What to bring to your weekly meeting

There’s a nice blog post from the Avasthi Lab on key points for students meeting their advisor. I agree with these points and refer you to the post here: They are quickly summarized here, but go read the more detailed ideas at the original post:. Use time wisely, bring an agenda of items you want to discuss Remind your advisor what was last discussed to get the discussion up to speed quickly.

UNSW proxy

UNSW library has a great many journal subscriptions you can use to access sources for your research. We often need to work with these sources when we are off-campus, but the library restricts access to those within its network. A proxy server allows us to be “within UNSW’s network” even when we are far from campus. Here’s how to use ours. Let’s say I need to download the colloidosome article below: You see the PDF link is greyed out and if I click on it will be told I don’t have access.

Group Bibliography

Any group has a lineage and history that has informed its focus and expertise. We are a fairly interdisciplinary group, blending engineering, physics, chemistry, foods, and biology, and the below texts are recommended as introductory and reference materials for anyone wanting to deepen or broaden their pursuit of complex fluids behaviour with us. Depending on your project, some will be of more use than others. I’ve grouped them below into three tiers, higher tiers indicating greater difficulty or specialisation, spanning several subjects.

Thesis Resources


The UNSW Complex Fluids group attended ACIS2017, the eigth biennial Australasian Colloid and Interface Symposium. The meeting was held in beautiful Coffs Harbour, New South Wales from 29 January to 2 February 2017. This international four-day conference had an excellent range of sessions and talks, with plenty of time for informal networking and discussions between the international and local colloid, surface and interface scientists. We look forward to new collaborations and ideas resulting from this great meeting!

Compilation of our tips and tutorials - FAQ

Mostly particle tracking with some Python links

A lot of our microstructural work is performed in concert with microrheological measurements using microscopic observations of colloidal tracer particles moving within a complex fluid. The analysis of these movies is easy these days, thanks to people who developed a number of open and freely available routines to ease the initial steps: Particle tracking microrheology is performed by many folks using IDL: Particle tracking using IDL or Matlab routines: The Matlab Particle Tracking Code Repository

Poster tips

As your work progresses, either in an Honours thesis, Master’s, or PhD, you will likely need to present a scientific poster at some point. The hosting organization will often supply a template or guideline for the poster format, and this is especially helpful to avoid changing the settings of PowerPoint (or LaTeX) yourself to print on larger-than-usual paper. Branded templates are available on MyUNSW. More important than paper size, the content, organization, and style of your poster is your responsibility and should be your main concern.

Presentation tips

Whether you pursue an Honours thesis, Master’s, or PhD, you will definitely need to make an oral presentation to your group, or a broader audience, at some point. When you become aware of this, the first thing you need to determine is the time allotment you’ll have, including questions. Make sure you are clear on that: is it 15 minutes total or 15 minutes plus 5 minutes for questions? There are a number of good tips in this document: Stuart Prescott’s Presentation guidelines

Professor Pratsinis' PhD rules

Doing a PhD is a singularly personal pursuit, and fields differ greatly in their standards, but a common factor is often the ease with which a student can become overwhelmed by the magnitude of the task at hand. This often makes it hard for them to take a pragmatic approach and keep some distance between their project and their identity/self-esteem. Back at the dawn of the Internet, when I did my PhD, my supervisor gave everyone a much-circulated copy of his rules for PhD students.