Hot answers tagged

128

"The only real critique I had on my thesis was that the chapter I sent you had typos. I went through this chapter again and found quite a few. In the future when someone asks you to review a chapter you need to carefully check and find typos because it's embarrassing to send a final thesis with a chapter filled with typos. Its disappointing when you ...


62

You don't owe this person anything, were under no obligation to help them, and everything you do for them is done in a spirit of generosity and kindness. If they don't think you did a good enough job, that's their problem, not yours. If they don't want your help, they are under no obligation to ask for it. It sounds to me that you did it exactly right, ...


58

Most publishers I know explicitly permit (pre)publication of papers as part of a thesis. For example the copyright policy of Elsevier (the publisher you used as a tag) states: Authors can use their articles, in full or in part, for […] [i]nclusion in a thesis or dissertation (provided that this is not to be published commercially) Going by this, everything ...


27

Let me start with a story. At Harvard, before a PhD student is allowed to schedule their oral dissertation defense, which (as is the case in many places) is usually a formality, the advisor is required to explain the significance of the dissertation work at a faculty meeting, and the faculty have to agree that the work is significant enough for a ...


25

That student's response is obviously unnaceptable and quite rude. You should gently remind the student that ultimately they are responsible for their own work when they submit a document and if editing was so important to him/her next time they should hire an editor. That being said, in the future it's a nice gesture to let others know ahead of time if you ...


21

Once as an undergraduate I gave a professor a draft of a scholarship essay for review. I told the professor that it was a rough draft but that the main idea was there and that I'd appreciate feedback on the main ideas in the essay. When I got the review back, the professor was furious and proceeded to chew me out. I had wasted their time by giving them a ...


16

Find a better journal. A large portion of papers published in journals were previously published in dissertations. A competent editor would have checked to see if the similar document was your dissertation. This is a mistake, but an unreasonable one. I have never seen a decision letter that involved an automated check of similarity. In good journals, ...


14

This lab mate should take full responsibility for the contents of their own graduate thesis. Having a friend or colleague look over a chapter is fine, but it does not relieve the main author from that responsibility. The email that this person sent to you is unacceptable, and you should not feel bad.


10

"(...) Its disappointing when you rely on someone and they screw you I hope in the future you do a better job" The rest of the text chain did not go well. Oh man, I had to take a walk to cool down. I truly (and seriously) admire all the answers you got here and that none of them told you to reply to this guy to fuck off. I've learned a lesson: I ...


9

You don't say which country you are in, but if this were the UK, I'd evaluate the work in thesis on its merits, and then interrogate the student on which parts of the work they consider to be their contributions in the viva. If you are convienced in the viva that the student had made a significant personal contribution, I would work with them, through the ...


7

I've been in similar situations, and I've learned that people have different ideas of what "editing" or "looking over" means. If that happens, I am sure to be absolutely certain what the person is expecting, and what I will offer. I don't think you are to blame in this situation; use it as a learning experience and be sure to clarify the ...


6

I have been working with qualitative (semi-structured) interviews for years and I read a lot of literature that uses such data. I am neither aware of any rule that prohibits or any convention that discourages quoting interview statements before the methodology section/chapter; nor could I see any reason for such a rule to exist. It makes sense to describe ...


6

I started my Ph.D. a few years after my father passed away. I dedicated the thesis to him. I wrote, "To my father who never saw this adventure" (something like this when translated). Like all who commented, I would say keep it short, keep it personal. Grief makes it difficult to find words. Actually, looking back at my thesis and this dedication ...


6

I had a dedication page in my PhD thesis, to my recently deceased grandparents. I kept it short, with a line that basically translates to: "To my grandparents, in loving memory." The things you suggest to include and to reference will make it more personal, and more appropriate for you. And that is all that matters: write it such that it represents ...


6

French perspective here. My understanding is that the contents of the PhD manuscript handed by the candidate should mostly consist of their own work, or things of which they are a main contributor: they should definitely understand it, probably have written it (or wrote a version of it), etc. If the candidate is an author on a paper to which they only ...


5

I often review papers for a certain college student, and always explicitly ask if they're looking for deep technical review of their writing - typos, punctuation, word choice, verb tenses - or more of a broad overview of the content (need more explanation here, rework this example, you haven't defined this term yet). And in any event - unless you edited &...


5

Let me start off by admitting that I am able to see my fault in this. No. Don't let your labmate shift the blame to you from himself. In all honestness, you made no error and there's no fault on your part. You did a voluntary review of a text he was responsible of, nothing more. It feels he is coping with the critique by finding someone to blame instead of ...


5

Others have already elaborated that you did not do anything wrong, and I have nothing to add to this. I will only address your other two subquestions: What could I have done better? While setting expectations could have prevented the entire affair (not that it was justified), there is another strategy. I review a lot of stuff for colleagues, students, ...


4

John Nash's thesis was 26 pages long with 2 references and he later won a Nobel price. What matters is scientific quality not quantity, if your ideas are superior nobody will object the length (mine was less than 100 pages).


4

Your colleague wrote "I went through this chapter again and found quite a few [typos] ... " I would suggest to your "colleague" (who isn't acting very collegial) that it was clearly their responsibility to go through their chapters themselves prior to submitting their thesis. In addition to coming across as rude, they come across as ...


4

You're in the right, but don't continue the flame war The person who requested the review from you appears to be either mentally unstable (e.g. a wound collector; see: psychologytoday.com/us/blog/spycatcher/201509/wound-collectors) or extremely manipulative. Either way try not to inflame the situation anymore than it already is, silently cut your ties with ...


3

It is common in book length material to give a citation of the photo, perhaps in a footnote. The title page, if present, or a page just following, is possible. So is a footnote on the last page, which is probably a list of references. Another possibility is on an "Acknowledgements" page, if present.Just mark the citation for the photo as "used ...


3

This is probably best evaluated in the context of the individual institution. Standards differ and both the student and the professor should have a common understanding. Some places it is sufficient to give a good summary understanding of a deep problem or area of research. Others requires some new results, which may be minor or not. Some require publishable ...


2

Your question reminded me of my own situation during my PhD. I share with you my experience and hope you can relate to it, and maybe learn something. I was also in third year, physics PhD, with published papers and lot of presentations at conferences. But still I was constantly thinking about quitting. The thing which made me to think like that, now I look ...


2

It would be good if you can find a way for this to work to everyone's benefit. I'd suggest that you start with your advisor and express your concerns and get some assurance that the other student won't be stepping on your research. You should be able to get a great acknowledgement in work of the other student. And your own work might well be eligible for ...


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

There is an old joke that goes like this: A man is flying in a hot air balloon and realizes he is lost. He spots a man down below and lowers the balloon to shout: “Excuse me, can you help me? I promised my friend I would meet him half an hour ago, but I don’t know where I am.” The man below says: “Yes. You are in a hot air balloon, hovering approximately 30 ...


2

I've never heard of this happening. Since it was possible to do so, I imagine everyone who now writes a thesis or dissertation is required to upload it to the library. I had to turn in two copies of each (before the internet). And many if not most of us go on to publish it or parts of it So I don't know if it's something unique to your field or the ...


1

The advice you have so far is pretty US specific - in a system without a committee system, where you will be judged by your examiners in a one off thing, you may want to be more careful. Of course, the person who should really know the answer to this is your supervisor/advisor, but should also be able to look up what the criteria are for your university. I ...


1

As a comment says, this really is a question for your supervisor. I'm assuming it was your supervisor's idea to put your three papers together in the thesis, so perhaps they have suggestions on how to make them fit together. If it was your initiative, check with your supervisor first. They might propose to leave out one of the papers so that the resulting ...


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