Hot answers tagged

63

Is this normal? No. In most places, wage theft is a serious crime. Who should I speak to about this? The HR department. Possibly also the department chair. Provide a detailed written statement of what happened and when.


25

The thing that strikes me most about your question is "the topic and goal are the same as mine". If this is the case, then those papers are intimately related to yours, and you will want to understand them for your own good. Granted you might not have the time - it is a Masters thesis after all. However, you'll still want to compare and contrast their ...


19

No, this is not normal. If an agreement about number of working hours and an hourly salary is made, the salary is normally supposed to be paid according to that agreement. It is not clear to me if a contract was written up, or if everything was oral agreements. If there is no contract, and no written correspondence to confirm the agreement, you will ...


9

You should report this to a some authority. The chances are good (but we do not know this) that the person has done this before and will do it again. Ethically if you have evidence enough to make a formal complaint you should to prevent them exploiting people. Ethically and practically are, however, two different things - you will have to make the decision ...


8

One of the skills that you have to learn during your masters is reading papers and previous work done in this particular area. So I suggest you put extra effort to understand them. This will benefit you a lot and will definitely boost the quality of your master's thesis. Also, learning about these previous papers might give you an idea to improve them and ...


6

Any research experience is good for an undergraduate in the US, and likely elsewhere. Don't worry about author order too much yet. The doctoral student probably has a good claim on first authorship in any case. But a publication on your CV is definitely a positive thing. Most people in the US start a MS or PhD with little or no real research experience.


5

No, a defense is not equivalent to a publication. A defense may just be something required by university rules and takes some of the responsibility and guidance from the advisor and gives it to others. Some such theses are available in, say, the university library, but that isn't the same as journal (or conference) publication which is more public by ...


5

While the most common answer seems to be "well just study all of that thoroughly" I can totally see why this may not be feasible. Related work usually is not the main focus and one cannot spend 2 months just to understand the stuff other people did. I'd argue that that is not necessary. The key is to understand what those papers did and to get a rough idea ...


3

I think you should raise this question with your supervisor. Think carefully first about what part of this literature you expect you could master well enough in the time you have. Ask about reducing the scope of your project in order to write a narrow good paper rather than a shoddy comprehensive one.


3

You did not mention your country but in some places (at least Europe, vastly speaking) the Masters thesis is the obligatory door out of your university. This means that the contents are mostly irrelevant. There are some philosophical discussions about how it should teach you something - the reality of the real world is that this is something you have to ...


3

While your advisor can probably help, don't misunderstand the purpose and process of research. It isn't making some unsupported claim at the beginning and then "proving" (dammit) that your claim was accurate. Research is a reach into the unknown. The answers you get depend on what is, not on what you want them to be. You are actually seeking knowledge (...


3

If he is still prepared to write you a reference then he will. He can state that you were a student when he was teaching at X institution and that will be accepted. If the admission committee feels it is necessary to contact him then they will do so. I have sent reference letters to the Academic secretary and she printed them on letter headed paper - this ...


2

This is half of an answer. Has anybody ever heard of anything similar? Yes. Conflicts like this unfortunately is not uncommon, judging from what I have observed in only two universities. Indeed, it appears to be more and more common. Is there an appeal process that I could take, if I am not allowed to graduate? Formal appeal process? Yes. The process ...


2

I have doubts that it will matter. The reasons for taking a pass might be obvious to a reader. Letting the numbers fall where they may might seem more honest. But also consider that few (if any) programs will automatically exclude you for GPA alone. People are admitted into doctoral programs based on many things, none of which (other than dishonesty, perhaps)...


2

tl;dr: Try your local small claims court or arbitration service to claim your salary, and make a formal complaint to your university regarding the professor's threat. Disclaimer: I'm not a lawyer, I'm an academic too. Try to look up guidelines specific to your jurisdiction. Don't worry about what may be common in academia. Pay disputes are very common in ...


1

That depends on the university and its rules. General advice is probably worthless. It may be more lenient for an MS than a doctorate, perhaps. But the competition will still be there, and there may be specific rules about candidate selection. I would expect that most places tuition reimbursement is a complete separate issue than placement into a program. My ...


1

The difference is miniscule and it will not make a significant different in the average. I would suggest you kept the mark, which is considered rather high in UK standards. Having a first is meaningful for prestige reasons but a high 2.1 such is your is by no means damning - a 68 has no difference with a 70.


1

If you are on a trajectory that will let you quickly complete a doctorate, then I'd suggest that you don't redirect at this time. This depends on your country, of course, and the requirements for a doctorate. In the US, having a broad enough knowledge base that you can pass qualifying exams is a necessity and is also an advantage in that you would be able to ...


1

Short answer: The Ws aren't great, but they're basically unimportant in light of the rest of your portfolio. I'm a little wary of withdrawals, because I know from personal experience that my own university's academic advising tends to use them as a way to help students avoid failing classes. So they're not great on your transcript, especially multiple Ws. ...


1

I think on any technical field building understanding is crucial, and what unfortunately is not taught sufficiently in technical universities/colleges is how to actually build it. However, I can give you two hints about learning that I have learnt over the years that will push you forward. There are two good books that will help you to understand how to ...


1

I think there's two critical questions you really need to be able to answer in this setting. First, is there some mathematical equivalence or relationship between some earlier paper's methods and your own, even if hidden by a different expression in the algorithms used? This may require some amount of digging in and gaining understanding. Second, how would ...


1

Talk to you advisor about that. When I was doing my master's thesis, my advisor (a really good advisor), gave me some papers to read, and she also showed me how to read them. She explained that I didn't need to understand all the technical details of the methodology involved; the big picture was most important.


1

Whether it is "okay" to skip the Masters depends on your country and field. In US institutions in most scientific fields it is considered the norm to go directly from Bachelor's to PhD (of course many people get a MS along the way, too, but it's not necessary). In my experience, though, even in countries such as China where enrollment in a MS program is ...


1

You can still pursue a PhD after doing a non-thesis master's degree. Contrary to popular belief, the thesis master's degree is not the only path to doctoral studies and the world of academia. Although there are a few exceptions, you can enrol in many PhD programs after completing a non-thesis master's degree.


1

I have advised PhD students who had a masters when they started their doctoral studies, and others who didn't. I did not have a masters when I started my PhD. As noted in another answer, in some countries, having a masters is not required to start doctoral studies. This is, for example, also the case in Hong Kong. You asked, what other criteria can [a ...


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