19

Along with research, work hard to make a lot of connections. Certainly connections at the new university, but beyond that through conference meetings and collaborations. Build a circle around yourself. Join the circle of other, more senior people. Get a sense of all of the research trends around you, even if it shallow outside your specialty. And, keep ...


12

[Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer, this is not legal advice] As Thomas mentioned in his comment, generally, without a visa you cannot be legally employed in the country of the university, this includes remote work from abroad. In addition to that, at least in some countries, it is illegal to do work that is normally paid, even if you are not getting paid for it,...


11

Well, for starters, Musk is just trolling. I think he does that often enough that people should recognize it for what it is. The statement has a bit of truth and if you exaggerate it enough you get to his statement. A more accurate portrayal is that most academic publications have a very small audience. Not all, but most. The audience is other specialists in ...


10

A PhD is a learning experience, so don't worry about stepping out into a new domain. It's also not uncommon for the supervisor to not be familiar with all the research methods you use, since the field has changed a lot since they were engaged in active research. I understand that this seems daunting, but try to find a support ecosystem where you can get ...


10

Your thesis committee, and your supervisor in particular, are the ones who decide if your research is sufficiently novel. Make sure they are happy and seek their guidance if they are not. It seems your supervisor isn't happy, so work with them to find what you can add or what other direction you can take. You could provide a StackExchange answer with dozens ...


7

I would echo everything that the @TheCodeNovice said (I would upvote but I don't have enough reputation). When I was in graduate school I also found myself exploring many areas that were less familiar to my advisor. This tended to not cause me problems so long as I communicated clearly and frequently. However, I would say that you are much more likely to ...


5

You need to think longer term. Decades, and perhaps centuries. Research done today may seem to have little immediate impact, and that is true. But over time, it contributes to the general knowledge that makes things possible. Think of any scientist from the past whose name is known today, even, say, Euclid. Some of what they did may have had some immediate ...


5

Understand what you have available to you, new assets, and learn how to take advantage of them. I expect you'll be competing with others who take for granted, and benefit from, kinds of support you would only have dreamed of.


5

A visa allows you to live in a country and (for the visa I assume you are getting) to be gainfully employed in that country -- that is, to draw a salary. You do not need a visa to work on things while you are in your home country (working in your spare time, or in fact in a paid position). In other words, you can work on whatever project you'd like even ...


4

There're a few ways to interpret why you don't like research in this field: First way: you don't like the particular field because the papers are confusing and technical. In this case I want to point out that from your description, you've done spectacularly well. I was barely able to understand one single paper when I was an undergraduate, and you understand ...


4

You can act active and send an email with suggestions to start working remotely. What does that mean in terms of the salary? Do you expect to get paid for that work? That point perhaps should be clarified.


4

Disclaimer: I'm in STEM, not the humanities, and I'm in the UK. But the idea of "research questions" (or, alternatively, research aims) comes up in all our student theses. I usually define a project as having three parts: Find a problem (or ask a question) Propose (or find) a solution (or find an answer) Evaluate your solution (how "correct&...


4

A PhD program is principally about training you to be a researcher. Research is all about doing things no one else has done before and pushing the boundaries of knowledge. A necessary first step is to get some understanding of what others have done before you. Unlike coursework where you typically learn things that "everybody" knows, when you do ...


4

I'd wager that both 1) the variance in expectations among PIs and 2) the variance in communication styles among graduate students or post docs far exceed the average distinctions between grad students and post docs. Many labs will have regular group meetings, perhaps weekly. One would expect both grad students and post docs to attend and give regular updates ...


4

Adding to the excellent answer from @AppliedAcademic Your advisor may have less experience in the particular field you are moving into, but she has more experience conducting research. That's how she reached a position where she can teach new scientists how science works. She may be wrong in this instance. If she is, I hope she can acknowledge that. But you ...


3

Ask your professors if it would be possible to do an internship over the summer. If you're an undergraduate student who is really eager to do research, and you've demonstrated your academic talents in your studies, I think that your best course of action would probably be to contact your professors and ask them if it would be possible to do an internship ...


3

I think Buffy's answer hits an important point to reconsider your time horizon in evaluating the social impact of research. I'm writing here to suggest how it is the cumulative sum and multiplicative effect of the entire body of researchers working towards expanding knowledge that has a profound effect, even if a single researcher makes a minimal individual ...


3

In all situations that I am aware of (social sciences, Western Europe), almost every student paper and certainly every thesis needs a research question. Deciding on the research question is a crucial and early part of the project and should be done in close coordination with your supervisor. In fact, when I supervise BA and MA theses, I spend a lot of time ...


3

Let me encourage you to think more broadly and longer term. Contributing to math and science, even in the purest of pure fields, is a contribution to humanity. The effects may not be seen for a long time, but they will come. If you think too narrowly then you may choose a problem that is intractable and you won't find a solution (though something may come of ...


3

Read material oriented to undergraduate- and graduate-level students: Grab a year's worth of the American Journal of Physics. Skim until you find articles of interest to you, ones you can latch onto. Read them, understand them, work backward from the references they use, find appropriate textbooks. Try to figure out reasonable entries to current research ...


3

There is no one-size-fits all answer. The key factors to consider are: (1) alignment to the funder's mission and (2) credibility. Alignment to the funder's mission. Different funding agencies have different motivations. Some have a particular capability gap (whether mundane or extraordinary) and want to fund the group most likely to fix it. Some routinely ...


2

I'm going to address your primary concern, which is that you are finding the papers in this particular area difficult to understand. Let me be clear - this is perfectly natural, especially when you are not familiar with reading papers or a particular field. Reading papers is a skill you learn, especially in graduate school, so do not fret. In graduate school,...


2

Everybody comes from a different background. Whatever your experience was so far, it got you to where you are now. Take advantage of the new opportunities you have, but also take advantage of your previous experience as well. Being able to do so much with such limited resources means you have become good at exploiting those resources, nothing was served to ...


2

It really depends whether your supervisor is willing to go through that learning process with you. I had a very similar issue in one project and I was only able to get a good result because I knew some people from a previous project who had experience with this technique. While the other answers mentioned that it is good to have someone with expertise I ...


2

I found myself in a very similar situation where my work was carving out new territory for my PI. You will spend a lot of time in jungle navigating the dense foliage. I would suggest establishing relationships with faculty who are familiar neith that new direction. You could get them for your committee and establish a good resource when you are stuck. A good ...


2

While ResearchGate provides some rough hints on their support pages (see @GoodDeeds's comment), the details of how the RG score is computed are not publicly disclosed. Relevant article from the London School of Economic's Impact Blog: The ResearchGate Score: a good example of a bad metric One of the most apparent issues of the RG Score is that it is in-...


2

I have to preface my answer by saying that what you're doing - independent reading and trying to solve problems - is exactly what PhD programs are for and I strongly encourage you to consider pursuing a PhD :) It sounds like your post boils down to 1. "is finding a more senior collaborator a good idea and how would I do that?" and 2. "is ...


2

Based on your reply to @DanielHatton's comment, you may have some research to make in that subfield to know about uses of the tool you discovered. Make your research in the subfield your tool may apply to and talk to people. If you find something: great, you now have an application for your tool If you don't find anything: it doesn't mean your tool doesn't ...


2

Whether you can publish your current work or not depends on the publisher. But you can certainly write it up and submit it to an appropriate journal. At that point it will get reviewed by people with more experience than you have and you will get the feedback that you need. The Mathematical Association of America (MAA) publishes a student focused journal ...


1

Since scientific and math writers are writing for experts, and in fact specialists, it can be very difficult to read papers as you are getting started. Specialists share a mindset that implies that they can leave a lot unsaid. The author of a paper is likely very familiar with all of the papers cited, and you are not. This makes it especially difficult. To ...


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