Getting funding for a PhD and being a graduate student
Audio clip: Alison says that when doing research students may feel disheartened for a while until they have some results which other people say are interesting. From that point ‘spirits’ improve.
When you were a graduate student for example did you enjoy that experience? You were busy working, you had that time off to do, that was your year off. Did you like having time for research?
Yes, yes I did. And I think the, if you have a formal period off where you are supposed to be doing something then there is this kind of curve of your spirits. They start off okay, they sort of plummet after a few months when you think that you’re not getting anywhere and you’re not delivering something and then you know the minute you start to get some results and people start to say that’s interesting your spirits get considerably elevated by that.
I think people should be aware of the fact that when they start they’re not always going to find that it’s, that they enjoy it to begin with. They may feel lost for a while. It does depend on what you’re doing though, if you actually had a specific project that you were slotting into where somebody else had been working on it that’s much easier. But if you’ve been given a blank canvas you can find it looks a bit daunting after a few months and then you need to keep going.