Surviving Graduate School:
When in doubt, a sense of humor always helps.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fl4L4M8m4d0A lecture from the University of Georgia on “Work-Life Balance: Keys to Successfully Managing Graduate School”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AkmbF5o4r0IA good starting place for resources at the University of Wisconsin is the Graduate School’s website.
Communicating your research:
- The Weed Science Society of America has an excellent webpage where they have compiled a series of articles on technical writing from 1986 to 1997. Each article is a short 1 to 2 page discussion of a common issue in technical writing. To access their page, go here.
- What are the elements of an effective abstract? See this helpful article from the American Society of Agronomy.
- For a succinct two-page article discussing writing style, see this American Society of Agronomy pdf.
- A list of links to sites discussing literature reviews.
- A short but effective article, “The Literature Review: A Few Tips On Conducting It” by Dena Taylor at the University of Toronto
- From the Writing Center at the University of Wisconsin, “Learn How to Write a Review of Literature”
- A key to writing scientific literature is, of course, the citations! Citation managers can save a lot of time and effort if used wisely. For more information, go here.
- Another great article from NatureJobs, the advice applies to both Masters and Ph.D. students who are in the process of writing their theses and dissertations. To access the article, go here.
- From North Carolina State University, a short 10 minute video discussing the literature review.
- Programming tools: Adventures with R, Nature magazine, an introduction on how to use R for statistical analyses
- A great guide to poster design, “Creating Effective Poster Presentations” by George Hess, Kathryn Tosney and Leon Liegel at the North Carolina State University.
- An article with several examples of effective slides, “Rethinking the Design of Presentation Slides: The Assertion-Evidence Structure” by Michael Alley at Penn State.
- For the source on presenting data, check out the works of Edward Tufte. A quick but enlightening read is Edward Tufte’s article, “PowerPoint Is Evil” in Wired magazine.
- The University of North Carolina’s Graduate School has an excellent and frequently updated list of poster and presentation resources. Highly recommended.
- Delivering an effective presentation requires more than well-designed slides. Click here for an article that discusses the importance of clear nonverbal communication skills.
Publishing your research:
The Review Process
The peer review process can be intimidating to new research scientists because there are no detailed how-to guides for every discipline. However, there are online resources that can provide an adequate introduction. Sometimes the best way to understand the process is to learn how to review a manuscript yourself. What are reviewers looking for? What are the differences between a good and bad review? Here are two reading recommendations:
Career Advice and Tools:
What careers are available? If you are wondering where science training has taken people, see this article.
Do you see yourself working outside of academia? Check out this article.
Naturejobs.com offers a free Career Toolkit. The toolkit is a page with a list of articles on a variety of topics including: CVs and resumes, interview skills, networking, presentations, mentoring, and salaries. For more career-related advice and information, Naturejobs has an even broader selection of podcasts– a great addition to your morning commute.
This NatureJobs blog post discusses how to tactfully answer several dreaded interview questions.
Communicating your skills to a non-academic audience is a pdf copy of a presentation by the Office of Professional Development and Engagement in the Graduate School at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, October 2012.
Job Listings in Weed and Crop Sciences
- Weed Science Society of America Job List
- Science Societies of America Careers Website, a joint website for the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America and the Soil Science Society of America
- Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation employment website
- CIMMYT, the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center, employment website
Updated June 12, 2015