5 quick and dirty tricks for the terminally busy researcher

I love these 5 tips

The Research Whisperer

This post is written by Dr Inger Mewburn, over at the Thesis Whisperer, who is struggling on a number of fronts to keep her research work cooking and stay sane.


Short Cut Road (Photo by Nic McPhee - http://www.flickr.com/photos/nicmcphee/) Short Cut Road (Photo by Nic McPhee – http://www.flickr.com/photos/nicmcphee/)

Busy-ness is something of a badge of honour in academia, but I am genuinely busy right now.

I fly 500kms to work and back each week, hold down a fairly demanding job, and want to spend some time with my family. When I am busy, ‘good practice’ goes out the window. At home, this means I stop planning dinners, cleaning behind the toilet, or pairing my socks. At work, I stop filing my references, tagging entries in my database, or cleaning out my inbox.

Chaos reigns but, curiously, things still get done. I’m a productive person who is deeply lazy, so I’m open to any and all hacks that make…

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The best two books on doing a thesis

These are books I highly recommend too.

The Thesis Whisperer

I started my PhD at the University of Melbourne in early 2006 and finished in 2009. I did well, collecting the John Grice Award for best thesis in my faculty and coming second for the university medal (dammit!). I attribute this success to two ‘how to’ books in particular: Evans and Gruba’s “How to write a better thesis” and Kamler and Thomson’s “Helping doctoral students write”, both of which recently went into their second edition.

photoI use both of these books in my teaching practice and refer to them often in my blog posts. My old copies had been photocopied so often they had nearly fallen apart, so I was glad to get a brand new copy of each. Both of them have been substantially refreshed, so it seems like a good time to finally give them a proper review.

I picked up “How to write a better thesis”

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