A PhD is not just a degree – it is an opportunity to develop the skills needed to deliver impact

Hayley Teasdale (LSE Impact Blog, 25 marzo 2019)

Some PhD students and early career academics feel that the demands placed on them are so intense that they can never devote time to ‘secondary’ activities. Research comes first and last, and the doctorate ‘grind’ is something that has to be ‘got out of the way’ before they can focus on anything else. In contrast, Hayley Teasdale argues that PhD studies are an ideal time for developing your research communication and impact skills and growing your entrepreneurial and organizational capabilities.


I am a neuroscientist by training and my PhD was undertaken in the Faculty of Health at the University of Canberra (UC). My research focused on improving proprioception (which is the sense your body has of where it is in space) and balance in Parkinson’s disease. I submitted my PhD thesis in December 2019, and at the time of writing I’m awaiting the results of my examination.


This ‘inter-regnum’ period has been wonderful for reflecting upon the hectic, exciting and stressful moments of my PhD, all the wins and all the losses. Many people I meet and see on social media talk about how excited they are to ‘be done’ with their PhD. But if I had the chance, I would live out my PhD candidature (or at least aspects of it) over and over again…


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