Author: Alastair Watson

Getting a PhD while working full time – Top 10 questions to ask yourself before starting a PhD

I’ve jotted down a list of ten questions that I wish I had thought about more fully, or even considered at all before starting a PhD. Now, please remember (as mentioned before), I was full-time PhD (with teaching and marking commitments in my PhD Contract), and part-time at work. However, my employment contract was 27 hours per week (plus travel time), which is only a few hours short of what most people would consider a full-time contract (35 hour per week).

Read More

Sitting down and working out quickly what I would do, and how I could possibly afford to do it (time and finances)

If you recall my last post, I had just bumped into someone that I knew from years ago. He was completing his PhD and I was on a Masters course back in the UK at the time. Before I went home from another busy shift at work, I sat down to catch up on the past 8 years! His question was “So, when are you going to do a PhD?”, to which I replied “I’ve actually been thinking about that for the past six weeks, but how on earth do I manage it?”.

Read More

What drove me to become a reclusive PhD student?

There were a few reasons that I decided I wanted to go back to studying after 8 years. First, I started to hate what I did for work. I had previously been a Hotel General Manager, and then moved into Branded Restaurants, working for one of the largest operators in the UK. The job was grueling, and depressing. Constantly working extra shifts, extra hours, having to work under-staffed due to unrealistic budget constraints, and then justify why the food quality and customer service were, to put a crude twist on it, pretty crappy – if you don’t have the staff, how do you meet such high expectations?!

Read More