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change of supervisor


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#1 noor jam

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Posted 15 January 2010 - 09:18 AM

Hello all

I appreciate if you give an advice...

- I'm having a PhD project that is not of my interest at all but I accepted it at the beginning so may be I'll like it
- my supervisor is not helpful, not cooperative and arrogant
- the lab assistant is supposed to teach me to run the experiments as this is new to me and I don't have an experience in this field, but she is teach me nothing and she treats me like a technician

according to that I'm thinking to change my supervisor specially I'm still in the beginning ( 1month so far)

what do u recommend from your experience,

thank you in advance

#2 MKR

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Posted 15 January 2010 - 10:34 AM

- my supervisor is not helpful, not cooperative and arrogant


Depending on your personality I would give different advice, and since I don't know your personality I can't say stay or go. But believe me, most PIs are going to be, at times, percieved by you as not cooperative and arrogant (in a way, they have earned that). The best ones (in my opinion) are not like that, but in the real world that's just how it is - alot of the most successful people are successful because they are (over)confident.

Anyway, you can look at it as a challenge and try to learn how to work with these personalities (very beneficial experience), or you can go find a different project/PI. Either way you're going to have to be tactful, you don't want an enemy. You don't want to offend your current PI. So if you're leaving, find some project you're passionate about and empahasize that you want to switch because of how interested in the other project you are.

Just my two cents.

#3 Micro

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Posted 15 January 2010 - 05:32 PM

Firstly, since it has only been a month don't make any snap decisions if your problem is people's personality and their resonse to you. Your lab assisstant may be just getting you use to how the lab runs before making you do experiments that as you said.. are new to you. Talk to the LA and ask her to set times and dates to show you the experiments you need to learn.

However, your first point/ concern sets alarm bells off when I read it. If you are not, at the very least, interested in your project when you start that is a really big cause for concern. Ask yourself... is it the project that you are doing that is the problem or is it the area of research in general? If it is the project, you could talk with your supervisor about changing parts of it to something that is more interesting to you (A new student in my lab did this recently with very good results). If you are not inerest in the area in general get out of the project now and find an area that you have an interest in.

It is not an easy decision to make... Good luck!

#4 noor jam

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Posted 16 January 2010 - 01:51 AM

firstly thank u for the advices, they gave me some relief:

Anyway, you can look at it as a challenge and try to learn how to work with these personalities (very beneficial experience), or you can go find a different project/PI. Either way you're going to have to be tactful, you don't want an enemy. You don't want to offend your current PI. So if you're leaving, find some project you're passionate about and empahasize that you want to switch because of how interested in the other project you are.


As you said the personalities I can handle but frankly with difficulty, but what bothers me the most is that I dont like the project at all I feel it's way what I've expected.
I found another project that is interesting to me and I will tell ( to my supervisor) that the project is the problem not the supervisor

However, your first point/ concern sets alarm bells off when I read it. If you are not, at the very least, interested in your project when you start that is a really big cause for concern. Ask yourself... is it the project that you are doing that is the problem or is it the area of research in general? If it is the project, you could talk with your supervisor about changing parts of it to something that is more interesting to you (A new student in my lab did this recently with very good results). If you are not inerest in the area in general get out of the project now and find an area that you have an interest in


the research area is the problem: I have a pharm.B with honor and my master was in pharmacy practice, now my PhD is on molecular pharmacology (I wanted so much to have my PhD in clinical pharmacokinetics). So I think totally different area from what I want.
beside I told to my supervisor that I didn't like the project or the lab work but he didn't give me any solutions: this is the project and I have to accept it.
hopefully the other project I found will have a major part in pharmacokinetics,

I hopefully made things clear now to you if you want to give further advices.

and again thank you for the advices...




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