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Define your goals

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Define your goals

Why have you chosen to undertake this degree?

Each of us embarks on higher degree candidature at different stages in life, for a range of different reasons, with particular expectations and hopes. The prime motive might be professional advancement, a job requirement, personal satisfaction, a desire for personal intellectual development, ...

What do you want to accomplish through the course of your higher degree candidature? Where do you want to be once you complete your degree?

Clarify these targets or goals for yourself. This will enable you to monitor your progress and know where to concentrate your efforts.

Your supervisors can help you best if they understand your personal goals, so you will want to be able communicate your priorities clearly to them.

Here is a small exercise to help you start goal setting:

Take a large piece of blank paper, a comfortable pen, and focus on your degree goals. Randomly and spontaneously start to scribble all over the page. Include all your thoughts, ambitions, hopes and dreams related to your degree. Nothing should be excluded at this stage. Now look at your jumble of thoughts.

  • Circle your primary goal.
  • Number the disparate thoughts into a list 1-10 in order of importance
  • What are the steps you will need to take to accomplish the goals?
  • Next to each goal list objectives you believe you will need to complete along the path to fulfillment of this goal.
  • Identify some of the milestones that will need to be achieved along the way

Understand your reasons for doing the research degree, carve your unique path.

This is your meaningful journey.

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