Учебно-методическое пособие для аспирантов




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SECTION II



ACADEMIC DEGREES AND

POSTGRADUATE STUDIES


FOCUS VOCABULARY


science – наука

natural ~ (or the natural sciences) – естественные науки

the exact ~es – точные науки

the mathematical ~ (or the mathematical sciences) – математические науки

social ~ (or the social sciences) – общественные науки

~ and technology – наука и техника

scientific – научный

~ method/approach/principle – научный метод/подход/принцип

~ work/research – научная работа/исследование

scientist – ученый (естественные науки)

to study – учиться (to learn – учить что-л., to teach – учить кого-л.)

scholar – ученый (гуманитарные науки)

learned – научный

~ society – научное общество

~ work/ article/language – научный труд/журнал/статья

но: paper – научный доклад

journal – научный журнал

supervisor – научный руководитель

supervisor (advisor) – научный руководитель

artsгуманитарные науки (humanities)

faculty of ~ – факультет гуманитарных наук

liberal ~ – гуманитарные науки (язык, философия, история и т.д.)

Candidate/Doctor of Philology – кандидат/доктор филологических наук

~ of psychology – кандидат/доктор психологических наук

~ of education – кандидат/доктор педагогических наук

~ of economics – кандидат/доктор экономических наук

~ of laws – кандидат/доктор юридических наук

researchисследование, научно-исследовательская работа

to do/carry out /conduct ~ (on/in/into) – проводить исследования (по)

to be engaged (in) ~ – проводить исследования

~ degreeученая степень

~ institute – научно-исследовательский институт

~ center – исследовательский центр

~ student – аспирант

~ subject (topic) – тема исследования

~ worker/researcher – научный работник

degree – степень (ученая)

to award/confer a ~ – присвоить степень

to get/take/receive a ~ – получить степень

to hold/have a ~ – иметь степень

first ~ – диплом бакалавра наук

Bachelor’s ~ – степень бакалавра

higher ~ – ученая степень

Master’s ~ – степень магистра

Doctorate ~ (PhD) – степень кандидата наук

~ of Candidate of sciences (Candidate’s degree) – степень кандидата наук

~ of Doctor (Doctor of sciences) – степень доктора наук

dissertation/ thesis – научная работа, диссертация

to defend one’s ~ – защитить диссертацию

to submit a ~ for hearing at the session of the Academic Council – представить диссертацию для обсуждения на заседании Ученого совета.

field of studyобласть исследований


Modern academic education in our country comprises four stages: Bachelor’s degree, Specialist’s degree, Master’s degree, Postgraduate degree. Academic degrees abroad differ in many ways which is the point of our further discussion.


Academic Degrees Abroad

A degree is an academic qualification awarded on completion of a higher education course (a first degree, usually known as Bachelor’s degree) or a piece of research (a higher/further degree, doctorate and so on). There exists considerable diversity of degrees in various countries. But in spite of the lack of equivalence of degrees some similarities can be found among certain groups of countries, particularly those of the British Commonwealth, continental Europe, America and the Far East.

One can distinguish the principal types of academic degrees – bachelor, master, and doctor which represent different levels of academic achievements.

The Bachelor’s Degree is the oldest and best known academic degree. Some varieties of bachelor’s, or baccalaureate, degrees are a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree and the Bachelor of Science (Bsc). Other baccalaureate degrees offered by most universities are Bachelor of Education, Bachelor of Music, Bachelor of Business Administration, Bachelor of Divinity, Bachelor of Home Economics.

The Bachelor’s degree can be attained by students who pass their university examinations, or in some cases other examinations of \ equivalent level. This normally involves at least three years of full-time study after passing the advanced level certificate of education at the age of about eighteen, so most people who become BA, BSc, etc. do so at the age of at least twenty-one. First degrees in medicine require six years of study, some others four.

It is now quite usual for students in subject such as engineering to spend periods during their degree courses away from their academic studies, in industrial location so that they may get practical experience. A student of a foreign language normally spends a year in a country where that language is spoken. Bachelors' degrees are usually awarded on the basis of answers to several three-hour examinations together with practical work or long essays or dissertations written in conjunction with class work. Degrees are classified. About a tenth (or less) of candidates win first-class, honours degrees, three quarters - second-class, and the rest - third class, or pass without fail. A person studying for a degree at a British university is called an undergraduate.

About 33 per cent of students continue to study for degrees of Master (of Arts, Science, Education, Business Administration, Music, Fine Arts, Philosophy, etc.). About 45 varieties of Master of Arts and 40 varieties of Master of Science degrees are reported. The degree of Master in general requires one or two further years of study, with examination papers and substantial dissertation.

A minority (about 15 per cent) goes on further, preparing theses which must make original contributions to knowledge, for the most advanced degree of Doctor of Philosophy (Phd).

Doctor’s degrees in many foreign countries are of two distinct types: professional or practitioner’s degrees, and research degrees.

The former represent advanced training for the practice of various professions, chiefly in medicine and law. The principal ones are Doctor of Sc. Medicine, Doctor of Dental Science of Dental Surgery, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, Doctor of Pharmacy, and Doctor of Jurisprudence. These degrees carry on implication of advanced research.

Quite different in character are the research doctorates which represent prolonged periods of advanced study, usually at least three years beyond the baccalaureate, accompanied by a dissertation designed to be a substantial contribution to the advancement of knowledge. The most important of these is the Doctor of Philosophy, which represents advanced research in any major field of knowledge.

Second in importance and much more recent as a research degree which is the Doctor of Sc. Education (Ed.D.) It was first awarded by Harvard in 1920, but was preceded by the equivalent Doctor of Pedagogy first conferred by New York University in 1891. The only other earned doctorates of the research type currently conferred by 10 or more institutions are the Doctor of the Science of Law and the Doctor of Business Administration.


Since there is no equivalence in foreign and native degrees compare academic degrees in your country and abroad.


It may be of some interest for you to learn more about the curriculum and training programs at the postgraduate level abroad. Read the text carefully and find some differences and similarities in the postgraduate course in the United Kingdom and that of our country.


Postgraduate Training Programs

All further education which comes after baccalaureate can be regarded as postgraduate education. It presupposes carrying a lot of research work, acquiring knowledge of new methodologies and new trends. It may lead to either a Master’s degree (a three year program of study) or PhD (usually a two-year course of study).

Postgraduate programmes are either research degrees or taught courses. Taught courses last one or more years and are either designed so that you deepen your knowledge gained from your first degree or for you to convert you expertise to another field of study. Examples of these include changing to law to become a solicitor and training to become a teacher.

Degrees by instruction are very similar to undergraduate courses in that most of the time is devoted to attending lectures. This may take up the first eight or nine months of the course and is followed by written examinations. A period of research lasting for two to three months usually follows and the results of it are presented in the form of a thesis. Finally, an oral examination is held, lasting perhaps an hour or two, to test the knowledge accumulated throughout the year. Most programmes, which involve classes and seminars lead up to a dissertation.

Research course is quite a different type of study from a taught course. First of all it lasts longer, for about three years providing Master’s or doctorate qualifications. They allow you to conduct investigations into your own topic of choice and are of use in jobs where there are high levels of research and development.

The most well-known research qualification is the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD, a three year study programme). There is a shorter version called a Master of Philosophy (MPhD) which takes the minimum amount of time of two years. Both of these qualifications require the students to carry out a piece of innovative research in a particular area of study. Also possible research based Master of Science (MSc.) and Master of Arts (MA) degrees. A recent development is the Master of Research (MRes), which provides a blend of research and taught courses in research methods and may be a taken as a precursor to a PhD.

It is a common practice for students to be registered initially for the MPhil and to be considered for transfer to the PhD after the first year of study, subject to satisfactory progress and to a review of the proposed research. All research degree programmes involve an element of research training designed to ensure that students are equipped with the necessary skills and methodological knowledge to undertake original research in their chosen field of study. The training programme includes the development of generic skills relevant to the degree programme and a future career. Although the training element is not a formal part of the assessment for the degree, it constitutes an important basis for research and may take up a significant part of the first year.

The start of a research degree involves a very extensive survey of all previous works undertaken in that area. At the same time, if a student is planning to carry out any practical experimentations, the necessary equipment will need to be obtained.

This preliminary part of the study can take up to six month, but it is important to note that the process of keeping up to date with other work going on in the subject must continue throughout the entire period of the research.

The next stage of a research course usually involves collecting information in some way. This might be through experimentation, in the case of arts, social sciences or humanities degree. The important thing is that something new must be found.

This second part of the procedure takes about two years in the case of a PhD. The research is written up in the form of a thesis during the final six months of the three-year period. Typically, this will contain an introduction, methodology, results and discussion. As in the case with taught degrees, the research must then be examined orally. Occasionally, if the examiners are not completely happy with the work they may ask the candidate to rewrite parts of the thesis. Hopefully, a good supervisor will make sure this does not happen!


What qualities does research demand from postgraduate students, those young people who make up their minds to devote themselves to scientific research? Some of these qualities are mentioned in the text below. Think of some other ones. You may enjoy solving problems, you may have creative abilities or things like that. Are you patient enough, industrious and hard-working for this kind of activity?


Different types of study require similar qualities from the people who undertake them. Both demand and inquisitive mind that will maintain the motivation to learn and discover new information.

They also both demand a high level of intellectual ability in order to cope with the pressures of understanding the possible complex arguments, facts or theories. Both require a high degree of organizational ability and time management, as so many different things need to be attended to.


Why undertake postgraduate study?

There are various reasons for choosing postgraduate study but some reasons are more positive than others. Look through the reasons given by some students and get ready to discuss them.


Tom Brown:

I Really Enjoy My Subject

This is a highly motivating reason to do a higher degree. It’s worth considering the long-term implications of your choice. Does your choice of course fit in with your long-term career plans? That does not mean that you should only consider postgraduate programmes related to your area of work interest. All further study programmes will enable you to develop skills that you could market to an employer.


Emily Wright:

I Need It to Pursue My Chosen Career

This is an obvious positive reason for undertaking further study. Some career areas do require a professional qualification, for example law, teaching, social work, librarianship or clinical psychology. For other employment areas a postgraduate qualification, although not essential, will provide a distinct advantage to applicants, particularly when competition for places is fierce. In any case it will make you stand out from the crowd and get you a better job. Research the area of work that interests you to identify whether a postgraduate course would be necessary or advantageous to you.


Martin Scott:

I Don’t Know What to Do – This Will Give Me More Time to Decide

Past experience suggests undertaking a further year or more of study is unlikely to lead to careers inspiration! If you choose a course for this reason, it is important to use the duration of the course to decide what options are open to you, what skills you have to offer, what you want out of a job or may be jobs, what jobs would suit you in general.


Apart from the above reasons you may have some others worth mentioning. Put them down in the order of preferences in writing.


There can be less optimistic opinions about taking postgraduate or doctorate courses. Some of the postgraduates consider post-graduate study and doctorate a mere waste of time and effort. Express your opinion on the problem. If you disagree with something, debate and give your arguments.


Pamela Bain

The idea of original research can conjure up thoughts of constant intellectual excitement and cries of ‘eureka!’ The reality may be rather different. Studying for a research degree is very different to studying for an undergraduate degree. Consider carefully whether or not you would enjoy the basic research techniques you are going to use. Can you imagine counting black dots down a microscope for weeks on end? OK spending a year, or two, building equipment before generating a single result? Will you be happy working alone in a library for days on end? The breakthrough, when it happens, can be euphoric, but when results refuse to come it can bу deeply disappointing.


Tom Sight

Doctorates don’t count for much outside academia – and in fact they may count against you. If you can’t find a directly relevant area for subsequent professional work, than many employers are likely to look at you, a 25-30 year old person with three-six years of post-graduate work as being a strange and slightly worrying employment prospect – they’re going to be too smart for their own good. Another thing you won’t be told is how many people don’t complete their doctorates. I’ve heard various figures mentioned, but I believe that around 50% of people who start doctorates don’t get a PhD out of it. An enormous proportion of people simply never finish the things because it’s not quite what they were expecting when they started.


Research the area of work you wish to enter to identify how potential employers would view applicants with postgraduate qualifications. What new experience and knowledge would you gain from the post-graduate course of study?


What is your motivation for taking a post-graduate course? Is it only because of helps for future career making? Sum up all pros and cons and make a presentation in class. The text below provides you with extensive information to think about and to help you find the right answer.


Career Prospects for Post-Graduates

Just getting a university degree isn’t enough nowadays. Employers are increasingly looking for graduates who can hit the ground running. Post-graduate courses are monitored to match the needs of employers and make you “work ready”. Each degree has been developed in response to current market demands for specific skills. Employers look for graduates who can demonstrate both breadth and depth of subject knowledge. Combining subjects in a degree programme is a popular way of tailoring a course to reflect your career aspirations. Work experience plays a key role in making yourself employable. Some of the benefits are: the chance to put theory into practice; development of key skills; greater understanding of career choices; valuable career contacts for the future. Business is increasingly dependent on international trade, and employment opportunities demand well developed language skills. The course of foreign language will provide a broad range of language training opportunities for all students whatever course they are taking. To find the right career for you, you need to think about the occupations and jobs available – the skills, qualifications, experience and aptitudes you need and whether they are right for you. A postgraduate qualification from the BSU will be one that is recognized globally and will provide an excellent route to better career prospects. Major companies say they would rather employ students from the BSU. The University’s graduates benefit from our tradition of strong ties with business and industry.

We can say that our courses were more vocational, with students developing better jurisprudence, teamwork and communication skills.

The BSU’s high quality facilities and teaching and its interdisciplinary approach to research will enable you to make the most of research and learning opportunities available whilst studying for your scientific degree. It provides exceptional opportunities for research with commercial applications, drawing upon decades of working relationships with business and industry. All students here receive “appropriate and relevant preparation, training and support for their development, helping them both to complete a high-quality doctoral thesis and to develop a range of knowledge, understanding and skills necessary for their future employment”.

There are undoubtedly scenarios in which a generic or interdisciplinary approach would yield interesting results: for example, one could imagine how networking, team working, and some communication skills could be enhanced through contact with others outside one’s subject area. Such elements of training must, however, be carefully handled, because the current crop of PhD students are surely busier than their predecessors, and are being required to professionalize earlier. Not only are they working to finish their dissertations within the three-year period of their awards; but also often teaching, attending conferences, making research trips, attending meetings, and engaging in other activities entirely appropriate to their stage of career.

It is clear that development of communication skills and participation in a research seminar are linked to an important professional activity: going to a conference and speaking about one’s work. Students are explicitly prepared for this experience in a special session on ‘conference culture’, in which they are given pointers about how to propose and present a paper, and are taught the conventions of an oral text. They are encouraged to use the conference as a way of raising their individual profiles, and as a springboard for future publications. The delicate issue of networking is also addressed. The session is also an appropriate opportunity to plant in their minds the idea of running a conference themselves, thus further enhancing their organizational skills. Conference activity forms an important part of the career of any academic; for postgraduates it is an important way of participating in academic debate, and ‘showcasing’ their own work.

By the end of the second year of the program it can be seen together: the postgraduates are taught to make practical progress in the number of key areas of academic endeavor, with a view to having a significant body of experience by the time they complete their degrees. Introducing this information in the second year also helps to focus students’ minds on the key question of whether or not these postgraduates pursue academic careers, they will almost certainly be required to undergo an interview in order to obtain gainful employment.

It is therefore crucial to present them with opportunities to hone their skills in this area. By this stage of the programme they will have had experience of delivering their material in a public forum, and will have made an attempt to develop their presentation skills; they should also have had other opportunities to defend their ideas, making a substantial, original contribution to knowledge in a specific area.


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