3 lessons for PhD candidates

Her 1.5 year old toddler taught blogger Nadya Karimasari how to do a PhD properly.

Trust me when I say my PhD process is not going as well as expected.
To my surprise, my 1.5 year old son really helps to understand how I should do a PhD. Most of the time, I feel like things just fall into place. Thanks to my son, who gives a day-to-day example of the best attitude on learning and from whom I try to learn.

He has no fear of failure. He never thinks he’s silly, ridiculous or not making any sense. He has a steadfast trust in himself.

First, he’s never afraid to make mistakes. He has no fear of failure. He never thinks he’s silly, ridiculous or not making any sense. He has a steadfast trust in himself. It’s okay not to know things, that’s why he is here to learn. Never mind what other people might think, he simply enjoys learning new things. No matter the result, for him the joy of the learning process in itself is enough of a reward.

Second, repetition is fun. Every little thing is exciting for him. He likes to do things again and again until he’s good at it, and better. And, always with a big smile on his face. I must admit that I might not be the most efficient PhD candidate because I often have to go back to a document many times over. But I always think about my son who never gets bored doing peek-a-boo game for the umpteenth time.

A lot of PhDs read academic paper not only to understand what is written, but to imitate the method

Third, he’s a very active observer, and he imitates even before understanding the meaning of what he’s imitating. Not long after, he gets the context and see the pattern, thus he can do it at the right moment. He starts to understand the meaning of what he’s doing. He’s learning very quickly by imitation. Similarly, a lot of PhDs read academic paper not only to understand what is written, but to imitate the method of how the author builds up an argument and brings evidence to come to a conclusion.

So, next time you don’t understand an academic paper, try to imitate it and you will get it eventually. Don’t forget to have fun repeting things and never be afraid to make mistakes.

Advertisements

Author: nadya

on-going tensions between ready-made values and uncharted territory

Share your thoughts

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s