In this time of uncertainty we’re sure you have questions about what it means for your PhD, your research project and your working routine. Some of you will be working from home for the first time, juggling study with caring responsibilities, or feeling isolated from your fellow researchers.
We are here to support you. Over the next few weeks we will be sharing resources to help you adapt to working remotely and to connect you with others in the PhD community.
If you have a favourite podcast or Twitter account, or you come across any other useful resources, email us at email@example.com and we will share on the blog. We’ll also be active on Twitter @SussexDocSchool and will be dropping in on the Hive Scholar Slack channels (see below).
It goes without saying that your health is the most important thing at the moment, so be kind to yourself and take some time to adjust. Please keep in touch and if you have any questions or concerns, email and we will do our best to help.
The university has a new advice page specifically for PGRs and supervisors, addressing everything from thesis submission and vivas to fieldwork, funding and what to do if you become ill. It will be updated regularly as the situation evolves so keep checking and if there’s anything you don’t think it addresses let us know by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Taking care of your mental health and wellbeing during your PhD is essential, more so now than ever. There is a wealth of resources on the Doctoral School’s Wellbeing webpages.
- The Wellbeing Thesis is a new online resource for postgraduates to support wellbeing, learning and research, developed by the University of Derby, King’s College London and Student Minds charity alongside a panel of PGRs. It includes tips on chair yoga, breathing exercises and getting a good night’s sleep as well as a section on managing adversity and bitesize videos on a wide range of topics. Explore by theme or use the menu to navigate.
- The Research Hive Scholars are moving their events online for the next few months, and building a virtual PhD community in the digital platform Slack. If you want somewhere to chat with other Sussex researchers, work alongside them or join the regular Shut Up & Write sessions, find out more on the Scholars blog.
- Claire Durrant, a doctoral researcher in ESW, has compiled a guide to creating your own online support group based on a successful video call model she set up with some of her peers. You can download the guide from the Doctoral School website.
- Silent Zoom Writing Group, set up by staff at the University of York, is an online writing group for researchers, academics and creatives. The two-hour sessions run twice a day, every weekday on Zoom.
- The PhD Game Night team are exploring online gaming as a way of continuing their popular monthly event. If you have any suggestions get in touch with them on Twitter @PhDgamenight and book to join on Eventbrite.
- Planet PhD: a podcast from local researchers Veronica and Gigi and a host of Sussex PhD guests
- Impacted: the Sussex podcast series about research for real change
- Viva Survivors: if you’re approaching your viva this is the podcast for you
Blogs and social media
- Virtual Not Viral, set up to support the PhD community through Covid. On Twitter @virtualnotviral
- Dr Inger Mewburn on Twitter @thesiswhisperer and The Thesis Whisperer blog
- Pat Thomson’s patter blog on research education, academic writing and more
- PhD Diaries, the chronicle of a PhD student, on Twitter @thoughtsofaphd and Instagram @phd.diaries
- PhD Comics on Twitter @PHDcomics and website
- The Sussex Hive Scholars on Twitter @SussexResHive, Instagram @SussexResHive and Research Hive blog
- For general PhD discussion on Twitter try the #AcWriChat, #PhDChat and #AcademicTwitter hashtags
RDP online training
We’re in the process of moving all of our scheduled workshops to online, where possible, and postponing those that won’t work as webinars or virtual modules. We’re also looking at webinars that will help support you through the current uncertainty, particular on wellbeing and working remotely.
Keep an eye on the RDP listings webpage and we will promote the new programme once it’s finalised.