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How to research independently?

  1. Nov 2, 2016 #1
    So, I talked to my professor about doing research and he said that I can start next semester either with his group which is working on supernova or I can find my own topic and work independently (or do both). I have decided to work with his group just because I really like the research topic and if I need any assistant, the group will be readily available to help me since their area of expertise is the same.

    However, I also want to explore other areas on my own as I don't wanna get bogged down researching just one topic my entire life. So, how do I figure out which other topic I want to work on? Also, how will I do it on my own? I will have access to the softwares that my group does, but where do I get the data online and where do I begin?

    Thank you!
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 2, 2016 #2


    Staff: Mentor

    Do one thing at a time. Join the group, study the topic and see where it leads you. Often this is the best way as whatever you find may be useful to the group later on or to you alone for a future project. Read the journals and look for what interests you but remain focused on one thing. Then as you mature in the group you will naturally find other interesting problems to study and can begin to explore them.

    Trying to multitask often creates problems where you don't accomplish either area of study. I've been doing this lately and find that I struggle to task switch between projects especially when I don't take good notes. Sometimes even the notes are insufficient and I have to redo some work to get back to where I left off.
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