Grad School Gripes

  • twiddle posted an update in the group Group logo of Grad School GripesGrad School Gripes 8 years, 7 months ago

    OH MY GOD WHY DOES THE END OF THE SEMESTER DO THIS TO ME?
    15 days to finish ALL THE THINGS and my lab advisor keeps asking me about my work/analysis on things that don’t have to be ready for conferences for another couple months. I know- I can’t put those things off either, but for fucks sake… PRIORITIES!

  • I’ve been in grad school for about five years now while working on two Masters and an endorsement. I will be down with one of the Masters come summer and I am excited. I have to say my biggest gripe is the people in my classes. I hate people. People are stupid. etc… etc… etc…

  • bibliotecha posted an update in the group Group logo of Grad School GripesGrad School Gripes 8 years, 7 months ago

    My primers are working. Too well. They are supposed to only be amplifying the Y chromosome…but my females are also amplifying. Something is wrong and I don’t know what.

    • That’s rough. Looking at the timestamp, I hope you’ve resolved it by now. When that happens to me it usually means something got cross contaminated. Or worst case scenario I screwed up the DNA extraction process- remnant proteins or something. What species do you work on? Or is it people and now having asked what species just sounds weird? [I do…[Read more]

      • Hi! Your work sounds cool! I’m working with fruit flies, and it turns out that the reason I am having so much trouble is because the Y chromosome is basically all paralogs of the autosomal chromosomes. Oh, and BLAST, BLAT, and the electronic PCR that I used were not complete. They all said that my region was only on the Y chromosome, but…[Read more]

        • Yay other genetics people! I basically use genetics to track landscape scale population movement of brook trout in fragmented river systems. A lot of monitoring for differentiation and creating sibship patterns to identify natural and anthropogenic barriers (anything from too-high water temp, pollution, damaged culverts, impassable dams, etc).…[Read more]

  • EliLaViajera posted an update in the group Group logo of Grad School GripesGrad School Gripes 8 years, 7 months ago

    I joined this group about a week or two ago and wrote out my big long gripey gripe and then the next day I wasn’t in the group anymore and my big long post was gone. I don’t have the energy left to write it all out again.

  • Frigg posted an update in the group Group logo of Grad School GripesGrad School Gripes 8 years, 7 months ago

    This isn’t really a gripe, but I am about to explode into full out panic mode.

    I have to start my first literature review, due in a week (I know, I know). Anyway, I keep hearing about setting up an excel coding sheet, but I can’t figure out what I should be using for my headings.

    Do I just set everything onto one sheet, or should I be using…[Read more]

  • alecto posted an update in the group Group logo of Grad School GripesGrad School Gripes 8 years, 8 months ago

    I feel very gripey indeed. I’m in the last semester of my MA, so I’m working on my thesis, and here in Taiwan you need to first pass an oral proposal defence – I have no idea if that is necessary anywhere else – and I have five days to turn mine in to him. Mostly because he didn’t have time to meet earlier this week, so I don’t have as much time…[Read more]

  • ModelSystem posted an update in the group Group logo of Grad School GripesGrad School Gripes 8 years, 8 months ago

    Sooo… I got the NSF DDIG! I am super excited that I will be able to fund the last bit of my PhD myself!

    • WOO! That is awesome!
      I’m on the last year of my current grant now, so I’ve started the prowl for more monies myself…

  • Silverwane posted an update in the group Group logo of Grad School GripesGrad School Gripes 8 years, 8 months ago

    I’m really confused. So I had graded everyone’s first papers, and I gave them a couple days extra to revise them if they wanted…and NO ONE submitted a revision.

    I don’t know if they decided the work wasn’t worth it, if they didn’t care, or what. Maybe I should have let the revision replace the grade rather than average between the two (ONLY if…[Read more]

  • bouhaliya posted an update in the group Group logo of Grad School GripesGrad School Gripes 8 years, 8 months ago

    I just can’t even bring myself to write anymore. It just feels like everything I’m typing out is word vomit. I have to stop ever 2 sentences or so to check sources, read up on something, or ask myself “Why the f- am I doing this to myself???”

    Please tell me it will get better. Because right now all I can think about is how I HAVE to finish this…[Read more]

    • Aww that’s no good. :( Do you have a break soon? Maybe that’s what you need to recharge a bit.

      • Yeah, I probably DO need a break, but I so desperately need to be ready to defend before this fall (when I plan to move out of the country). Plus I’ll probably be taking about a month off over the summer to make the necessary preparations for said move, so ideally I should have a full first draft before then. *sigh* I guess I’ll rely on my coffee…[Read more]

        • Take a day off! Sure, you have craptons of work, but 1) you’ll feel tons better after some time for yourself and 2) you’ll be more productive, so you’d be actually helping yourself get done!

  • raine posted an update in the group Group logo of Grad School GripesGrad School Gripes 8 years, 9 months ago

    Gripe: Advisers who don’t reply to my goddamn e-mails. Seriously, I just want to know if you’ll be IN THE OFFICE ON A CERTAIN DAY. Hit that reply button and take 4/10 second to reply. For the love of god.

    • I always figured that such professors were just hoping students’ queries would just magically sink to the bottom of their inbox (“If I don’t click on it, I don’t have to answer their questions”).

  • veruna posted an update in the group Group logo of Grad School GripesGrad School Gripes 8 years, 9 months ago

    Gah! I hate writing up my data. It’s not fun and not the kind of writing I’m good at. I don’t care what the R-squared of the data is when I don’t know what the data means! I want out of research. I hate it. I want to go back to writing fun things, like my dream journal. Blagh.

    • I think you need to know what you’re trying to find from the test, then you’ll know why the R^2 value is needed. Do you need help? I might be able to help.

      • The problem is I didn’t get to do the actually data crunching, so I’m not familiar with the tests the statistician used. I know my R^2s are decent, but I’m frustrated because I don’t know the whys of it all. I have a meeting with the woman who crunched the numbers tomorrow. I just wish she would have given me better information to go on because…[Read more]

    • Annnd… Done with my abstract. Halfway done with my poster. And I just got the wonderful news that I don’t have to write the paper. Someone else does. Thank God for small favors. :)

      • Hooray! How silly that they would have you do that without taking a course that involved writing up stats results, though.

  • ModelSystem posted an update in the group Group logo of Grad School GripesGrad School Gripes 8 years, 9 months ago

    Oh man. I applied for a Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant (DDIG) from the NSF in November. The external peer review was two days ago. I know we probably won’t hear one way or the other for a few months yet, but it’s driving me crazy knowing that Real Scientists (TM) have looked over and discussed my proposal. I very likely will NOT get…[Read more]

  • Liadan posted an update in the group Group logo of Grad School GripesGrad School Gripes 8 years, 9 months ago

    Group projects, you guys.

    I’m getting my Master’s in Public Health, and so many of my classes are all about the group projects.

    One of them is an general requirement to cover the broadest bases of another department. We have preassigned groups to ensure that there are representatives from each department, and holy hell, I simply could not care…[Read more]

    • Ugh, group projects in grad school? Is that reflective of the field of Public Health (I’m fairly unfamiliar)?

      I HATE group work. Luckily, I don’t have to do that in my program. I’m also really hesitant to assign group work when I teach unless I think it would be super beneficial because I hate it so much.

      • Group work is definitely common in my concentration, but not all of them. I’ve gotten used to it to an extent–the thought alone used to fill me with dread–but it’s still a pain, because scheduling those things around work and organizational duties and the rest of the course load is nearly impossible.

        The huge one makes sense to do as a group…[Read more]

  • Katie posted an update in the group Group logo of Grad School GripesGrad School Gripes 8 years, 9 months ago

    I’m going to start grad school this fall, and I’m SO excited. (don’t rain on my parade)
    I haven’t been challenged in undergrad and am ready to work hard. It’s just for my master’s, but I plan on getting a phD after that, and that excites me too. I love to work really hard at something and conquer things. I know it’s hard, but I’m really thrilled…[Read more]

    • Absolutely! I love grad school. I am constantly learning, and I have an advisor that I absolutely love. I love being a scholar and getting to expand my brain everyday!

      What field are you in?

      • Cultural Anthropology. My major first was international studies, but I don’t know if politics is for me. I really like expressing myself through writing and expanding my horizons (and being able to travel was #1), so I thought Anthropology would be a great field for an adventurer like me.
        What is your concentration?

        • Art History. I took my first art history class when I was a sophomore in college and never went back! It fulfills my love of writing and of art.

  • bibliotecha posted an update in the group Group logo of Grad School GripesGrad School Gripes 8 years, 9 months ago

    So…I’m more scared than ever. I’m working on my Master’s now, at the same school I did my undergrad in. I planned to go somewhere else to get my doctorate. Last Thursday, my professor randomly asked me if I was looking at schools, and told me not to do it, basically because the higher up you go, the less research you actually do. He was talking…[Read more]

    • I’m definitely worried. Doesn’t it more depend on what kind of school you end up working at? If you work at a big research school you can do more research, whereas if it’s smaller you have to spend more time doing other things (teaching and admin). Also, is your prof younger? If so, I know that new profs get strapped with the shit admin jobs.…[Read more]

      • I think he’s younger. He’s one of the younger ones in our department. He just got tenure last semester (the fall one). Maybe you’re right about the age thing (I certainly don’t know haha).

        Thanks!

    • I’ll just echo what Lilydancing said. If you want to do research, you should try to work at a large research university. I have no idea what the grant money situation looks like for animal behavior.

      I have heard from some in the sciences that they don’t like that they eventually don’t participate in hands-on research as much as they did when they…[Read more]

      • Yeah, I do not want to be a lab tech permanently. I’m wondering if my professor was just having a day when everything seemed to be going wrong. But I also know some animal behavior PhDs who are defending this semester, and they all seem very bleak about the job outlook and grant money.

        Thanks!

    • Oh, I just thought of something else. Have you been checking out what the job market looks like for Masters vs PhDs in your field? It’d probably be a good idea to see what kinds of careers you could enter. This would probably be the best way to answer your own question.

    • I think it generally is true that once you’re on tenure track, you tend to do less hands-on research. But! You now have your own grad students who have tons of ideas and are going to challenge you and expose you to new directions and areas of research you may not have otherwise been involved in. In reality, jobs are tough to find everywhere.…[Read more]

      • I would love to send you a PM! Thanks! I think we have them. Figuring them out…well, that’s another question. :P

        I don’t really care about “the grant money” because one of my professors (the one I did undergrad work with) who is one of the most amazing women in the world, has done a lot of her research without funding, because it wasn’t…[Read more]

    • I guess my only question is do you want to work in academia? Is that the only place you can do research in your field? A lot of my friends want to do research, but are avoiding academia because they don’t like the politics/admin stuff, so they are instead either going to work at a national lab or else in industry. Is this an option for you?

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