Sunday, 11 October 2009

My PhD Experience

Hi guys I'm gonna share with you my experience during my PhD . At that time I have two supervisors to choose from. I don't know whom I should choose. After giving some thoughts I finally decided to choose the supervisor that already well-established in terms of research and facilities.

The first thing that I must consider before doing PhD is the research grant. To conduct research one must have the budget.After completing the application form I then submitted it to my head of department for getting approval before I can proceed with the study leave application. To my surprise the head of department refused to give an approval since the supervisor that I have chosen was not from my department. At that time, cross departmental was not encouraged. In about a week later, I have to rewrite the proposal and my head of department suggested me with the new supervisor. I was very fortunate that my new supervisor have helped me a lot during preparation of my new research proposal and I managed to submit it within one week. Once I got the approval then I can start with the research. But I was worried about the budget. My new supervisor had just submitted the application for getting the research grant. He asked me to stay focus to my studies without too much worry about the money to run the research. Fortunately, I got a friend who also doing a research in the similar area and under my new supervisor.

At the initial stage, we have to work together to design the main rig needed in this study. We spent for about 5 to 6 months for designing and testing this major equipment. Our first raw data only available in the third semester. We were so worried about collecting data because the data almost cannot be used at all. The problems need to be rectified immediately. We have to work day and night to make sure that the equipment can work accordingly. Finally we managed to get the reasonable data that we need to use it in our progress report.

In the following semester, the data collection process was running very smoothly. After fourth semester my friend was successfully graduated in his M.Sc. Then, after almost 3 years the data required for my studies were already complete and enough for thesis writing-up. Yet, another problem awaits me. That is modeling that had made me scary and worry. I need to spent another 6 months just to really understand how the model works. To employ the model is another story. This problem totally dragged my PhD for semesters.

After a 4 year period was ended, I have to report for my duty. This really made me headache. I can't cope with it. I just keep on registering from semester to semester but my attention to PhD at that time was really out. No major progress has been reported. That time was really difficult for me. To write the thesis is actually more tougher and more difficult than collecting the experimental data. I'd never realized this before. During my tough time I can only see one by one of my colleagues had graduated with their PhD. Their success had really inspired me to work harder and harder.

Deep into my heart, I only have one word that is: "Whatever problem come to me I can handle and accept it but to fail PhD is never at all". The turning point only began in the last 2 semesters. I stay focused to my thesis writing-up. I did a review from topic to topic. When everything is completed I then print it out and gave a copy to my best friend for corrections and proof reading. It took about a month to finish.

Thesis writing need to improved and another thing is to add some updated references. It was really hectic. Only in the final semester I managed to submit the thesis for the oral examination.

I can conclude that we must pay attention and stay focus to what we are doing. Writing is the most difficult task. Never take it lightly. We should never give up to what we are doing. Do to our very best whatever we do. My final remarks is " I won't be like I am today if without the support from all my very best friends.

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