The Australian National University


Research Digest


April edition

Welcome note

Some of you may be planning a short break to coincide with the public holidays in April. I certainly have been, and am now deciding how much work to take with me. The amount I achieve while on holiday varies, but I can never rest without the knowledge that I have something to do at hand, which will make me feel better if I do it. At this time last year, I was judging a literary prize and spent my holiday enjoying the mild autumn weather in Queensland reading novels, short stories and biographies – so compatible with relaxation that it hardly felt like work! This year a number of writing projects have been on the back burner, and a break from the office is a great time to refocus. I’m not the only one who struggles to decide how much ‘work’ to do on 'holiday': is it better to cut off from work or just keep things ticking over? That is the questio n.

While I’m struggling with that thorny issue, I will also be spending time just walking and thinking, possibly my two favourite activities. There is so much to think about at the moment, and much of it relates to my role as Dean, Higher Degree Research. The ANU Strategic Plan prompts us to reflect upon the characteristics of the ‘ANU PhD’, both now and moving forward, and I’ll be doing just that with the help of colleagues and student representatives across the University during the coming months. If you have views about what is, or could be, distinctive about the ANU PhD, do email me at



Professor Imelda Whelehan

Professor Imelda Whelehan

Dean, Higher Degree Research




Upcoming programs



Register your interest to join the Thesis Whisperer for a word count workout at #ANUTBC.
#ANUTBC is passionately supported by your Postgraduate and Research Students' Assoc.




Shut Up and Write Nights


ILP: Word for academic writing: maintaining consistency in your thesis


Career Doctor with the Thesis Whisperer. Beyond Plan B: non traditional career options for PhD graduates


First Wednesday Connect. Network with entrepreneurs, innovators and businesspeople from the innovation community, hosted by CBR Innovation Network.


Shut Up and Write-a-thon April (fully booked)


ILP: Search Strategies and Subject Databases


Thesis Boot Camp Veterans Day


ILP: Word for academic writing: putting your thesis all together


ILP: Data Management


Thesis Proposal Review (TPR) toolkit with the Thesis Whisperer


ILP: EndNote


Thesis Boot Camp




First Wednesday Connect. Network with entrepreneurs, innovators and businesspeople from the innovation community, hosted by CBR Innovation Network.


Shut Up and Write Nights


Shut Up and Write-a-thon May


Thesis Whisperer: What do thesis examiners really want


Thesis Boot Camp Veterans Day


Thesis Whisperer: Working with your Supervisor






Can’t find that book? ANU postgraduate students and staff can now request books online from other BONUS+ participating Australian and New Zealand university libraries and pick them up from one of our branches. Visit the ANU Library website for more information on using BONUS+.

Using Word to write your thesis? Our workshop will show you how to use templates to maintain consistency: Word maintaining consistency workshop.

Learn how to format the front sections of a thesis (e.g. cover page, declaration, abstract, lists of figures): Word putting it all together workshop.

Digital literacy training available: Register from our online training calendar.

Book a research consultation. Subject contacts are available for personalised, one-to-one research consultations. Book in now and get the subject specific advice you're after.

Discover how SAGE Research Methods can help you at every step of your research project. Explore research design, qualitative and quantitative methodologies, literature review writing, data collection and analysis through hundreds of videos, case studies and the Methods Map bring your project together with advice and tips on sharing your research findings, completing a thesis and submitting work for publication.



News & links




Chifley level 3 will soon be offering 24-hour access. A major refurbishment is being completed in the Chifley Library and an extra 200 study spaces are being added. Keep an eye on the Library website for more information.

The ANU Library is hosting an exhibition on Myanmar in conjunction with the Myanmar Update 2017 conference. Myanmar transformations will be on display in the Menzies Library foyer until the end of April.

New ANU Press title: Regulatory Theory: Foundations and applications, edited by Peter Drahos.

Discover the need-to-know of Research impact with Dr Anthony Dona at our free one day Clarivate Analytics workshop: Research Impact Training ANU.


Statistical Consulting Centre

The Statistical Consulting Centre is in the John Dedman Building (27). There are four academic statisticians offering free stats advice for your PhD, Masterate or Honours project. They also provide stats support and collaboration for academic staff. Click here to make an oppointment with statistical consulting.


ANU Qualitative Research Network

QRN Forum: Qualitative research at the margins: case studies of innovative methods


Academic Skills & Learning Centre

The Academic Skills and Learning Centre has launched a new Research writing website. This site has self-paced resources to help students from across disciplines with writing their thesis and disseminating their research.


ANU Online Wattle, Turnitin & Echo360 training

If you are teaching now or in the near future, ANU Online offers training on Wattle (Moodle), Turnitin, Echo360, and using technology for teaching and learning. You can come to one of the face-to-face sessions, get personal assistance at a drop-in session, learn at your own pace with Wattle Basics online train ing, or join the conversation about education technology with a coffee course. All are welcome to attend. For more information on Wattle or training, contact us at


Counselling Centre

Group Programs and Workshops for Semester One


Ethics training

Twice monthly Human Ethics Training sessions


Centre for Higher Education, Learning &Teaching

Are you a PhD student who has tutored at ANU? Learn about new ideas and practices


Postgraduate & Research Students' Association (PARSA)

PARSA Survival Guide and more



From the Thesis Whisperer



Inger's picks from the web

Don't like your writing? Ask a machine to fix it...

Creating space for academic babies

How to time a presentation properly (some really useful tips here)


The latest from the Thesis Whisperer Blog

Ever thought of podcasting your research?

Getting Spiritual with it?

How to stop 'flipping' (and write a good to-do list)


Doctor Inger Mewburn

Associate Professor
Inger Mewburn

Director of Research Training
Thesis Whisperer



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