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Career Advice
BY DERRICK E. RANCOURT | November 20 2020

Unlike specialists who possess depth in one area and generalists who have breadth but no depth, “versatilists” are the best of both worlds.

dissertation, they are unaware of it and unable to convey their skills to employers. Along with creating opportunities for students to learn these skills and vocabulary, educators need to provide opportunities for students to interact with the non-academic community, breaking down silos of differing...
BY KERRY BANKS | October 28 2020

Chronic procrastination is on the rise, say experts, and appears to be prevalent among academics. We really should get around to doing something about it.

dissertation) has become distressingly commonplace, says Dr. Steel, leaving about 50 percent of grad students without a degree after several years of dedicated study. Procrastination is also prevalent among faculty members. “I call professors ‘unregulated scientific entrepreneurs,’” says ...
BY PAUL YACHNIN | September 30 2020

On their way to graduation, PhD students become converts to the Church of Knowledge. But this secular church is in need of reformation.

dissertation – a book-length work in the humanities and social sciences; shorter in the STEM disciplines, though just as demanding. Finally, they have to stand up for the dissertation they have written against a specially constituted committee of experts at a formal PhD oral defense. The PhD is...
From PhD to Life
BY JENNIFER POLK | September 04 2020

Her biggest piece of advice? You absolutely must take the lead for yourself.

dissertation"), I noticed that signs I wasn't fully invested in a traditional academic track for my career were beginning to add up. My main interest in being an academic was my writing, but everything that I published and enjoyed working to make publishable wasn't in my field of specialization. I c...
BY TARA SIEBARTH | July 02 2020
dissertation-defences/">Virtual victory: inside the new normal of online doctoral dissertation defences


Seven academics reflect on the moment they realized the world had changed.

dissertation defences. We had to roll those out remotely, with none of us deeply experienced with the online systems. I worked with two staff members to ensure all the documents were in secure servers, accessible to the appropriate people, and to draft a guide to the online platform for all particip...
BY UA/AU | May 30 2020
dissertation-committee meetings have already moved online, and now students will also have the option to remain enrolled in their programs, to choose “Final Stage Status” if they have already completed 75 percent of the first draft of their thesis and all coursework, or to take an “inactive”...
From PhD to Life
BY JENNIFER POLK | May 27 2020

Rebecca Maymon of Adoc Talent Management explains how the PhD employment landscape is shifting.

A few months ago, Continue reading released a report on their PhDetectives project, which includes original research on the professional competencies of PhD students and graduates across Canada, as well as the views of employers. The report's findings provi...
BY KAT ESCHNER | May 20 2020

The scholar’s latest book is not only the culmination of a career spent examining the ethics of biotechnology, it’s a call to action for the rest of us get in on the conversation.

dissertation at Western University on research involving human embryos. A several-years stint outside academia after her PhD, starting with a think tank and then with the first bioethics department at Sick Kids hospital in Toronto, gave her experience talking to non-philosophers about ethical issues...
BY UA/AU | March 31 2020
dissertation online instead of in person? Susanna Mitro, who successfully defended her research in population health sciences at Harvard University on Friday, Continue reading her
Career Advice
BY HEATHER MCGHEE PEGGS | February 27 2020

The University of Toronto G2G Peer Advisors provide graduate students with practical conflict resolution and communication advice.

A complex and competitive mix of academic pressures and interpersonal relationships make graduate school simultaneously invigorating and potentially unsettling. Students must navigate complex institutional policies and processes as well as develop and maintain productive relationships with thesis su...
BY EMMA MCPHEE | January 29 2020

In this program, Indigenous PhD students receive a stipend, teaching experience, faculty mentor and time to complete their dissertation.

dissertation defense. Keri Cheechoo, a Cree Iskwew (woman) from Long Lake #58 First Nation, was also one of the inaugural fellows in 2018. She successfully defended her dissertation at the University of Ottawa this past December and was recently hired as an assistant professor with U of Ottawa’...
BY MARK CARDWELL | January 22 2020

Queen’s University terrorism researcher Amarnath Amarasingam is no stranger to intersectoral strife.

dissertation on social activism, organizational dynamics and youth identity in the Tamil community in Canada, he conducted dozens of interviews with former Tamil Tiger fighters, honing a research technique that has become a pillar of his academic work. Then a series of events – the Arab Spring ...
In my opinion
BY ROBERT DANISCH | January 13 2020

For me, podcasting is a way to continue the conversation with my students and bring my research to unexpected new audiences.

dissertation research to audiences with different levels of expertise (tenured professors, undergraduate students and our grandmothers). My podcast is an expanded and extended version of that exercise. My two sons, 11 and 13, remain my toughest critics and the litmus test for a good episode. If they...
From PhD to Life
BY JENNIFER POLK | December 13 2019

“Throughout grad school, I always thought about how I could leverage my research, writing, analytical, and communication skills if an academic job never panned out.”

dissertation, I realized I would have to be pragmatic when it came to my career opportunities.

What was your first post-PhD job?

My first job was a policy analyst position for Northern Policy Institute, a think tank focused on providing evidence-based solutions for northern Ontario. I sta...
Career Advice
BY STEPHANIE WHITNEY | November 25 2019

I can be an effective scholar and leader only if I am healthy both physically and mentally.

dissertation with project management, fieldwork and finalizing a major grant contract. By December 2018, I was burnt out and, in a careless moment, I had an accident and suffered a concussion. I only took a week off to heal from the physical trauma, because I was teaching during the winter term a...
In my opinion
BY MARY RYKOV | November 21 2019

Within academia, the professional editor is considered to be an outside, unknown and potentially dangerous entity.

Each semester as assignment deadlines near, dog-ate-my-homework syndrome appears in my inbox (typically around 3:00 a.m.) from undergraduates requesting editorial assistance with laughably unrealistic turnarounds. Most students mean well but are still learning time-management skills. Others are too ...
From PhD to Life
BY JENNIFER POLK | November 01 2019

You do not have to accept the labour conditions that have become the norm in universities, even if you are passionate about research and teaching.

dissertation under time constraints and financial stress. I was not thinking about the future so much as getting through each day. Life after the PhD was not discussed in my program, except for students trading successful postdoc applications and foreigners (we were a vast majority) discussing visa ...
Careers Café
BY ANDREA EIDINGER | October 29 2019

This column is being relaunched, the first post takes a unique look at some of the issues that affect contingent faculty.

dissertations, they are often encouraged to do free or underpaid academic labour, labour that is often encouraged by the use of the term “opportunity.” For instance, we are told that writing book reviews is a great opportunity to learn about academic publishing and to get our name out there. ...
BY CHRISTINA FRANGOU | October 23 2019

Many universities lack adequate policies on how to deal with cyberbullying, leading to real-life consequences for some targeted academics.

dissertation, she examined the accessibility of games, gamer identity and games culture – a topic that put her at the centre of Gamergate, a large-scale harassment campaign targeting women in the video game industry. For years, Dr. Vossen has been subjected to waves of cyber-harassment, with spike...