Coming up with a thesis topic, developing the novel contribution, proposing it and writing it is challenging. There are a number of resources available that describe the process.
For advice specifically on contacting me with a PhD proposal, see here.
Here are some general examples, not specific to a particular domain or field:
- Kung’s talk on Useful Things to Know about PhD Thesis Research
- Toby Walsh’s presentations:
- Jim Kajiya’s (1993) paper on How to Get Your SIGGRAPH Paper Rejected
- Phil Agre’s paper (2002) on Networking on the Network: A Guide to Professional Skills for PhD Students
- Olin Shiver’s Dissertation Advise
- David Chapman (Editor) on How to do Research at the MIT AI Lab
- Robert Axelrod’s Tips For An Academic Job Talk
- Riesbeck’s What is a Thesis
- Riesbeck’s page for Students
- Good website on more resources
- American Scientist on the science of writing science papers
Other relevant sources (also useful for new faculty)
- Gray, P., & Drew, D. E. (2008). What they didn’t teach you in graduate school: 199 helpful hints for success in your academic career. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing.
- Darley, J. M., Zanna, M. P., & Roediger, H. L. (Eds.). (2003). The complete academic: A practical guide for the beginning social scientist / Edition 2. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
- Boice, R. (2000). Advice for new faculty members: Nihil nimus. Needham Heights, MA: Allyn & Bacon.
- Peter Feibelman: A PhD IS NOT ENOUGH! A Guide to Survival in Science
- Agre, Peter: Networking on the Network: A Guide to Professional Skills for PhD Students
The list above is adapted from the PLAIT website, Northeastern University, and various colleagues.
Research Design and Research Report Templates
This is a broadly applicable, generic template for writing a proposal for an empirical research project.
This is a broadly applicable template for writing reports based on empirical work.
Postgraduate Research Student Supervision Guidelines
These are the guidelines I operate under as a supervisor. I expect students to familiarise themselves with, and approve, these before signing a supervision contract.
General FAQ For Students
Are you looking for graduate students?
Yes, I am always seeking ambitious, talented and motivated graduate students to join various projects. Send me a brief application. Please be precise and interesting in your application if you want to hear back from me. I am not arrogant, entitled, or have a shiny beard,but I do have a high volume of work and not enough time to respond to everyone.
I am an undergraduate or graduate student taking one of your classes, what is the best way to get in contact with you?
Please use email: anders [dot] drachen [at] york [dot] ac [dot] uk
Can you be my job reference?
The answer is very likely “no” if you were one of my undergraduate students – mostly because I have limited time – but it is “yes” if you worked for me or you are one of my graduate students (or you were an excellent student in many of my classes).
Can I work for you (as an undergraduate or graduate) in the Summer or other period?
I need to see your work first and need to have funding available. Talk to me as early as possible (e.g. in February) and not just when the semester ends. We have Summer Internship programmes and unpaid opportunities, but irrespective there is an application process. I am always happy to talk to you and explore opportunities.