I’ve fielded questions recently from undergraduate students interested in, but unsure about, pursuing a PhD. I distilled some thoughts into an email, but actually these thoughts are better spent in public. I have previously written on the process of a PhD elsewhere, from a different perspective.
The following was written retrospectively, after I had submitted my own PhD dissertation, and long after I completed my undergraduate career. It’s also written from a UK perspective: other countries may have teaching requirements for PhD students, or may have taught classes that students must attend. UK PhD programmes also have a time limit within which you must submit your work for examination, and that time limit may be different or non-existent in other countries.
Here’s a universal truth: studying for a PhD is vastly different to studying for your undergrad. Here’s how: