On surviving a Ph.D.

by | Tuesday, August 10, 2010

I just discovered (H/T Daily Dish) Matt Might’s website and his writings on graduate school, academia, and the professoriate. Matt is funny, cogent and most importantly insightful. I recommend his writing to anybody who is interested in getting into graduate school, or is currently in a graduate/Ph.D. program. Despite the fact that Matt is in the sciences, what he writes is quite applicable to graduate students in the social sciences and fields such as education. Here are links to some of his more interesting pieces:

  • The illustrated guide to a Ph.D.
    • This is absolutely a brilliant visual argument. A must read for any serious scholar.
  • Recommended reading for grad students.
    • A useful set of resources. My list (or yours) may be different but that’s not the point.
  • 3 qualities of successful Ph.D. students
    • Among other things, this piece contains a key survival strategy, one that I often used when I felt my Ph.D. wasn’t moving along.

“Whenever I felt depressed in grad school–when I worried I wasn’t going to finish my Ph.D.–I looked at the people dumber than me finishing theirs, and I would think to myself, if that idiot can get a Ph.D., dammit, so can I.

  • A Ph.D. thesis proposal is a contract
    • Addresses a key misconception most doctoral students have, i.e. Students tend to invert the importance of the proposal and the defense: they see the proposal as the formality and the defense as the challenge.

There are many more such nuggets on his site. Explore at your leisure…

Topics related to this post: Learning | Personal | Teaching | Worth Reading

A few randomly selected blog posts…

Perceiving & Patterning as skills essential for creativity

We have been writing a series of articles for Tech Trends titled Rethinking Technology & Creativity in the 21st Century. You can see the full list here. One of the key focus areas of these articles is on what we call trans-disciplinary thinking i.e. a set of...

Information is beautiful

Anybody who knows me (and/or reads this blog) will know of my love of issues related to representation (see all postings under that category). So I am always looking out for new and interesting representations. An lovely example sent to me by Patrick Dickson is...

Repurposing a stick. What fun!

Teaching with technology, for me, is all about repurposing technology. Such repurposing requires creative play. Our presentation at SITE 2010 was around some creative micro- and macro-design tasks that can help foster such creative repurposing. I just came across this...

How to author 85,000 (or is it 200,000) books…

Andrea Francis just emailed me a note about Professor Phillip Parker who is the world's fastest book author. He has over the past five years over 85,000 books to his name. He is also the most eclectic. As the article says, "He has authored some 188 books related to...

Creativity in mathematics and beyond

Creativity in mathematics and beyond

Our series of articles related to the broad topic of Rethinking technology and creativity for the 21st century in the journal TechTrends continues with a new article on creativity in mathematics. This article focuses on the 4 winners of the 2014...

Jeff Keltner from Google Education to talk today

There has been a great deal of interest in the educational use of cloud computing tools such as Google Docs in the College (and at MSU at large). Though these tools are often free and easy to use, they come with concerns about intellectual property and ownership of...

Visualizing periodic tables (What not to do)

Sean Nash (of Nashworld) sent me a link to A Periodic Table of Visualization Methods of Management. This is a very cool looking representation developed by Ralph Lengler & Martin Eppler at the Institute of Corporate Communication at the University of Lugano,...

Links of interest

During Dr. Jalaluddin's keynote I took some time to search online for some reports, prompted by what he had been saying. (Yes I was listening not just browsing). The first is an European study: ICT in Schools: Trends, Innovations and Issues in 2006-2007. You can...

1 Comment

  1. Jordan Walker

    Thanks for sharing those links, those are rather funny. I can relate the experience being that my wife when through the who process.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *