Author: Graduate School

Three-Minute Thesis: From Contestant to Judge

By Sophie Damy

Summer seems to have finally arrived in London and it is hard not to start thinking about the holidays. Imagine, in a few weeks, going back home to visit your family and having to answer the recurring question: “What is it exactly that you are researching?” In my case, I can categorically forget the usual “I am developing algorithms to minimise the bias created by deterministic errors on the position estimated by a satellite-based positioning system.” You will need to keep your explanation clear and concise while trying to share your enthusiasm.

This situation is actually pretty similar to the 3-minute thesis competition!

Goats, Concubines and Misery – the Ig Nobel Awards Tour Show 2017

The Graduate School was delighted to host the fantastic Ig Nobel Awards Tour Show on Friday 17 March for the twelfth consecutive year. Presented by the wonderful Marc Abrahams, co-founder of the Annals of Improbable Research, the Show seeks to make you laugh, then make you think with research that’s maybe good or bad, important or trivial, valuable or worthless.

Marc was joined on stage by several winners of the Ig Nobel Prize, who presented their research in a hilarious and fun-filled evening. This year, Marc was joined by the following prize winners:

Mathematics – Dr Elizabeth Oberzaucher: Mathematical Analysis of the Man who Fathered 888 Children)

Management – Raghavendra Rau: Some Business Leaders Acquire a Taste for Disasters that do not Affect Them Personally

Biology – Thomas Thwaites: Living as a Goat

Also on stage were the QI Elves, who gave dramatic readings from bizarre-seeming research studies, including, “On the Reception and Detection of Pseudo-Profound Bullshit,” “From junior to senior Pinocchio: A cross-sectional lifespan investigation of deception”, and “Unskilled and Unaware of It: How Difficulties in Recognizing One’s Own Incompetence Lead to Inflated Self-Assessments.”

Evidencing Leadership and Management within a PhD

By Dr Paul Seldon

As researchers we are used to talking about our research to different audiences, explaining the ideas and findings. Often we are less able to see the wider value in our practices and how these can be translated to other roles and positions.

This became very relevant for me when having completed a PhD and several post-doctoral positions I wondered if I had relevant experience that I could evidence to gain full membership of the Chartered Management Institute (CMI). The challenge was to examine my academic progress through a leadership and management perspective. Looking through the activities of my PhD I found evidence in the five areas below.

A Year in Review: From a President’s Scholars Rep

by Abellona U

Upon becoming the year rep of the President’s Scholars, I set myself a goal – to foster a community amongst the scholars.

I was very excited to serve this community because we really are a unique bunch. We come from all corners of the world and we research in all imaginable areas across science, engineering and business. I wanted to organise social events that form part of the highlights of the scholars’ student life at Imperial.

Queen’s Tower Tour

The first event that I organised was the Queen’s Tower Tour. We walk around this iconic tower every day, yet, have you ever wondered what it’s like to go up there?

Doctoral Researchers Well-being: What’s New?

By Caroline Hargreaves, Senior Teaching Fellow, Graduate School, Imperial College London.

With the holiday now a memory, the Graduate School looks ahead to a new year of expanding and novel provision for all postgraduates. I wanted to pass on some recent findings about researcher well-being and reasons behind some of the developments, to help you with your choices.

This year I’ve had the good fortune to talk at the Higher Education Academy Surveys Conference and the Society for Research into Higher Education (SRHE) Annual Conference about changes to Well-being in researchers between our 2009 and 2014 studies. A doctoral researcher at my talk at the SRHE mentioned how well our questions reflect doctoral concerns.