Presentation on theme: "Managing your research project. Objectives Opportunity to think about what it means to do a PhD project Provide space to recognise factors affecting your."— Presentation transcript:
Managing your research project
Objectives Opportunity to think about what it means to do a PhD project Provide space to recognise factors affecting your research project Help identify key project milestones and strategies of reaching those milestones Opportunity to discuss these issues with other Postgraduates Provide list of helpful resources
What is a PhD? Why are you doing it? Factors involved? 3 key questions
What is a PhD?
Official definition The degree shall be awarded on the examination of a thesis embodying the results of a candidates research, and an oral examination. A successful candidate for the degree of Ph.D. must show convincing evidence of the capacity to pursue scholarly research or scholarship in his or her field of study on a scale which can be completed during three years of full-time research. The results of this research must then be embodied in a thesis which makes an original contribution to knowledge and the completed thesis must contain material of a standard appropriate for scholarly publication. The thesis must comply with the requirements for the form, submission and deposit of theses.
What is a PhD? PhD = product + process Period of training – apprenticeship Research project 3 years full time
Why are you doing a PhD?
Constraints & Determinants Factors affecting your PhD
You PhD Life Work Life balance
Milestones (what are the hoops I need to jump through!) PhD Transfer
Hypothesis formulation + proposal DNA Planning, data collection and analysis Writing up ideas Annual appraisal + DNA Producing chapters Conferences and presentations Completed thesis Submission viva Amendments Final submission Graduation
How do you organise yourself? How do you like to work? Plan to ensure you work that way Responsibility – your project You need to be aware
Identify Review Plan Implement Project Management
How do you identify? Mind mapping Create task list –Break down into smaller lists Tables Dictation –Transcribe into list format
How do you identify? Mind Map Tony Buzan diagram representing ideas and tasks linked around a central theme No censoring All issues/facts/ thoughts and feelings Join up with lines
Literature review on method Metalib search Print out access Available computer Reading time Quiet place notes Summary form Endnote library Access to up to date version Previous papers Supervisors Other students PhD theses password format
How do you plan? Task list Gantt charts / Calendaring / Tables Projected timescales Deadlines Big tasks broken down into smaller tasks What are you trying to achieve?
Things you need to bear in mind Clear idea of the milestones/goals/objectives REALISTIC + 50% extra time (slippage) Flexibility Avoid overloading Overlapping and multitasking Time for problem solving Scoring tasks off! –Sense of achievement Family and life commitments Hobbies, recreation and relaxation Downtime Holidays! PhD You Life
How do you implement? Action –Carry out specific tasks –Sticking to deadlines and reaching milestones Make notes (Important!) –What you successfully achieved –What you did not achieve –Why did you not achieve – time/money/resources –Problems arose, strategies and solutions found –Unexpected or other points –Avoidance mechanisms Put time into plan for downtime!
How do you review? Read notes from implementation stage –Positives and negatives Check milestones/goals/objectives –were they realistic? Rewrite task lists, –alter calendar/Gantt charts/tables/mind maps Begin cycle again – –Identify/re-plan/implement/review Identify more/new tasks Plan using recent knowledge
What milestones do you have to meet each year? Looking at it as a 3 year project – what should you be doing in your final year? Fieldwork/fieldseason Thesis write up – traditional or alternative format. Discrete packages of work publication times. Affect project plan Resources Sharing of resources e.g. research group Planning ahead – fieldwork abroad/collecting data in other countries Requesting books/papers from other libraries, even other countries Access to resources – legal requirements, inoculations Implications for your research project
Project Planning strategies Research friendly One methods/series of methods What works for you? –Know yourself When do you work best? When are you efficient and effective? What other activities do you enjoy – plan these in! Are you willing to try an new method?
Key Points PhD is a project that needs planning Find a strategy that works for you Use some planning ideas –Mind map / Gantt chart / task list / calendaring Set yourself deadlines –Be realistic –Meet them Set your Supervisor deadlines