Whether you’re thinking of applying to grad programs or you’re in the thick of internship applications, being aware of these seven points can save you some heartache when applying for an internship or practicum.
Everybody knows that interviewing for a graduate or post-graduate position involves prep work. You want to be sure to effectively communicate that you are a polished, serious candidate. In addition to preparing your answers to expected questions, you may need to practice a job talk, teaching demonstration, or give an informal summary of your previous work. However, you can make that work a little easier by following these simple tips. For all you academic job hunters, also check out this article on the cardinal sins of interviewing.
It’s now been two years since I walked across the stage, shook the administrators’ hands, and received my doctorate degree. I remember thinking, “Yes, I did it!” Things were looking up for me, I had a job lined up, I was a new mom, and finally free from school and all the unpleasant things associated with it (like sitting in seminar meetings). Two years later, I have a much different perspective than I did back then. Below, I’ve outlined nine things that I miss about being in grad school. If you're in grad school, my advice is be grateful for what you've got while it lasts.
Grad students have a hard time keeping the lines between school and home separate. When your advisor finally emails you back, it feels like you need to be ready no matter what you’re doing. However, given what we know about work-nonwork conflict, grad students should proceed with caution.
Grad students are plagued by self-doubt and wonder if they’ll make it through the week—let alone the semester. When everyone else seems to be doing well, it’s easy to believe that you’re the only one struggling. In reality, these feelings get to everyone whether they’ll admit it or not. Research shows us, however, that there are simple things that you can do to improve study habits, grades, and even motivation for learning.
Grad school will test your time management skills. You won’t be able to graduate without successfully scheduling and completing events. But did you know that your preference for planning your day can have long-lasting implications on your psychological well-being?
Sent a draft to your advisor and got it back dripping with red ink? Does it mean that you should quit? Not at all! How, then, should you handle negative feedback from your advisor?
Teaching has changed dramatically with the advent of the smart phone. Perhaps you actively encourage students to Bring Your Own Device (BYOD), or maybe you’ve given up on trying to police students’ behavior in the classroom. Either way, your educational goals may ultimately be tempered by this one course policy.
There is no question that you will need to work with others in order to be successful in grad school. If you know a little bit about personality theory, you will not only be able to predict how people will react in various situations, but you will also be able to use your own personality tendencies to increase productivity.
Feel like your advisor is working you into the ground? Perhaps you have come to the conclusion that graduate programs have complete disregard for their students’ personal lives and that they intentionally and ruthlessly work their students like slaves. I won’t attempt to deny these accusations, but I do believe in seeing the bright side to any unfortunate situation. Below I’ve outlined a little pep talk to encourage you on your quest for that coveted postgraduate degree.
As you start your career, you may consider going into academia or industry. Either way, the career path you choose can affect how others view you—even without knowing anything about you. This type of stereotyping allows people to make fast decisions about a person’s intentions. Is this person good or bad? So how will others perceive you when you begin your new career?
If you’re even remotely considering going into academia, you will need to gain as much teaching experience as you can. Part of teaching is the dreaded course evaluations. Whether you are teaching a solo class or are simply a teaching assistant, should you care about course evaluations?
You’ve excelled at everything in your life thus far. You’re a budding expert in your field. You dazzle your peers and faculty with your mad research skills. You’re a superstar in your field. So why would becoming a new parent be any different? According to recent research, feeling pressure to be a “super-parent” can exacerbate mental health conditions in new parents.
As a grad student, I often joked with people about how we must cater to the needs of undergrads. Their parents were paying big bucks, and who would want their little snowflake to feel the pangs of disappointment? It wasn’t until my first year as an assistant professor that I heard the term “customer service” applied to students in a serious, non-satirical manner.