Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #AcademicTwitter

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Scientific debate around Covid-19 on Twitter and beyond has become increasingly polarised & unpleasant in recent weeks. It’s not a great look. Ironically, I think it’s less down to scientific disagreement, & more down to the limits of scientific knowledge. A few thoughts. (1/16)
#AcademicTwitter is rarely the civilised, courteous affair that people outside academia might expect of university researchers, but since the pandemic started it’s been particularly rough-and-tumble. (2/16)
I think some of the ill-tempered flare-ups are down to the same pressures facing everyone. Long hours and lack of face-to-face interaction with colleagues take their toll. Recently, though, I think the quality of Covid-19 debate in particular has got worse. (3/16)
Read 16 tweets

As uncomfortable as it may be, this is, in most cases, an essential part of the application process.

@OpenAcademics @PhDVoice @AcademicChatter #AcademicTwitter #phdchat #gradschool #firstgen #nontraditional
The concept of cold-emailing prospective supervisors may seem strange, but I do recommend it, even for programs where it may not be 100% required.

From personal experience, the first email is the most intimidating, but it gets MUCH easier. You can do this!

First, look up the...
structure of your prospective programs. Some admit you to a department first, and then you choose a supervisor after you start the program. Others have you attached to a supervisor right away.

If you're entering a department first, you'll have time to get to know the faculty...
Read 18 tweets
1/n: Today is the birth centenary of Hemedrakumar Prithviraj Gandhi (HP Gandhi) (20/09/1920-05/06/2008) - The father of Indian freshwater #diatomology. This thread details about his life and contribution.…
2/n: A globally celebrated diatomist / algologist and still unknown in India. He worked on #diatoms all his life. Diatoms are a group of algae responsible for 25 % of global O2 production.
3/n: Gandhi described 300+ new species of diatoms from Western India covering #Rajasthan, #Gujarat, #Maharashtra and #Karnataka. Maybe he is the ONLY INDIAN #botanist who described 100+ species? List of species by Gandhi:…
Read 21 tweets
I just read another one of those “how I overcame writing anxiety and became a more productive writer” threads on #AcademicTwitter. They are a frighteningly frequent thing. A few thoughts. #StockholmSyndrome /1
This latest thread was full of very reasonable advice on how to boost your writing productivity by a researcher who published something like a dozen and a half articles and book chapters over the past year. The implicit claim is that this made them a better writer. /2
But why would you want to optimise your output like this in the first place? What kind of system makes you think this is a good thing? This cult of productivity is driving us insane & it’s also driving academic research into a corner, the corner of the low-hanging fruit. /3
Read 10 tweets
Women are 57% of PhD pool. But look how we drop out in leadership. Need for better inclusion. @NIEHS Council Meeting
NAEHS Council addressing funding gap for Black researchers. So important to show the data. There is good news for closing disparity for K awards - 2013 vs 2018.
Improvement for R01s but still a 10% lower funding rate for Black researchers. More progress is needed. How can we do this?
Read 7 tweets
#AcademicTwitter: I used to be a horrible scientific writer. I was paralyzed by writing anxiety & it took me FOREVER to write papers. Last year I published 14 scientific articles (8 first, 2 second, 2 senior-author) & 2 book chapters.

A thread⬇️on how I became more productive:
1. Figure out when you write best & block out that time on your calendar.

I write best in the morning. Unless unavoidable, I do not take meetings in the morning. Mornings are my time to read, write, & think. I write every single day, Monday-Friday. Even if just 30 minutes.
Every Friday, I do a brain dump of what tasks I need to complete for the following week. I block off my calendar with writing times & what I will focus on during those times (e.g., 8-10am is specific aims). I try to be realistic about what I can accomplish during a given time.
Read 18 tweets
I looked ahead to next week's paystub to see my first "tenured" check. I want you all to see what being a "fancy" #tenured #PhD looks like in financial terms and what it cost me to get here as a #firstgen working class kid raised by a single mom. #AcademicTwitter Image
To get here, I:
-spent 12 years dealing with white supremacist heteropatriarchal bullshit in higher education (BFA/MA/PHD: 1997-2013, with a 4 year break between MA and PhD).
-accrued student loan debt (b/c funding was never enough for the supplies, conferences, travel, housing, food, research). I also had to leave/lose everything and start over TWICE due to IPV and loans were the only option. That balance, after years of paying, is still at $81,202.
Read 5 tweets
Things you learn on an academic hiring committee.

US letters of rec: "This student's work will explode your mind, revolutionize social science, and open a portal to another dimension."

UK letters of rec: "This student's work is rather solid. Quite."

PS. The final deadline for our two tenure-track positions in Global Affairs at @yalenus is September 30. Come join a diverse group of friendly people equally committed to and excellent at research and teaching.

Read 3 tweets
As a 1918 flu scholar, I think it's insanely important to point out (now esp. given Dr. Fauci's statement today about "back to normal" by the end of 2021) ...

It's not going to be the same "normal" we left 6 months ago. (1/)

@AcademicChatter #AcademicTwitter
@AcademicChatter The 1918 influenza pandemic lasted for 3 distinct waves over about 2 years, and the world was literally never the same again (2/)
The Black Plague lasted for about 3 years, but there were serious breakouts of plague for hundreds of years afterwards. (3/)
Read 9 tweets
One of the most useful things I found in preparing for the viva was reading the questions other people had here are 13 (out of many) questions (not verbatim...from my memory 🤯) that I had in my viva last week... #phdchat #phdviva #AcademicChatter #thesis
1. What would your elevator pitch be to summarise your thesis? A summary in your own words, say you met someone

2. What is your motivation to research this topic?

3. What spoke to you about a foucualdian approach , why did you choose it?
4. What have you learnt doing a doctorate?

5. What is the value of a Foucauldian approach?

6. How do you understand resistance, conceptually?
Read 7 tweets
Year 2 of my #PhD when I was atvthe peak of my #PhysicalActivity and #fitness! This was the time when anything felt acheivable 😀
Loved my #hair that I had grown since the start of my PhD! This was #onceinalifetime thing for me to do! I donated 12’ to @locksoflove #cancersurvivor
Then the #science #reality and #depression hit me! It was the most unimaginable experience! It’s easy to brush off when other people say what depression entails, but the #experience was very profound and physically devastating! I noticed the smallest things around me differently!
At the end of year 5, with the help of many #people I beat the #depression! Ofcourse I had occasional flairs from that #experience. But the #rockbottom was something else! In a way I’m #glad I experienced it ad I truly cared about my PhD #research. @OpenAcademics @AcademicChatter
Read 10 tweets
It’s that time of the year again when most post graduates students are nearing their (mini) thesis/dissertation submission dates. A short thread on things to look out for before you click that magical “Submit” button 🥳🥳. #AcademicTwitter #past3amsquad
1. Draft a submission checklist with due dates; which includes the most important tasks. Tick off each item as you complete it. Try and stick to the plan.
2. Make sure you’ve proof- read your work. You can also ask someone else to read your work if you can(especially if you can’t afford a professional editor). Utilise the services of an editor if you can. You don’t want to submit work which contains grammatical errors ❌❌
Read 8 tweets
I hope PhD students on the job market are getting advice for how to navigate applying to non-academic jobs from their departments. If not, here's a few things I learned when I started applying to industry jobs last Spring when the academic job market collapsed:
First off, there are FAR more industry jobs than academic jobs. I don't think we realize how limiting it is to only apply to professor jobs (at least I didn't). Searching things like "data analyst" or "researcher" will yield tons of results.
Sites like Glassdoor and Google jobs make it easy to find industry jobs for PhDs. However, you will have an advantage if you have some industry experience first. So if you can do an industry internship during grad school, definitely consider it! #phdchat
Read 10 tweets
Completely agree! But I think it's crucial, #AcademicTwitter, for us to see how contingent the crisis of public funding is. Most public uni boards are NO different than private uni boards: they are stacked with hedge fund managers, corporate lawyers etc. 1/5
These corporate types lobby city councils & state legislatures to keep taxes purposely low, esp. property taxes. This means that there is little tax revenue to fund public colleges, many of which consequently rely increasingly on private capital. 2/5
At the same time as they squeeze tax revenue from public colleges, they use their position on university boards to prevent endowment spending and/or ensure that endowment composition is tied to highly illiquid forms of capital (real estate, art, complex investments) 3/5
Read 5 tweets
🚨Advice for early phd students🚨

1. Invest in your cohort!

Ya'll are in this TOGETHER. These folks will mourn rejections, show up for endless practice presentations, push you to apply to things, and will be your future collaborators.

#AcademicTwitter #AcademicChatter
I wouldn't be half the person or academic without them. Shout out to @mingome, @mendoza_yosi, @MarianaFAmorim, @TPadillaCU, @Marthja, @daphneblakey, @youngmin_yi, @meredithswelch, (+ others) for listening to my bad ideas, pumping me up when needed, & supporting work/life balance.
Also, phd programs are long & often far from home. These folks were there for me when I missed funerals, missed weddings, & missed births. They made guac for me when I was homesick & can name my extended fam based on photos. YOU WILL NEED THEM.
Read 17 tweets
🧵In case it hasn’t been made abundantly clear how little wyte scholars respect Black scholars, I present to you this past week’s conversation w/ 2 wyte women who have created a project to get rid of racist pedagogy in Old English studies. 1/
Problem: they’ve erased BIPOC scholars, dismissing concerns & appropriating, columbusing ideas & perpetuating white supremacist actions that keep the field stagnant. #medievaltwitter #shakerace #BIGGER16 #raceb4race

Tldnr: this is abt wyte saviors, BIPOC erasure, columbusing 2/
& perpetual mistreatment of marginalized communities, particularly by wyte women who dont keep up on issues but capitalize on “race” scholarship for their CVs. This is abt scholars who dont put into practice theories they read & think they know. They don't treat us w/ dignity. 3/
Read 43 tweets
(1/13) Please RT: our first #tweetorial!

Here's a 🧵on our new paper which is also my 1st time being (joint) last author✍️

Congrats to all, especially superstar med student @LuszczakSabina!

#AcademicTwitter @AcademicChatter @OpenAcademics #womeninSTEM…
(2/13) In #prostatecancer cell lines & human tissue, co-targeting #PIM & #PI3K #kinases seems promising!

We reckon ~20% of prostate cancer patients could benefit from this approach in future & these tend to be the sicker patients.

Scroll for #science!…
(3/13) Fig1a:

From publicly available data we see that some patients overexpress either the #PIM pathway, the #PI3K pathway, or both. Each of these targets have inhibitors in development, that could theoretically be of benefit to any of these patient groups when combined 🤞
Read 13 tweets

By request, today I'm going to talk about CV's: what they are, why they're important, and how to construct them.

@AcademicChatter @OpenAcademics @PhDVoice #AcademicTwitter #phdlife #phdchat #firstgen #gradschool #phdadvice
A CV (curriculum vitae, or “course of life” in Latin) is essentially a comprehensive summary of your work, education, and professional accomplishments. Thus, CV’s tend to be quite a bit longer than resumes.

Some grad school apps will directly ask you to upload/attach your CV.
Others might not ask explicitly for your CV, but the sections on the application will almost surely be sections that would already exist on your CV, so it’s extremely helpful to have your CV ready to refer to. CV's are also essential for applying to jobs/grants/etc., so...
Read 9 tweets
Ok, #AcademicTwitter, I was asked: what can tenured faculty do to help fix this crisis? Non-exhaustive list of suggestions (plz add): 1. Recognize that you are a worker in a corporation; 2. Change the mission of disciplinary associations or create new ones that focus on labor;
3. Reassert “shared governance”; 4. Unionize or lobby legislatures to change the laws that make this difficult
5. Get woke to the condition of contingent faculty members at your institution and use leverage / hierarchy to improve it. At least try before you tell me you throw up your hands & say you don’t have any power to do this;
Read 10 tweets

My best advice: think about why you want to go to grad school in the 1st place. What type of career do you want afterward, and what degree would best equip you for it?

@AcademicChatter @OpenAcademics @PhDVoice #AcademicTwitter
Look at job postings for your desired jobs and see what they require, and ALSO look for CV's or professional profiles of people who actually have those jobs.

I'll talk more about switching fields later, but for now, I'll say that this decision also depends on how much...
knowledge/experience you already have in the field you want to study. If you're changing to a completely unrelated field, then it might be good to ease into it with a Master's.

For research fields, there tend to be two main types of Master's programs: taught and research.
Read 11 tweets
I don't know who needs to hear this, but providing examples of being nice or supportive to women in your own family does not make on a feminist or pro-woman nor does that make you anti-racist regarding POC or WOC or BIPOC. The "I am a good person" is at the root of much harm.
Okay, I do know who needs to hear this and this was not really a subtweet because the individuals who fit this description do not use Twitter. But there is more than one individual who may or may not need to have some deep reflection on what "I am a good person" says about ego.
This is from Australia. If in these times, as a not BIPOC, certainly as a not Black person in America, you are asking "Are you calling me a racist?!" (when that word not uttered but, yes, #implicitbias exists and racism is a #public health crisis)....…
Read 20 tweets
APPLYING TO GRAD SCHOOL, POST #1: You decided to apply to grad school; now what?

Knowing how/where to start was the hardest thing for me. The process varies for each person; for me, I started by making a list.

#AcademicChatter #phdlife #AcademicTwitter #gradschool #firstgen
Figure out what you want in your grad program, so you know how to begin deciding where to apply. You don’t need to have a plan for the rest of your life/career, but deciding which programs to apply to is VERY daunting, so it helps to break it up.
Where do you want to study? Geography matters more than you might think it does. Grad school is going to be stressful, so the least you can do is be in a location you enjoy. Coast vs. inland, big city vs. small city vs. rural, and cost-of-living, etc. are all things to consider.
Read 6 tweets
Erik Wade (@erik_kaars) here. Today, I want to talk about other peoples' work. Often when we tell the story of scholarship on pre-modern race, we center the work of white people & we represent these discussions as recent. But that's....not true. #MedievalTwitter #AcademicTwitter
Dr. Mary Rambaran-Olm and I recently wrote a chronological bibliography of work on pre-modern race studies. It shows how important and central the early work of Black scholars has been, especially Black women. This work is often erased.…
Let's take one of the central claims of pre-modern race studies: that skin color & whiteness have a history, and that they were not always important in the Middle Ages. Medieval Europeans (it is argued) did not describe themselves as "white" for centuries.
Read 25 tweets
On not expecting your trainees to be in perfect mental health, a thread:
I debated disclosing my grades, but because science twitter is so into toxic, over-achiever culture, I'm gonna do it. It's not like I'll ever get into a PhD program so what the hell. I also worry about someone on twitter getting pissed and weaponizing this, but the only
time we seem to talk about grades is to humble-brag. "LoL I oNlY gOt FoUr As ThIs SeMesTeR". So anyway, here are mine, and they're very much a reflection of how I was doing each semester, good or bad.
Read 11 tweets

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