Concerning the use of available working time to accomplish the greatest possible amount of work by improving efficiency, minimizing wasted time or procrastination, etc.

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8
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4answers
4k views

How many hours a day on Mathematics as a successful student?

My motivation to ask this question actually comes from here, receiving negative reactions for 12 hours a day or even 7 hours spending time on Mathematics. A person usually spends 4.5 years to ...
4
votes
2answers
191 views

Time management and organization for PhD Student in first year?

After failing the first year of the PhD program at a top university, I know that my poor performance resulted from dealing with a tremendously debilitating psychological condition, but this was ...
3
votes
1answer
345 views

Trade-off between content and style

I am in the UK and I completed an undergraduate dissertation. In my dissertation I went much higher than my level. All the content in my dissertation was at a masters level and everything was ...
0
votes
1answer
236 views

How to speed up publishing papers?

In my field, good journals often seem to take around 12-20 weeks to review papers. As was suggested in a previous post, "How is it in my best interest not to submit a paper to two journals ...
34
votes
7answers
4k views

Is it fair to offer students a last-minute extension to finish a test?

A friend of mine who is a CS grad student at a US university took a class in which the students were given an extra hour on a two-hour exam. The trouble is that this offer was made in the last five ...
15
votes
1answer
382 views

Life Hacks: Teacher Edition!

Now that I've gotten your attention with that terrible title... The Mathematical Association of America used to regularly run a column called Teaching Time Savers, an archive of which can be found ...
16
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5answers
2k views

How to prevent too many students from making appointments to meet with you when you put “Office Hours: …, or by appointment” on the syllabus?

In the past I have included the following statement on my syllabus: Office Hours: Mon 1-2pm, Weds 3-5pm, or by appointment However, I am beginning to get too many requests for appointments. ...
1
vote
0answers
43 views

Booking websites for student consults [duplicate]

Apologies if this has been asked. I've been searching the website to find a comment on a post I read about online scheduling systems. I'm looking for a free online system that will enable students to ...
48
votes
11answers
4k views

How to make thesis-writing feel less tedious?

I'm about to finish my master's thesis on a TCS topic (algorithms). I'm quite happy with my results; the most engaging part of the thesis was grappling with getting up to speed on the state of the ...
2
votes
1answer
258 views

How to quickly understand the main idea when reading a paper?

I have problems in reading papers, specifically papers where the subject is not so new to me and I am familiar with the problem which the writer wants to solve. How to find the those parts which talk ...
2
votes
3answers
318 views

Is it OK to start a PhD with a side project still running from your master's?

I just finished my master's and I am about to start my PhD studies. As I am very used to do many independent projects during my bachelor's and master's, I am willing to continue a side project on a ...
12
votes
3answers
1k views

How many “office hours” are common (or standard) for full-time lecturers?

In situations where one teaches purely undergraduate students (20 hours per week, 16 weeks per semester, 2 semesters per year) how many hours per week, and how many weeks per year, are people normally ...
49
votes
4answers
4k views

How do you balance producing results with learning new skills?

On the one hand, I'd like to produce a few graphs every week so my project can move forward. Taking a month off to learn a new programming language, do a literature review, or work through a relevant ...
9
votes
4answers
847 views

Average time alloted for manuscript review across disciplines

I am asking this question because I've always had the impression that manuscripts submitted to a journal in my field (theoretical linguistics) take an insanely long time to get published, and ...
11
votes
2answers
885 views

Should I cancel / alter office hours for committee meetings?

My contract requires that I maintain a certain number of office hours a week where I am available to meet with students. In practice this time is rarely entirely taken up by student meetings however. ...
14
votes
4answers
2k views

How to tell supervisor too many lengthy meetings are hurting your productivity?

My supervisor wants us to meet 3-5 times in a week with another PhD student of his. Every meeting is on average more than couple of hours. I don't know about the other student. But I feel like we are ...
8
votes
4answers
414 views

What is the optimal balance of time spent on research vs. volunteering/leadership/organizing in grad school and beyond?

In graduate school I have found that along with being a producer of good research, fellowships/post-doctoral advisers/faculty search committee are also often interested in what one has done outside of ...
15
votes
3answers
641 views

How many papers should I be reviewing as a referee?

Like many academics with an active research program, I am asked to review many papers. Borrowing an idea from peer-to-peer file sharing companies, I try to keep a rough sense of my recent "ratio" of ...
74
votes
5answers
6k views

What productive academic work can you do with minimal attention in a small (<30 minutes) block of time?

Ok, here is a major issue I have with much of my work (which is experimental/computational research): I am a graduate student, and spend much of my day doing 5, 10, 20 and 30 minute experiments (both ...
2
votes
3answers
169 views

Journal publishing timetables

I am about to submit my first article to a peer-reviewed journal. I have basically already decided which one, but I have a shortlist and am still in principle considering my options. One of the ...
20
votes
1answer
352 views

Is there an optimum time to leave between writing and self-proofreading?

Having read a number of guides on tips to do when proofreading as well as some questions on this website. They all refer to leaving some time between writing and proofreading. This time can vary from ...
2
votes
1answer
277 views

How to decide which university to study for PhD [duplicate]

I have seen many different research students that want to apply for a PhD or MSc program but they are so nervous about their choice. Sometimes they pay most of heir time, reviewing the websites of the ...
17
votes
2answers
929 views

Does becoming good at scientific research force one to become one dimensional?

I'm an individual interested in multiple academic disciplines such as neuroscience, biological engineering, computer science, history, anthropology, psychology, political theory ... to name just a ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

How long should it take to read a paper?

I am wondering how long it usually takes to read a research article. I can see that the answer depends on: The knowledge and intelligence of the reader The field of research The journal The ...
8
votes
2answers
876 views

What is a reasonable time to resubmit revised papers after they have been peer reviewed?

I'm pondering on how much time I should plan to finalize a paper that has received a 'revise and resubmit' letter from the journal editor. I know that I should return it as soon as possible. However, ...
9
votes
2answers
516 views

How to mark student reports more efficiently

I have been assigned to mark student reports for an engineering coursework, which mainly involves the use of a software. The main content of each report is around 15 pages. There are 45 reports in ...
13
votes
2answers
1k views

Agile/Extreme/Lean methods for academic research

Startups I've been enjoying quite a lot of literature on how to handle project, ideas, development, thinking, etc, with theories such as Extreme, Agile, Lean, etc. All dating of less than 10 years. I ...
21
votes
3answers
902 views

How do you manage to work on multiple research projects?

Things that make multiple research projects different: 1). Inertia that sets in once I have spent a few weeks on single one of them. The 'switching cost' seems too high to me, and it leads to not much ...
8
votes
2answers
232 views

Graduate studies online application time of submission

During graduate studies online application submission period, is there any preference given for an applicant if he/she submits his application at the beginning of that period compared with someone who ...
33
votes
3answers
1k views

How can I improve the effectiveness of my literature searches?

OK, I know this is a pretty basic question but I haven't been able to come up with any really satisfactory solutions. (I have searched around on this site, but none of the related questions precisely ...
5
votes
3answers
142 views

As a recent PhD entering jobhunt, should I agree to host a weekly seminar?

I recently graduated and am temporarily employed as a lecturer at the school I graduated from (9 hours a week of teaching, not counting prep time). There's a weekly seminar on my field of interest, ...
18
votes
5answers
779 views

How do I tactfully tell my advisor (who's much busier than I am) that I'm too busy to do such-and-such?

I recognize my advisor is busier than I am. But, nonetheless, I feel the need to tell her sometimes that I am overloaded with too many tasks and I need to push a deadline back or pass on some request. ...
8
votes
3answers
478 views

Journals selection - alternative criteria to impact factor

While trying to select the journals I can submit my present work and future work, I realize the time between the date the authors send the article to the journal and when the revised article is ...
16
votes
3answers
229 views

How to replicate others' results quickly?

Lately, I've been getting the impression that before I can conduct cutting edge research, I have to first master state of the art methods/techniques. Often, this requires spending (i.e. wasting) lots ...
6
votes
1answer
528 views

Advisor-student meeting patterns in very high-end theoretical research

This is related to my previous question: “What is the optimal number of times one should meet one's PhD. advisor?” I want to know of specific details of advisor-student meetings, frequencies, ...
32
votes
5answers
1k views

How to avoid thinking about research in your free time

I work on research, trying to get grants and publish papers and the like, I really like my job, could not think about doing anything else. When the weekend comes, or just free time I have the problem ...
5
votes
2answers
460 views

How to arrange courses to timetable?

I would like to ask if there is some algorithm how to arrange courses to timetable. I study at the university and we can choose a few different lesson times for each subject. The problem is how to ...
156
votes
18answers
12k views

How to avoid procrastination during the research phase of my PhD?

I just finished all of my coursework for my PhD program, and am entering the research phase of my degree with a topic already in mind. I've already started the research, but I'm already finding that ...
8
votes
3answers
269 views

Time employed for writing

I am looking for any indication of how long should it take to write, let's say, a paragraph, for a non-native English speaker (with a good knowledge of English). I know that for the writing process of ...
3
votes
2answers
255 views

What's the editor's benefit in setting deadlines for manuscript revision?

In many journals of my field, upon acceptance of a manuscript for publication with minor revisions, the editor sets a deadline (4 weeks, in many journals) for submission for the revised manuscript. ...
13
votes
2answers
136 views

Balancing between finishing past projects and working on current ones

Personally, I never feel done with projects, as there are always a few open projects, in which I'm involved in. (And typically 1-2 which "I should have finished year ago or so".) First, what are good ...
6
votes
4answers
2k views

Time spent marking essays

A stack of psychology exam essays has just landed on my desk for marking. It was a 3 hour exam with 3 essay questions. This is a final year essay so I do not have to provide written feedback. How long ...
9
votes
2answers
469 views

How to salvage a rejected paper when you don't have time to correct it?

I just submitted a paper to a conference. The reviewers gave me their responses only two days before the deadline to resubmit the paper. They seemed to indicate that my paper was on topic, and had ...
18
votes
4answers
5k views

Use cases of org-mode as a scientific productivity tool for academics without programming needs

I am a social scientist working primarily on Linux, but also at times required to work on Windows systems at the University. I have been looking to improve my productivity in the academic workflow ...
11
votes
2answers
381 views

Is there generally a high amount of variability in the number of hours grad students put to work each week?

As in, it's certainly not a standard 8-5 job of 40-50 hours per week. Is it common (and expected) for them to sometimes put in 80 hours a week, and to occasionally put in 10 hours? (say, during times ...
16
votes
3answers
743 views

Ways to manage something like a 'work-life balance'?

According to a recent international study on work-life balance within academia "a majority of researchers and scientists had conflicts between their work schedules and personal lives at least two ...
6
votes
2answers
222 views

Do school-wide holidays count against personal vacation time?

I keep hearing different things from different people and it seems there is no clear policy laid out at my institution regarding the definition of graduate student vacation days; I'm curious how PIs ...
21
votes
5answers
1k views

Doing a PhD with significant external time obligations (e.g., marriage)

Graduate school has a reputation for being a tremendous time-sink. I'm currently married with kids, and I have a fairly busy extracurricular schedule. Is it common for married people - or anyone, ...
16
votes
5answers
385 views

Balancing coursework, research, and teaching

I'm a first-year graduate student, and I just joined a computational chemistry laboratory. I have three tasks now: pass all my courses, fulfill my TA duties, and start research. I'm finding that I'm ...