Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Simpsons on Graduate School

Very funny. Here.

Hmm. What would I tell potential grad students? First, unless you so love your area that you don't care whether you have a job when you graduate or not, then pay attention to supply and demand. Your love for a subject area is not a reason for a university to give you a job.

Secondly, can you produce new knowledge? Grad school (well, at least doctoral study) is not about studying something really hard. It's about knowing an area well enough that you can make original contributions to the field. I have seen very smart people fail in grad school because they are not intellectually creative. Creativity is a personal quality that is distinct from intelligence. The older I get the more I recognize the critical importance of scientific or scholarly creativity for successful scholarship.


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