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27 votes
2 answers
3k views

Advisor isn't advising

I'm having the problem that my advisor isn't providing me with any real guidance. To avoid making this a rant post, I'll just state the facts: my advisor is an MD/PhD, working almost full-time as an ...
  • 47.9k
55 votes
10 answers
71k views

How important are my grades to the rest of my PhD career?

Speaking to the faculty in my program, I've noticed that they seem to evaluate themselves and others using two criterion: (1) publication quality and quantity, and (2) ability to obtain grant money. ...
  • 47.9k
28 votes
6 answers
22k views

Conference vs Congress vs Symposium vs Meeting

What is the distinction between the following scientific events: conference, congress, symposium, meeting? While I have some idea about differences (e.g. congress - large and serious, meeting - by a ...
  • 25.8k
19 votes
2 answers
3k views

Changing mailing and e-mail addresses as corresponding author--which to include?

I finished my undergrad last year and have since been working in the private sector. I'm about to submit a paper with my senior thesis results. Two questions about corresponding author information: ...
  • 721
24 votes
4 answers
3k views

How can I find out which universities allow a sandwich (stapler) PhD thesis?

Following on from What is a "Sandwich thesis"? , is there an easy way to find out which departments at which universities will allow a sandwich thesis (aka a stapler thesis, portfolio thesis,...
  • 25.6k
60 votes
3 answers
5k views

How to evaluate potential advisers on grounds other than their research/publications?

While accepting an offer to grad school, one is basically entering into a lasting relationship with one's adviser - most likely, someone whom the applicant has never met before, and the only exposure ...
  • 9,471
106 votes
3 answers
21k views

What is a “sandwich thesis”?

On the Internet, I have found that some people have graduated with a PhD by means of a “sandwich thesis”. Could anyone explain what it is?
  • 1,996
22 votes
4 answers
18k views

What is the difference between Ph. D programs with coursework and those without it?

I have been looking into PhD programs in the Engineering field, and I have found different types of programs, such as some with coursework, and others without any coursework. What is the practical ...
  • 1,996
24 votes
5 answers
1k 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 ...
  • 47.9k
17 votes
4 answers
3k views

How to recruit a PhD student without a strong connection to teaching?

As a postdoc, I'm considering to apply to research-only positions (for instance in a research institute, and not a university), and I know that one of the responsibilities of being a researcher is to ...
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13 votes
6 answers
580 views

Evaluating Grad Schools on grounds other than research

Assuming that an applicant does his research and applies to a bunch of schools for a PhD. He gets accepted by a few of them with full aid. Assuming that the research and faculty at all places is more ...
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19 votes
5 answers
11k views

Usefulness of prior industry experience before entering grad school?

I'm wondering what impact does prior industry experience (by which I mean 2+ years in a non-trivial functional role in any established organization) lend to the profile of someone who is entering grad ...
  • 9,471
49 votes
5 answers
32k views

How to find a good topic for a PhD research proposal?

In many countries an application for a PhD position includes a written research proposal, so my questions is what are some advises/strategies to come up with a good topic/idea for a PhD research ...
  • 993
87 votes
14 answers
26k views

Is there any efficient non-linear note-taking software?

I'd be interested in tools helping to organize thoughts and ideas, especially in a non-linear way (i.e. not as most existing note taking tools, working with lists and bullets, but rather as a post-it ...
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18 votes
4 answers
1k views

Advice and tools for hosting an online journal club

I have some experience with hosting reading groups/journals clubs in an off-line setting. Usually we meet every week in a room and discuss the paper for that week. However, recently some colleagues ...
161 votes
20 answers
32k views

How do you judge the quality of a journal?

A colleague and I recently submitted a paper to a journal with an impressive-sounding name, the "International Journal of Artificial Intelligence and Computational Research". According to ...
  • 2,031
19 votes
3 answers
1k views

What kind of opportunities exist in the industry for someone with a Ph.D in theoretical CS?

I'm curious to know what kind of choices does someone with a recent Ph.D in theoretical CS have, in the industrial research labs, and how to find out about existing opportunities. In particular, I'm ...
  • 9,471
213 votes
4 answers
42k views

University rank/stature - How much does it affect one's career post-Ph.D?

What I'm trying to understand is, to what degree does the status/rank of the University (where one completes his/her Ph.D) matter while shaping his/her career after graduation? I would like to know ...
  • 9,471
80 votes
15 answers
13k views

Preprint services other than arXiv (for other fields)

While arXiv is great, it covers only topics in physics, mathematics and computer science. Are there any good preprint storage places for other scientific disciplines?
48 votes
8 answers
13k views

Good practices for organizing notes

As a PhD student I generate a lot of pages with calculations, ideas and lecture notes. Most of them are useful only for a short amount of time, but some may be important for much longer (when writing ...
  • 25.8k
24 votes
1 answer
2k views

What are the most important criteria to consider when hiring postdocs for a research group?

One of the most important challenges that academics will face is group management. Although this takes many forms for graduate students, undergraduate assistants, and so on, I believe postdocs are a ...
  • 172k
11 votes
3 answers
2k views

Do I need to have teaching experience before entering grad school?

I'm considering going back to graduate school, but I've heard from a number of friends that graduate students are all required to teach. Is that the case? I have no teaching experience at all. Will ...
  • 47.9k
16 votes
4 answers
262 views

Usefulness of graduate school extracurriculars

All graduate programs have committees such as the "social committee" and "speaker series committees", as well as Graduate Student Organizations and other organizations to work on behalf of these ...
  • 47.9k
15 votes
4 answers
485 views

Teaching Assistantships and research

I'm working as a TA now, and I've found that I'm spending an inordinate amount of time on my TA-ship. Is this normal? Furthermore, is this expected? I'm worried that my research career will suffer ...
  • 47.9k
19 votes
7 answers
666 views

Should I take courses that are not directly part of my research topic?

I've received conflicting advice as to whether I should choose my coursework based on my research topic or not. The main pro usually is that I'll quickly be able to get up to speed on my research. The ...
  • 47.9k
15 votes
3 answers
1k views

Obstacles in job hunting for US citizens in non-US nations

I am curious to know the kinds of obstacles a US citizen would come across when trying to find work in academia outside the US and/or those that a non-US-citizen faces when trying to get an academic ...
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40 votes
4 answers
26k views

Submitting the same research to multiple conferences

I'm aware that it's a violation of terms for most publishers to submit the same article to more than one journal, but I frequently see authors whose papers seem very similar, particularly papers ...
  • 47.9k
91 votes
9 answers
14k views

Am I reading enough of the scientific literature? Should I read for breadth or depth?

Ever since starting graduate school I've tried to make scientific reading a part of my daily ritual; I track pages read using Beeminder, and the graph doesn't lie. It keeps me honest. I aim to ...
  • 1,951
27 votes
4 answers
8k views

What are alternatives to Journal of Theoretical Biology? [closed]

I am considering joining the recent boycott of Elsevier, however I work with biologists on theoretical/mathematical biology (in particular, evolutionary game theory and population biology). However, ...
16 votes
6 answers
708 views

What are the common productivity measures of a scientist, like h-index?

I am aware of h-index. I was wondering what other types of scores are both widely and rarely used to measure the impact of a scientist?
  • 889
19 votes
1 answer
568 views

Submitting a subset of my work to ArXiv

I've been thinking of publishing a subset of my work in fluid dynamics to arXiv. I realize the following about arXiv: ArXiv isn't a journal I would need to be endorsed to submit an article on arXiv ...
  • 4,210
45 votes
6 answers
3k views

Will people judge me negatively for skipping department seminars?

I'm a graduate student in the Earth Sciences. The breadth of my departments runs the gamut from geobiology to geophysics and everything in between. As a result, a large number of the department ...
  • 1,951
16 votes
2 answers
369 views

English certifications: which ones are recognized overseas?

In the European Union we have a "Common European Framework of Reference for Languages". In practice all language certification programmes have one of those levels associated to them (ranging from A1, ...
  • 395
13 votes
2 answers
727 views

Is there a standard for translating grades across Erasmus universities?

I've just finished my Erasmus period in the Netherlands. I'm still waiting for one result from my guest academy, then the Transcript of Record will reach my home university and, somehow, the results ...
  • 395
20 votes
4 answers
8k views

Academic salaries at European universities

Is there a good source to compare academic salaries at European universities? For example, what are the salaries of full professors in different countries? I would particularly welcome a possible ...
  • 870
15 votes
3 answers
566 views

How many physician-scientists pursue academic tracks?

The National Institues of Health (NIH) funds Medical Scientist Training Programs (MSTPs) also known as MD/PhD programs to create a group of researchers whose work more rapidly effects medical practice....
  • 2,230
19 votes
4 answers
2k views

Does publishing a book while employed by an academic institution grant them legal claim on the royalties?

If I publish a book on my research topics while employed for an academic institution, can they claim part of the revenues I get from royalties ? My question is relative to Europe, but if someone knows ...
14 votes
3 answers
367 views

How do I select a graduate program?

I've applied to several graduate (MSc) programs overseas, and I've received several acceptance letters. Now I have the problem to select one of those programs. How should I do it? What should I look ...
  • 1,996
10 votes
1 answer
2k views

As a postdoc with a one-year contract in Switzerland, am I allowed for a B visa?

I worked for a year in Switzerland, but I have been given an L visa, even as a European. This has strong limitations in terms of rentals and bank services. Other people got a B visa for the same ...
13 votes
2 answers
2k views

Who evaluates Marie Curie Intra-European Fellowship proposals?

Who are the evaluators of the Marie Curie Intra-European Fellowship proposals? Other academics ? How are they selected ?
26 votes
4 answers
769 views

Scientifically meaningful sources of bibliometrics

Whether we like it or not, modern academia is increasingly being measured, in some vain attempt to get objective measures. Although it is unwise to fight 'being measured', it is at least possible to ...
22 votes
2 answers
744 views

What journals do not allow open access to published material?

An increasing number of funding organizations require publications on the research that they fund to be open access, i.e. available to the public without having to subscribe to a journal or pay a fee. ...
89 votes
6 answers
22k views

Does publishing a paper on arXiv prevent me from submitting it to a non-open access journal?

If I publish a pre-print paper on arXiv, how can I guarantee exclusive rights to the publisher afterwards? Am I unable to publish on non-open access journals after I publish a pre-print on arXiv ?
36 votes
1 answer
1k views

What is the h-index exactly and how does it work?

What is the h-index, and how does it work ?
13 votes
2 answers
314 views

In U.S., why do many engineering departments care about professional engineer registration?

I have seen many engineering departments want professional engineer registration. Why do they care?
  • 1,104
48 votes
4 answers
5k views

Where can I find the Impact Factor for a given journal?

As from title. Not all journals provide the impact factor on their homepage. For those who don't where can I find their impact factor ?
11 votes
2 answers
850 views

As a computational chemist, which online resources are available for Ph.D. level jobs? [closed]

Which online resources are available for job search at the Ph.D. level in the computational chemistry field?
20 votes
2 answers
620 views

What kind of Visa is required to work in Academia in Japan?

As from title. What kind of visa class do I have to apply for, in order to work as an academic in Japan ?
72 votes
8 answers
5k views

Is there a good site for holding online discussions of scientific papers?

Many of my computational scientist colleagues used to use Google Reader to share and discuss new journal articles. The loss of Reader's social features killed that, and we have subsequently tried ...
22 votes
2 answers
477 views

Are European schools experiencing the same cost raise as American schools?

After factoring in government subsidies (or lack thereof), is the total price for one year of undergraduate education in Europe increasing at a rate similar to America?
  • 285

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