CASPR PhD students Paige and Elizabeth recently attended the Flinders University College of Business, Government and Law (CBGL) Higher Degree Research (HDR) workshop, and have plenty of positive reflections on the day. 

 On Monday 20th September, I attended the annual HDR Workshop hosted by Biggles, the CBGL HDR Association. Attending this workshop provides a great opportunity to catch up and connect with fellow HDR students within my college, which is so important during the PhD journey. Being able to discuss our research, wins and struggles with each other allows us to feel less isolated as we can all relate to each other.  

Beyond that, the workshop had five informative sessions, including three panels. The first session focused on HDR student wellbeing, which is particularly timely during the global pandemic. The next session was a panel on industry engagement during a HDR and the importance of connecting with industry, even if your career aspirations are in academia, as this relationship can result in new research opportunities. Following lunch, we had a really informative session by Dr. Alexander O’Donnell on networking and how to navigate networking when conferences are largely online due to the pandemic. The workshop ended with two panels, one on supervision and how to get the most out of your supervisors and ensure you have an effective relationship with them. The last panel was on publications and which journals we should aim for, how to handle rejection, and whether we should publish our thesis as we go or wait until the thesis is completed. Overall, the workshop was a fun day and I left feeling empowered with the knowledge I had gained and a clear vision on how to maximise my final year of my candidature.” – Paige Fletcher, PhD candidate 


The CBGL HDR workshop was a day well spent. Hearing from the various speakers on issues and topics related to doing a PhD gave me new information, despite almost completing my first year.  

Dr. Peter Chen’s talk on how to navigate our PhD supervision and supervisors from the perspective of the students directly complimented the later supervisor panel that answered all the questions we didn’t know we had about a supervisor’s perspective of supervision.  

The publishing panel was quite informative, providing us information on how and why to submit articles, as well as discussing how to deal with desk rejections. Their responses to my questions were informative and helped me decide on if I should publish an article outside of my PhD research area (do not do so for your first article!) 

Both the Industry Engagement and the Networking in a Virtual World panels helped provide me with some directions for my future connections with industries and with other academics. Both are something I desperately needed information on, as Covid-19 has changed how academia works and makes growing these connections difficult.”  – Elizabeth Forrest, PhD candidate 


CASPR would like to thank Biggles – the CBGL HDR Social Club – for convening this workshop, CBGL for supporting it and all the presenters for sharing their wisdom with the students. The CASPR Group academic supervisors encourage their HDR students to engage in peer support networks and HDR student cohort interaction as a vital part of their HDR journey. 

Categories: postgrads