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Academia after the PhD

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What to expect after finishing the PhD and aiming for the academia? Somewhat focused in the Portuguese case, and highly biased by my own experience.

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Academia after the PhD

  1. 1. ACADEMIA AFTER THE PHD João Paulo Barraca jpbarraca@ua.pt ! Universidade de Aveiro Instituto deTelecomunicações PhdComics go see it, great cartoon!
  2. 2. This talk is totally biased by my own experience and my own conclusions! ! Contents may be biased, slightly inaccurate, or totally wrong. Photo: Flickr, kyphotofile
  3. 3. DUTIES • Teach and Advise students • Research • Publish • Transfer knowledge • Participate in scientific events • Participate in university councils Professor Researcher
  4. 4. TEACHING • 12-13 hours/week of actual lecture time • 1 to 4 courses per semester • Plus tutoring and office hours • Plus marking and assessing work • Plus creating quizzes and laboratory guides ! • Senior academics have less lecture time
  5. 5. TEACHING • Then you start coordinating courses ! • Add: • Create contents (slides, homework's, projects, exams, etc...) • Manage students and colleagues • Fulfil administrative tasks • Reports, Pedagogical dossier
  6. 6. TEACHING • Example: Lab-I (~CS101), 2 semesters • Created from scratch, 120 students enrolled • NoTAs! ! • 16 assignments • 4 short exams • 2 projects • 20 laboratory guides: 419 pages • Theoretical slides: 725 slides
  7. 7. ADVISING • Professors have 4-8 MSc students/year • Start in September. Defend in June/December • Must advise and guide ! • “A few” PhD students • Must advise and guide • Build research environment
  8. 8. RESEARCH • Participate in joint projets • National or International scope ! • Participate in research teams ! • Start building a research team • Mostly PhD students
  9. 9. RESEARCH • Constant search for funding! • Pay conference papers, grants, equipment, etc… • Pressure to get funding ! • Several grant calls • Approval ratio: FP7 EU ~10%, FCT ~13% • 1 Project/year requires ~10 proposals (avg)
  10. 10. RESEARCH • Myth:You are free to research whatever you want ! • Reality: Freedom must be conquered/discovered • You are free to research what is promoted by funding agencies • Grants are focused in specific objectives • Fit your objectives in the grant call
  11. 11. PUBLISH • Probably the single most important aspect • For entering academia • For progressing in the career (obtain tenure) ! • There is no career without (lots of good) papers! ! • Not unusual to see 30 papers/year • After you have a research group
  12. 12. PUBLISH • Must publish, consistently, frequently • Mostly in international events/journals ! • Aim for high impact factor: high quality journals ! • Aim for high citations: high quality work in good places
  13. 13. SCIENTIFIC EVENTS • Conferences and journals • Editor, Chair, TPC, Reviewer ! • Standardisation bodies • IETF, IRTF, 3GPP, ETSI, etc… ! • Committees,ThinkTanks, Networks Of Excellence,…
  14. 14. MANAGEMENT COUNCILS • University has several management councils • Mostly composed by professors ! • Scientific Council • Pedagogical Council • General Council • Course, promotion & dissemination councils • etc..
  15. 15. NETWORKING! • Most areas are now multi-disciplinary • Especially when applying science to the real world ! • Need to collaborate in projects and publications • be able to form/join a project consortium/publication ! • Assure presence in events/scientific groups • Chair sessions, Organize events
  16. 16. WORK IN ACADEMIA • You get to travel frequently • Varies with projects, events, papers and funds ! • You will feel rewarded by teaching interesting topics ! • You will explore a few novel topics • Its application to solve problems • May choose where to invest your interest
  17. 17. WORK IN ACADEMIA • You really must collaborate • papers, projects, research ! • but your colleagues are your competitors ! • and the academia is similar to a feudal system • must stay aware of the politics
  18. 18. 2
  19. 19. WORK IN ACADEMIA • 12h/week + coordinating a course takes effort! ! • Must also write papers, proposals, deliverables • Must also travel to meetings and events • Must advise students ! • You will work a lot in the first years! • expect 50 to 70 hours just to keep it going
  20. 20. HOWTO JOIN? 1. Research topic and experience ! 3. Publication Record ! 5. Teaching Experience ! 7. Networking capability
  21. 21. HOWTO JOIN? (2012 DATA - PORTUGAL) • PhD students: 19.213, of which 1.859 defended ! • Professors: 21.951 (Univ), 13.531 (Pol) ! • New Openings: 57 (Univ), 21 (Pol) ~4.19% Source: Pordata and SNESUP
  22. 22. Thanks Photo: Flickr, jenosaur

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