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PhD Life

a blog about the PhD student experience, University of Warwick

“Racing on the thunder and rising with the heat”: PhD Superpowers

Saving the world can wait, we first need to finish the thesis. Regeneration, invisibility, teleportation… What are your PhD superpowers? Recently, I have come across an amusing post by Mark Bennett, in which he compares PhD students to superheroes. I... Continue Reading →

Stories within stories

PhD is much like a story. We need to uncover it, and find compelling ways to tell it. And, just like in a story, there might be unexpected twists and turns. Read about Bernie's PhD story... I've long been convinced by the... Continue Reading →

Six Misconceptions about the Three-Paper Route

Monograph dissertations are still the norm for many PhD students, but some disciplines allow a collection of papers to be submitted instead. We talked to a PhD student taking this route to learn more about it…   Majority of texts... Continue Reading →

Should you join a dissertation support group?

In the seemingly endless struggles with your dissertation, you may think about joining a dissertation support group. Experts in dissertation shepherding often advocate a group. It be excellent for “solace, support and motivation” (Axelrod & Windell, 2012, p. 101) and... Continue Reading →

PhD Diary: “Working” from Home

Not all researchers have the luxury of choice, but if you are among the lucky ones, working from home can be a treat and a nice change to your routine. It can also be a complete waste of time, if you’re... Continue Reading →

When plans fall through…

It is a well-known fact that your finished PhD thesis often shares little resemblance with your original PhD proposal. Despite this, it is easy to feel worried every time your research does not go quite to plan. Joelin shares some of... Continue Reading →

Just like everybody else

In the last post in this series, Sherry writes about fitting PhD into your life plan (and explaining it to everyone else...). If that trip wasn’t traumatic enough, you should hear about my recent trip back home during Chinese New... Continue Reading →

Back home?

In the first post in this series, Sherry wrote about perceptions of female PhD students. The second part deals with issues that arise when move away to do PhD, abroad and then try to fit back in.... Soon enough it was... Continue Reading →

Di san zhong ren lei – The third kind of human being

Studying for a PhD does not just change how much we know about a topic or how well we do research. The perception other have of us changes too, sometimes more than we expected. Read Sherry's post on the image of... Continue Reading →

All the academia’s a stage…

“I’m not really as smart as everyone else here”, “When my supervisors read this report, they’ll realise I have no idea what I’m doing…”, “My slides are ok, but they will get to me in the Q&A”… I was born... Continue Reading →

Review – “265 Troubleshooting Strategies for Writers”

Yes, we tested another writing manual. Yes, PhD students are not the target audience of “265 Troubleshooting Strategies for Writers”, but hey, 265… We were curious. Read on to see how they worked. I might have mentioned in previous posts... Continue Reading →

Still in love after all this time

PhD is not always easy to love, but if we dig deep under deadlines, endless reading and rewriting, there is a drive that keeps us going, after all that time. Is it love? Bernie shared with us her love of... Continue Reading →

Has anyone seen my motivation?

Yes, it is hard to deal with lack of motivation. You might feel this only goes to prove you are not cut out for PhD, you might feel you are letting down your supervisors, your funders, yourself …. But try... Continue Reading →

How to Write an Academic Bio for Conferences

There are very few things as challenging as writing academic biographies (perhaps academic writing?). It seems simple, but things soon get awkward as you try to show how amazing you are without sounding arrogation or pretentious. Sophie shares her tips... Continue Reading →

Getting Published – A quick FAQ

In case you have missed the peer-lead event on publishing as a PhD student or you are just looking for something get you started, PhD Life prepared a quick overview of some key points to consider, before and  after publication...... Continue Reading →

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