experienced feelings of self doubt.
Chickpea- I have always had the imposter syndrome, but I think reading my thesis with a critical eye just made it much worse. Also, yes you are right - I hear 'it needs to pass not be perfect' quite often, but I keep thinking how gutting it will be if it isn't even 'passable' or if it needs major reworking. There are things I do want to add to strengthen it and develop some of the points further though. I have made a list of literature I want to incorporate, and have inserted post its in the thesis to show where I would like to insert this.
Effin- I think part of my anxiety stems from the fact I do not feel like an expert in some things in my thesis, particularly the underpinning philosophical approach of my work and I have recently discovered one of my examiners is and I just feel like I have approached things in the wrong way. I also have a lot of interesting data that is not in the thesis to keep it as concise as possible, and I just felt that some of my arguments could be better. Your point about the examiners approaching it with the expectation that it will pass is comforting too, so thank you :) I think I have created them in my mind as these monsters that are going to attempt to trip me up.
The title says it all really,
I submitted my PhD (social sciences) a couple of months ago. I worked incredibly hard on my thesis, felt it was a strong piece of research, my supervisor felt, and still feels, it is of a high standard.
I was confident until I started preparing for my viva. Upon re-reading the thesis and reading more around it, I feel as though the paradigm I chose does not really work, the analysis is patchy and inconsistent in places, I have noticed issues in the structure of the work and areas where the argument is quite weak, found literature that I have missed that could really strengthen the work, also typos and things (the typos don't really bother me though)
I have added masses of notes to my thesis (so many post-its throughout) including quotes and ideas from additional reading to help defend the weaknesses, to help me explain why I did what I did, and what I would add/change if writing it again. All in all, reading the thesis with fresh eyes has led me to see it as a very weak piece of work - if I was the examiner, I would probably fail me.
I have lost all confidence in my work in such a short space of time. I am very very surprised at myself for not picking up on these things before (I proof read it loads, checked it, edited loads etc. before submission). I have become very depressed thinking that I will definitely fail and I feel sick and anxious 24/7. It truly is like I am reading the thesis with a new pair of eyes and seeing every fault in it.
Any words of wisdom, encouragement or the like would be much appreciated. Writing this all down has certainly helped a little, so thank you for reading.
Sounds like progress is steady and good Pjlu :) glad to hear.
I am printing the thesis this week and dropping it off to be bound. I am waiting on my sup to sign some forms so I can submit and they have confirmed they are happy with me to submit, they keep replying to emails without the signed forms. I know this is not the case, but it feels like it is being stalled intentionally. I am desperate to submit and get it over with now!
How is everything going guys?
Happy to say I am nearing the finish line. I have booked two days off of work to get the thesis sorted. I paid for a proof reader and I am currently going through their suggestions, but finding that a lot of their suggestions just make the writing seem more confusing, that they have missed quite a few errors, and they have not checked some things that I expected them to check :(
Kind of defeats the purpose of paying a proof reader when you are having to proof read their proof reading eh?
How is everyone getting along?
I am trying to blast through the final edits this week (all whilst working multiple part-time jobs eek) to send it to a proof reader fairly soon. I am so tired and I just cannot wait until I have submitted so I can have a break from thinking about it.
I am so glad to hear that it was a pleasant experience litphdgirl :)
I have had some bizarre dreams about the viva over the past few months which I will share for giggles- I don't even have a date yet so unsure why. One of them involved having 11 examiners and they were drinking wine so they passed me with no corrections while drunk. The other was about a viva that only lasted 15 minutes. My brain is going through some weird stuff right now!
I am submitting in a few weeks- the thesis is written and I am applying final amendments whilst working multiple teaching/research roles.
My advice echos others' here; I use a notebook to write down my monthly 'goals', then each week I make a 'to do' list (crossing a completed task out has always felt satisfying for me) and I also make a 'done' list where I note everything I have done on a daily basis. I found that this works well when feeling a bit demotivated as you can reflect on your accomplishments.
More recently, I deactivated my Facebook which has worked wonders. Instead of checking Facebook I now check and deal with emails (work based). I text/call friends to stay in touch. I am also quite amazed at how less 'cluttered' my head feels having Facebook deactivated. I realised in retrospect that, in addition to the many hours wasted mindlessly scrolling through, that dealing with notifications, messages etc. made me feel quite stressed...it felt like a 'chore'.
Hope this helps :)
I agree Hugh and Chickpea- it is really harsh for those who put lots of time and effort into each application and in preparing for the interview for it not to matter in the end as they already have an internal candidate.
I am just unsure what other sectors to look in to really! I have been keeping an eye out for jobs in charities and I have been applying for professional services roles in Universities that are relevant to my area. I have also been keeping an eye on the NHS website as they sometimes advertise posts for researchers. I am getting to the point where I am just envious of anyone who has a job, any job haha
What I really dislike is the always wondering if they have an internal candidate and worrying that my time is being wasted.
My first academic job interview was not a pleasant experience in that, the panel just rushed through the interview, were very rude and did not provide a whole lot of feedback. It really seemed like they were just trying to 'get through' the process as quickly as possible to tick a box.
I also try not to get attached to the jobs im applying for but that is also difficult as you of course need to come across as super enthusiastic in interview. I had my heart set on one I went to in November, it really looked like I had it in the bag, then they went with someone else.
My financial situation is getting increasingly desperate. While I have bits of teaching and supervision work here and there, it's not enough to cover my rent, bills and food and also, since unis can take months to pay you, there is just no stability. You never know when you'll get the money that you are owed :/
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