The full name of PhD is doctor of philosophy, or more descriptively “permanent head damage”. Generally, you conduct your own research over three to four years and contribute novel knowledge to the field. At the end of journey, you defend your thesis and get rewarded as “Dr”. As a Bachelor student, you take papers, write reports, assignments and exams, then you pass the course.
Once a month I enjoy giving up some time to do volunteer work in the Waitakere Ranges for Ark in the Park. The Ark is a large area of the Waitakere Ranges that is under a pest protection plan that involves the use of traps, poison bait, monitoring, reintroduction of native birds and much, much more.
As a student with my family and friends spread out all across Auckland, I am quite reliant on my car. I drive a (relatively) old car, as I’m sure many of you other students do, and with age tends to come a variety of strange features in the form of odd noises and weird features. Whenever I experience one of these, I usually turn the music up and/or assure my fellow passengers that everything is completely fine, all the while pushing back the ‘I hope I don’t die in this car’ thoughts to the back of my head.
My trip to Washington DC started with me waking up in disbelief one morning noticing that my flight time was within 10 hours. The GapSummit conference was held in between the end of lectures and exam period. Therefore, the thought of being halfway around the world before having exams was very unreal and stressful. However, it turns out the lesson I got out of this trip was more valuable and memorable than the course content crammed just for my exams.
It’s that time of year again. You’ve got your semester one results back, have had time to cry in your room for a few days, and then a little more time to realise the error of your ways and promise yourself that this semester will be different.
For most of us, university is a long, strenuous grind in which one toils to obtain a piece of paper with their name on it. The freedom one gains compared to high school feels liberating, yet it is marred by the daunting reality that you are now responsible for your own learning with no one to push you.
This is the most common phrase that you always hear but never fulfill in real life. According to my experience, studying harder and longer doesn’t always guarantee you to get A+ in all assignments and exams. Studying hard for long periods is very exhausting and 100% of the knowledge would not last forever in your brain. I used to fail many subjects back in high school but when I started to follow my intuition to study smarter, instead of harder, my entire life was changed dramatically.
While diamonds may be made under pressure- cue Kermit Procrastination memes- procrastination and the Bermuda Triangle of productivity isn’t a recommended method of tackling the upcoming exam period. However, neither is studying till you drop! Believe me, after 5 years surviving exams I’m now somewhat of an expert.
Let’s face it. Our lives are infested with memes. One would say it’s a new cultural phenomenon that has revolutionised the way we communicate. Facebook feeds festering with relatable captions accompanied by an obscure picture where the comments section merely functions as means to tag your mates and say “omg us” are all the craze these days. But memes are not new. They’re not revolutionary. They’re evolutionary. I recently attended a fascinating psychology lecture discussing the evolution of culture and how memes, as they accumulate changes over a period of time, adapt features to fit into their respective niches and compete to be the most propagated, can be explained easily with the analogy of being a rapidly evolving cultural parasite.
Sometimes life presents you with hidden opportunities. How was I to know while idly perusing the magazine rack at Christchurch airport that I would find something that has astounded most of my friends, has had me and my flatmates screaming in incredulity?