” rather than “What is the maximum one can contribute while pursuing the goal?
” With that former question in mind, it is useful to meet with your adviser at least every other week and to take notes during each meeting. The direction you receive from week to week may change, and memories can be short for academics juggling teaching, research, publications and administration.
To spare doctoral candidates protracted and unproductive efforts, Tim Marler and Dean Young suggest a pragmatic route to successful completion, while, below, Julian Kirchherr advocates a quick-and-dirty path to a viable thesis Decades ago, we sat in the library as graduate students, staring at shelves of books and thinking: “If only we understood all the knowledge sitting on just one shelf, what power that would be.” Today, we try to convince ourselves that such daydreaming was not naive.
Of course, there are people who love to learn, but is pursuing such passion foolish? Presumably, passion for knowledge is the fuel for pursuing an advanced degree. Actually, obtaining a Ph D can often have less to do with learning and more to do with jumping through the appropriate hoops.
Most importantly, study only with an expert in your specific field of interest.
If you don’t have a specific field of interest, find one.However, despite the experience, teaching does not facilitate obtaining a degree as expediently as possible.There can be little room for initiative in graduate research.Each lecture was designed to be energetic and unique, with varied presentation styles and media. When the final numerical grades for the course were calculated, it took three hours merely to assign the letter grades for just 12 students. A short stint as a teaching assistant can provide valuable experience, but such work should be limited to two semesters.Few graduate students have an impressive income during school. Certainly, the ability to explain material clearly and to communicate effectively is useful.This third guideline contradicts what academia is supposed to embody traditionally, but it represents a turn that academia has taken in some respects.It can be more efficient simply to ask “What is the minimum necessary effort required to achieve the goal?One of the first classes that one of us taught in graduate school was in statics.It was for the mechanical engineering department, and it was approached like an engineering design project.They are intended primarily as advice for students entering graduate school with the intent of going on to work in industry or academia.However, adhering to these rules can benefit students and advisers alike, and the benefits point to broad academic and social trends.