Welcome to another Research Bow year!

Welcome to another Research Bow year!

It’s a new academic year and we want to say “welcome (back) to our PGR cohort”! Research Bow is a platform by PGRs for PGRs, and as such our contributors are always writing blogs that encompass the full range of experiences and milestones that are part of the post graduate researcher’s journey. To introduce you to some of the incredible writing that features on our blog, we have round up some of our most read blogs right here for you to take a look at…

With that in mind, if you are a new member to the Health in Social Science PGR cohort, you might be wondering how you can ensure that your first few months are used efficiently so that you can become a savvy scholar. Maybe you do not have a background in psychology, or you have come back to postgraduate education after working in a different field. It can be daunting to start afresh, but we hope you will feel comforted to know that many of us have made transitions from different backgrounds! One thing we know for sure is that the HiSS PGR cohort are a welcoming group of people who are always ready to lend support where they can. Peer support is such an important part of the journey we are all taking – and even though we might all be on slightly different paths, knowing that someone is walking by your side can be a huge relief when things get tough. Once you have settled down to your research, we have no doubt that you will start to look ahead to the milestones that we all need to prepare for and probably the most nerve-wracking milestone of the first year is the first year annual review – but never fear, with the support of your supervision team and your amazing peers we are sure that you will do an amazing job!

For those of you who have already established yourselves and have entered your second or third year,
congratulations! We hope you took some time off to recharge your batteries because you are about to master some truly essential research/life skills: patience and adaptability! Getting ethical approval and recruiting participants for your project are two of the most important and often underestimated (in terms of time needed) milestones that will really sharpen these and many other skills. We hope you will find our tips helpful, but as these lists are by no means exhaustive, we do encourage you to reach out if you come across any challenges – we can guarantee you will not be the only one facing these. In fact, did you know that our School has several research centres and groups? Maybe joining or even creating your own research group will help you navigate some of these obstacles on top of connecting and learning from peers and staff members working in your field. Nevertheless, no matter how much you may love your research project (although let’s be honest, things are usually a bit more complicated at times), it is equally important to seek opportunities beyond your PhD as well. Have you considered tutoring or doing an internship with the Scottish Government? These are just a few of the many opportunities you will have during your PGR journey. Having said that, more is not always better. It’s vital to take care of yourself during this journey and allow time for some creative procrastination moments. At the end of the day, the main output of your PhD is you- not your research findings. So, when the much awaited Viva comes, we hope you feel confident that these past three, four or more years have shaped you into the best version of yourself.

We, the Research Bow team, are here to make our PGR journeys as full and smooth as possible, recognising that this is not always easy and it’s definitely not the same for everyone. If you would like to join our community and be the first to learn about our newest blogs and initiatives don’t forget to subscribe and follow us. If while reading this blog you felt inspired to share your experiences and tips then don’t supress this urge- write a blog for us! We would love to hear more about your ideas and support you any way we can – Just get in touch with us: research.bow@ed.ac.uk

 

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