In this post, I'll share ten of my favorite research blogs for dissertation students, including academic, writing, and humorous options. (Don't worry - we'll get to podcasts another day!)
Dissertation blogs are great, because you can get everything from instructional tips on research and writing to motivational daydreaming and validation for your frustrations. I think these ten blogs offer a good range of what you need to survive the dissertation research and writing process - but let me know what you think!
(And yes - the ReadWritePerfect Dissertation Advice blog also offers these things - but it's nice to have options, right?)
Director of Researcher Development at The Australian National University, Professor Mewburn writes The Thesis Whisperer with candor, humor, and more than a little bit of inside knowledge. her tips on writing, surviving the dissertation process, and staying motivated are user-friendly and filled with empathy.
More formal and authoritative than the Thesis Whisperer, Nick Hopwood is a site for readers who prefer an all-business approach to academia. As well as the blogs, readers can find podcasts and instructional videos on the site.
Get A Life, PhD is all about finding the balance between letting your PhD fall to the wayside and letting your PhD consume you, mind, body, and soul. I especially love the practical, realistic tips on time management.
The Research to Action site is a pretty comprehensive one-stop-shop for researchers at all levels, from PhD candidate to seasoned researcher. The site itself is well-designed, as as well as instruction, readers can find reading lists, calls for submissions, and even job opportunities.
Slightly more commercial than some of the other blogs listed here, the key strength of The Professor is In lies in the range of contributors lending their voices and expertise to the content, from a productivity coach to a graduate director to an editor to several professors and assistant professors. Between them, they know everything there is to know about thriving in academia.
The bloggers at The Research Whisperer address topics related to all aspects of academic research. While they "don't just talk about funding," there is a real emphasis in the content on the business side of research (such as getting grants and being a union member), as their tag line suggests: "Just like the Thesis Whisperer – but with more money."
Even if you're not quite ph(inishe)d yet, From PhD to Life will definitely give you something to look forward to - and tips to help you plan practically for it. I particularly like the light, conversational style - it's a nice break from academia-speak.
Writing for Research does offer some basic writing and research advice, but what really helps it stand out from other sites is the focus on how academia ticks. There are posts on everything from university organization (why exactly is an academic discipline called a "discipline"?) to open-access and fair reviewing practices - really interesting stuff, in other words.
Not every dissertation student is interested in a lifetime devotes to academia - some just want to get on and get done. Tress Academic offers easy-to-digest advice posts broken down into manageable steps, as well as useful worksheets, checklists, and free training videos. Again, this one has a commercial feel, but it's still got a wealth of useful material if you need to get the job done quickly.
Admittedly, a lot of the really useful stuff on Supervising PhDs is aimed at professors and supervisors. However, there's nothing to say you can't gift some of the useful checklists, guides, and articles to your supervisor the next time they're being particularly frustrating...
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