Is there an upper limit to how often users may ask a question? I am doing masters level research so my questions are not "homework dumps" or anything that I haven't already searched for extensively, banged my head against a wall thinking about, etc. I try to be sufficiently specific that I don't get more direction than I really need, but if I'm having a good week there may be a domino effect of fruitful interaction here, progress on my part and more bite-sized questions. I just want to use this resource appropriately.

  • $\begingroup$ My experience is most of the downvoted questions are already answer, good questions are always appreciated even if a bit offtopic. $\endgroup$ – Grijesh Chauhan Apr 5 '14 at 6:04

The only technical limit is that you must wait 20 minutes between questions (this only applies to low-reputation users). A few of the biggest site in the Stack Exchange network have additional limits: a maximum of 6 questions per day and 50 per rolling month, but these limits do not apply here. (Source: The Complete Rate-Limiting Guide)

There isn't a number that I'd put forward as a limit, etiquette wise. If you find yourself asking 50 questions a month, you should probably rethink your participation — but even that is highly dependent on the quality of your questions.

The important thing is that you ask good questions. As long as you do, I expect that nobody will mind, or indeed care. If you're imposing on us, we'll let you know progressively, via comments asking you to improve your questions. Only a pattern of asking low-quality questions would be abusive, and then the problem would be the quality well before volume became a concern.

As a masters student, there are undergraduate-level questions that you should be able to answer. I encourage you to spend a bit of time answering as well: it's a great way to organize your thoughts about things you already know, and a mini-practice for when you'll be writing up your research or doing some teaching. But this is only a personal encouragement for your own sake, it's perfectly fine to participate here only by asking questions.

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    $\begingroup$ Note that this is only the SE side of things: what your advisor thinks about you basing your research/thesis on three hundred SE questions is another story. My guess is, if you balance that side of things, i.e. do an appropriate amount of work by and on yourself, you will not end up asking more than a question a week. $\endgroup$ – Raphael Mod Mar 24 '14 at 10:28
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    $\begingroup$ @Raphael Not more than a question a week on average during the thesis, definitely. But there could easily be a question and a follow-up or two in the same week. $\endgroup$ – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' Mar 24 '14 at 13:45
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    $\begingroup$ Certainly! I did not want to formulate a rule or anything, just give a rough, amortised estimate. (In the later stages you'll find yourself more on TeX - LaTeX, anyway.) $\endgroup$ – Raphael Mod Mar 24 '14 at 14:02
  • $\begingroup$ @Raphael If he managed to get the P=NP answer by orchestrating the work of a thousand people through appropriate questions, I do not see that any advisor would find reasons to complain. It would even be an interesting innovation in scientific procedure. This is just an extreme and unlikely example to state that all rules may be transgressed, if appropriately so. $\endgroup$ – babou Apr 2 '14 at 11:51

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