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Questions tagged [motivation]

For questions about increasing the motivation of oneself and others to avoid procrastination, disinterest and failure.

5
votes
3answers
140 views

How to encourage students to answer their peers' questions

We have a forum in which students can ask questions about the course material, homework exercises, etc. Usually I answer all the questions. I want to encourage students to answer some questions too. ...
2
votes
1answer
244 views

Giving up before even starting: life without a PhD [closed]

I am currently a Master student working on my thesis (started a few days ago). I've always wanted to become a researcher (thus getting a PhD) but a few months ago I started doubting about this ...
0
votes
1answer
49 views

Application for master's course: should my motivation letter include my contact?

I am applying for a master's program at a german university, and as my whole application includes a CV (with my detailed personal info and contact), should my motivation letter include my contact at ...
37
votes
4answers
5k views

How do I regain my momentum in research after a long period of slacking off?

I'm two and a half years into my PhD program. Recently, I finally worked up the courage to admit it — I've been slacking off for over a year and it's my fault. Now I'm determined to be productive in ...
4
votes
2answers
395 views

How do you measure success to remain motivated in academia?

I am currently pursuing a physics major in college. My question mostly applies to those working in STEM, but I am definitely open to hearing answers from others. Right now, in college, most of the ...
4
votes
2answers
144 views

Is it a good idea to spend one year on a pre-PhD diploma to learn advance research methods?

I am recently graduated with a degree of MS in Physics. I am very interested in condensed matter physics, that is why I chose a topic from this field for my MS thesis. But it was very hard for me to ...
11
votes
3answers
933 views

My co-authors don't want to help get our manuscripts published anymore. What should I do?

Recently I've had three different sets of co-authors give up on the publication process. Here are the three cases: Publication was rejected on the basis that additional work was needed, amounting to ...
3
votes
2answers
275 views

Expectation of perfection vs. the never ending list of 'to do's'

I am wondering if anyone has experienced conflicting feelings of failure associated with their work? Essentially, I am struggling to continue my students and maintain a proactive attitude while ...
77
votes
14answers
22k views

How to get work done whilst feeling crippling shame?

In academic work, when we are writing or have written a paper for example, there might be strong feelings of shame about the work done or to be done. These feelings can get in the way of finishing or ...
2
votes
4answers
659 views

How to collaborate with unmotivated postdocs

As a PhD student in a multidisciplinary subject, I am grouped with a postdoc by my supervisor. In our lab, the usual rule is student do the theory and coding, and postdoc do the experiment. My ...
10
votes
3answers
667 views

Dealing with a slow moving project as a professional researcher

I have an undergraduate degree and I'm working as a medical researcher in a research lab, affiliated with a University. I've done very little since being employed, due to problems such as: lack of ...
8
votes
2answers
480 views

Extremely lost and unmotivated in new lab, what am I supposed to do?

I'm currently in a Ph.D program for pharmaceutical sciences. Long story short my background is cell biology and I originally worked in a Cancer lab. My lab relocated and I could not follow. I was ...
3
votes
2answers
380 views

How do I maintain motivation in a completely awful grad program? [closed]

I am a 2nd year PhD student. I regret my choice of grad school severely. The program here has a good reputation and I have no idea how or why it has a good reputation. The program here is absolutely ...
2
votes
0answers
387 views

How do I know what I burn for? About to get a PhD, but lost my drive

I am a few months away from completing my PhD (nanotech/chemistry), I'm "just" writing my thesis. But I somehow feel like I have lost my motivation and I am confused about my future. I began the PhD ...
15
votes
3answers
367 views

What are good strategies for not losing sight of the novelty and nontriviality of one's work?

I would like to ask this community for help in finding good strategies for avoiding an aspect of my mindset that I don't much like, which I get when I've been working on a given project for a while - ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

One year into PhD, feeling lost and inadequate, Help!

I'm 22, and I'm one year into my PhD in History. I immediately started my PhD after finishing my master's, working with the same supervisor. Throughout the years, I've started to become more and more ...
0
votes
1answer
120 views

Being personal in motivational letter

I'm starting to prepare my application for scholarships to do MSc in Europe. One of the requirements, of course, is the motivational letter. I was interested: how personal should the essay be? How ...
-1
votes
1answer
59 views

Studying at university [closed]

How do I get the motivation to study for a test for university? I was a high achiever in high school but I just don't feel motivated to study.
2
votes
1answer
457 views

How my admission would benefit the university? [closed]

One of the main questions in an admission interview for a master’s would be Why do you want to attend this university? Reading between the lines, this means: What makes you and the university ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

How to justify motivations for a second master?

I have already graduate from a master degree in Europe (Software Engineering) , and applied for another master degree (Informatic) in Germany (TUM). I have applied with my BSc. degree diploma and ...
9
votes
2answers
546 views

How do I stay motivated with repetitive tasks as an undergraduate research assistant?

In a nutshell, I'm drawing circles on images for most of my day (more precisely, ROIs around cellular components in fluorescence imaging). I volunteer to do this on weekdays from 10am to 7pm, and I ...
8
votes
2answers
366 views

How to deal with impatience when starting off in research?

I am half way through the first year of my PhD (physics) and I find myself faced with the following problem related to research discipline and learning new techniques while doing a PhD. The problem is ...
174
votes
15answers
21k views

How to stop hopping the learning chain and actually begin somewhere?

Here is what I feel whenever I find something interesting and feel like pursuing it : Oh so I like X (Computer Graphics), let me read up papers/books about it. Ok let me begin with reading up Y (...
14
votes
2answers
2k views

Ph.D. work seems like a drag sometimes, is this normal? [duplicate]

I am a math researcher working in number theory. During my college years I heard all the stories of great mathematicians, icons of the subject who dedicated most of their time to mathematics research (...
18
votes
4answers
758 views

As a postdoc, should I spend time learning new subjects or focus on applying what I know?

I've just started as postdoctoral researcher at a great institute. I imagine that they expect me to achieve good results and teach some classes. But honestly, I feel that I still need to learn a lot ...
32
votes
10answers
4k views

Concerns about the value of the research domain

I am a PhD student in applied computer science methods, halfway through the program, and the question that is in the title is what have occupied my mind almost from the beginning of my study. I can't ...
73
votes
5answers
11k views

Tutoring is depressing because my students are struggling too much with my exercises. What do I do?

I am a tutor for first year students in mathematics, and I feel pretty bad about it. I recently changed universities. At my previous university, where I also tutored, the exercises were very ...
2
votes
0answers
112 views

Lack of motivation-Changing PhD [duplicate]

I know there are different posts about changing PhD, but with such an important decision I would like to ask the same question but including the details of my personal situation. I am in the first ...
147
votes
19answers
21k views

How do you come to terms with the fact that you might never be among the best in your research community?

I am currently a PhD student advised by a new (and awesome, in my opinion) theoretical computer scientist in the field of optimization. This was my dream ever since I took a class on convex ...
10
votes
1answer
505 views

How to stay motivated when working on projects by yourself?

My advisor told me that I needed to be an independent researcher, so I came up with a project by myself. But I don't really work on it because there are no deadlines and no one else is involved with ...
4
votes
3answers
206 views

How to encourage and motivate undergraduates to regularly and independently work on problem sets?

I'm wondering how can a professor encourage students to complete their problem sets on their own in undergraduate classes. I'm not saying that every student cheats off of other students; rather, I'm ...
7
votes
1answer
238 views

How to stay motivated for grant applications

I find it increasingly difficult to motivate myself to write grant applications - in my case to raise money for a post doc fellowship. It seems to me that all bureaus require descriptions and ...
2
votes
1answer
386 views

“Brain doping”: Can drugs compensate a lack of concentration while learning? [closed]

I am almost at the end of my bachelor degree but I am afraid that I never will be able to finish this mere rest. Not only because the rest of my degree (around 20 credit points) is downright ...
11
votes
2answers
1k views

How do I stay motivated in my PhD research when my advisor doesn't seem to like me very much?

My PhD advisor and I simply do not get along. I think it has a lot to do with the language and cultural barriers (we are in Germany). We had an argument this week that almost led to me quitting, but ...
2
votes
1answer
217 views

Examination review courses and the (wrong) motivation of participants [closed]

Short summary of the situation Our faculty offers special courses after the end term exams and before the resit for students who failed the first attempt and/or did not participate in the final exam. ...
95
votes
4answers
17k views

I'm feeling discouraged after getting tenure; should I quit?

A few months ago, and seven years after I obtained my PhD, I finally got tenure. Hence I have a permanent position in academia. After a few months in this new position, I find myself thinking of ...
11
votes
2answers
680 views

Students who want to take higher courses early

I'm a first-year undergraduate student (studying Pure Mathematics) at a university that has a mediocre mathematics department, in a country where there are no really good math departments compared to ...
53
votes
9answers
10k views

One week to go in the final PhD submission and I have lost the will to work on it. Help!

I have less than a week left in my PhD submission - it's due by 9th of December. This is almost the end of my fourth year and I have been able to edit it several times since I completed the first ...
19
votes
2answers
1k views

Where can I find hard data on students' reasons for being students?

Have any studies been done of students' motives for being students at universities? At one extreme there are those who want to study at a university in disregard of the disapproval of their parents ...
4
votes
1answer
662 views

Do I belong in academia? [closed]

I went to a great college, did well enough to get into a good master's program and probably land in a good phd program at some point. But I don't know if I'm meant for this. I'm 27 and coming out of ...
4
votes
2answers
223 views

In my letter of intent for an MSc, should I mention my commute?

I have a respectable cGPA of 3.5 and annual GPA of 3.7. I am hoping to graduate with at least a cGPA of 3.5 which would award me with "high honours". I am not trying to find an "excuse" for a low GPA (...
16
votes
6answers
1k views

How can teaching staff improve a passive student group?

I have been assigned to a section of student where I am teaching probabilistic models. From the starting day itself, I feel something strange is happening in the class. For example: I like to have ...
32
votes
4answers
4k views

How to overcome a mistake you make in your proof and regain motivation?

I am an undergraduate student in computer science, and I have been working as an undergraduate researcher in theoretical computer science for 7 months. There was this problem that my supervisor ...
8
votes
1answer
272 views

Suffering boredom in proofreading own paper

For two years I've been working on drafts of a paper. I'm happy to keep incorporating new sources and improving the paper, because the topic is fascinating, and I'm confident that my work is worth ...
5
votes
4answers
963 views

Convince my supervisor for me to switch my research field to his major area halfway in my PhD

I am going to finish the 2nd year of my PhD and have been working in a field which is not the major research area of my PI. He promised there will be industrial involvement and collaboration with ...
5
votes
3answers
632 views

PhD student where TA work leaves little time for PhD. Is it even worth it to finish this PhD?

Background: I started a PhD in a CS-oriented field about 8 months ago, after completing my masters. At the very start, I was given a lot of duties besides my PhD project, such as responsibility for ...
32
votes
3answers
3k views

How can we justify basic research funding?

Definitions: Basic science is research conducted without immediate applications in mind. It is driven by the "curiosity [...] to expand [humanity's] knowledge, not to create or invent something." ...
11
votes
2answers
333 views

How to efficiently engage undergraduate students in my research program?

I'm a fairly new Assistant Professor at a 4-year university. As is often the case our teaching load is high and we are also expected to do research. Personally, I like both teaching and doing research....
6
votes
2answers
756 views

How do I get out of my overly vain 'trophy' mindset when it comes to universities?

I have friends who went to pretty good universities (world top 10), and I would love to apply too after my Masters although I am not sure how realistic this is, as I also had some personal problems ...
3
votes
1answer
319 views

Is just 'being interested in the topic' a bad reason to do a PhD? [duplicate]

I've got an offer to do a PhD at a great uni in the UK, in a scientific topic I find really interesting because of some courses I've taken at Master's level. My dissertation advisor seems to think ...