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drafting the phd

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    so its been a few months since i begun my phd in economics.
    im quite confused though. ive been reading and reading for the past few months and im meeting my supervison on thursday and she asked me to write a draft of the first part of the phd. we have divided the phd into 2 main parts.
    the part which confuses me is how many pages should that be and, should i draft it like we draft master thesis? like, introduction, lit review, meth etc?
    im not planning to write much, as the time approaches and i dont have the time, but help is needed!!
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    (Original post by fairytalegonebad)
    so its been a few months since i begun my phd in economics.
    im quite confused though. ive been reading and reading for the past few months and im meeting my supervison on thursday and she asked me to write a draft of the first part of the phd. we have divided the phd into 2 main parts.
    the part which confuses me is how many pages should that be and, should i draft it like we draft master thesis? like, introduction, lit review, meth etc?
    im not planning to write much, as the time approaches and i dont have the time, but help is needed!!
    You are going to need an introduction, lit review, methodology etc, so they might as well be part of it. Basically write as much as you've got so far, whether that is full blown data/argument of just guidelines about what you will put where in terms of arguments, ie just the outlines.

    My advice would be (unless you are using very empirical, data driven research) to get as much down on paper as possible. It is much easier to deal with a bad argument written down, than formulate ideas in your head to perfection before you write anything. It is just much easier to handle, see gaps, and see the thesis evolving when you have something, no matter how badly thought out and disjointed it is to start with.
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    How big should that be? it will be the first draft i will show to the professor. i was thinking something like 4-5 pages?
    im confused by the two parts of the phd. should these have two different drafts with each one having its own lit review etc?
    ive been away for a masters so i did not have the time to ask her for details these months and i am hoping she will not attack me.
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    (Original post by fairytalegonebad)
    How big should that be? it will be the first draft i will show to the professor. i was thinking something like 4-5 pages?
    im confused by the two parts of the phd. should these have two different drafts with each one having its own lit review etc?
    ive been away for a masters so i did not have the time to ask her for details these months and i am hoping she will not attack me.
    It's hard to say what the shape of your thesis will ultimately be, but your supervisor's statements about the 'two parts' probably just means that as it currently stands, your argument would be best structured into two main sections. Whether they will require separate literature reviews etc will depend on how closely related they are.
    Also, I wouldn't worry too much about producing something that isn't quite up to scratch at this stage - most people do that to begin with (at least I don't know anyone who doesn't say the very first piece of writing they produced during their PhD was embarrassing and undergraduatey), and your supervisor knows that you're still finding your bearings. It's unlikely he'll 'attack' you, even if what you end up writing really isn't all that great, because he'll know that your work will improve as you get the hang of things a bit more.
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    would it be ok if i show her a detailed list of contents and a page analyzing the topic?
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    (Original post by fairytalegonebad)
    would it be ok if i show her a detailed list of contents and a page analyzing the topic?
    Why don't you email her and ask?
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    (Original post by hobnob)
    Why don't you email her and ask?
    she never really replies to any email. i can only find her at uni and shes also been away so i havent seen her in weeks.
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    (Original post by fairytalegonebad)
    she never really replies to any email. i can only find her at uni and shes also been away so i havent seen her in weeks.
    That's pretty rubbish.
    Anyway, an overview of how you're going to structure it and a bit of analysis based on what you've read so far should be OK. If it's not what she wanted, presumably she'll tell you so and just tell you to do it again, so at worst you'll have lost a couple of days.
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    (Original post by hobnob)
    That's pretty rubbish.
    Anyway, an overview of how you're going to structure it and a bit of analysis based on what you've read so far should be OK. If it's not what she wanted, presumably she'll tell you so and just tell you to do it again, so at worst you'll have lost a couple of days.
    i dont mind a few days, or months even.
    but i do mind if she hates it and asks me to quit
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    (Original post by fairytalegonebad)
    i dont mind a few days, or months even.
    but i do mind if she hates it and asks me to quit
    Come on, now you're overdramatising things a bit. She may well tell you to redo it, but she's hardly going to tell you to quit.:erm:
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    (Original post by hobnob)
    Come on, now you're overdramatising things a bit. She may well tell you to redo it, but she's hardly going to tell you to quit.:erm:
    shes very strict, so im kind of nervous. when i was late to deliver my phd application/draft and topic in october she actually said that if i dont find a permanent topic by december "our cooperation will come to an end" :eek:
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    OK, so your supervisor is someone who 1. doesn't respond to emails, 2. disappears for weeks, 3. gives extremely vague instructions as to what she actually expects of you and 4. tries to keep you on your toes by threatening to stop supervising you if you do anything wrong? She has to be bloody good at what she does for you to want to put up with that for several years...
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    no. but i love my topic.
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    (Original post by hobnob)
    OK, so your supervisor is someone who 1. doesn't respond to emails, 2. disappears for weeks, 3. gives extremely vague instructions as to what she actually expects of you and 4. tries to keep you on your toes by threatening to stop supervising you if you do anything wrong? She has to be bloody good at what she does for you to want to put up with that for several years...
    I was thinking the same thing...

    Seriously, this kind of thing actually pisses me right off. Without knowing the exact situation, I can at least say that it is usually the case that an academic gets credit for supervising PhDs that is counted against the lecturing/other teaching responsibilities that they have as part of their position. This means that it is part of their job that they are being handsomely compensated for and to do it in such a lacksadaisical and unprofessional manner is frankly, a bit of a travesty.

    I am lucky that I have a PhD supervisor who actually goes beyond the call of what could be reasonably expected from it since he is just quite keen to have students and generally makes himself available to people who want to talk about our subject. In fact, he is even working with a PhD student from another department who has a supervisor like the one mentioned above who essentially abandoned him. That said though, each supervisor has at least a minimum responsibility and if they aren't making the grade, they should be brought up on it instead of being left to be what is essentially negligent in their duties.
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    (Original post by Jake22)
    I was thinking the same thing...

    Seriously, this kind of thing actually pisses me right off. Without knowing the exact situation, I can at least say that it is usually the case that an academic gets credit for supervising PhDs that is counted against the lecturing/other teaching responsibilities that they have as part of their position. This means that it is part of their job that they are being handsomely compensated for and to do it in such a lacksadaisical and unprofessional manner is frankly, a bit of a travesty.

    I am lucky that I have a PhD supervisor who actually goes beyond the call of what could be reasonably expected from it since he is just quite keen to have students and generally makes himself available to people who want to talk about our subject. In fact, he is even working with a PhD student from another department who has a supervisor like the one mentioned above who essentially abandoned him. That said though, each supervisor has at least a minimum responsibility and if they aren't making the grade, they should be brought up on it instead of being left to be what is essentially negligent in their duties.
    You are really lucky to have a great PhD supervisor. I wish I could find a good PhD supervisor as yours if possible.
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    (Original post by Jake22)
    I am lucky that I have a PhD supervisor who actually goes beyond the call of what could be reasonably expected from it since he is just quite keen to have students and generally makes himself available to people who want to talk about our subject. In fact, he is even working with a PhD student from another department who has a supervisor like the one mentioned above who essentially abandoned him. That said though, each supervisor has at least a minimum responsibility and if they aren't making the grade, they should be brought up on it instead of being left to be what is essentially negligent in their duties.
    Interesting. How did your supervisor manage to do that? Surely the PhD student is working in a different area, unrelated to your supervisor's area?
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    (Original post by CrestedIbis)
    You are really lucky to have a great PhD supervisor. I wish I could find a good PhD supervisor as yours if possible.
    It's a hit and miss thing with supervisors. More like a lottery winning thing really
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    (Original post by kka25)
    Interesting. How did your supervisor manage to do that? Surely the PhD student is working in a different area, unrelated to your supervisor's area?
    Surely many areas overlap? Someone doing a political economy focus for example may find appropriate supervisors within both politics and economics departments, I presume there are a number of areas where maths could overlap with, etc?
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    (Original post by sj27)
    Surely many areas overlap? Someone doing a political economy focus for example may find appropriate supervisors within both politics and economics departments, I presume there are a number of areas where maths could overlap with, etc?
    The term 'areas' itself is rather vague don't you think? My previous supervisor has a knowledge in Image Processing, specifically in segmentation of characters in old text. Now, Image Processing overlaps greatly with Signal Processing but my supervisor has no real experience dealing with them, especially on a specific Signals topic, so we can't discuss much on it. So my supervisor asked me to consult other Professors for further discussion.

    Now, since this is a PhD, I presume, the particular person is working in a very specific area, hence that's why I asked the poster.
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    (Original post by kka25)
    The term 'areas' itself is rather vague don't you think? My previous supervisor has a knowledge in Image Processing, specifically in segmentation of characters in old text. Now, Image Processing overlaps greatly with Signal Processing but my supervisor has no real experience dealing with them, especially on a specific Signals topic, so we can't discuss much on it. So my supervisor asked me to consult other Professors for further discussion.

    Now, since this is a PhD, I presume, the particular person is working in a very specific area, hence that's why I asked the poster.
    :dontknow: I know of one particular case where a maths professor was involved in supervising an economics PhD. And on your example in fact, a friend of mine did a PhD in image processing, and was supervised by someone attached to an applied maths department. It's entirely possible that the narrow focus of a PhD may indeed find a specialist in another department, or that a specific topic might technically fall under one department but be able to supervised by others. I don't see why this is so surprising.

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