Mentoring Students

Mentoring Students

  • Development in skills for personal, professional Career development and to enhance their employability
  • Joining a vibrant group of students, scientists, and educators who can support each other and share common interests of passionate scientific investigation  
  • Opportunity to conduct real research projects
  • Develop Decision-making and research communication skill
  • Develop skill sets like data management, grant writing, manuscript editing, statistical analysis
  • Clear and  strong outlook for building professional relationship
  • Skill development for  Higher education & job prospects
  • Supportive connections with peer & alumni groups and members of scientific community
  • Exposure to career opportunities in Science

Acquiring new knowledge is a natural process for the development of any society. It is the need of the hour of our society to have proper awareness on the ideal approach towards scientific investigations and research. Linking education and research is a key step towards empowering our new generation with full potential and employability thus building a strong nation. Although, government has taken strong initiative in the form of new policies and strategies in this regard, researchers can act as a support platform to provide strong back up to the budding citizens of tomorrow in the members of undergraduate, post graduate level courses and junior faculties of science & engineering institutions.

In the contemporary scientific settings, cross/interdisciplinary investigation has become an essential ingredient to any scientific investigation. One has to go into the nuances of investigations and apply a variety of specific tools from different fields which are not directly related to the core problem or specific aim, but has extreme influences on it. Pursuing such investigations, demands the branching of our thoughts and approaches into diverse specialties for assimilating knowledge and precisely tune them to suit our needs keeping our core theme track intact. This necessitates the use of various methodologies, scientific principles, technological and research tools and diverse ideas thus making a transdisciplinary travel into various branches of science which may not be have been well integrated into our core curriculum or even the core area of one’s investigation.

Deprived of the chance of appropriate interactions with full time research fraternity, in particular from multidisciplinary backgrounds, most of the students are left with no alternative but to carry out a half hearted investigation and put forth an unconsummated compilation; as against the requirements of a completely thought-through and analysed work and its quality presentation in a mature and complete form.

It would be of extreme benefit to the students, if we could provide them with supplementary support that will help them to inculcate the culture of ideal and optimised mode of research and investigation during their project tenure. This can be provided in the form of appropriate directions and know-hows for integrating their novel ideas into a well planned research work and choosing the optimal approach for implementation of the same. This will help them to better imbibe whatever they acquire from classroom lessons and regular laboratory experiments.

1.1.1 Key features of the proposed program
Support and assistance to explore novel ideas and identify personal research targets
Achieving the research/study goal with the appropriate strategy, work plan and methodology
Properly phased meetings for review of achievements against targets for identifying potential issues in specific projects and providing and constructive feedbacks
Assistance in identifying novel projects and funding sources

Assistance in preparation of funding proposals and reports for review meetings
Assistance in career and personal development for smooth on-boarding into professional settings of industries/higher education or research institutions
Assistance in identifying the appropriate publication platform
Ethical and moral guidance for enhancing motivation, productivity and performance
1.3 SCOPE AND NEED OF THE PROGRAM

Through the interactions that I had, over the last couple of years, with the faculty members and students from different fields of science, I have apperceived a gap in career building of student community particularly in the areas of research and investigations. I have observed that the students and the junior researchers lack the proper approach required to produce quality research work and related publications. Thus I have envisaged, a Research Mentoring Program to provide a supplementary support facility for both students in need of project guidance and professionals with varied requirements and time constraints.

The proposed program would be one of its kind, in a form that is customizable according to their need and flexible to fit their unique strength and weakness. I firmly believe that this initiative will be extremely beneficial to the academic and scientific community towards enhancement and expansion of their skill set for better career opportunities and improvement of individual capability along with higher chances of employability. The student mentoring program is planned as a support service for academia for skill development and empowerment of students. The program offers general or specific professional guidance in the form of short-term/long-term/collaborative support.

1.3.1 Benefits to Students
Development in skills for personal, professional Career development and to enhance their employability
Joining a vibrant group of students, scientists, and educators who can support each other and share common interests of passionate scientific investigation
Opportunity to conduct real research projects
Develop Decision-making and research communication skill
Develop skill sets like data management, grant writing, manuscript editing, statistical analysis
Clear and strong outlook for building professional relationship
Skill development for Higher education & job prospects
Supportive connections with peer & alumni groups and members of scientific community
Exposure to career opportunities in Science
Mentoring is not meagrely the practice of providing materialistic support. Rather, it is a complete program leading to the professional development of student which includes two equally important components. (i) Explicit materialistic component like providing scientific/technical training and guidance. (ii) Implicit developmental components like Overall personal supervision, regular review and most importantly assisting them in the overall development of their scientific and personal capabilities.
1.4 ACTIVITIES PROPOSED UNDER THE MENTORING ROGRAM

The following supplementary aids can be provided to fulfil the project requirements of academic curriculum and research fronts and thereby contribute to the enhancement of scientific approach and development of research and investigatory skills.
Topic Selection : Assistance in identifying feasible projects which are researchable within the scope of the time limit and availability of resources according to their specific academic needs. Also support them in the introductory phase to make the topic selection in such a way that it fits within the specific discipline so that it gets approved and students can get a flavour of real science and a feel of research activities.
Literature Survey and Hypotheses Development: Support and provide proper coaching to the students/researchers in developing a clear picture of their research problem, defining research related questions and testable hypotheses. This can only be set achieved with the strong backing of finding gaps in the related literature, defining a realistic problem and selecting the most suitable theoretical framework. This is a crucial phase where they develop and the state-of-the art in the chosen topic.
Methodology and study Design: Support the students, with regular discussions, to design their study approach in a clearly defined phased manner in either a qualitative or quantitative study. Help them to define each phase to suit the study requirement in terms of data structure or sample size or related necessities. Help them in selecting the most suitable analysis approach for carrying out the study according to their unique strengths and choices so that they can successfully fulfil their academic requirements together with a sense of enhanced capability and strength.
Data Management: Help the students in identifying the suitable tools and methods to solve the defined problems for successful analysis. Support them at each phase of like plan validation, data collection and structuring, coding for developing the methods for solving project specific and unique research problems and overall management of both quantitative or qualitative data.
Analysis: Provide support and coaching in finding answers to specific research questions with the proper analysis approach to case studies/theme designing/theoretical research/ identify necessary statistical assumptions and comfortably conduct the analysis using suitable testing and validating procedure. These steps are very important in the development of student skills for conducting independent research and investigations and defending their work.
Discussion: Provide coaching in completing the analysis phase by efficiently interpreting the results obtained and thereby extracting meaningful insights. Conducting regular discussion is an important part of this phase which will help the students and researchers to develop the skill of self reviewing. This will help them discern the theoretical and practical implications of their findings with respect to their current problem and identify potential future research problems on their own.
Manuscript preparation and PowerPoint Presentation: Provide Assistance in identifying suitable publication/presentation platforms. Provide coaching in the proper approach of communicating to audience the results of their research and investigation and highlights of their study to ensure that they receive the deserving acceptance. These skills are of extreme importance to the students in both the successful completion of their current research developing the capability and confidence in conducting independent research

  1. 5 PROGRAM OVERVIEW AND CONCLUSION
    Scientific and technological investigations and related faculties are ever developing and is currently in an extremely expanding phase. The number of registerions for Ph.D are at the highest toll ever, among all the universities especially in our national scientific scenario. Moreover, as the scientific interests are booming on an exponential scale, many of the students opting for research training relish to begin their grounding in research, right from their undergraduate period. Most students are opting for appropriate training from multidiciplinary research fields during their course period especially for the successful completion of their project work. This phase is a very crucial one in their career and it at this phase, research mentoring has its importance and relevance.
    Mentoring relationship is an extremely influential one and hence highly important one in academia. It is relevant at all levels of career starting right from the undergraduates to junior researcher/faculty positions. Most influential phases are the post graduate and junior researcher levels and hence is our thrust area.

  1. PROPOSED RESEARCH ACTIVITIES
    2.1 Dynamical Analysis & Signal Processing
    Recent years have witnessed an exponentially fast growth in signal processing research with the main focus being its applications in biomedical engineering and communication. It has also found important applications in many other real world contexts such as in financial time series, macro-economics and environmental signals for weather, agricultural and marine systems.
    The classical theory of signal processing is based on models which are stationary, linear and in many cases also assume that signals have Gaussian amplitude distributions. Several new direction of research have been developed in the last decade, most of which have been successful and thereby has introduced many new models and methods like nonlinear autoregressive and state-space models; models with time-varying or state-dependent coefficients as representations of nonstationary and nonlinear series; adaptive methods of forecasting, interpolation and smoothing; linear non-Gaussian methods, and methods derived from the theory of dynamical systems.
    Hence new research programs which encompasses diverse fields like dynamical analysis, statistics, engineering, medical and other areas where signal processing methodology finds applications is need of the scientific field altogether more than for a personal research achievement. This will help in developing a general framework by unifying existing methods and customising several existing methods in such a way that many of them can be made suitable for applications in other fields where new methodology and analysis techniques are required.

Considering the importance of the above mentioned scientific investigations, I am currently working on ideas related to new signal processing methods like Hilbert Huang transform and its variants which are extremely useful for analysis of machine vibration, speech and other audio signals, electroencephalographic (EEG) signals of brain, electromyographic (EMG) signals seismic vibrations, image processing and a lot more of the kind.

The above mentioned studies have high potential for conversion into extremely useful tools for application in real world systems. Dynamical investigations and study of coupled oscillators is a scientific field which finds applications in almost any real world system and very important for conducting studies and developing new approaches. Hence, I have always maintained a parallel track of research on a few topics related to chimera formation, explosive death of oscillators related to synchronisation of large networks of coupled oscillators, fault identification using multiscale network analysis and various entropy measures.

I am also working personally on novel ideas related to synchronisation and related phenomena in coupled oscillator networks and its application to biological and engineering systems, which are currently of high priority and importance in both scientific and social levels.

2.2 SPECIFIC FIELDS OF INTEREST & EXPERTISE :
Linear & Nonlinear signal processing and Time series analysis of real world signals from mechanical, biological, chemical systems etc
Study of memory, cognition and learning from a dynamical systems approach
Study of Electroencephalographic signals (EEG) of patients with memory deficit conditions like Alzheimer’s disease, Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and dementia
Curve fitting of data and System Modelling for study of dynamical evolution
Dynamical analysis of large network of coupled oscillators
Synchronisation Analysis in coupled oscillator systems
Non-Linear Dynamical Analysis and Chaos theory with special emphasis on Chaos Synchronisation
Chaotic Secure Communication
Feedback and Control techniques

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