I am a PhD student close to finishing my 1st year, highly motivated, passionate, hard working and with one accepted article in a really good journal (related to PhD project) plus conference proceedings.

I would like to grow as a scientist and also develop my ideas and therefore having a good research portfolio (i.e. papers) is essential for an early career scientist as me.

I am trying to share some of my research ideas, which are something extra outside the PhD project (multi-task), with my PhD supervisors but it seems that they won’t listen or are not interested.

Why are the not involving/listening to me in their ongoing research?

My field is applied physical sciences and I am based in ‘EU’.

I’m currently writing an essay on the possible benefits of video games in education for my Extended Project Qualification, and for part of it I want to cite a blog post from Gamasutra written by a developer who makes educational games. My supervisor has previously said to me that I should try to stick to citing research papers or books, as these are generally reputable, and I agree with this. However I cannot find anything in a journal that fits the point I want to make, as I wanted to write about a developer perspective on these kinds of games. Would citing such a post have an impact on the reputability of what I am writing, and therefore impact my grade?

First of all, I apologize if this is not the right forum to post this question.

My school currently has an update on our computers that includes a method that allows them to delete all our files anytime on our school-owned computers. This method is done without the students knowing it. My computer has not been updated yet, but I think that they will force me to update to include that feature.

Would it be okay for me to refuse this update?

First off, I want to say that I wholly support the idea of making STEM labs and research groups at good universities more inclusive and that race and gender should be used in the admissions process to help schools admit more qualified women and minorities. In fact, it is even allowed by the Supreme Court, here in the United States.

(However, as an aside, setting quotas, e.g. limiting the amount of a certain minority / majority group based on their race, when they are otherwise well-qualified, or more qualified than other applicants who receive admission, is defined as discrimination and illegal. Harvard is one school that is currently being scrutinized for setting quotas, and in due time, the courts will decide whether there is enough evidence…).

So basically I know of a professor who gives preferential treatment to women, and I want to confront him about the inequity of his actions, and the inconsistency with which he chooses to advise students.

So what did he do?

He wrote a rec letter for my female classmate to attend a very prestigious graduate school. She got in and is very happy. I also don’t doubt her abilities either, having worked alongside with her for a bit and can see her talents. However this female student never took a class or did a research project with this professor who wrote her letter. This professor, call him Professor X, is a household name in his field, and his word can pretty much get someone into a program, I believe.

However, I was told, right from the horse’s mouth, from another professor that serves on the admissions committee at our school, that letters should never come from a professor which a student has never worked with or took a class with. Academic advising on coursework selection should not count, basically. I.e., just because he gave her advice on coursework selection and watched her develop into a talented senior, it does not give him the ethical right to write a letter for her and speak about her accomplishments with other professors. In fact, I was told this by my own professor, who said very explicitly, “I am happy to write for you, but note that I am not allowed to speak about anything else other than your performance in my class, despite the fact that you have progressed much further.”

Another inconsistent action by Professor X: he told me that graduate school selection must be done on my own. However, my female classmate told me that Professor X gave her a list of schools to apply to. But I thought that the student must choose his / her schools on their own?

Again, I would like to reiterate that I respect this female student very much; I am however feeling cheated by a professor who says one thing regarding advising, yet does another thing, depending on the gender of the student.

Is it worth pointing all of this out to Professor X directly? If so, how should I go about it? A carefully worded email is something that I had in mind.

Planning to apply for MS/Phd Artificial Intelligence/Neuroscience . I have a previous Msc from UK in Computer systems Management (it was a professional master’s inclined towards industry but i did a thesis here) and the subjects were not as deep and intense , nonetheless it gave a good foundation.I have since grown , matured and developed some serious research skills and now I feel/can prove that , I am competent enough for artificial intelligence/neuro-computer thing. I will apply for Phd directly but I am not sure whether they would admit without a Specialized masters in AI. I am also worried about being “flagged” out because of duplicate degree

Note: this question is specifically about awards in math.

So I have heard that professors doing applied work in math research have like no chance to win the big prizes in their fields, and that only the theorists win the big math prizes.

Is this true?

You might be asking “big, compared to what?”

So let’s consider, for example, the Abel prize and the Fields Medal, … or some prize of similar prestige and similar monetary award.

I received a master’s in math a long time ago and now I am thinking I would like to get a Ph.D. Since I have not been in school, would it be ok to approach a professor I would like to work with by proving a small thing from one of his papers he says is “work to be done” and emailing to him? I already have a proof. Would this add value for him or would he be annoyed? Many people here say you need letters from professors but I have no way for that. This is in America.

Lately I’ve been reading a lot of the influential papers in my field (computer science, but specifically, machine learning). What’s about to happen if I decide to publish my detailed notes (along with my commentary/views about the author’s arguments) on my personal tech blog? More concretely, would this practice be looked down on by the authors and other academics? At what point could I get into legal trouble for directly quoting too much from a given article? My intent is to summarize others’ research, and not call it my own.

In a cover letter to apply for an assistant professor job in the Western US, I want to refer to one of my publications in particular:

Indeed, this theme is the topic of my 2016 paper in Journal XYZ on the relationship between _____. I used the such-and-such scale to examine _____.

My coauthors were a faculty member with whom I have a excellent relationship and her former adviser; neither one would dispute that I did about 95% of the research (except for the original dataset collection) and perhaps 80% of the writing.

It feels cleaner and intellectually honest to call it “my paper,” rather than “my first-authored paper,” but of course anyone can see on my CV that I was the first of three authors. Is it wrong for me to use the singular? What would be a preferable way to refer to this publication in a way that rightfully claims substantial ownership of it?

From The Professor Is In and from other sources, I’ve gotten the impression that it’s very good practice to refer to possible collaborators both within and outside of your department or academic unit. This makes sense to me. Doing so demonstrates that you’re not just applying blindly, but rather have thought through how you fit in on that particular campus. It also makes the sale that you’re a good fit with the folks already there.

I’m unsure if this practice should start at the cover letter. Is it appropriate to mention potential collaborators (either within or outside of my targeted dept) whom I don’t know in the cover letter?

Talking about working with people I don’t know feels a little bit pretentious–how on earth should I know what they want to collaborate on?–but I can get over it if I have incentive.

Meanwhile, it also feels natural that I should be contacting these potential collaborators if I’m sincere about thinking there’s potential to work together. OTOH academia’s a bit emphatic (relative to industry) about recusal so contacting such people might seem pushy, or even like trying to cheat.

Is it OK to contact potential collaborators at the institution/in the department to which I’m applying? Is it ever expected?