Key Terms

The Kauffman polynomial.

Two-variable polynomials for unoriented links.

Genus 2 mutations.

Reidemeister moves.

These were all things I knew and needed to know in order to do my PhD research – but which I also needed to get my head clear on in advance of my viva.

I realised as I was preparing for my viva that for too long I’d just known what these things were in an abstract way. Even in writing up my thesis I’d written and rewritten what different technical terms and ideas meant many times.

There’s a lot to share in the viva. You’ll have a lot of valuable ideas and information you want to get across to your examiners. While you will take time thinking about how to summarise your results, make sure you leave time to consider the key terms that underpin your research.

Refresh your memory, review your notes and rehearse how you will communicate what the important things mean.