Twitter Weekly Updates for 2010-04-19

PhD progress

Things are finally starting to move on the proposal now that I’ve managed to catch up on a lot of other regular work that’s been outstanding.  I’ve had a few meetings with my two supervisors (one is a professor in my department and another is the head of the Directorate of Teaching and Learning at the university) and we’ve drawn up a timeline for submission of the proposal.

I’ve also been spending some time putting together a different proposal for funding, which I submitted today.  I had no idea how much time is involved in getting these things together.  On the one hand you spend a significant amount of time on something that may have zero pay-off.  On the other hand, it really serves to clarify your thinking around the project.  Through this process, I found that vague ideas are easy to have, but finding a workable methodology to take them forward is far more difficult.

I’m also beginning to understand what people mean when they say that research is a very lonely process (I recently spent hours on a few paragraphs, tweaking them so that they’re just right).  Oftentimes, people just won’t understand what the motivation is and it’s sometimes quite difficult to explain.  It’s like that saying: “If they get it, you don’t have to explain.  If they don’t get it, you can’t”.

Anyway, as I said previously, I’m going to try and make this research process as open as possible, in the hope that others in similar situations find some consolation in realising that they’re not alone.