Friday, 19 December 2014

Quotes from Reviewers

(link to an article by Kristy Hamilton)

The Journal of Environmental Microbiology includes a yearly list of funny and odd quotes from their reviewers, this link leads to a compilation of some of the funny ones.

“Although it seems like they have conceded to the referee’s comments, in some ways the paper is less clear than the previous version.” Referee quote (2007) 

Thursday, 13 November 2014

Webinar: the PhD viva

The British Ecological Society launched its first-ever free webinar series for PhD students, and I volunteered to speak about the viva from the perspective of an external examiner.
The webinar is available on YouTube. I'm biased, but I think it's well worth watching, and contains lots of practical advice and insights that will benefit PhD researchers (and not just ecologists!) who are preparing for the PhD viva. 
Surviving the viva

Friday, 3 October 2014

Prepare an effective CV: five top tips

There is an abundance of information on the web about CV design and presentation. However, what’s more important than presenting a good CV is having good content to write about. Here, I share a few thoughts about CV preparation for PhD and early career researchers.

Monday, 9 June 2014

Why the viva – what’s with the torture?

Almost every country in the world today applies some kind of unique examination process at the end of the PhD, tailoring the determination that each candidate has reached the standard required for the award of what is typically the highest degree a university can routinely award to each individual student, designing in effect a completely personalized examination.

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Tips for Writing Better Science Papers

Tips for Writing Better Science Papers

  • Author: Richard Threlfall
  • Published Date: 05 September 2013

This post links to a great series of article by Richard Threlfall, in which he provides advice on various aspects of the publication of scientific articles.

Thursday, 20 February 2014

A PhD in one sentence

As part of our Agri-Food Graduate Development Programme (AFGDP), we had a fun session about research communication.
Groups of four PhD researchers wrote a one (or two...) sentence summary of their project, and selected one to go forward to a class competition.
The prize...a box of Ferraro Rocher. The outcome ... as follows:

Thursday, 6 February 2014

And our next speaker is….
Fergus McAuliffe in action at a packed TEDxDublin
- read on to find out how he prepares for presentations...
The hot seat. You’re in it. About to stand up and present your work in front of 100 members of the public. People who you don’t know you at all. People who know even less about what you research. Your palms are sweaty, knees weak, arms are heavy. Rapping in Detroit it seems, is just like presenting to the public. You shift in your seat.

We’ve all been in a similar presenting scenario to this at some point. But it doesn’t have to be like this.
To help, below are five tips. Not quite learned on the streets of Detroit, but useful nonetheless.

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Manage your PhD supervisor

The relationship between PhD students and their supervisor is one of the fundamental determinants of success in the PhD. This post emphasises that you have a role in taking the initiative to manage the academic relationship with your supervisor, and suggests some practical actions.

Tuesday, 7 January 2014

Guide to Peer Review

Click Here: Guide to Peer Review in Ecology and Evolution

The British Ecological Society has produced a guide for those wishing to learn more about peer review. Although intended for ecology researchers, it is relevant to researchers across a much wider variety of disciplines.

"This booklet is intended as a guide for early career researchers, who have little or no experience of reviewing journal articles but are interested in learning more about what is involved. It provides a succinct overview of the many aspects of reviewing, from hands-on practical advice about the actual review process to explaining less tangible aspects, such as reviewer ethics."

Thursday, 2 January 2014

Writing: it is never too early to start (Part 1)!

[A typical scene: Year 1 of PhD]

Writing the thesis?  That’s for the last year of my PhD, and I’ll put it off as long as possible.  Start writing in first year? But what could I be writing before I have my data?

[Fast forward three years]

Dear supervisor, the company just called and I have the job, but they need me to start in 3 weeks.  I know the timing isn’t ideal but at least all my experimental work is done, and I am fully committed to getting a start on the thesis in the weeks before I go to work, and then will get into the discipline of writing every weekend for at least a day, and two evenings minimum during the week…..

[fast forward three years]

Dear anyone, HELP!!!  Yours insanely, the unwritten thesis.