So you want to be a Doctor?

PhD preparation workshop

You are thinking about getting a PhD, but you are not sure about what is expected, how to go about it and whether it’s worth it. This workshop will help you to decide, and to prepare an application for PhD studies.

Many people want to get a PhD, to wear the red gown and to earn the right to be called Doctor. But it’s not an easy process. Doctoral education takes three to six years so it’s a big commitment. Many start, but few complete.

This workshop will help you to …

  • Decide if a PhD really is for you
  • Understand what a PhD is and is not
  • Choose a PhD program
  • Find a supervisor and persuade them to supervise you
  • Choose a research topic
  • Prepare your application
  • Prepare a research proposal
  • Increase your chances of acceptance into a program
  • Plan for your life as a PhD candidate

This workshop is a great way to start you PhD studies and make sure you succeed.

Who is it for?

All kinds of people do PhDs. This workshop is for you if…

  • You are employed at a university and are under pressure to get a PhD
  • You want to get into an academic career and need to improve your qualifications
  • You are employed outside of academia and want a PhD to differentiate yourself
  • You are retired and now have time to explore an area of knowledge in depth
  • You want to reflect on and consolidate your experience and knowledge in a field
  • You have a long-standing personal dream of being a doctor
  • You have applied for a PhD before and been rejected
  • You don’t have friends and family with PhDs to advise and guide you

How does it work?

The workshop takes place over two days. You must attend both days. It is held at Better, 91 Oxford Road, Saxonwold in Johannesburg. We can recommend accommodation nearby for people travelling to Johannesburg (not included in the fee).

The first day of the workshop will be spent learning about the PhD, how doctoral education works and analysing your reasons for wanting to do a PhD. We discuss how to choose a program and supervisor and go through a detailed process for deciding on a research topic. The day is very hands-on and we will have plenty of time to talk about your specific circumstances. We work through exercises examining what the information we share means to you.

At the end of the first day you will be set homework to do that evening, collecting information for and preparing your application. On the second day we will review your application and discuss how to strengthen it. Then we will spend time writing your proposal, discussing your proposal and improving it. This process also gives you a taste of what PhD study is like. We end the workshop by discussing how you are going to adjust your life to accommodate a PhD.

You get…

  • Two days with an expert on doctoral education answering your questions
  • Detailed information about what to expect from doctoral education
  • A checklist of questions to ask when choosing a program and supervisor
  • A detailed procedure for approaching a supervisor
  • A template for preparing a short proposal for your application
  • Insight into how to find and use academic literature to guide your choice of topic
  • A taste of what academic research and PhD learning is like
  • A personal review of your CV and academic transcript to identify strengths and weaknesses
  • A worksheet that helps you plan your life as a PhD candidate

About Judy Backhouse

Judy Backhouse wrote her PhD on Doctoral Education in South Africa, graduating in 2009 from Wits University. She has run workshops for postgraduate students and academic staff on academic writing. She has also run workshops for postgraduate supervisors at Wits University and at the University of Venda. She has worked as the convenor of a PhD program, including screening and interviewing PhD applicants. This course is a result of seeing a lot of bad applications and wanting to help applicants to improve their chances in applying.

You can learn more about Judy at:

Participants in some of Judy’s workshops have said:

“Judy has an amazing ability to create a safe space. Academic writing can feel so scary, and yet she made me feel that I could do it and that I didn’t have to be afraid of asking stupid questions.”

“This workshop gave me so much direction and clarity. I now know what I need to do next.”

Details

Dates:           Friday 6th and Saturday 7th October 2017
Times:          8:30am to 4:30pm
Venue:         Better, 91 Oxford Road, Saxonwold (entrance off Englewold Road)
Cost:              R3850
Booking:      Contact Candy on 011 327 6098 or create@better.joburg

Book and pay by Monday 2nd October to secure your place. (EFT details)

Contact us