The Australian National University


Research Digest


March edition

Welcome note

February has been a busy month on campus as new students arrive and orientations and celebrations abound. If you arrived during this period, I hope you felt very much a part of the general student welcome. For those of us returning, we endure the longer coffee queues in the knowledge that everything returns to normal by March. HDR students arrive at all times of the year and with that in mind the Research Skills and Training team have coordinated a series of induction events which provide a short introduction to our central support services. Not only do these provide a great overview of some of the support available to you during your time here, but they are also a fantastic way to meet people beyond your School or College.
We had the first event at University House on 15 February, which was lively and stimulating and accompanied by a superb morning tea. We also took the opportunity to launch a new #ANUHDR Services and Programs brochure for 2018. Hard copies of these are doing the rounds of the Colleges, so do get one if you can. The cover features a map of campus with all the relevant services highlighted, and offering contact details for each one. It contains guidance about the main training programs available and suggests the stage of candidature when they are most useful. Up-to-date details and dates are available on
I am always interested in what our HDR students think about the support that is available and would encourage you to contact my office with any suggestions or comments. The scholarship opportunities I mentioned last time have now closed. The Fox International Fellowships selection process is complete, and one of the 4 candidates nominated by ANU will be selected by Yale to spend the 2018/19 academic year there. ANU is also a partner of the Westpac STEM PhD program which has generated a high level of interest this year. Good luck to all applicants and for the rest of you, do keep your eye on upcoming opportunities. Last year I mentioned the Global Young Scientist Summit (GYSS) held in Singapore in late January. The five ANU representatives - Gowtham Mohan, Jacob Ross, Larissa Huston, Alexandra Schumann-Gillett and Helen Jiao (pictured here) - found the experience very rewarding!



Professor Imelda Whelehan

Professor Imelda Whelehan

Dean, Higher Degree Research


Upcoming programs



Gain expert skills from the Thesis Whisperer in March.




Word for academic writing: formatting your document

2 Endnote 1: Building and managing your library
5 Official Research Candidate Induction to the Australian National University
7 Advanced digital research
8 Word for academic writing: maintaining consistency in your thesis
9 Endnote 2: Formatting and perfecting your paper
14 Thesis Boot Camp Veterans Day
14 Internet research workshop
15 Word for academic writing: putting your thesis all together
15 Official Research Candidate Induction to the Australian National University
17 Thesis Boot Camp Veterans Day
19 Official Research Candidate Induction to the Australian National University
21 Thesis Whisperer: Tragic Research Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
21 Thesis Whisperer: Working with your Supervisor
23-25 Thesis Boot Camp, applications open until 1 March

Saturday Endnote 1: Building and managing your library

24 Saturday Endnote 2: Formatting and perfecting your paper



3 Advanced digital research workshop
4 Word for academic writing: putting your thesis all together
5 EndNote 1: Building and managing your library
9 NVivo introduction (cost $90)
10 Statistics for CASS and CAP HDR students, more information below
11 Statistics for CASS and CAP HDR students
12 Statistics for CASS and CAP HDR students
12 EndNote 2: Formatting and perfecting your paper
16 NVivo advanced (cost $90)
30 Official Research Candidate Induction to the Australian National University






Research to Impact
Research to Impact is an intensive program designed to empower researchers with new tools to maximise the impact of their research through lean innovation methods.

As you are affiliated with the ANU you are eligible for a FULL SCHOLARSHIP (valued at $2000) for this program. Please submit your application here.

The program schedule is as follows:

  • Workshop 1 – Innovation essentials (14th March – 9:30am-1pm)
  • Workshop 2 – Value proposition for big impact (28th March – 9:30am-1pm)
  • Workshop 3 – Collaboration, value chain & business models (11th April – 9:30am-1pm)
  • Workshop 4 – Pitching for outcomes (9th May – 9:30am-1pm)

More information is available here. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.

Academic Skills & Learning Centre
Want to learn more about writing up your research for publication or thesis submission? Take a look at the Academic Skills and Learning Centre Research Writing website. There you will find a range of self-help resources to help you communicate your research.

Statistical Consulting Centre
The Statistical Consulting Unit will be running a free three-day short course in Statistics for CASS and CAP HDR students Tuesday 10 to Thursday 12 April 2018. CASS and CAP staff members are also welcome to attend.

The course will be hands-on and include case studies. The course will cover how to distil research aims and how to identify research questions. It will look at study design, and a range of statistical analysis methods. Presenters will outline experimental and survey design, and observational studies. The course will cover how to organise data, as well as provide guidelines on statistical software usage. A range of statistical analysis techniques will be considered, including regression, logistic regression, and linear models with random as well as fixed effects (linear mixed models). The special techniques required for sample survey analysis will also be outlined.

The course will use the statistical software R, but guidelines for other software (SPSS, Stata, SAS, Genstat) can be provided if needed. Discussion of your own research project will be encouraged. To get more information on and to enrol for the course, please contact Nicole Armstrong at  

The SCU also provides ongoing one-to-one statistics consulting support. See the SCU website where you can request an appointment with one of the SCU’s four statisticians.

Commonwealth Defence Export Controls Office
Individual researchers in Australian universities have a legal obligation to consider whether they may require a permit from the Commonwealth Defence Export Controls Office to physically export or electronically transfer regulated goods, software and technology or ‘know how’ outside Australia’s borders. The Research Services seminars are targeted towards researchers, join us on Wednesday 3rd May 2017 10–11am, register on Eventbrite.



News & links



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


ANU Qualitative Research Network

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


Centre for Higher Education, Learning &Teaching

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


Counselling Centre

Group Programs and Workshops for Semester One


Ethics training

Twice monthly Human Ethics Training sessions



Research and digital literacy training available – register via the online training calendar.

Navigating the sea of scholarly communications, an open access course designed by a team of local and international experts that aims to build the capabilities researchers need to navigate the scholarly communications and publishing world. Five self-paced modules available now!

JB Chifley Library turns 50! Our treasured main student library has reached the grand old age of 50. See our exhibitions in the Chifley and Menzies libraries – including the books that were banned in 1968.

Do you need to analyse and present your data? Join the SPSS workshops and you will learn these skills and much more.
Manage and analyse qualitative data with NVivo – upcoming workshops are available on 9 and 16 April (cost $180).

New ANU Press titles

Cascades of Violence by John Braithwaite and Bina D’Costa. 


Statistical Consulting Centre

Appointments for statistical consulting are free and very worthwhile. The SCU is a team of experts keen to support you to design and analyse your data collection.


Postgraduate and Research Students' Association (PARSA)

The Postgraduate and Research Students' Association (PARSA) is the democratically elected representative body for postgraduate students at ANU. Our membership is comprised of approximately 11,000 postgraduate students. PARSA exists to ensure the interests of postgraduates at ANU, namely through representing postgraduate students rights and welfare. PARSA is hosting many free events in March 2018, click here to find out what's on.



From the Thesis Whisperer



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Interested in connecting with non academic employers? Check out Ribbit

Is it possible to refuse the culture of overwork in the academy?

Awesome photo of a single atom wins prize


The latest from the Thesis Whisperer Blog

When is it ‘enough’?

De-stuffing your writing: or the The bumper list of words and phrases you could delete to make your writing more concise

9 Tips for a fuss free (i.e. survivable) PhD submission


Associate Professor Inger Mewburn

Associate Professor
Inger Mewburn

Director of Research Training
Thesis Whisperer



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