Advice to Ph.D. Students

  • frueh top publications (wie Jo-Anne) in the first two years
  • create your own research agenda: eigene Ideen entwickeln unabhaengig vom Chef und anderen Lab members in the second two years
  • workshop at NIPS or R:SS - last two years
  • think for yourself, never just trust any statement
  • be pushy
  • give credit, don't ever fail to do so
  • no bad collaborations, then better none
  • don't hurry, be patient!
  • two conference papers per Ph.D. year, one journal paper; don't expect a uniform distribution, more a ramp
  • write a book review once, but only about a book you care about

Obstacles in learning

Skinner says that there are 5 main obstacles in learning:

  • People have a fear of failure
  • There is a lack of directions
  • There is also a lack of clarity in the direction
  • Positive reinforcement is not used enough
  • The task is not broken down into small enough steps

Teaching principles:

Skinner suggests that with all of the obstacles out of the way any age appropriate skill can be taught using his 5 principles:

  • Have small steps
  • Work from most simple to most complex tasks
  • Repeat the directions as many times as possible
  • Give immediate feedback
  • Give positive reinforcement

How to Reject

The reviewers appear to agree that this work is very interesting. However, they also point out a variety of weaknesses which do not appear fixable in the tight schedule of a special issue. Please understand that under these circumstances, the paper cannot be considered by Autonomous Robots for the special issue as it had 46 submissions and the space is limited to only a few papers. Note that we have asked the leaders in the field to review for us, hence you are getting valuable feedback on your work.

How to Accept

Congratulations! While the selected reviewers were very knowledgeable and digging quite deep, they only discovered minor problems which can be fixed in a quick revision. Hence, we recommend a Conditional Accept/Subject to Minor Revision. We will carefully check that you address each of the reviewers point will be addressed in the revised version and kindly ask the authors to also upload a clarification of all changes made. As a last request, we ask the authors to add a sentence to the paper which makes clear that the presented work does not have a major overlap with the authors already published journal papers.


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