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PhD project!! go ahead or change!!


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9 replies to this topic

#1 jasmina

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Posted 02 June 2010 - 02:30 AM

Hi all,
i would like to share with you my present concern, im PhD student starting one year back. i have an european fellowship, im supposed to give an update of my work in time to time, after each 6 or 7 months! there are some other international groups working on the same project, at least the same molecule! i started my PhD with difficulty, im collaborating with one biochemist lab, to do proteomic study, the postdoc guy that was working this porteomic part spent a lot of time to set up the conditions of experiments, and unnfortunantly without efficiency. now, i started to do again the set up of conditions of technique, and it seems going ahead, i got preliminary result for control experiment, then, i will work on my experimental group, to find what im looking for in my project. these experiments take times. since, all the team was desesperated one year back of repeating mistakes and no great issue. i try to work hard to improve things and give a hope to my project and im gonna getting results!!
however, few days ago, one great paper was just published on what im studying and what im going to find!!
so, everybody is desesperated,!!! i feel very sad, but i dont give up, now, we are waiting for meeting all together, and decide what to do!!!
the problem is that i spent one year in this project, and i have 2 others years of work and fellowship. i dont know what to do, how to face that??????
my supervisor looks unhappy!
im trying to read papers to find a way to keep the project and deviating the goal by other secondary goals! and i cant stay for long in this biochemist lab, since in this paper, they did proteomic work to find what im supposed to find! but, this doesnt mean that its enough, may be i can find other things!!
i dont really know what to do, please if you have any ideas or suggestions, let me know
thanks alot for reading my message

#2 sgt4boston

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Posted 02 June 2010 - 10:17 AM

OK. So, the other group got some results of what you are looking for. Can you focus on what they did not find or apply their findings to some commercial need? If there are others working with you and on the same time-line it may be best to re-group and collectively focus on an aspect of that research...this way everyone can benefit.

the competative group may have found an answer but there are always questions your job now is to find the question that no one has thought to ask.

#3 Maddie

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Posted 02 June 2010 - 11:06 AM

Hi Luciana,

I am sorry for what happened to you. You must know though that this happens ALL THE TIME. The scientific community is a very competitive one and rare are the people who don't fear that another lab will publish similar research before they do. Your boss can be sad, but he/she should know the drill and especially that this is not your fault.
My advice would be to read this article carefully and see if you can actually use their research to speed up yours. Science is constanstly moving on. One thing gets discovered that leads to another discovery. It never ends. I know nothing about proteomic so I can't make any suggestions on what to try next. I just wanted to encourage you and remind you that there is ALWAYS something else that can be tested/done.
Of course, if your boss and you prefer to completely change topic, it's OK too. Do not worry. PhD are here to train you and make you understand what research is. Your career won't depend on your thesis; it's what you'll do after the PhD that will matter most.
Hang in there.

Maddie
Theory is when we know everything and nothing is working. Practice is when everything is working and nobody knows why. Here, we combine theory and practice. Nothing is working and nobody knows why.

A. Einstein

#4 jasmina

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Posted 02 June 2010 - 01:44 PM

thanks alot for your replies!!
in fact, i was reading again the paper, and try to find some issues for my project!
in fact, when i checked something among their supplementary data, i dont find one potential protein among their list of proteins, that we found in preliminary experiment few months back!!! so, im wondering if our technique shows something different from theirs!!
if it worths to continue our strategy
anyway, i will see tomorrow, what my team decide to do, if giving up or changing something in the project.
In fact, this happen makes me feeling as im not able to work efficiently in my project, im learning proteomic techniques and applying to my project, so, this takes time, and i have to work alone, some advice from collaborator and supervisor.
i think its normal that we are late!!! with only 2 hands!!
thanks again i let u know :wacko:

#5 Maddie

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Posted 03 June 2010 - 03:36 PM

Good luck :)
Theory is when we know everything and nothing is working. Practice is when everything is working and nobody knows why. Here, we combine theory and practice. Nothing is working and nobody knows why.

A. Einstein

#6 jasmina

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Posted 24 June 2010 - 09:03 AM

hi all,
i would like to ask you advice!
im supposed to present my PhD work of one year, i dont have data. one paper is published with another group on my project!
i 'm willing to inform people about this paper, i feel really shame! to say, that i dont know if its worth to continue my phd project, or to change completly and start new one in order to finish after 2 years ( according to the fellowship!)
what do you think about that?
thanks

#7 pito

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Posted 24 June 2010 - 09:14 AM

It always astonishes me how "easy" it seems for you people to change a phd project. In my country its damn hard to get one and to change one? Hell that doenst even excist here.

I can not understand it how easy it seems to start a phd in other countries.

And 1 year of phd work = not much at all in general. So its no big suprise you havent got a lot of data. Here the first year is seen as the "trouble" year where you simple prepare everything etc..

I can not imagine that in italy they expect you to have published a lot or whatever.

If you don't know it, then ask it! Better to ask and look foolish to some than not ask and stay stupid.


#8 jasmina

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Posted 24 June 2010 - 11:59 AM

hi, thank you for your interaction.
people who are willing to hear me are not italians at all!!! but other people responsible for my fellowship (english and belgian as well!...).
what i mean by stopping, is to deviate my project to ask another question! because the work published is made by what im willing to do in my PhD. so, for a scientist, is it worth to find the same result or even nothing??
its just that the work started may be one or 2 years before mine!! and published in very good journal!



It always astonishes me how "easy" it seems for you people to change a phd project. In my country its damn hard to get one and to change one? Hell that doenst even excist here.

I can not understand it how easy it seems to start a phd in other countries.

And 1 year of phd work = not much at all in general. So its no big suprise you havent got a lot of data. Here the first year is seen as the "trouble" year where you simple prepare everything etc..

I can not imagine that in italy they expect you to have published a lot or whatever.



#9 Maddie

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Posted 25 June 2010 - 05:44 AM

i 'm willing to inform people about this paper, i feel really shame! to say, that i dont know if its worth to continue my phd project, or to change completly and start new one in order to finish after 2 years ( according to the fellowship!)


Hi again Luciana,

First of all, the fact that another team published before you doesn't take away the quality of the work YOU did, so you should feel no shame. Consider this like "an accident". They happen.
About your decision to continue or move on, I think this something you should discuss with your PhD advisor. I doubt it your decision alone to make. Do you have a PI in Italy?
Theory is when we know everything and nothing is working. Practice is when everything is working and nobody knows why. Here, we combine theory and practice. Nothing is working and nobody knows why.

A. Einstein

#10 pito

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Posted 25 June 2010 - 07:14 AM

hi, thank you for your interaction.
people who are willing to hear me are not italians at all!!! but other people responsible for my fellowship (english and belgian as well!...).
what i mean by stopping, is to deviate my project to ask another question! because the work published is made by what im willing to do in my PhD. so, for a scientist, is it worth to find the same result or even nothing??
its just that the work started may be one or 2 years before mine!! and published in very good journal!



It always astonishes me how "easy" it seems for you people to change a phd project. In my country its damn hard to get one and to change one? Hell that doenst even excist here.

I can not understand it how easy it seems to start a phd in other countries.

And 1 year of phd work = not much at all in general. So its no big suprise you havent got a lot of data. Here the first year is seen as the "trouble" year where you simple prepare everything etc..

I can not imagine that in italy they expect you to have published a lot or whatever.



If I understand it correct a researchgroup has published what you wanted to "publish" or at least do research at?

If that is the case, then yeah, maybe it might be good to "change" the subject a bit , but not completely.

I was under the impression you wanted to start a complete new phd thesis..

If you don't know it, then ask it! Better to ask and look foolish to some than not ask and stay stupid.





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