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An academic from X country (Not USA) and my experience with her

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I am accepted to MA plus PhD program in USA. Before that, I want to get my another master's degree here. But I have some big problems which are small for some, but not for me.

Since April, 2011 I send my thesis to my advisors but haven't received even a feedback about the content yet.

My jury day is in this month. My advisor, while having not provided any corrections on the content, blamed me yesterday. She said:

''I am not going to defend you as your advisor in the jury day. You did not do the corrections I emailed to you and you distributed your thesis without my corrections on the content''

I said I did not receive an email of corrections but an email which says ''It is DONE''. And at that point, since I was waiting for corrections, I and another professor interpreted that as ''You can distribute your thesis''.

Later, I asked her to forward her corrections. She changed the subject. I emailed her after checking my inbox and junk folder, again asked her to forward her email sincerely. She hasn't replied yet again.

A PhD woman said to me ''Be careful, she does such tricks, she is this, she is that.... Email her and ask for corrections...'' We both thought that there is not such an email at all.

So, basically she lies. I feel that. By nor forwarding ''that'' email to me, she absolutely accepts that there is not such an email.


So I wanted to mention this to another member of the jury who is also her friend and knows her personality. She replied harshly, skipping from email story:

''You say your thesis is good, we could not read it till now, yes, but saying that your thesis is good, you offend your advisor! It can not be good without her! You might be criticized and edited on jury day! You are offending her!''

I accepted this unbelievable remark again to escape confrontation. But I ask, who is offended really? My thesis has not been read until now. I started to send from April 2011 till June 2012. So, if she does not give me corrections, I accept that situation and sometimes say ''it is also good, it will not embarrass you on the jury day''.... I only say this sentence to relieve my advisor, to show that I do not think bad of their academical dysfunction at all.

Anyway, I want to take this degree and run away from this dysfunctioning department. She is an Associate Prof. and does not have even 2 master's theses I know that she advised. I might be her first. But she hasn't read me, lies to me, and blames me. All I did was waiting for her corrections.

I think of other actions, if they continue this nonsense on jury day and make me fail the jury. But I worked on this master's thesis for at least 1,5 year!

What should I do? I will continue to say that I asked for corrections but did not receive it even if I asked for them first.. I hope to see her corrections soon.

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When you say "correction", do you mean a modification on the content of your thesis, or the writing quality of your thesis (i.e. grammar)?

From my understanding, there are numbers of professors who are not willing to fix your grammatical errors for you because it is your job to ensure that the thesis has no typos, run-ons, any grammatical errors possible when you submit your thesis. Obviously, correcting ones writing isn't their duty or their jobs. So you might just have to find an alternative option for that kind of correction. As for the content, you may either wait for your advisor for the fix, or somebody else who has experience in terms of looking through a thesis and determine where to improve so that the thesis becomes a qualified package.

''it is also good, it will not embarrass you on the jury day''

Statements like this can be tricky (because you are confident with your work but you are also asking your advisor for revision; besides the fact that your advisor disagreeing your perspective based on her response from your post). Depends on the scenario and content, this may actually offend someone who is more knowledgeable and established, careerwise.

Anyway, ask somebody else to improve your thesis. The sooner the better. Good luck.

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actually i mean with correction ''any comment on content''. she hasn't read my thesis even. here is a bad functioning university where you need to have personal ties rather than research experience to be a professor.

later, we found out that: she fears criticisations on jury day about the thesis. so she plays tricks to tell the jury that she does not have responsibility of it. she has not read it since April 2011. can you believe?

this professor is famous for her laziness in the department. so all of these can make sense to you. she now fears criticisations if there is going to be any in the jury day. so she wants to clear herself from responsibility and leave all responsibility on me.

i corrected grammar mistakes. i just wished that she reads and gives me feedback about the content. but she hasn't read yet. and this is famous of her. she does not read term papers as well. this is common knowledge.

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Is this country China or South Korea? Or even in East Asia? Just from the sounds of it...

In this situation, there's one thing you can do: Go to the head of the department in secret and privately, unofficially talk about what can you do. This is quite a serious situation, so you must have all the evidence on your side, because even with all the evidence on your side, the chance of success is still half at best. Do you have written evidence that other professors, and senior professors, have agreed to let you distribute your thesis?

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I need to draw a timeline of my suffering or etc.

2010 Fall: I am accepted to master's.

2009 Fall-2010 Spring: she did not conduct lessons at all. just leaving all to students, she watches and sometimes cancels classes because of things she need to do, or she does not feel like having a class saying ''let's leave early today''. One time we even waited at least for 30 minutes in class till she finish her sandwhich. Then, came and said that ''let's finish dears''. The whole cohort were unsatisfied of her behaviours but could not say that since she is one of the aides to the department head.

2010 Spring: She wanted me as her advisee saying ''when do we start dear?''. I said ''I need to think over some things, uhmmm, hmmm''. She said OK. Then I had to take her.

2010 September (After 3 months): I wanted to change her since for three months we did not ever talk about a research, but daily things. Another professor said to me that department's core teachers do not want good students be taken by outsiders like her. So she decided to be my UNOFFICIAL advisor working together with my OFFICIAL one. I could not change advisors, because first advisor was afraid to take her student.

I went to a research to another university. And, it was a complete bliss to be with responsible people.

2011 Feb. : I turned back with my readings piled up. I met with her. She did not listen to what there were in my readings. She joked ''hahaha he brought me his readings rather than his writings'' to the department head. The department head did not react to this. Seconds of silence.

Then she said: (My name), don't get me wrong but you are very lazy when it comes to writing.

I said: You are right, I will write it.

2011 April: I sent my first part of my thesis via email (I am in another city for a year due to economic reasons). She said ''I do not read and accept theses, articles sent via email. Continue writing and when you are in the city print them for me''

I was angry. Called unoffical advisor. She said she would read it and narrate it to my official advisor.

From this time -----------------------------------------------------until 2012 JUNE (NO FEEDBACK FROM THEM)

I call the unofficial with questions about my thesis. She answers well. But she has always said they could not read it because they are busy. (Indeed they can read it in one day)

After I got into PhD, official advisor changed her principle saying: ''Ohhh of course you can send via email, and I read them dear. You are in another city. This rule is of course not for you....(etc. etc.)'' (she said the opposite and did not read one year before for a year)

I also had sent the hard copies via Post Service.

I came to the city. Printed another hard copy and gave her (official advisor). She only changed words in the content page to make titles clearer. And always said, as before, she is hopeful about the thesis and it would be a great one.

After corrections on titles, I gave another hard copy with corrections done. She said she would now tell her comments, after reading the thesis about what is inside. Not technical matters, since I fix all of them myself.

She had the thesis with her for two weeks but she postponed reading till last two days. Then I talked and said, I need to leave, since I am not able to stay in the city due to economic reasons, accommodation problems, and that I need to take an exam back in my city. She said she would give her corrections on Wednesday rather than Thursday. She was going to give those corrections on Thursday but changed into Wednesday, since I am there for long doing nothing, so I need to move and get things done until I leave. She knew I would leave. I always told her.

She emailed on Wed: It is done dear (my name)''

Unofficial advisor said: So it is ready to distribute (my name) and do not worry. We will send corrections until the jury and on the jury day''

I distributed on Wed. On thursday, she blamed me with not doing her corrections about what is inside. So she is not responsible of my thesis. She would said that to jury. She would not support me on the jury day. My thesis even could be rejected. She said over and over that she sent corrections a day before, on Wed.

I said that in the mail group we only received ''it is done'' email. She said there was another email with corrections too. I said ''can you send me please, so I can edit what is inside the thesis. She changed the subject.

Hours later, I emailed her, asking her kindly to forward her mail with corrections. She never replied.

A fresh PhD in the department said that she does those tricks and I should be careful and ask for corrections so she can not blame me for not doing what she emailed me. She even said that there might not be an email like that and she can lie too. She said my official advisor does such tricks. I said ''yes she presented me as guilty even if I always send my thesis for more than a year to her''

Now, I am waiting for my jury day. I do not know but our relation might be worse after these things. Now I am going to an American university. I hope they become my mentors on this road. Because, like this, she will never help me again if i ever need a reference letter again. So I hope my professor in the american university helps me about these matters after they learn about me more.

I am sad that she lied to me like this, and I also reacted to her behaviours by asking her to forward her email. Even if it was kind, i am sure she did not like that. And some professors also know her but they do not mess up with her. Because they want to be in good terms with her.

Edited by keephappy
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