The art of the ‘cold call’ email

Email is the lifeblood of university communications: quick, easy, painless… and so very easy to get wrong. We humans are a curious lot. We are highly social creatures but idiosyncratic. There is a lot of love, but also a lot of jostling for status and power. Academia, with its deeply middle class, coded language and … Continue reading The art of the ‘cold call’ email

The year of living Covidly

We made it. 2020 is about to be over. Before a year in review post, a special announcement: As regular readers know, for over 10 years now I have run the Thesis Whisperer blog as a 'not for loss' model, where I donate excess above operating costs to charity. This year, as an explicit christmas … Continue reading The year of living Covidly

Where I call bullshit on the way we do the PhD

There's a looming economic crisis in higher education. Perhaps you have lost work already and you're wondering how you will support yourself (I'm really sorry). It's hard to know if you'll get more or less teaching next semester and what form it will take. Will it be online? Or face to face? Maybe your courses … Continue reading Where I call bullshit on the way we do the PhD

Academic spy networks (and why you need one)

First, a fire update! Thank you SO much for your messages of love and support in response to my last post. Thank you to everyone who donated to our P2 mask appeal: it was wildly successful and is now closed. We gave out an astonishing 3500 masks and donated the excess (some $1500) to our … Continue reading Academic spy networks (and why you need one)

You have to believe that what you do matters

Greetings friends. I hope you had a summer or winter break wherever you are. I'm back early this year because Australia, where I live, has hit the world media for all the wrong reasons. You might have seen the horrifying footage from the South Coast. My  oldest friend, who was holidaying there, sent me this photo, which … Continue reading You have to believe that what you do matters

Winding down the Thesis Whisperer?

[Edit 23/12/2019: I donated all of my Thesis Whisperer Amazon royalties (about $1000) to the NSW Rural fire service. Thanks to everyone who bought a book this year: you have made a difference. If you can spare anything else, please consider giving. The government has not funded services enough and volunteers are completely exhausted. Here's … Continue reading Winding down the Thesis Whisperer?

Being in a Minority: It’s Not All Bad

Some time ago I wrote a post about what I thought was an 'anti-PhD attitude' displayed by some recruiters I interviewed for a research project. In that post I suggested that the small number of PhD graduates in the workforce led to graduates facing similar problems to other minorities who faced problems like stereotyping. After that … Continue reading Being in a Minority: It’s Not All Bad

Cleaning up, ready for the next phase

Is your desk a hot mess right now? Dr Linda Devereux can relate. In this post she shares the touching story of cleaning her office after the PhD was finished and the unexpected difficulty of the clearing out process. Linda Devereux is a writing consultant and independent researcher. She has worked in higher education for … Continue reading Cleaning up, ready for the next phase