Over the years, I’ve collated a list of resources and tips for PhD students, based on my own experience and that of colleagues.
Please let me know if I should add/change anything, or what you found useful.
- Jason Hong’s thoughts on breaking away from the undergrad mentality
- Visualising a PhD by Matt Might
- ThinkWell resources for PhD students by Hugh Kearns
- Vitae Research Development Framework https://www.vitae.ac.uk/researchers-professional-development/professional-development-advice-sheets
- Vitae Doing a doctorate: https://www.vitae.ac.uk/doing-research/doing-a-doctorate
- Vitae Personal effectiveness https://www.vitae.ac.uk/researchers-professional-development/personal-effectiveness
- PhD life 101, aka what I wish I had known in my first year
- From 0 to submitted: journey through the last month of a PhD
When things are not going so well:
- 10 ways to fail a PhD by Matt Might
- The valley of shit and Leaving the valley of shit by The Thesis Whisperer
- Quitting a PhD
- Deposit any accepted papers within 3 months of acceptance in Pure: https://pure.northumbria.ac.uk/admin/workspace.xhtml
- Survey software available: Bristol Online Survey and Qualtrics (Psychology Dept). Ask IT helpdesk for details: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Courses available at the Library university library courses
- Work-spaces available:
- Use Library Commons: https://library.northumbria.ac.uk/researchspaces/researchcommons.
- Library works 24/7 too, if you need to pull an all-nighter on the university premises.
- Need to talk to someone about applying for grants? – Talk to David Young
- Want to get some extra cash for travelling to conferences or organising events? – Use Northumbria Research Support: PGR Conference Bursary Scheme; Research Support Events Scheme
- Seven Research Contributions in HCI by Jacob O. Wobbrock
- Use this edited version of Heilmeier’s questions to help you define your research project
- What is the real world problem?
- What are you trying to do? Articulate your objectives using absolutely no jargon.
- How is it done today, and what are the limits of current practice?
- What are you going to do about it (approach)?
- What are you really going to do about it (operationalization)?
- What’s new in your approach and why do you think it will be successful?
- Who cares?
- If you’re successful, what difference will it make?
- What are the risks and the payoffs?
- How much will it cost (time/money)?
- How long will it take?
- What will success look like for this project?
- What are the midterm and final “exams” to check for success?
- Where will you publish this?
- Need to know general usage stats for the internet/smart devices/online video behaviour? – Use Google Barometer: https://www.consumerbarometer.com/en/graph-builder/?question=N1
- Identifying related literature
- Critically reading a research paper
- How to Summarize a Research Paper
- How to handle a large amount of literature. Blog post. 2011. Emphasizes the need for speed reading and organization tactics.
- How to avoid going down a rabbit hole of literature search:
- identify 1-2 key papers that are the key papers for your research. Look at the papers they cite. And the ones that have cited them.
- Read titles, abstracts, scan methods & conclusions.
- Aim to identify the key authors. Set google alerts for when those people publish papers.
- Revise your choice of key papers. Are there a few more that now seem like you will reference them in every paper you write? Also set alerts for when any of your key papers get cited.
- Join (or start) a write club (e.g. Shut up and write Tuesdays) https://thesiswhisperer.com/shut-up-and-write/
Writing your thesis:
- Write every day and keep writing throughout the PhD. Don’t wait till the end, it will make the task of writing a thesis a lot easier.
- Write that PhD– Twitter account with lots of good tips
- How to write a thesis – Rowena Murray book
- Write a fantasy abstract for your thesis – it will help you keep focused
- Finishing up your PhD thesis – Pat Thomson
- The Science of Scientific Writing, G. Gopen and J. Swan, American Scientist, 1990.
- Writing Technical Articles, H. Schulzrinne, Columbia University.
- How to get your papers published, Matt Welsh, 2009.
- How to write a good HCI research paper – Philip Guo
- An HCI research paper writing guide formatted as an HCI paper by Jacob O. Wobbrock
Where to publish:
- How to pick a publication venue – Luigina Ciolfi
- How to design and award winning poster and this (Tullio Rossi)
- Research Posters 101 (L. F. Cranor)
- How to Write a Research Poster (L. F. Cranor)
- Inspiration for posters: pictures of real-life posters at conferences
- Even a geek can speak book by Joey Asher
- 10 simple rules to making a good oral presentation (Philip Borune)
- Tell them a story (Tullio Rossi)
- How to present your research
- Giving an academic talk (Jonathan Shewchuck)
- How to Give an Academic Talk v4.0 (Paul N. Edwards)
- Giving Talks, S. Drysdale
- Giving a good elevator talk
Opportunities to present:
CREATING IMPACT & PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT
- Advice on how to have impact by Prof Mark Reed: Fast track impact
Opportunities for dissemination:
How to visualise your research:
- When should you start reviewing? My advice is as soon as possible because it will help you understand what other people are working on, and will help you understand what is the benchmark for publishable papers. Always discuss with your supervisor first – you can even ask them to check your review before you submit it.
- How to Review papers
- How to review a late-breaking work (CHI)
- Reviewing for CSCW (Dave Randall)
LIFE AFTER A PhD
- General advice on looking for a job: The Professor is in
- What should you get by doing a postdoc?
- Interview tips for faculty position (US based) https://web.eecs.utk.edu/~azh/resources/facultyinterviewquestions.html
Find job opportunities:
Negotiating an offer: