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Everything posted by Arcadian

  1. Arcadian

    Still Ambivalent About Staying in Academia

    Thanks Let me know how your search goes.
  2. Arcadian

    Fall 2019 Psychology PhD Applicants!

    You will be. After 6 months of time off and traveling with my wife, I took a job at a software company for a UX research position. I had taken interest in that field about 2 years prior. Several of my coworkers have a similar background in cognitive psychology, so it's a great fit. My wife and I agree that it's the happiest time in our lives. We both found good-paying jobs in the city of our choice, got a nice new home, and still have time to pursue our hobbies. Grad school was a transformative experience for me. Made a few forever-friends and so many great memories. That period of my life shaped me into the man I was always meant to be. Seize the moment, and enjoy it! Congrats to both of you (and everyone in the thread). Eight years later, I still remember my moment of acceptance vividly. I called my mom, and then my girlfriend (now wife). Tears were shed. Cheers to your present and future success!
  3. Arcadian

    Still Ambivalent About Staying in Academia

    Hey, just wanted to follow up on this. Indeed, I ultimately agreed with your assessment and decided to take an industry job. Everything is going great so far, and I've never been happier! I'm definitely happier now than I would have been if I had stayed in academia, lol.
  4. Arcadian

    Fall 2019 Psychology PhD Applicants!

    Just wanted to drop in and say good luck to everyone. With grad school in my rearview mirror, I can now appreciate this forum from a different perspective. Wait a minute...am I like that guy who graduated high school and still hangs out at the football games?
  5. Arcadian

    Should I tell the supervisor how I have been feeling?

    Sounds about right. That's grad school for ya! You'll constantly question your own decisions, and you'll perpetually have this vague feeling that you're doing something wrong. Heh! Fun times. Don't worry, it'll all work out (probably), and you'll look back on your first year project later and realize nobody cared. Just kidding. Kind of. On a more serious note...hey, look at it this way! When you've done everything you can, and you're just waiting on your advisor to follow up, the "ball is in his/her court." Nobody can blame you for taking too long because you've done your part, and you've made efforts to contact your advisor all you can. It's up to them! You're totally blameless at that point. That was the approach I took to allow myself to relax throughout grad school. Granted, I took 7 years to complete my PhD, but hey! ?
  6. Arcadian

    Still Ambivalent About Staying in Academia

    I was pretty ambivalent too. Just finished my PhD last May. I'm currently a freelance proofreader and looking for jobs at software companies. I'm kind of open to doing a post-doc or adjunct position, but I'm not really interested in tenure track anymore. I just don't enjoy the publish or perish culture, constantly applying for grants, and all else that academic careers entail. I also really wouldn't want to advise grad students and all that. It's like, I just went through this whole process as a grad student myself. The last thing I want is to go through that whole process again, over and over again, from the other side of the advisor's desk. No thanks!
  7. When I listen to a podcast or music in my lab, I keep one earbud in and one out, just in case someone needs to speak with me. When I listen to podcasts, I keep the earbud in my right ear because the right ear hooks up with the left auditory cortex, which is more devoted to speech perception (right ear advantage). When I listen to music, I keep the earbud in my left ear because the left ear hooks up with the right auditory cortex, which is more devoted to music perception (left ear advantage). Anyone else do this, or is that weird?
  8. Arcadian

    Email etiquette

    I'm seeing a lot of uptight traditionalism in this thread, to be honest. I don't care if a student addresses me by name in an email. As long as they're not being disrespectful, there is no problem. I care more about efficiency and conciseness - ask me your question, or convey your message, and make it brief and to the point. Efficiency is what matters, people, not archaic traditions. Even my 80-year-old co-advisor stopped using greetings and signatures in our email exchanges. He says what needs to be said, and he sends the email. With that said, I do care about the proper use of grammar, and I silently judge people who write poorly in emails. Even when I write emails from my phone with a crappy touchscreen, I make sure everything is correct. Caveat: If it's your first time corresponding with someone, or you don't know them very well, then yes, include a greeting and signature. But that's only because you don't know how that person thinks. If someone really cares that much about an email greeting, I can't agree with them, but I also don't want them to think less of me for something so petty.
  9. Arcadian

    Office hours?

    The department doesn't keep track of my hours spent in the office. I'm not sure how that would even be possible. This isn't "clock-in clock-out" wage labor. If I'm fulfilling my responsibilities, no one cares how long it took.
  10. Arcadian

    Office hours?

    No. I have one regular office hour per week, or by appointment. This obviously depends on your school/department/program/professor.
  11. Arcadian

    PhD going bad.....

    Damn, that's pretty rough. The workload is pretty normal, but I don't think you should have any possibility of being removed from the program within the first year, unless you do nothing at all. Year one should be for formulating ideas. This takes time. Hell, I didn't settle on the topic of my dissertation until year 4.
  12. ^That's a sad story. Granting the fundamental differences between social psychology and sociology, I find it unfortunately narrow-minded for psychologists to be "concerned" about someone's choice to study sociology. If anything, we need to have more cross-talk between those two fields, so I find it sad that it's being discouraged. Fortunately, many people in behavioral sciences take a multidisciplinary approach. I know several people in my program who got Master's degrees in different fields, most notably computer science and engineering. It is considered valuable to bring knowledge from another field if it complements your field well, because it means you will have something unique to offer that few others can.
  13. Arcadian

    POIs Googling you

    I don't care if people look at my social media. I hope they do. I have nothing to hide. I explicitly advocate everything that I post. So this is a non-issue for me.
  14. In the text that you quoted, I said "you can expect to encounter people like this anywhere in society." However, there is a higher probability of encountering them at an institution that is affiliated with a related train of thought, such as Catholicism. Additionally, so as to indicate that I'm not just picking on Catholicism in particular, I followed that statement by saying that I would never take a job at any religiously-affiliated university. And I maintain that anti-religion is a position that can be rationally defended. If there is an idea that gives rise to bigotry towards other ideas, then that is the idea we ought to oppose.
  15. Haha! It seems that everyone involved with this story is wrong in some way. The undergrad was wrong for believing gay marriage is harmful to society, wrong for recording his conversation with the TA, and wrong for misinterpreting the TA's comments as being against "homophobic opinions." Unfortunately, you can expect to encounter people like this anywhere in society, especially at a Catholic university. And that's reason number 427 why I would never take a job at a religiously-affiliated university. The TA was doing fine until she became overly aggressive in her conversation with the undergrad. During her actual lesson, she was right to assume that most of the class agreed that gay marriage is permissible under Rawls' principle. And she was right to invite students to discuss the issue further after class. Why, then, did she become so hostile to the student in their post-class discussion? She could have ended this whole thing by simply presenting a counterargument to the undergrad, rather than engaging in a meta-debate about what can and cannot be debated. That sort of meta-debate is rarely productive for actual debate. The professor was wrong for taking sides with the undergrad, and for writing about his TA in a blog using her real name. The dean was wrong for taking such extreme measures for such a trivial matter. I know it escalated when the TA received threatening emails, but that is unfortunately a fact of life that academics must learn to deal with. When you express contentious opinions in a public setting, you're probably going to evoke heated responses. As the professor's attorney pointed out in his letter to the dean, there are no university laws against using a student's name in a blog. He didn't violate any university laws, hence there are no grounds on which to fire him. Lol at this whole stupid, avoidable situation.
  16. Arcadian

    Creating a Convention Poster For The First Time

    My advisor always says "too much text." So, that's been my experience with that.
  17. Arcadian

    Questions about the field

    What’s up sociologists! I come in peace from the land of psychology. I have some general questions about the field. Although I have never formally studied (or even taken an introductory course in) sociology, I have long been interested in sociological phenomena, especially structural violence and class stratification, and I have been told that I think like a sociologist. Maybe I went into the wrong field, but alas. Psychology can inform sociology and vice versa. Anyway, as I said, I have never read a text book on sociology, so I am unacquainted with the history and evolution of the field. But I know there are many conceptions (perhaps misconceptions) out there about sociology, and I know some people (anarcho-capitalists) who tend to make sweeping negative generalizations about the field. Here are some questions that I have: Is it true that most sociologists can be classified in what is called the “political left”? Are there major counterexamples? I don’t generally like to think in terms of a left-right dichotomy, which is severely oversimplified, but it can be a useful distinction in some contexts. Is there anything like a “unified theory of sociology” or an effort to create one? Physicists are trying to mathematically unify the forces of nature, and psychologists are making a similar effort to develop a unified theory of cognition. Is there anything like that in sociology, or is it primarily an applied science? (Not to say that would be a bad thing, but just wondering.) What are the most common two or three research methods in sociology? How often does sociology link up with philosophy in the academic world? It seems like they should be intimately linked, as social philosophy is basically concerned with sociological questions. But are they? Same question as above, but with social psychology (instead of philosophy). Are there any famous sociologists alive today? From my naïve perspective, it seems that sociologists, as individuals with a scientific understanding of society, should be in a position to make important decisions about society. They are probably more qualified to make such decisions than “politicians.” Is there much effort among sociologists to directly affect, or even enter into, the political system? Are most sociologists considered “radical” in their ideas? It almost seems necessary, for how can one study society and merely conclude that the status quo is acceptable? Thanks for your time.
  18. Arcadian

    Questions about the field

    No clearly defined purpose - sometimes I just sit around and wonder, what is it like to be a sociologist? Your answers were great. I'll let you know if I think of any more questions.
  19. Arcadian

    I feel my PhD has been a waste

    Interesting - I have an equal and opposite problem. I almost fell into the trap of becoming my lab's data monkey, but I managed to sidestep that role just in time for another new PhD student to take on that role (lol). So I've developed my own research area within the lab, and I've spent most of my time designing novel experiments and testing hypotheses. However, I have not developed many technical skills that my peers have - mainly because I don't feel like they would directly help me to answer my research questions, but I know I should learn more technical skills for my (hopeful) future career. I'm going into my fourth year, so hopefully I can practice my technical skills during dissertation time. And hopefully you can practice your research design skills in the time you have left. Cheers...
  20. Arcadian

    Rude program director response-- how would you feel?

    You're good. Fuck that guy who wrote to you. /thread
  21. Arcadian

    Getting off to a good start

    Leisure activities are crucial for the human mind...they actually increase one's work productivity. The optimal ratio of work to leisure varies a lot between individuals. I start to see diminishing returns in my work after a just a couple of hours, so I prefer to intersperse my work with leisure activities throughout the day. Philosophically, I am something of a hedonist. Life is not worth living without pleasure. I do desire more than just pleasure - what is often called self-actualization - but that is only relevant if it is enjoyable. I'm not willing to suffer for many years just based on the premise that someday, hopefully I will be happy. That is a fruitless endeavor because when you finally achieve your goals, you'll wonder what happened to the time. You'll wish you had stopped to smell the roses. You'll wish you had actually lived in the present moment, rather than treating everything as a preamble to the future.
  22. Arcadian


    I have more free time in grad than undergrad. I pretty much do whatever I want whenever I want. Livin the life!
  23. Arcadian

    What are your 4 dream jobs? Are you qualified for any of them?

    I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up... :/ but if I could do aaanything... 1. Research scientist - maybe I can do this with enough work. 2. Film or video game music composer - I have no credentials in music, but I am a decent composer, so maybe a long shot. 3. Musician in a symphony orchestra - I haven't played my instrument in years, but I was once a top tier player in high school...also a long shot. 4. Author or journalist - I enjoy and have always been praised for my writing ability, but not even sure if I would really want this as a career. Bonus choice - Unemployed. It is the ultimate freedom. I dream of a society that doesn't require its citizens to fight and compete over life-sustaining tokens.
  24. Eh, it varies. I will proudly say that I am not a very disciplined person, and that's how I like it. I don't like to live on a strict schedule. For the most part, I just do whatever I feel is best at any given time. I am flexible. I do make weekly schedules for myself, but they are very loose and open to alteration. I wouldn't have it any other way. Regarding sleep, my schedule is different from many of you because I am a nocturnal person. My circadian rhythm is very different from most other people. I generally don't feel tired until at least 2:00 am, and I generally don't like waking up before 10:00 am. And that would be an early day for me. When I have free days, I typically sleep from 4 or 5 am to noon or 1 pm. If I sleep naturally with no distractions and nothing to wake me up, I will sleep for 7-9 hours. Sometimes I feel great with 7; sometimes I need 9. It just varies. I only sleep enough about half the time. The other half, I am limited to 5-6 hours. Sometimes I have trouble sleeping, so I occasionally have sleepless nights or just 1-3 hours (but that is rare). Regarding exercise, I'm not a big fan of it, but I still do it 2-4 times a week. My favorite thing is running outside. I usually go running 2-3 times a week (either jogging 1-2 miles or intervals for 2.5 miles). Sometimes I go to the gym once or twice a week, just for about 30-45 minutes each, not really focusing on anything in particular. I just do a light, all-around workout. I'll be the first to admit that I'm not the healthiest person on earth, but I feel healthy enough. As others have mentioned, I make time for exercise based on my obligatory scheduled events for that day. If I'm on campus from 2-5 pm, I'll exercise after that. I prefer exercising late in the day (obviously, given my sleep patterns).
  25. Arcadian

    How likely is it that research can be done in two years?

    Obviously it depends on the type of research. If you keep it as simple as possible (one or two experiments), it can be done. But, as a general rule, research always takes longer than you initially think it will. So if you plan a 1-year project, it could easily take 2 years.

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