Rights: The University of Waikato Published 5 December 2008 Download

Are you thinking about where your science studies may take you? In New Zealand, you can study for a PhD after you have completed an undergraduate degree. PhD students normally have their own research project.


David Ackerley (Victoria University, Wellington): One of the key criteria for me is I want nice people, because a communal environment you are packing a lot of people into what is realistically a fairly small room – I want them to be able to get on with each other.

I figure, if people enjoy what they are doing, they are going to spend a lot more time doing it if they don't. So my advice to anyone who is thinking of doing a PhD would be make an effort to meet your prospective supervisor because then they're going to be able to actually have a picture of you and how you would fit into their lab.

It’s also very important for you to meet your supervisor because three to four years is an awfully long time to spend working with someone who is mean, or who doesn't suit your requirements.

You can actually go from a PhD to doing all sorts of things, and very often, they are very well paid things, so I would strongly advise everyone to do a science PhD at Victoria!