Friday, 29 October 2010

MSc Dissertation Passed!

This is really short update - on Wednesday the MSc African Studies Dissertation results were announced and I passed with a mark of 68!! I'm so happy!

Well done to all the MSc African Studies and MSc A.I.D students!!!

Monday, 25 October 2010

"the PhD student with the inability to say no"

Well it's week 6, and i've more and more reading to do with every blink of an eye! Week 4 and 5 have basically consisted of going to classes and lots of reading. I'm now one of two new student reps for the CAS PhD students -and its not just reading and note taking that is keeping me busy, I've been tasked with organising the hoodies/t-shirts for CAS, helping to organise the CAS Photo Exhibition and now the CAS Christmas Event!

In terms of actual work, I'm auditing classes - which is good as I don't have coursework to submit, I do however have an exam for stats next week :D!! I'm still enjoying the tutoring and if nothing else its a test of my  own knowledge.  There is endless amount of reading to do, and taking notes on it all is pretty much impossible - being selective is the key i have discovered!

I can't believe it's week 6 already, where has the time gone? I also have a part-time job (on a Saturday), on one hand its a good laugh and I'm earning money on the other I want my Saturdays back!! - having to work on a Saturday is simply no fun!

I've become the "PhD student with the inability to say no" - i need to hide myself away and get back to the reading...

Friday, 1 October 2010

Week 0, Week 1 and Week 2...

Well the end of Week 2 is here and it's October already!!! Week 0 was full of induction events, how to do research, how to start writing, getting to know the other new students. Week 1 - was a bit of a blur; I sorted out all the classes i needed to take (Data Analysis) and decided what to audit (Political Economy of Modern Africa, East Central Africa and Africa in International Politics). I then found a quiet corner and got my head into the reading - lots and lots of reading!!! We then had the CAS away day on the Saturday: started in CMB with the usual activities, the afternoon was a trip to Incholm Island - the weather was good which made all the difference. It was a good day and I got to know many of the new students!

With no office space for new PhD students but a new "hot desking" suite, I started week 2 by sorting out a locker and getting organised for what i need and don't need to take with me every day!!  I've also started tutoring - I have a good group and they all seem into the topic, which makes my job much easier!!! I then went back to the reading, getting to grips with SPSS after a year of not using it and more reading!!! 

So by the end of week 2, I have realised that I do remember how to work the stats programme (SPSS), I prefer taking my lecture notes on the laptop rather than writing them, that I know a bit more about African Politics than I realised and that  m still totally clueless about the Anthropology of East Central Africa (I'm a political economist and apparently Malawi is not regarded as East Central Africa - so i feel this is not so much of an issue).

So week 3 brings more reading and note taking, the Global Academy Launch on Friday and the first meeting with my PhD supervisor.....oh and a new weekend job!!!!