EAPLS Representatives

Danielle Andrewartha

Position: Local Representative: Australia.

Words of Wisdom: Anything is possible! If you believe in yourself, are determined, put in the work, and take some calculated risks, you can achieve whatever it is you most desire.  The following are a few tips I have found useful, which may help you on your journey: 1. Grades are not everything – Aiming for top marks is a lofty goal, but not worth killing yourself over.  While your grades will be taken into account when you are applying for your first job, they are not the be-all and end-all.  Especially if you choose to practice psychology or law, your personality and life experience will be most significant in determining whether or not you get the job.  And, once you are in the working world, your grades become less and less important as you prove yourself professionally. 2. Find your passion – The only thing better than doing what you love, is being paid to do what you love!  If you find the vocation that fullfils you and brings you joy, you will never need to think of it as “work”. 3. Embrace the interdisciplinary –Engaging in ongoing interdisciplinary study, either formal or self-directed, and attending interdisciplinary events will ensure your skills continue to grow and keep you interested. 4. It’s not what you know, but who you know – I always used to hate this saying, but, while not agreeing with it completely, have come to see that it holds some wisdom.  Making connections with others in your field, particularly via mentoring, can be invaluable to your career progression and very rewarding on a personal level. Finally, don’t forget that “nothing is worth more than this day” (Goethe), so get out there and make your mark

Favorite Quote: “Nothing is worth more than this day.” (Goethe)

Leandro Velasco

Position: Local Representative: Mexico.

Words of Wisdom: Many things in life are uncertain, but do not take this uncertainty with fear but rather see it as part of this great adventure. Ultimately we may have only one life to live--so make it a good one! Relish the ups and downs that come with success and failure, both personally and professionally and you will always come out well. When it comes to graduate school having this perspective is a must. The thing to keep in mind is that while we may all want perfect 10's or A's throughout graduate school, this may not always be possible. Learning from one's mistakes can often be just as a valuable a lesson as receiving a 10, plus it provides you the chance to identify your strengths and weaknesses--so make the most of those opportunities and keep improving, keep going! Remember, we only fail when we stop fighting adversity.

“He who has a why to live can bear almost any how.” (Nietzsche)

Ulrike Ruppin

Position: Local Representative: Germany.

Words of Wisdom: It is a little strange for me to answer this, as I do not consider myself wise (yet). Nevertheless, I hope to gain more and more insight in my fields of interest during the course of my career, and maybe one day I will be able to answer to the full extent. What is essential, in my opinion, is to be and remain curious. There cannot be any research without people who are looking for answers to their questions. Thus, never stop asking, also when it comes to job offers or other possibilities. A second trait that helps you to gain ground in research is openness. Goals are important, of course, but do not let them become a hindrance. Otherwise you might miss out on interesting opportunities that could help you grow (as a person and as a researcher). This is what I am trying to do, and hopefully it will help me on my way. So far, it earned me a position as Ph.D. candidate.

Favorite Quote: “The important thing is not to stop questioning.” (Einstein)

Berenike Waubert de Puiseau

Position: Local Representative: Germany.

Words of Wisdom: In today’s world, we are swamped with opportunities and choices, and one easily gets overwhelmed. Sometimes one gets scared to be missing important things that a career in academia requires. In my experience, following your heart is at least as important as weighting the pros and cons of your options. If you really love what you do, you will be successful.  Don’t overthink! Go by your own opinion and not by what you think everybody else expects. Be unconventional, be creative, be brave! This makes you much more interesting. And don’t forget that life is more than academia and work.

Favorite Quote: “The most important thing in a person is not intelligence, but what is controlled by him: character, heart, good feelings, and advanced concepts.” (Dostoevsky)

Oskana Malanceva

Position: Local Representative: Russia.

Words of Wisdom: Every Person is unique and has something to offer. Some may be more intelligent, more competent or have better reputations than others, but these differences are often beyond our control. Our ability to understand and to help people, to have ideas and to perform activities to make life better, safer and more beautiful are the more profound and important things.

Favorite Quote: “The most important thing in a person is not intelligence, but what is controlled by him: character, heart, good feelings, and advanced concepts.” (Dostoevsky)

Pawel Banas

Position: Local Representative: Poland.

Words of Wisdom: Have fun in what you do and don't expect any payoff. I agree that the more you learn the less you know. However, there is no better addiction than science – so try not to be afraid to ask even dumbest questions. Never underestimate the importance of good theory and always look for objective measures. You can't be sure but being sceptical is a very good attitude; again - you can't be sure but you can be right.

Favorite Quote: "Knowledge brings fear [and fun]”

Karisha George

Position: Local Representative: United Kingdom.

The main thing I have learned in my academic pursuits is the value of determination. Postgraduate research began as a privilege for the select few who excelled above all others. Although the numbers have increased, it remains an arduous and challenging journey. I can guarantee that it will demand not only academic development but also personal growth. Your capacity to critically analyse will pervade into your personal life, and not only your intelligence but your friendships and relationships will change. Let your entire being go through the process of change. It is scary but it will definitely be worth it!

Favorite Quote: "Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.”

Jorge Jiménez Serrano

Position: Local Representative: Spain.

Words of Wisdom: Today's society requires professionals to be innovative and enterprising. We need to think beyond to the established research lines, beyond the structured protocols, beyond the theories and the validated methodology. The student should always engage in critical thinking, develop questions that no one has explored, build hypothesis not yet investigated, and identify new methodological approaches. The evolution of professionals stems from failures and small changes that seek to address those failures.

Favorite Quote: "My students today will be my teachers tomorrow." (J. Jimenez)

Néstor Carlos Litter

Position: Local Representative: Argentina.

Words of Wisdom: It is our duty to become researchers in all matters that concern our profession, ability to communicate and generate new ideas on learning, be proactive, carrier solutions, a true agent of change and fully updated in modern society topics demand knowledge. And so, contribute to the development of a more cohesive society, expectant to new challenges.

Favorite quote: "I feel braver who conquers his desires to that which conquers his enemies, for the hardest victory is the victory over self." (Aristóteles)

May Kanippayoor

Position: Peer-review Coordinator

Words of Wisdom: I am a graduate student in Forensic psychology at the University of British Columbia-Okanagan and I am pleased to be the new peer-reviewer for the EAPL-S. The road to academic professionalism is long and cumbersome. As students we often travel the winding path with little opportunity to practice our craft. We attend the lectures, study the material, and take the tests, but what is missing from the experience is the opportunity to apply the theories we learn in a meaningfully practical way. “The price of greatness is responsibility.” (Churchill, 1874-1965) –we are the academics of tomorrow and it is our responsibility to be great by taking chances and practicing our talents. Follow wherever the pursuit of knowledge leads you and search out the opportunities that allow you to perfect your craft. The EAPL-S has given me the opportunity to take the first step in my professional career – being the new peer-reviewer will allow me to apply myself in a practical and meaningful way. Therefore, I would like to thank the members of the EAPL student association for paving a path for students who wish to apply and shape their years of classroom learning within a professional framework. As a fellow student on the road to academic professionalism, my advice is to make the best of this short part of your life’s journey and discover greatness in your every pursuit while traveling the course.

Favorite Quote: "With ordinary talent and extraordinary perseverance, all things are attainable." (Thomas Foxwell Buxton)

Dr. Graham Davies

Professor Emeritus, University of Leicester.

His thoughts on what makes a good poster:

A good poster is rarely a conventional written paper printed onto a big sheet of cardboard: it needs its own special approach. Remember most of your readers will not be specialists and are not going to spend a long time reading your poster. They will have lots of other posters to look at and only a limited time to do it in. So, get your message across in the title: make it short and crisp-think newspaper headlines. The reader needs to know quickly what the poster is about- and if you can squeeze in the take-home message as well, better still.

Avoid formal Introductory sections with literature reviews-no one has time to read them: stick to the key study or theory which motivated your own research. Avoid tables in favor of bar charts and other visual aids-remember you have your average reader's attention for only 2-3 minutes at best. Abandon conventional discussion sections in favor of bullet points highlighting the main findings and the conclusions you have drawn from them.

Think about using relevant illustrations to catch the reader's eye-they don't have to be just of your experiment in progress but could illustrate themes or applications-Google Images is, as always, a mine of useful material! Its always good to have a fuller, more formal version of the paper available for the specialists to take home (perhaps containing that literature review and the details of those fourth-order interactions).I appreciate you can't always bring pre-prints on long haul (with airline luggage restrictions, it can sometimes come down to either the pre-prints or a second pair of trainers). If not, a sign-up sheet for electronic copies will do the trick-but make sure it's clearly designed, rather than a ragged piece of paper torn from an exercise book that you then loose.

Remember poster sessions are a drinks party with illustrations. Most people-readers and players enjoy them and they are a great opportunity to meet and chat informally with the great and the good in your area of research as well as your fellow students-have fun!

Dr. David Cooke

Professor of Forensic Clinical Psychology, Glasgow Caledonian University; Visiting Professor in the Faculty of Psychology at the University of Bergen in Norway. Former EAPL president.

His thoughts on what makes a good poster:

Graham Davies has provided wise words on how to prepare an effective and enjoyable poster. What if you want to go the next step and give your first presentation at an international conference? There’s lots to think about, good data, good design and a good story – many people have these, but they let themselves by poor PowerPoint. Death by PowerPoint is often the norm at conferences ─ and psychologists, of all people, should know better. Here are my three top tips for improving your PowerPoint presentations.

Tip One, you should be audience-focused not presenter-focused. PowerPoint slides should not be your script or cue-cards ─ dump the bulleted list and present images ─ diagrams and images. The combination of images with what you say enhances what people understand and what they retain. Interesting images, or even images that are ambiguous until you explain them, grab the attention of the audience, they intrigue the audience, and keeps them focused on what you have to tell them.

Tip Two, remember to KISS ─ Keep It Simple Stupid. You have had months or years to mull over your results; you cannot expect your audience to absorb tables of correlations, t-tests or whatever statistic you prefer: you have to share your conclusions by highlighting the key findings ─ these should be few. Too much information, too fast, impresses no one ─ if you try that you will bore, infuriate and quickly lose your audience.

Tip Three, guide your audience by building slides over time. PowerPoint allows you to use animations to place different elements on your slide. For example, if you are presenting line graphs, you might start with a title explaining what bi-variate relationship you are about to consider, then bring in the axes and their labels, only then do you bring in the first line graph and, in turn, subsequent lines. What does this achieve? It means that you take your audience with you, like the PowerPoint magician you hope to be, you guide their attention to where you want it. This promotes communication of your ideas, which after all, is the whole point of a presentation.

Finally, be creative ─ and have some fun ─ a bit of humor showing you don’t take yourself too seriously helps to engage your audience and makes the experience less stressful than it might be.