Don’t get pregnant. If you can help it…

This might explain why were were encouraged to form a good relationship with the university counsellors…

The Thesis Whisperer

This post is by Walter Reinhardt, a PhD student at ANU’s Fenner school where he is investigating demand management policy for residential water and electricity use. Walter is now at the pointy end of his degree, but he took time out to play with the stats and tell you what the likelihood is of you encountering a major life event during your PhD.

A few weeks ago I had a meeting with my PhD supervisors. Gave them draft chapters, chapter outlines and results enough for a couple more. I asked them, in their experience, if they thought it could be submitted by mid next year and what advice they’d give me if I went for it. Straight off the bat, one of them remarked: “Don’t get pregnant.”

We laughed.

It’s kind of hard for me to do that. I’m a dude with an unappealing mo’ for a start. But…

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Why do people quit the PhD?

While I am not even contemplating quitting (but I can see why drop out may be high) I thought this was worth reposting.

The Thesis Whisperer

I’m interupting our usual programming to share with you some research in progress, because I am really interested in hearing what you think of it.

Next week I’ll be at the Quality in Post graduate Research conference (or QPR) the key gathering for research educators in Australia. I’m planning on presenting an analysis of the comments on a blog post written in 2012 by BJ Epstein called “Should you quit your PhD?”.  As you can imagine, it has been a popular post; so far it’s been viewed more than 30,000 times. Two years later it continues to get around 100 hits a day and, the time of writing, there were 183 comments.

This is a shed load of data about people’s experiences and thoughts around the subject of quitting the PhD.

I started my analysis by putting the comments in Nvivo to identify themes in order to compare them…

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