Tips and Tricks

Weekly Roundup: November 9

November 09, 2012

In this week's roundup: Tons of writing tips, creating your web presence, careers after graduation.

Grad Student Life

  • Chronicle of Higher Education: Creating Your Web Presence: A Primer for Academics
    "Chances are, however, that if you’re reading ProfHacker, you understand that being visible on the Internet can benefit your scholarship, pedagogy, and even service. And if you’re going on the job market soon, you can reasonably assume that the search committees will put your name into Google (or Bing?) to see what they can learn about you."
  • Carleton Now: Twitter in the Tower
    "As a communications professor who is trained as a sociologist, I spend a lot of time playing with digital media, experimenting with and thinking critically about how technology affects intellectual labour, the delivery of education, and social relations among faculty, administrative staff and students."
  • PhD Talk: The Creative Process: The Creative Habit
    "In this post, we focus on a long-term way to find more creative solutions to research questions."
  • Chronicle of Higher Education: One Sentence Mentoring
    "The appeal of this approach to mentoring is that it forces one to prioritize: If I could tell you only one thing about each topic, what is that one most important thing?"
  • Thesis Whisperer: Should you quit your PhD?
    "If you are doing the PhD for the “wrong” reasons and you aren’t enjoying it or getting much out of it, then it’s time to let go."

Writing and Research

  • Inside Higher Ed: The Costs of Perfectionism
    "As a recovering perfectionist, my heart goes out to people who are in a state of self-inflicted misery. Because I’ve been able to help many people to the other side on an individual basis, I thought I would share the process with you."
  • Inside Higher Ed: 30 Writing Tips
    "A friend just sent me an e-mail asking for writing tips. Her question is a common one -- I get this question every month from one of my doctoral students, one of my former students, or someone outside of the university where I teach."
  • PhD2Published: Successful Academic Writers Make Writing Social
    "Academics in the humanities persist in believing that texts spring fully formed from the mind of the writer. In the sciences, this myth is not so prevalent since most science articles are the result of a team of researchers who publish as coauthors."
  • PhD2Published: Understanding Feelings About Writing
    "The leading researcher on academic writers found that most academics were more willing to talk about even their most personal problems, including sexual dysfunction, than about problems with writing."
  • PhD2Published: Fifty Shades of Grey Matter or How I Learned To Read Again
    "I recently came to the shocking conclusion that I can’t read or rather have forgotten how to read. This alarming realisation has been a moment of anagnorisis in what has otherwise been a wonderfully restful sabbatical term of conferences and writing. I am not suggesting, of course, that I cannot comprehend sentences (although there are certainly some mornings when this would be true) but rather I have lost the art of sitting with a book and really engaging with it. I am an accomplished skim reader and a consummate finder of useful quotes, but I am not a reader."
  • Chat with Rellypops: Why I participate in AcWriMo (Academic Writing Month)
    "... AcWriMo as a process supports the formation of goal setting, and most importantly, at least for me, allows me to focus on research areas that excite me and motivate me to produce publications."
  • PhD2Published: Successful Academic Writers Write
    "It may sound tautological, but the main key to a positive writing experience is writing. Most students’ negative experiences of writing revolve around not writing (i.e., procrastinating) and most students’ positive experiences of writing revolve around actually doing it."
  • Research Whisperer: Academic Fandom
    "As much as we may want to eschew the idea, there are academic celebrities. I don’t mean the ‘media stars’ and leviathans of productivity that we hear and gossip about. I mean the intellectual and theory heroes that we all have: people whose work becomes the foundation of much of our subsequent academic thinking, and even oblique career enablers."
  • Michael Geist: Canadian Copyright Reform In Force: Expanded User Rights Now the Law
    "Today, a bill took effect that has its flaws but also creates some of the most expansive copyright user rights in the world."


  • Inside Higher Education: Teaching with Tablets
    "When I teach, I use my iPad pretty exclusively, from lesson planning to classroom management to grading, and it has done a serious number on the way I think about being a teacher in the dawning age of ubiquitous digital technology. This post offers a brief defense for teaching with tablet technology and hacks for getting the most out of your tablets as an instructor."

After Graduation

  • University Affairs: Keep Your Job Talk Short and Simple
    "To prepare for my own job interviews, I’ve been attending various job seminars in my home department. When I see a bad talk, I’m sympathetic: it’s difficult to condense years of research into a few “take-home” messages, while at the same time demonstrating that you actually have done a lot of work."
  • Chronicle of Higher Education: Adjuncts Build Strength in Numbers
    "Community colleges have traditionally relied heavily on nontenure-track faculty, with 85 percent of their instructors in 2010 not eligible for tenure, according to the most recent federal data available. But the trend has been increasingly evident at four-year institutions, where nearly 64 percent of the instructional faculty isn't eligible for tenure." See also "On Some Campuses, a Population Boom of Adjuncts"
  • Chronicle of Higher Education: Please Click 'Like'
    "Suddenly there's no one's looking out for you, no one to catch you when you start to falter, and no one to offer praise when you do something well. That is something much overlooked in academic culture, where we expect and become inured to criticism, where we analyze and carp at one another."
  • Inside Higher Ed: Who Is This “Admin” You Speak Of?: Some Myths of Alternative Academics
    "The alternative academic career path has recently caught a lot of attention from all angles of academia, in part because of the state of the job market for PhDs and in part because more and more alternative academics are talking about their career paths."
  • Inside Higher Ed: Administration as Academic Alternative
    "It recommended a more open-minded attitude towards administrative careers as options for academics who had trouble finding the tenure-track position of their dreams."

This week's PhD comic:

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