Ian
  • Member for 7 years, 4 months
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Should I share my horrible software?
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317 votes

Yes, you should. First, most scientific software is terrible. I'd be very surprised if yours is worse than average: the mere fact you know design patterns and the difference between recursion and ...

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Why do most scientists think Brexit is bad for British science?
67 votes

In addition to the practical, and very important answers that others have already given I will make this point about the emotional impact. I'm a UK citizen in academia, but a lot of my colleagues, ...

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Can open-source software be peer-reviewed and published?
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42 votes

Yes, Open Source software can be published. What's required varies depending on the venue. There are general journals that focus on the software process. The idea is to encourage better software ...

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Under what circumstances would a professor be offended at students taping or recording his or her lecture?
36 votes

Leaving aside the points already made (that it's exceptionally rude to do so without consent, etc.), I'll just (approximately) state the policy of my institution: anyone speaking or otherwise ...

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Should one offer to take over a lecture that the lecturer is struggling to teach?
32 votes

No, you should not. The lecturer isn't trying to give a single lecture, but deliver a complete course. That means connecting many lectures together, alongside supplementary material (notes, textbooks,...

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Knowing when the code is good enough, for research
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28 votes

As the code I write is almost always only used by myself you only have yourself to please. So the only sensible answer is to balance things to minimize the frustration to yourself. Don't do things ...

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How much work is preparing a MOOC-ish course
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27 votes

I have a couple of strong opinions on this: Just because many MOOCs are built around video does not make them a good idea. See this article by Lorena Barba for one example. It is hard to use recorded ...

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If transitioning into academic position, should I buy my PhD graduation cap and gown?
24 votes

Don't bother. It's over 10 years since my ceremony, I've been in academia all that time, and I've never seen the need. I've also seen very few faculty with their own robes. For graduation most ...

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Postdoc salary negotiation (UK)
23 votes

This depends heavily on the funding source. For all UK funded postdocs the pay will be set on the national scale - current rates without London weighting are up-to-date, but I'm not sure if the ...

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Living standards for academic/postdocs
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19 votes

Current salary scales for UK academics can be found here. Lecturer pay scales start at point 30 (currently around £31k). I would expect most lecturers to be paid at point 40 or above (currently over £...

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How to respond to "unfair to write English" comments?
16 votes

Communicating academic work is a key part of doing academic work. Communicating in different forms (symbolic, graphical, natural language prose, computer code, ...) is essential to engage with ...

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Can UK PhD studentships legally effectively bar EU applicants by stating that "all eligible applicants must also have been resident in the UK"?
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14 votes

You have answered your own question in the question: states can (under EU law) put conditions on, e.g., funding, based on residence, but not based on citizenship. As UK citizens who are not ordinarily ...

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Does ORCID matter for a person who would like to work in academia?
14 votes

My personal opinion is that right now ORCID has pretty much zero traction in academia: when my university partnered with ORCID and pushed uptake quite hard internally (by its standards, at least) I ...

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In teaching, what are the advantages of using slides over doing board work?
12 votes

I use slides as I'm more likely to get the details correct on slides than when I'm trying to explain and write at the same time (e.g., writing out a moderately large matrix example); I much prefer ...

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What can I expect from a Skype interview for PhD admissions?
10 votes

This doesn't sound like an overly formal process as you're already known to the interviewer. However, in my institution at least, the process is becoming much more formal (person specifications, ...

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Where to draw the line for authorship for a software-announcement paper?
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9 votes

As the discussion underneath this post shows, there is no set of established guidelines within a single subfield, let alone across all academia, as to where to draw the line. A different, not ...

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Reasons for an academic to need administrator rights on work computer
9 votes

The following makes excessive assumptions about what your work entails, but... Get computing time on an external HPC resource (in the UK that would be Archer or a field specific resource such as ...

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Math PhD viva (UK): what to expect
8 votes

You will not find such information as there is no standard process in the UK. The best people to talk to are your supervisor (who should have knowledge of both examiners, and can tell you what they're ...

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In UK, is the advertised salary range before or after tax?
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7 votes

Yes. Internal "grades" usually don't transfer between institutions. I have just compared my (Russell Group, UK) university pay scale against the UCU one you link to and it is identical. That scale is ...

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Where in academia are HEA fellowships valued?
6 votes

(Nearly) all UK universities want to signal that they take teaching seriously, both for student recruitment and for the TEF, for the obvious financial reasons. For this reason new faculty are ...

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What do universities usually do with a student's graded final exams?
6 votes

At my UK institution, exam scripts are stored centrally by the university up to the deadline for formal appeals (I think one year post graduation). Any student should be able to request to see their ...

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How would the UK leaving the EU affect academia and PhD admission?
6 votes

The following are opinion, not fact, as AFAIK nobody has a clue what a potential post-Brexit academic situation would look like: It's standard for qualitative features in regulations and costs to ...

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What software can I use to poll my audience during presentation?
6 votes

The Software Carpentry instructors do lots of presentations where they need/expect rapid, interactive feedback. They (especially Greg Wilson) have lots of experience of different ways of doing this. ...

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Tips for being the first graduate student of a PI?
5 votes

This may be country specific, but there are a couple of points I would make. First, in the (UK) departments I know, there must be more than one faculty member involved in the supervisory team, and a ...

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How does "Living review" style of publishing work
5 votes

The Living Reviews that I know solicit articles from authors, rather than accept submissions ask the authors to revisit and revise the articles to keep them up to date. are online review articles ...

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Admin/teaching workload in a UK university, compared to other research universities
5 votes

In my UK institution the expectation (at lecturer level, on the "balanced" role - neither teaching nor research specialized) is that the research/teaching/admin split is 40/40/20 %. How this splits ...

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What are the salary bands specifically for lecturer/senior lecturer/reader/professor in the UK?
5 votes

How the titles map onto the grading is not fixed precisely - I've seen it vary by a couple of points across the country, but my institution has lecturer as 30-43, SL/Reader as 44-52 (yes, 52 - not ...

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Academic position salaries in the UK
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5 votes

There is typically a fixed pay scale (see the UCU page, for example), but where on that scale someone starts may be subject to negotiation. Within each job "band" (lecturer, senior lecturer) there is ...

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How much are local (same state or country) applicants favored in PhD admissions?
5 votes

In the UK, in STEM areas without industry funding (where I have most experience), funding restrictions typically meant there are at least 10 places restricted to home (or in some cases EU) students ...

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How does time off for a serious illness affect funding and duration of PhD?
5 votes

I'm at a UK university. In my institution, which almost certainly doesn't have the same regulations as all, there are two distinct issues. First, the university regulations around PhD candidature. ...

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