Common academic pitfalls
Academic work can be richly rewarding both professionally and personally as well as being enjoyable and a source of great satisfaction. Some however fi nd the very thought of research terrifying, daunting or simply tedious. Most of you will have friends and colleagues who have undertaken periods of research and will have likely heard a mixture of positive and negative experiences of academic life. Th is chapter aims to highlight some of the potential pitfalls that can occur in academic life so that you might avoid them. Many of these will not make or break a period of research, but can critically determine your experience and enjoyment of it. Much of this is common sense. It is worth being aware that diffi culties can originate before you even start your research that will impact on what happens not only when you start but throughout your work.