Scales of ability: autism, music, and the need for flexibility in doctoral research.

Allen, Rory. 2010. Scales of ability: autism, music, and the need for flexibility in doctoral research. PsyPAG Quarterly, N/A(76), pp. 30-32. [Article]

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Abstract or Description

Working towards a Ph.D. can be a very diverse experience. Not only do people differ greatly from one another in their individual research fields, but one’s whole method of working changes at different stages for the same individual. Looking back as I end my time as a postgrad student, only one thing has remained constant: the future is always unpredictable. The Ph.D. process is like a military operation, and it is said that no military plan survives first contact with the enemy. This is just as true when applied to a research plan and its contact with scientific reality.

Threatened by all this uncertainty, one piece of advice that I found helpful was, to find an area in which you can start doing original work at an early stage. Ph.D. examiners are looking for work of publishable quality, and besides, it is very motivating to know that you are exploring a new piece of science. Finding such an area may appear daunting, but I have found that this impression can be mistaken. However, it is necessary to be prepared for the possibility that your first effort may be a false start, and to change direction if necessary. Science, like warfare, requires flexibility and the humility sometimes to admit defeat: a strategic withdrawal, or at least a change of direction, may be essential.

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October 2010Published

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Date Deposited:

10 Jan 2011 13:32

Last Modified:

29 Apr 2020 15:49


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