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scientist twitter

069: Five Ways Scientists SHOULD Be Using Twitter

Traditionally, spending time on social media was a great way to make your PI angry. Your job is to finish experiments, read papers, and present your work at conferences, not to upvote and share the latest blue-dress illusion.

But there are some unexpected benefits to the Twitter network that could help your science and your career.

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068: Use Targeted Savings Accounts for Irregular Expenses

If the idea of saving money while in graduate school sounds laughable to you, you’re not alone. Many grad students live month to month on a stipend that places them near the poverty line.

After rent, food, and clothing, there’s nothing left to save.

But food, clothing and shelter don’t cover all the expenses you’ll face as a grad student. There’s also car maintenance and repair, gifts for loved ones, and the occasional concert or trip to the beach.

How do you squeeze these add-ons from an already meager budget?

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067: Science Magazine Takes a Teeny, Tiny Step Toward Open Access

If you read the following headline this week, you might have experienced a small thrill:

AAAS Forms Partnership to Expand Access to
High-Quality Scientific Publishing

AAAS, or the American Association for the Advancement of Science, is the organization that publishes the flagship journal Science Magazine and related titles.  You might believe from that headline that you could now access Science articles for free from anywhere in the world!

You’d be wrong.

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066: Should Scientists March on Washington?

Though techniques and terminology vary from one scientific discipline to another, all scientists are bound together by a set of core principles.

We call this the “scientific method,” and the approach is sacrosanct.

Observe the world around you, state a hypothesis to explain what you’ve seen, devise an experiment to prove yourself wrong, and report your findings so that the next inquisitive mind can build upon your work.

So what happens when an elected official seeks to erode the foundations of scientific inquiry?

Scientists take to the streets.

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065: Does the GRE Predict Which Students Will Succeed?

Though most of us have never served on a graduate program admissions committee, we can still appreciate the difficulty of their task: Given a stack qualified applicants, choose the few that you believe will succeed.

Where do you start?  Perhaps you check on each applicant’s GPA, or focus just on the GPA in their science classes.

Or maybe you trust the Graduate Record Examination (GRE).  After all, it’s designed to measure a student’s readiness for graduate school, right?

Because reviewers differ on which metrics they trust most, it’s worth considering a scientific approach to admissions. Are there any predictor variables that actually correlate with student outcomes?

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