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  • tom2331 6:15 am on September 16, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    How to find research conferences to attend? 

    Hi. I’m a PhD student of Stanford university having epidemiological and behavioral studies as my research area. I need to present my research paper in any conference within the two months. But I don’t know where and how would I find the information about the upcoming conferences and proceedings at various institutes? I keep on searching for it online but only get the handful of those and that too turns out to be fake. Tell me please what should I do?

    • Mitchel 2:18 am on September 17, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Well, check out On this website, you’ll find all the recent events happening/occurring nearby and updates about different universities. This will save time and you will get to know different events under one roof.

    • Hannah 6:17 am on September 18, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Okay, so that sounds like a serious problem. You can subscribe to the newsletter of various universities. They will keep you updated with the upcoming events/conferences occurring in a year or in a particular month. This will definitely solve your problem.

  • Samayra 1:07 am on September 14, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    How to mentor research students? 

    Hi. I am neither a PhD nor Masters student but a PhD graduate so I don’t know if I should really be posting my query here or not. I’m a newbie to the research supervision at Cornell university where I’m given the responsibility of guiding two Masters’ students from my research area only. Because I do not have any prior experience of handling research students, I’m not confident if I would be able to answer their queries, helping out with the research process, and evaluating theses. I’ve fixed the meeting with them next week but I don’t know what shall I do, how to begin, nothing at all. University has given me a handbook of supervision of graduate students, but there is a lot of difference in reading and implementing those advices in real life. I’m anxious how to get started. Any suggestions please?

    • Caroline 10:20 am on September 15, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      As a PhD student, I am writing this answer. I hope it would help you out. I have observed my supervisor guiding me. Usually, supervisors tend to become lax and indifferent. But, mine is super passionate about research in Biomedical Sciences. All thanks to him, my research is going on successfully. So, primarily, keep tabs on your student’s’ progress. Initially, you can give them few small projects to be finished within a given time period. You need to encourage them that they should treat their Phd like any other 9 to 5 job. They should carry on with utmost diligence and commitment if they wish to make significant progress. Secondly, you can ask them to attend various national and international conferences or group seminars so that their presentation skills get honed.

    • Anna Hughes 5:18 am on September 16, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Hey! first of all, I’d wish you luck. You are right in assuming that this forum is slightly unsuitable for this question. But, fortunately you will get a first hand advice from a fellow supervisor. I currently teach at the Indiana Wesleyan University and very often supervise PhD students researching on Nursing and Public Health. I usually visit this forum 3-4 times a week so that I can get an insight into PhD students’ problems. What I have learned from my experience is that constant communication is what a PhD student craves for the most. Make sure, you provide constant support to your students. During the first year, they would be dependent upon you largely. You should not discourage that. However, after a year you should let them become independent researchers. Apart from that, for channelising their research in the right direction you can have a lot of activities like regular reading sessions where you could read published PhD dissertations. In this way, your students will get acquainted to various academic writing styles at an early stage. Also, during the third year you can make these students train the newcomers. It will enhance their knowledge and inculcate professionalism into them.

    • Lauren 9:12 am on September 20, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Give a little introductory task in the initial year with a particular deadline. This will help you in detecting issues and coming up with solutions to help the students understand their area of weakness. Ensure supervisee know about the professional guidelines of published work by suggesting them to read good PhD dissertation and frequently perform review literature and organising reading groups. Hope you do well in the orientation program.

    • Ryan 10:11 am on September 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      You can guide them by citing examples of your own experiences you faced during your PhD graduation phase. For example, make them aware about the common mistakes committed by a masters or a PhD candidate. Make your students comfortable, so that they do not hesitate in asking questions. Best of luck

  • wilson349 1:41 am on September 10, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    Inadequate Supervision! Need Help! 

    Hi guys! I am pursuing my PhD in management and my research is based on novice entrepreneurs.
    Initially, I was highly passionate about my research, but now I am loosing interest in it. The reason being
    that I’m experiencing inadequate support from my supervisors. During the past one year, my supervisor
    has been changed for the third time. The first one got retired, the second one has migrated to some
    European university and the third one is unfortunately hard – to – catch. He was assigned to me two
    months back and I have hardly seen him once, that too at the time of introduction. It was a short
    introduction of merely 5 – 10 mins. I am constantly trying to reach him through emails, phone calls and
    even Whatsapp. But, he never reverts back. I am getting demotivated day by day. I have started to think of
    dropping my PhD. What do I do? Please help! I am unable to decide.

    • Tony 6:08 am on September 11, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Hi. In my opinion, you should not drop your PhD due to the negligence from the university’s part. In fact, if your advisor doesn’t turn up, you can always report it to the authorities. The board of graduate studies of every university has the power to look into the matter like why he is not responding to you.Unless there are some issues which cannot be resolved by you and your advisor yourself, then they have to help you out. I mean, they have changed your supervisors because it’s the university’s responsibility to make the assistance available to you. Go through your university’s website or your head of faculty. I’m sure you will figure out how to deal with your supervisor rather giving up on your PhD.

    • Laura Betcher 5:11 am on September 14, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      I do not deny the fact that you are in dire need of research supervision but when things just don’t go the way it should be, you should get your own ways. One of the students like you shared his/her instance of bad supervision in this blog post. .Go through it as well as the comments along. There are plenty of advice; perhaps a single one can work in your case.

    • Caroline 6:10 am on September 16, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Don’t lose hope, because this is not the end. You may face even more difficulties in your life in future. Infact, this is just a beginning. In my opinion, try out help from online tutor., you can take consultation from them. They provide the best PhD assistance right from research proposal to the conclusion. Go through their website, I’m confident that you’ll figure out a way to deal with your research instead of giving up on your PhD.

    • Ryan 11:10 am on September 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      This behaviour towards your research at this stage is natural. Since you are not getting the right guidance from your university and especially from your guide. I would support your idea of discontinuing your research. And focus on something else, or change your topic selection and opt for different guide. I know it may sound negative, but i guess this is the only option left with you. Anyway, I wish you all the luck and best wishes.

  • sierra4328 11:31 am on September 4, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    How to collect research data online? 

    What are the reliable ways through which I can collect research data online? I thought creating online surveys and sending personalized emails to the respondents would do the job best, but then I really don’t know how to do it. Also, I wanted to get it clarified if online data collection is even ethical? Because the authenticity of data is seen vulnerable in online data collection in many cases, I’m doubtful. Please advise something. Thanks pals in advance!

    • Robin 6:50 pm on September 8, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      I am hoping that you intend to send personalized emails to those respondents with whom you are acquainted very well. Otherwise, there is a little hope that you will be successful. Nowadays, identity theft is on the rise and majority of the people (including me) prefer not to reveal much on a cyberspace. I guess a paper and pencil method would produce better results where you get to meet your respondents in person.

    • Alexie 8:48 am on September 12, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      As far as I believe it would be considered unreliable than unethical. You cannot be sure about the authenticity of the data collected because sometimes the people can be insecure to divulge certain personal information on the internet solely for a research purpose. Moreover, I can give you a good tip. You should try to keep your questions extremely precise. Respondents usually don’t take online surveys seriously and there can be a high dropout rate when faced with tricky questions. So, make it convenient for them. Good luck!

    • Mustafa Zunaid 6:13 am on September 16, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      The idea of collecting data online is actually good. This way you can get to connect with large number of audience and you can save time and money. Keep one thing in mind, do not connect with the wrong audience.Choose your target audience wisely and the one from where you can get 80%response. All the best with your research.

    • Lauren 5:12 am on September 19, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      My advice would be, do not include personal questions. Because sometimes people refrain from providing personal information. Try to design your questionnaire in such a way that it doesn’t lack the core essence of your research. Also, there are many online services available which provides tools to conduct surveys via emails and other modes. You can consult them as well. As they have a vast network, so they can provide you with the correct audience from whom you can the positive results.This way, it will be easier for you to articulate your results.

  • Samayra 11:44 am on September 1, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    How to write PhD CV? 

    Hi all. I’m a PhD student of Teaching English to Speakers of other languages (TESOL) and this year, I will graduate. Currently, I have started searching for a job of research assistant in any industry or institute. But before I approach one, I must have an influential cv which I have no idea how to prepare. Are there any formatting guidelines or something to write PhD cv? Do I need to give reference to my published research work? If yes, then how? Please advise.

    • joseph664 11:25 am on September 4, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      What actually happens is that whosoever receives your CV would skim through it. They don’t actually read it word by word. So, make sure all your strong points are highlighted. It should sufficiently draw attention. One of my friends who is M.A. in French used to put the URL of her website on top of the CV. Her website was professionally designed and developed and worked as an interactive CV. She even had a separate blog section with huge number of followers. This was highly appreciated by her hiring managers. If you too have a professionally built website of your own, then you can definitely take advantage. Here is a link These guys can help you with developing a website if you don’t have it and are interested in having one.

    • sierra4328 11:30 am on September 4, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      I really don't know much, but one thing I can be sure of that at this stage of your career, your CV has become an official representation of your qualifications. So, keep it formal. No need to add any extra – co -curricular activities into it. That would be considered irrelevant. If you want, do precisely mention your accomplishments in the area of your research. If there is a specific area of research which you are interested in, do mention that. As far as your published works are concerned, you should mention that. They would increase your worth exponentially. Even if you have co-authored some work, you should mention it. Don't forget – You sell yourself
      (your skills) through a CV. So, anything which increases your merit and make you stand apart from others, should be included.

    • Cynthia 3:59 am on September 5, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      A curriculum vitae reflects the achievements and developments in a student’s career, and therefore should be prepared with precision. When you are applying for a job, make sure your cv is updated and error free. Since you do not have any idea about how to prepare an influential cv, i will guide you in that. First of all, your cv should include your name and contact information(phone number and email address), your academic and related employment information(especially teaching, editorial), your published research work(research projects, conference papers and publications), your community service. You can also include reference list on a separate page or as part of you cv. These are some of the points you have to work upon because they an essential part of you cv. In the end, make sure your cv is impressive and appealing.

    • Jessica 7:04 am on September 6, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Greetings from my side. To prepare an effective CV, one of the most important points to remember is that there is no standard format. A decent CV is one that underscores the points that are considered to be most critical in your discipline and fits in with the standard protocol within your discipline. Make sure you highlight your strongest points on the top. For example, do mention about you published research work, about your accomplishments and achievements. Highlighting these points will give you an edge, since you have enough knowledge about it. It will be easy to prepare for the interview for those area of subjects in which you have done research. I hope i was able to answer your query and all the best.

  • yenohsha 9:33 am on August 17, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    Should I disclose respondent’s company name? 

    Hi, my school wants me to attach the list of the respondent’s company name, but i am hesitating because i told them that it is againts the research ethics. Before i conduct survey, i wrote them that it will be confidential and anonymous and that i willl not gather company names and email. Please tell me what should i do?

    • Tony 12:23 pm on September 1, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      If your respondents are not comfortable in disclosing their organisations’ names, then you just cannot share either this or any sort of information with your committee. As per the ethical rules, I guess you must have sent a ‘consent to participate’ form to all of your respondents, which ensures that the information shared by each of them will be kept confidential. If the names are disclosed then that will raise an ethical issue, which is also not acceptable. Try to convince your school or the authority that it must be kept confidential, you may also show that consent form (if already signed by the respondents )to them in justification.

  • ryan7178 5:05 am on August 7, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: qualitative analysis, questionnaire designing   

    Pictorial techniques in Questionnaire Design 

    I need some suggestions for questionnaire development. I am having a qualitative analysis for my research and I feel that pictures would give a better and efficient response from my respondent’s end. Please help!

    • Nolan 5:10 am on September 7, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      I guess you are trying to extract a user’s emotional response by applying this technique. I would suggest to use real pictures of real people to extract a real emotion instead of using those ubiquitous smiley faces/emojis. And also incorporate a variety of options (wide range of emotions) to have precise answers. Hope it helps.

    • Richard Perry 10:06 am on September 9, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      One thing which can help here is having a collage of pictures for one option. You can have multiple pictures of different people from different races, ages and gender to express one emotion. This would ensure that your answer doesn’t gets biased and your target respondents choose a right answer by looking at the emotions and not other things like beautiful face, features etc. This solution is actually adopted by NFO Worldgroup. So, it is an acceptable method and would help you in collecting efficient data.

    • Steffy Cougar 9:00 am on September 11, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      While using pictorial techniques, it is really important to make sure you don’t end up making a mistake I did during my PhD. I too took help of pictures in my questionnaire. My research area was related to children’s receptiveness towards animal abuse. So I showed them various violent videos on animal abuse and then asked them to fill in the questionnaire accordingly. I used stock photos in my questionnaire. I had the least idea that my supervisor would declare my data invalid because he felt the images I used were having a biased effect. Children usually have an irrational thinking ability and would willfully pick a picture which they would find attractive. I tried to prove my point for long but didn’t have any luck. And, I had to perform the whole data collection from scratch. Just make sure you use pictures which have a neutral influence. Your target respondents shouldn’t get influenced by pictures and give efficient answers.

    • James Pete 10:11 am on September 11, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      This is exactly what my consultant explained to me when I got my questionnaire professionally designed from These guys have years of expertise in this area. I was apprehensive about this idea of collating diverse images into one. But, this actually saved my research and even my supervisor appreciated my technique. You should definitely adopt it if you are going for pictorial responses in your questionnaire.

  • matilda774 11:05 am on July 24, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    How to write literature review chapter for thesis? 

    I have been searching and collecting references and resources for literature review chapter for past four weeks. My research is all about the stereotyping threats among the people belonging to age group of 20-35 years based in US. I visited the Michigan libraries to find reliable literature but because the topic is less explored, it lacks the adequate information. So, I have around 41 research papers only to study but I do not understand how I should write the review, shall I write the review author-wise or by the date of publication. My chair wants that I provide the research methodologies used by each of the authors I cite so I’m thinking to draft review of literature in tabular form which would keep each methodology or its relevancy sorted out. However, I don’t know if it would be a good idea or not. Help please!

    • Yusuf 6:53 am on August 25, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      I guess you should write literature review theoretically as well as in tabular form. Creating only a synthesized table alone would be much confusing because then there is no scope for explaining or criticizing the existing literature if needed. So, for that purpose only, I think you should write the review as per the publication dates as then you can actually describe the evolution of the knowledge or concepts discovered. Here is a good
      resource This is a detailed guide using which you can conveniently draft review chapter.

    • Samantha 2:57 am on August 27, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      In my opinion, opt for both tabular as well as theoretical format. It is essential to take note of that your review ought not be just a portrayal of what others have published In the form of summaries, however should appear as a basic exchange, indicating knowledge of varying speculations and methodologies. It should be an amalgamation and analysis of the applicable published work, connected consistently to your own particular purpose and justification.

    • Zishan 11:59 am on August 28, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      According to me you should go for the tabular format. You can include different columns to highlight the pros and cons of the studies done. Reasoning being, it will save time of the reviewer and will give the better understanding about the work done in the past and the current area of study.

    • Ellis 6:02 am on September 1, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      In my suggestion, to make a literature review informative, analytical, it is necessary to identify the areas of controversy and help formulate questions that need further research. The most common method used is in the theoretical format. This goes for both primary research projects and secondary data analysis research projects. A good review is described by the author’s ability to assess and critically analyze the significant work in the field.

  • Laura Betcher 12:12 pm on July 18, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    How to synthesize research articles? 

    Hi. It has been three weeks now that I’m still trying to write the literature review chapter of my thesis. My research is about the unfavourable impact that technology has on employees at the workplace. And for this, I obtained 61 research articles and papers from libraries and DOA which are really useful. So, the problem is that I reviewed all of them, finalized 20 research papers and prepared detailed notes. But I cannot synthesize the 20 sources which then are troubling me in writing LR. Are there some tools or any easy peasy way to get done with it?

    • jamie16917 1:17 am on July 19, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      So are you trying to synthesize all of the 20 articles? I don’t think you will be able to synthesize and you are not supposed to do that. Don’t you think it will be too much for the reader to grasp your intent? Instead, out of those 20, you take out 10-12 research papers which you can actually cite and synthesize them all. Now for writing part, you can explore synthesis matrices. Here is a good template of research synthesis matrix. Referring to this create your synthesis matrix and then bring out the main concepts or ideas of those research papers along with the mentioning the sources.

    • Thomas 8:20 am on July 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      What I understand of the problem you are facing is perhaps you are unable to plunge into the articles for understanding the central idea & the developmental structure or organization of the articles. So, first read and review each of those articles and write the main theme of each of them in a synthesis chart or table; whatever you feel like! When you can visualize these, you will automatically see the connecting or the contrasting ideas of multiple sources. And then you can easily write all of these in a coherent manner. You can either begin synthesizing those ideas either source by source or theme by theme. In such way, you can write your focused literature review carefully.

    • tom2331 7:19 am on July 27, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Watch this video although, the idea is not practically elaborated, still, it will clear of many of your doubts. A month back, I had a similar problem with writing literature review chapter when I found this video. It’s good.

  • tom2331 11:48 am on July 14, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    How tough is writing a quantitative methodology chapter of thesis? 

    Dear Admin! I have read many threads here. It’s glad that here many people find the solutions to their problems and it is really motivating that PhDs share their stressful (perhaps many aren’t stressed at all) experiences here and somehow finds support with the interaction.
    Anyways, can someone help me to find out why I’m not able to write my methodology chapter! Like seriously! I freak out every time the research methodology chapter lying on my study bench and with a stamp of REJECTED. I have written this petty little paper almost 7 times but still the comments of my supervisor are same- This piece cannot convince me why you chose quantitative approach, why collected the data through interviews and not from the existing documents, why only SAS is used and not SPSS. He needs more! More elaboration, more strong arguments, more peculiarity! But it is just a methodology chapter okay? What more clarity does he need?

    • Jeff 12:53 pm on July 17, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      7 times really? It appears to me as if you are making the use of inappropriate writing skills for academic writing. Go through this.

    • Sheri 4:52 am on July 19, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Your methodology chapter should move from broad to specific! It will have many sections! Discuss paradigms but not too much. Then, write research design which is the heart of your methodology chapters. Here the study type, questions, data collection and analysis all are introduced and justified step by step. Take some time and research about the importance of the methods & instruments you have used in your research. If you are unable to form your own arguments, look for inspiration somewhere else. See how others wrote a good methodology chapter. Read, evaluate and synthesize in own language: thumb rule of every successful writing.

    • Derek 12:51 pm on July 21, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      You must create a value of the chosen methodology particularly and had no other choice but working out with only this methodology. Quote the sources on research methodology and make claims and arguments that you understand why your methodology works in this particular ways to achieve research purpose. Criticize other researches and other methodologies that have been wrongly implemented.

    • Clay 12:54 pm on July 21, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      let it get done by professionals. They handle such problems well because they know what is it that supervisor expects from you. Check I took SPSS help from them. I’m sure they can help you out with drafting chapter.

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