Witten, I. H., & Bell, T. C. (1992). Getting research students started: a tale of two courses (Computer Science Working Papers 92/5). Working Paper Series. Hamilton, New Zealand: Department of Computer Science, University of Waikato.
Permanent Research Commons link: http://hdl.handle.net/10289/9919
As graduate programs in Computer Science grow and mature and undergraduate populations stabilize, an increasing proportion of our resources is being devoted to the training of researchers in the field. Many inefficiencies are evident in our graduate programs. These include undesirably long average times to thesis completion, students' poor work habits and general lack of professionalism, and the unnecessary duplication of having supervisors introduce their students individually to the basics of research. Solving these problems requires specifically targeted education to get students started in their graduate research and introduce them to the skills and tools needed to complete it efficiently and effectively. We have used two different approaches in our respective departments. One is a (half-) credit course on research skills; the other a one-week intensive non-credit "survival course" at the beginning of the year. The advantage of the former is the opportunity to cover material in depth and for students to practice their skills; the latter is much less demanding on students and is easier to fit into an existing graduate program.
Department of Computer Science, University of Waikato
© 1992 by Ian H Witten and Timothy C Bell