Could collaborative funding become a widely available option from the start of an academic career?
Short-term Organizational Tools for Scientists
A big part of a student’s daily work is organizing their professional life – managing tasks and effectively using their time each day to meet long-term goals. But, as a friend of mine recently pointed out, little in our training prepares us for this critical, but difficult, task. In this post, I describe tools and share resources and advice related to short-term (daily/weekly task) organization that I’ve picked up in my last three years of grad school. This is a follow up to my previous post on tools/resources related to long-term organization.
Long-term Organizational Tools for Scientists
A big part of a student’s daily work is organizing their professional life – deciding on project priorities, keeping track of resources, mapping out long-term research plans, and setting appropriate goals. But, as a friend of mine recently pointed out, little in our training prepares us for this critical, but difficult and unintuitive, task. In this post, I describe tools and share resources and advice related to long-term organization that I’ve picked up in my last three years of grad school. I’ll be following this up with a second post on tools/resources related to short-term (daily/weekly task) organization.
Interdisciplinary teams that tango
I find myself more and more willing to go out on an interdisciplinary limb with age. Is it the job security, boredom of my discipline, alarm at impending climate and biodiversity issues intersecting with society?
Who rewards you?
In this incredibly demanding environment, it was so important for me to find my own pleasure in my work, to understand that I could fix my own principles and values, not look for them elsewhere. It took me awhile to figure this out….
Returners to science mentoring scheme
Can you leave academia, take a long break, and come back? I talk about my experience of being a returner to science and how I am taking up mentoring to share my experience with others.
An inconvenient report
That graphic cliff of emissions is telling us we cannot keep doing the same thing – as if that inconvenient report never came out – we cannot keep flying everywhere to network and hear each other talk in person
“Be Like Me” might be bad advice to students
Academics should question whether advising students to do as we do, or follow in our footsteps, is really the best advice for students.
The First Year Experience of a Postdoctoral Fellow
Finishing your PhD and entering the postdoctoral world? Congratulations! In an ode to “The First Year Experience of a Grad Student” I provide a narrative of my first-year experience as a postdoctoral fellow and lend a few tips for what I found made me successful.
When can I decline peer reviewing a manuscript?
I provide here examples of situations when it is understandable or acceptable to decline peer reviewing a manuscript.
The Game Theory of Scooping Grad Students
The lag that many graduate students experience between gathering feedback on their ideas and publishing leaves them vulnerable the unethical tactics of scooping “hawks”. How much do we need to worry about this? Game theory can help us decide.
Planning a Scientific Conference Session, or How to Make the Perfect Science Mixtape
The process of putting together a conference session is strange at first, but what you soon realize is that what you are actually doing is making a science mixtape for all your closest friends. And if you want that mixtape to shine, you need to make sure your session is diverse, inclusive, and focused.
I’m Meghan Barrett and “This Is How I Work”
“How I Work” is a interview series that demonstrates there are many ways to be successful in academia and students, post-docs, and professors need to find the approach that is best for them. This is the second installment in the series.
#ClimateChangedMyThesis: Mentoring students through climate change
Many graduate student ecologists will propose thesis work that contains both a lab and a significant field component. However climate change is shifting where species occur, when they occur, and if they occur, often in ways we are ill prepared to predict. How should mentors shift the advice they give their graduate students as they work to develop the fieldwork component of their research, to avoid risky and potentially impossible projects?
Thoughts Of a Graduate Student
This is the inaugural post in a periodic series that details the late-night, midday, and early morning musings “Of a Graduate Student”.
Diverse ecosystems require diverse ecologists
As ecologists, we study biodiversity in ecosystems. Here, we look at diversity of ecologists themselves and make recommendations on how best to recruit and retain underrepresented groups. Entering ecology and other field sciences face additional challenges due to the privileged nature of outdoor careers. We believe outreach programs designed to engage underrepresented groups at a young age as well as initiatives to promote inclusive excellence during graduate school will help increase diversity of ecologists. Contribute to the discussion using #ecologist_diversity on Twitter!
So you want to be an ally
Here are some pointers to consider if you’re a guy who wants to support fair treatment for women scientists.
Dr. Mom: How being a single mom has influenced my life as a PhD Student
This post details some of the obstacles I’ve faced as a single mom pursuing a PhD. These two paths don’t often intersect, and while this lifestyle can be challenging, I’ve struck a balance that works for me. I hope to let other young women in academia know that you don’t have to choose career or family, you can have both!
The importance of early career networks
Networks of early career researchers (ECRs) have long existed as unofficial groups, yet only within the last decade have they been widely formalised within universities, societies and other groups of researchers. Often the benefits of participating in these groups are difficult to convey to ECRs and others within the wider community, yet they are wide and numerous.
We are more than just grad students: we are academia’s unacknowledged workforce
There is a growing need to create equitable experiences in academia- for everyone.
Rejection in ecology is something we all go through, so how do we not feel like a failure?
Research & innovation: a conflict of interest for conservation biologists?
When research becomes innovation, universities get paid.
Changing the model of academic publication
The problems with academia are multifaceted. The intense competition for positions and funding rewards numbers of publications and grant dollars brought in, rather than advances in understanding. Individual researchers cannot change this state of affairs without uniting to improve the system. While many issues need to be addressed, there is one revolution that researchers can start immediately: we can change the model of academic publication.
Is 50:50 an appropriate null model for measuring gender bias? Ecologists should know better
Ecologists use null models every day. But we rarely use them when measuring gender bias in academia.
Ecologist Spotlight: Cecilia O’Leary
We seek out ecologists with diverse backgrounds and perspectives to highlight their work and share their stories and experiences. Check out this week’s Ecologist Spotlight featuring Cecilia O’Leary!