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Coursework vs Research: Battle or Balance ? BattleBalance Daqing (Daching) Piao, PhD School of Electrical and Computer Engineering Oklahoma State University.

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Presentation on theme: "Coursework vs Research: Battle or Balance ? BattleBalance Daqing (Daching) Piao, PhD School of Electrical and Computer Engineering Oklahoma State University."— Presentation transcript:

1 Coursework vs Research: Battle or Balance ? BattleBalance Daqing (Daching) Piao, PhD School of Electrical and Computer Engineering Oklahoma State University ECEN 6001 PhD Seminar Series Professor probes prostate problems

2 2 Not good at all in time-management! 1984— year playing in college to find a way out of the BOX 1990— year running in industry to sneak back to the BOX 1999— year struggling in graduate school to earn the PhD cap 2003— year hanging around in New England to land a job

3 3 There is no “life” BEFORE you get your PhD ! Everyone wish to drop out from the PhD program after this lecture !

4 4 What is the difference between degrees ? Bachelors are “Smart” Students Masters are “Stubborn” Survivors Doctors are “Stupid” Scholars

5 5 What is “PhD” Why “PhD” ?

6 6 Papa’s Hat got Dust Personal HemoDialysis system (Aksys, Ltd.) Player Hater Degree Port Hueneme Division (Naval Surface Warfare Center) Port Huron & Detroit railroad Portable Handheld Device Portable Hard Drive Post Hole Digger (construction) Post Homicidal Depression (serial killers)

7 7 Pot--Hole Dodger (driver on poorly maintained roads) Pre-Hearing Detention Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas Probability Hypothesis Density Process Historian Database Push Here Dummy (point & shoot cameras) Professional Help Desk Professor and Head of Department

8 8 Piled Higher & Deeper Particularly Hard to Deal with ermanent ead amagePermanent Head Damage a Person’s Highest Degree Poor, Hard, and Difficult ersistence, ard-work, and edicationPersistence, Hard-work, and Dedication

9 9 Too little time Too much load Too heavy stress Too “bossy” boss like Dr. Piao The life of an ECE PhD student

10 10 Coursework vs Research Battle –Time confliction –Course too much theory to understand ? Too many projects to do ? –Research too tough, too complicated, spend too much time? Battle in time-domain, balancebalance in k-space, knowledge-domain Foolish Transform Fourier + Laplace

11 11 Research TA ? Have to have research to get PhD Theoretical Theoretical theory Applicational theory (medical image processing) Experimental theory Instrumentational Developmental instrumentation Experimental instrumentation Team-work, help others Do your own part Guide Prove

12 12 Research work MethodProblem M AB CD EF N PQ Pre-existing knowledge

13 13 Research work A different problem for a known application An innovative application of a mature method A novel method in an established area A new area within an existing discipline An unprecedented discipline for a ground- breaking application or problem-solving

14 14 Coursework vs Research Similarity –Lead to your degree –Suck your time, drain your brain –Problem solving –Career training –Competition –Presentation (class, conference, seminar)

15 15 Coursework vs Research Difference –Pay for coursework (someone pays) –Paid for research –Competition in the (inter)national level---research –Coursework—good or bad affect yourself –Research-----alive or dead affect the entire group

16 16 Coursework vs Research Difference (roughly) –To use known details to derive known results Known detailsKnown results Coursework

17 17 –To use known details to administer known expectations Known details Known expectations New product development

18 18 –To use known methodology to address unknown details Known methodology Unknown details Applied research

19 19 –To use unknown methodology to approach unknown expectations Unknown methodology Unknown expectations Basic research

20 20 Evaluation criteria Productivity –# of courses – –# of years to finish PhD – # of publications Quality –4000/5000/6000,A or B – –# of 1 st author (contribution levelweighting) –# of Letters paper (impact factor weighting) –# of talks (face credit weighting)

21 21 Coursework vs research Which is more important? –Job in industry (general PhD level) r –Job in industry (R&D centers)r –Job in teaching collegec+r –Job in research universityr –Recommendation letter for job from Boss r

22 22 Coursework vs research –Fellowship/scholarshipc+r –Awardr+c –Internshipr+c –Getting degreer+c –Recommendation letter from instructors » c

23 23 Coursework vs research Which is more important? –To make myself safe, 50% c, 50% r –To make you safe 50% c, 100% r

24 24 Coursework vs Research Time-management: –Work hard ultimate management –No game, less sleeping (2:00 am ? 5:00 am ?) –Persistent, die-Hard, and Determinant, (typically 3~5yrs for a PhD in EE) –Not everyone can finish a PhD, treasure this privilege – Stay oriented, focused (don’t be distracted when economy booms, nowhere to go when economy plunges)

25 25 Coursework vs Research Time-management: –You came for PhD, if quit or sleep in the middle, your uni- directional head damage won’t get recovered. –“No life”, PhD’s “no life” is interesting & rewarding –Keep accumulating small amount everyday, do not attempt to rush up a big chunk in a short time, it does not work out that way..

26 26 Time-management (my experience, may not apply to your case): –Schedule the week: Days for research Nightsforcourse Weekendsforback-up, or, catch-up (for both) Observe the schedule for both course-work and research, though you do have deadlines to meet

27 27 Deadlines: –For student: Course work---homework, project, presentation, exam Research----conference paper, features journal paper, data when boss needs badly, student research proposal –For Boss Proposal, getting $$ in, $$ ends, requires students to deliver results on-schedule Advise student’s papers/abstracts, Lecture notes, hw grading, other academic duties/services –Win-Win, not lose-lose –Keep research moving, slowly moving traffic is better than complete jam

28 28 Why put “day” for research? You are paid for, $ Good interaction with advisor, supervised Good discussion with group, connected, Concentrated and guarantee the time proceed Common time window

29 29 Time-management: –Why spend so much time on research being an RA because you are paid for just 10/20 hrs/week ? –RA position is not a regular job…… –Don’t waste your own time thinking about how much work I should do to match up the assistantship ? (not because I am one “boss”) The RA leads to your dissertation Working in restaurant---working for the boss to get money for living Working as RA----working for my dissertation while get paid

30 30 Time-management: We are talking about your degree! And you are working on new, “unknown” stuff. »Overpaid during learning curve (1+ years) »Even-paid after know how and where to drive (~2 years) »Underpaid when close to graduate (1- years) Every effort you put into research will be paid off when you look for job it does make difference ! It is you who will look for the job, not the boss Want to stay in business in your research community ? Want to land a dream job ?

31 31 Coursework Type Not related to research at all Somewhat connected to research Significantly associated with research

32 32 Coursework Level Linking up Advanced Independent study (?) Buffer Specific topicParticular purpose

33 33 Research topic into coursework –Term project or paper Electromagnetic Wave light transportation in tissue Estimation theory missile tracking Microwave Array probe design –Independent study (?)

34 34 Coursework into research (great !) –Develop term project/paper for a course to be included in your dissertation (one section, or one chapter) –It will save your time when you write your dissertation, and make your dissertation more coherent. Though, no one will read your dissertation except you and perhaps your advisor (Dr. Alan Cheville)

35 35 Superluminescent diode, “semiconductor optical devices” final paper a complete chapter among 11

36 36 Coursework vs Research Done with course ? –Do more and better research, –Keep doing research when you write dissertation (post-doc ?) (dissertation, 10—2, three month) –Done ? –Proved that Hard-work Deserves the name of “PhD” –Promoted as the Head of your Division

37 37 There is no “life” AFTER you get your PhD ! Now you enjoy “no life” as you have addicted to it

38 38

39 39

40 40 Scared ? The road-ahead becomes wider, brighter, more predicted after getting PhD PhD is the second largest achievement for me, just next to my two boys! Picture taken in 2005

41 41 Daqing Piao In ~ 4 years, you will belong to the fish of scholars Questions ?

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