The Illustrated Guide to a PhD

Every fall, Matt Might tries to explain to a fresh batch of Ph.D. students what a Ph.D. is.  It’s hard to describe it in words.  So, he uses pictures.

Read below for the illustrated guide to a Ph.D. Explanation courtesy of Matt Might via http://matt.might.net/articles/phd-school-in-pictures/.

Imagine a circle that contains all of human knowledge:

By the time you finish elementary school, you know a little:

By the time you finish high school, you know a bit more:

With a bachelor’s degree, you gain a specialty:

A master’s degree deepens that specialty:

Reading research papers takes you to the edge of human knowledge:

Once you’re at the boundary, you focus:

You push at the boundary for a few years:

Until one day, the boundary gives way:

And, that dent you’ve made is called a Ph.D.:

Of course, the world looks different to you now:

So, don’t forget the bigger picture:

Keep pushing.