What does a PhD student do all day?


I often get asked what I do all day. Although I am at home and physically not leaving for a “place of work,” my days are pretty hectic. I spend a lot of time in front of my computer. Usually I am answering emails, writing abstracts or writing a paper. I might also be checking on my online class or doing some data analysis. There is never a dull moment in my day.

For example, although I have over a month until my first conference of the year, I am already busy getting ready for it. I have pulled a variety of articles from the library and I am preparing to dive into the literature which will guide my presentations. Today I had to create   a  sub-website for my conference presentation.  I had the usual technical issues which required me to call my web hosting company. As I create this website, I am outlining my presentation and considering what I will be speaking about. Interesting to note that while I am waiting for the installation of various applications on my website, I am multitasking and finishing up an abstract. I am also checking into my online class (answering a student message) and responding to emails that comes into my inbox.

As I type this blog post, I still have half of my day left. I am mentally planning what I need to to get done (e.g., the emails that need to be sent, the writing that needs to be done, etc.).  After I “post” this blog entry, I will begin reading the articles I have pulled. However, I can’t do this until I have checked my email to make sure there is not anything urgent that needs to be responded too.