View Full Version : Re: Mel Siff's email on ( Student Calls for Help)

07-15-2002, 08:52 PM
Dear colleagues,

Quoting Mel Siff :

> The following letter which was written anonymously to me serves as a
> useful...
> Incidentally, I regularly receive requests from senior students who want
> me
> to read their entire theses or dissertations to see if there are any
> omissions, errors or weaknesses. Now, this is a task that generally
> takes
> many days and a great deal of effort, yet, as soon as one mentions that
> you
> might charge for this service as an experienced academic and
> technical
> editor, students usually rapidly disappear. Apparently they accept that
> one
> has to pay a doctor or a lawyer for advice, but not academics!
================================================== =====

Well said. What Mel has pointed out is indeed a very regularly increasing
demand on the never increasing number of hours in the day.

The thesis (the PhD) is the responsibility of the student and it may be seen
unfair in the first instant to have someone else see and edit it. However, a
thesis is also the fruits of someone's efforts. It probably is the single
largest research project that any researcher undertakes. Never again, he or she
will have the luxury of several years dedicated time to one project. In
addition the thesis is the manuscript of scientific methodology and
contains “new knowledge”. It therefore deserves the editorial attention of
experienced researchers and peers. Not only for the purposes of aiding a young
researcher to present their work, but also for the sake of the scientific
community who will benefit from a well written and well presented thesis.

I wonder if we have time to read and edit a thesis, why should we ask for
money? This approach is neither a good motivation for the student nor is a good
example. It would be entirely different, if my employers asked me to fill out a
time sheet to account for the number of hours worked so that charges can be
applied. But I do not know of any university that has such policy.

I think, despite all the pressures that we face, it is important to remain
scientists and retain an appropriate attitude.


Hamid Rassoulian

Dr. H Rassoulian BSc, MSc, PhD, MIPEM, SRCS |
Head of Clinical Bioengineering Group |
Dept. Medical Physics & Bioengineering |
Southampton University Hospitals NHS Trust |
Southampton, SO16 6YD |
Tel : 023 80 79 69 45 |
email: HamidR@soton.ac.uk |
For Web info see: www.medphys.soton.ac.uk |
then go to: RESEARCH |
and then to: Clinical Bioengineering |

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