Tag Archives: Pat Thomson

setting goals – starting the PhD

If you’re just starting the PhD, you goal is to finish. Finish. Get it done. Get yourself across the stage to receive your testamur. Wear the floppy hat and gown. Change the signature on your email. Finally a Doctor. Makes … Continue reading

Posted in planning, time-limited doctorates, writing goals | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

writing a lot – starting the PhD, and finishing it

When you write, you must write a lot, but that does not mean you will publish a lot, which means that when you are writing, or when you have finished writing, it might be that no one knows that you … Continue reading

Posted in rewriting, routine, writing and thinking, writing as work, writing routine | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

starting the doctorate – finding good advice

It’s that time of year. Across the world potential new Doctors have rejoiced. They’ve been accepted by the university of their choice. They are now getting their heads and lives geared up for a new intellectual adventure. I usually write … Continue reading

Posted in advice, poor advice, starting the PhD | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

last-minute proofing – 12 things to look for

The last stages of handing in a thesis or book can be very trying.  It’s taken you an age to get to the point where this big hefty manuscript is as ready as it’s going to be. Well just about. You … Continue reading

Posted in academic book, Big Book, proof-reading, proofreading, thesis | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

patter’s diary

Health warning. This post contains no advice. Here in the UK we are now over the results of the Research Excellence Framework, REF, the UK audit measure of institutional “quality” and “productivity”. We can all breathe a sigh of relief … Continue reading

Posted in audit regimes, REF | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

should you highlight the paper you’re reading? 

The short answer to the question is… maybe, it depends. Not a yes or a no. That’s because should you highlight is not a simple question. Unless you are a marker addict of course, in which case the answer is … Continue reading

Posted in highlighting, note-taking, reading | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

propositional density – a helpful steer on writing and revising

Yes, it’s another post on terminology, on naming. Being able to give something a name is important – a name is shorthand for a lot of information. When we name something we can then discuss it, and this is of … Continue reading

Posted in nominalisation, nouny, propositional density, revision, revision strategy | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

using the progressive disclosure principle in academic writing

I work a lot with artists and designers. Because I’m a bit of a magpie, I have a habit of collecting – and then using – their principles and approaches. A lot of them are interesting, because they make you … Continue reading

Posted in drafting, progressive disclosure principle, revision | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

anonymisation – what’s in a name?

Many researchers find themselves inventing names because it’s standard ethical procedure to anonymise the people we’ve talked with and the places we’ve been. And naming is of course a simple and straightforward process. Well, maybe. Well, not all the time. … Continue reading

Posted in anonymisation, anonymity | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

everyday annotation

Last week I stumbled across the book Annotation, written by Remi Kalir and Antero Garcia. As the title suggests, the book is all about the history and practices of annotating texts. And probably because the book is from the MIT … Continue reading

Posted in annotation, footnote, marginalia, note-taking, reading | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment