Posts tagged academia is shit

That’s vodka. And usually this (non)blog isn’t sappy pap…

But some days you realise you’ve chosen a life that’s really lonely, and usually on those days it’s pretty shit coming home, even though your best mate is there, and feeling like he’s the only one who wants to spend Friday night with you; and even that’s contractually obligable. 

Expat. 
4th year PhD.
Married.

See, even the things you think will make you less lonely, still make you lonely. Because the human condition is a lonely one.

That’s vodka. And usually this (non)blog isn’t sappy pap…

But some days you realise you’ve chosen a life that’s really lonely, and usually on those days it’s pretty shit coming home, even though your best mate is there, and feeling like he’s the only one who wants to spend Friday night with you; and even that’s contractually obligable.

Expat.
4th year PhD.
Married.

See, even the things you think will make you less lonely, still make you lonely. Because the human condition is a lonely one.

3 notes 

The happiest people I know are dedicated to dealing with the most difficult problems.

Why the happiest people have the hardest jobs (via fastcompany)

lol - academics say ‘what’?!

160 notes 

the halfway mark

I’ve 24 exams left to mark (grade) out of this pile of 50, out of 90 total, and they all must be done by today.

I write to Parliament.
Even though I’m not British.

You think he knows?

I’ve written over 2,500 words today - that’s longer than my students’ essay! 

My supervisors have given me until the end of the month to get my shit together and produce work, which I haven’t done since my PhD/mental/nervous breakdown 13 months ago. 

My tally of 2,500 today is added to the 12,000 total from yesterday. … That’s right; I’m submitting well over 60 pages. …

Hooray me!

Maybe I did have a year long crisis, but I’m doing DAMN WELL now. 

GIVE ME A DOCTORATE TO OCCUPY THE 4TH POSITION ON THE WALL OF SHIT THAT DIDN’T KILL ME!

I’ve written over 2,500 words today - that’s longer than my students’ essay!

My supervisors have given me until the end of the month to get my shit together and produce work, which I haven’t done since my PhD/mental/nervous breakdown 13 months ago.

My tally of 2,500 today is added to the 12,000 total from yesterday. … That’s right; I’m submitting well over 60 pages. …

Hooray me!

Maybe I did have a year long crisis, but I’m doing DAMN WELL now.

GIVE ME A DOCTORATE TO OCCUPY THE 4TH POSITION ON THE WALL OF SHIT THAT DIDN’T KILL ME!

1 note 

Most Ph.D. students spend their days reading esoteric books and stressing out about the tenure-track job market. Thomas Herndon, a 28-year-old economics grad student at UMass Amherst, just used part of his spring semester to shake the intellectual foundation of the global austerity movement.

“Meet the 28-year-old Grad Student Who Shook Global Austerity Movement” | Daily Intelligencer

There are several things that are great about this story:

  1. A “lowly” graduate student was able to take down a highly influential study, by simply looking under the hood at the underlying data and finding simple errors.
  2. The importance of replicating existing findings.
  3. Consequently, the importance of sharing data (or making it publicly available).
  4. The importance of remembering that science is not about definitive answers, but about engaging in a debate.
  5. The importance of making arguments and counter-arguments based on data, not just mere speculation.

We don’t often push our students to ask questions and challenge the authorities. We should. This guy is inspiration because he had the confidence, persistence, and fortitude to take apart a highly influential study. 

But.

You also have to give credit to his professor, who gave the assignment: Go out and replicate and existing study. And then working with the student to refine the findings and double-check the work.

And you also have to give credit to one of the original authors of the study, who sent the student the dataset. Without that dataset, there would be no “take down” and no discovery. The original author knew she was exposing herself, but freely passed along the data.

This is how the scientific method works, and why it’s superior to other forms of knowledge. Science is a collaborative project. The student needed guidance from the professor; the original author shared her data. Together—collectively—they are engaging in a debate and uncovering knowledge (in this particular case: the relationship between public debt and economic growth). 

In the end, it doesn’t matter that the student is a “lowly” graduate student at UMass Amherst and he “took down” two Harvard economics professors. In the most scientific sense, they stood as equals and worked together to solve a problem. The idea that “experts” have superior intellects and should not cooperate if they disagree, is the exact opposite of how science is supposed to work.

(via pol102)

Fact.
Science.
Next.

79 notes 

pol102:

watchallisonteach:

captainnaustralia:

i made a thing

uh…. I kinda sorta really want to make this more school appropriate and use it as a review for writing essays…

Kinda sorta love this.

Brilliant.

Teaching resumes Monday and Friday. Out of my 40-something students, 4 came last class, and guess what we covered - yup, essay prep. So, guess who wants to forward this along to all the little miss/mister-can’t-be-bothereds.

201,949 notes 

Welcome to the everyday subconscious of an intellectual.

If they had invented this sooner I bet fewer academics would have died of the drink… just saying - we can be a destructive bunch.

H/T: Tastefully Offensive

1 note 

nevver:

Against the world

I’m trying to keep my (non)blog professional for a variety of reasons that make me a lil sick right now… 
but this and PhD Cat are how I feels inside. 
OH THE FEELS - little teeny fingers choking the life out of me. 
OMGPHD

nevver:

Against the world

I’m trying to keep my (non)blog professional for a variety of reasons that make me a lil sick right now…

but this and PhD Cat are how I feels inside.

OH THE FEELS - little teeny fingers choking the life out of me.

OMGPHD

147 notes 

I feel a bit sick (and very distracted)

Just before lunch I sent an email to Geneva asking for help arranging an interview with the Director-General of certain international organisation.

This interview, in addition to another interview request (pending) with the Secretary-General of another international organisation, will make or break my doctoral thesis and possibly my career in the international civil service.

I.am.quite.sick in the belly.

Send hugs?

1 note 

Great read. My partner and I’s story has yet to be played out, as he’s currently in the 3rd year of sacrificing his career as a satellite engineer so that I can obtain my doctorate (with another year to go). Here’s one thing that’s absolutely true about work and marriage: when you’re married, you make trade offs, and mostly this means one sacrifices while another gains. No matter how you determine who sacrifices and who gains, you always hope you’ve made the right decision based on complete gender equality - an equality that does not reflect the reality of the professional world, especially in the case of academia.

internationalwomensinitiative:

My youngest brother was born with health complications that made it necessary to have one parent caring for him full-time. My mother assumed this role, and never returned back to work full-time once her maternity leave was finished, in order to care for my brother. This decision made sense…

5 notes