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Duns Eith

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Duns Eith last won the day on December 25 2016

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About Duns Eith

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  1. If you want an insider perspective on WMU, I'm happy to field any questions via PM. Just graduated this April, starting a PhD program this Fall.
  2. Idiomatic expression of "unacceptable!" Perhaps Turkish? https://forum.wordreference.com/threads/persian-this-is-not-on.2410432/ I dunno.
  3. Unless B has shown significant evidence contrary, they are mentally ill.
  4. Thankful for the bold. What a muddle-headed approach to expanding and proliferating your research, let alone hiring.
  5. I have seen the results page and I have two friends who each got offers in the last week or so. This seems crazy late to me.
  6. MA sounds like the best idea, but whether you go for an MA or go for a PhD, you're gonna need letter writers. How difficult will it be to obtain at this point? I take it those GRE scores are recent? Those are great scores.
  7. That makes far more sense. And no, you don't sound like a snowflake. Whatever that means (I hate the term being thrown around), you're just being sensitive to the fact that your livelihood is in some political jeopardy in a relevant way. It'd be nice not to have that be a factor, even though on a federal level there are some concerns. Grad school is hard on any relationships, as it takes so much time, effort, and energy, and it has a way of creeping into other things. There is the pressure of I could do more! constantly. So, it is probably easiest when you're single-but-well-connected. It's gotta be difficult to start something new while in grad school, but I bet it depends on a ton of factors you can't change easily: how well you're paid, what the work load is, whether you're extremely fast reader and learner, whether you can handle stress well. I.e., situation and temperament.
  8. I think this is a helpful way of thinking about it. I think of a similar concern about getting into an MA program without funding. If you can't get funding into a grad school, then there are really only two routes: you just aren't a competitive quality and should tap out, or the odds were against you this time around. So apply again, or get out. Don't take an unfunded offer. It bodes your chances getting a philosophy job are extremely slim. This gets back to something I've been wondering: when should we discourage each other from continuing in philosophy? It seems like every time I see an applicant who earnestly wants a philosophy PhD but lacks the chops and I suggest that they try a plan B, I get down-voted or people post in direct conflict with me (along with a long pep-talk). There are some people who, even if they don't fit the "go big or go home" mentality, they just simply aren't competitive for even an MA program. Don't get me wrong, I think all some people need is encouragement, but for some of them I feel obliged (especially if they literally title the thread asking "do I have a chance") to tell them to invest themselves elsewhere.
  9. When I applied my wife and I made a radius of 8 hr drive one of our limitations, due to family (our fathers are of questionable health, our mothers really want to be close enough to visit grand kids if they happen -- which is likely) and general appeal of climate. But it did help make the list shorter! Huh. I'm surprised. What difference does this make, practically? It isn't like any major city is red, and should someone have difference of opinion what damage or threat is that to you?
  10. Hate to be a downer, but this is quite true. It might be wiser to cut losses. The general advice is "If you can do something else, do that." There are plenty of less competitive, yet high paying, jobs out there. If, say, you can work in IT, become a business consultant, or do data-analysis, you're gonna be in much better shape from a risk-cost-benefit analysis. For some people, they would not be wise to cut losses: they have been given every encouragement to pursue philosophy, they are doing excellent work (far better than peers), and they have no other skill-set that is marketable. Depends on what you're counting for "jobs." A university "research" job? Extremely rare and competitive. A university teaching job? Quite a few out there, perhaps fewer openings than there are top-10 graduates. A college job? There's a lot. By far, they are adjunct or visiting associate professor jobs, but they do indeed exist. It is hard to live off the last category, though, as you may need to work at 2-4 colleges, without benefits, and still have no job security. There is no such thing as a "safety school"... but realistically, the odds are better at lower ranked (or unranked) schools. If your goal is to get in somewhere, then definitely apply to those. But if you don't want to get in just anywhere, then you shouldn't apply to those lower schools. I know a lot of people who take that mentality. I think it's dumb, and only perpetuates the disparity. I mean, it makes sense from a vantage of "I simply can't be happy unless I get a tenure job at a university, so I gotta"; but even then, there are so many factors that go into employability, to the extent that being in a top-10 (or even top-20) cannot corner the market on all the factors. I care more that I get to do philosophy. I care more that I get to teach. In order to make up for the lack of prestige where I will be attending (and I guess I was going to take this route anyway), I am gearing everything I can toward making myself competitive as a teacher. Developing a growing list of courses of which I have been instructor of record (4 different courses now) -- syllabus, course schedule, exams, etc. Creating materials that can be reworked and repurposed across classes -- lecture notes, examples, handouts, etc. (literally, just focusing on presentation of material intensely) Creating a data-set of my evaluations -- scores on several metrics, written feedback Developing good relationships with the chair, administrative assistant, and DGS -- getting letter writers for my dossier Networking at conferences, sending my CV to local schools, etc. -- getting my name out there and always checking for availability even when no job offer is posted Other professional things that matter Conferencing papers, giving talks, etc. Getting feedback so I can get published in a journal All this can be done without a PhD, but with PhD in-hand, many of these things (if developed properly) can outshine someone at Princeton or Harvard. Depending on the school's needs, they may want someone who has demonstrated excellence in teaching time and time again, so as to reduce risk and raise confidence in long-term benefit to the university. Some top-rank schools don't even have their grad students teach during their entire program. This is indicative of a few things. When your professors were hired, there were fewer PhD programs and fewer grad students. This raises the probability that they were accepted at those fewer, longer established programs. Given that they were hired in the 70s, 80s, 90s, and early 2000's, such hires are a sort of snapshot of the way the university (used to) hire(s). This also indicates that prestige does matter. More often than not, the top schools crank out better qualified professors than "lower" schools. There are exceptions, but this can't be ignored. A lot of it is tied to the details of the hiring process... Human resource directors in general, and universities deans in particular, want to pay as little as they possibly can for the highest qualified, most stable candidate they can afford. For academia, it is a buyer's market: they can have their pick among 50 excellent applicants and turn down another hundred great applicants. But, again, they can choose a candidate who came from a great school but didn't have any teaching experience (or very little), or they can choose someone with a ton of experience but a lesser known but recognizable school (e.g., Purdue, Mizzou, etc.). Likely, they will choose the candidate who has both qualities. But sometimes that doesn't describe the best candidate. Sometimes, though, a chair will pass over a candidate who is likely to take a job elsewhere on short notice (not stick around) because they are "overqualified". (I wouldn't stress this too much though; it is the exception) Advice: Find the faculty you want to study under by looking at the specialty rankings for different fields. Look at their CV's. See what they have been writing on, and where they went to school. Put their name down as a person of interest. Then simply look at the placement record of the school with that faculty. That is, forget that the school has a PGR ranking. Compare the placement records along the lines of four categories: tenure-track (or tenure), post-doc or VAP, or adjunct (lecturer), and then left-academia or unknown status. Compare the stats for each of the programs you are taking seriously. I think PGR should only be a proxy for this very metric, and it isn't an excellent one. You can go to an unranked school with a better placement record than some mid-ranked schools. In other words, climb up the PGR ladder in the specialty areas, then after you've isolated enough programs to take seriously, kick away the PGR ladder and evaluate the schools yourself.
  11. Whether a language helps depends on what you want to research in philosophy. Many enter a PhD program with a long-faded education in Spanish. Their dossier is not hurt by this. But suppose you want to do medieval: it helps that you have Latin. Suppose you want to do French Existentialism -- French, obviously, helps. But many graduate students acquire the research language while in the PhD when they have identified which language will be most helpful for research. Most enter the PhD without knowing what they will write on; so let's have a reasonable expectation. That said, knowing any language is helpful, insofar as it is helpful for equipping the person to know how to learn a language. [edit] Some programs give an option to replace the language with some other research skill. If not language, then maybe advanced statistics. If not language, then maybe supplementing with cognitive science and neuroscience. The program I am entering into has no language requirement, unless your research area calls for it. (I'm interested in early modern, so it looks like I'll be learning Latin or French ... or both)
  12. Wow, that's a really, really low rate of feedback. Yeah. The fact that a paper might be held up for 5 months is the impetus for having one being held up while you're working on another to send out; basically the idea is that you've always got a paper in process of review and a paper that is in process of revision. Irons in the fire, lines in the water, whatever analogy we want. It just takes a long time and there's no way to shorten it. Hah. c) Network, network, network. Check. d) There is a way to avoid thinking that is depressing, by convincing yourself that you're on the cutting edge! Honestly, this may be a good idea, except perhaps someone would pigeonhole you into "Oh! He's the philosophy of anatomy guy" or "She's the Inuit philosophy gal!"
  13. Congrats! I may know the person who turned down the spot you got into. Are you taking Oklahoma's offer?
  14. Publishing is a necessary goal as people go onto the market. Ideally, one will come from a well-reputed program with a publication in-hand, and have 1 or 2 in the works. So, let's talk publishing strategies? I spoke with someone from Kent State a while ago that his strategy is to get a paper or two in constant rotation, just keep hitting journals until you're accepted. This is a brute force tactic, and seems a little sketchy. I spoke with someone from University of South Florida, and the idea is send a paper to the top journal according to fit/tribe of the highest quality, then if rejected immediately correct the paper according to feedback given, and then send it to the next-level down. Keep hitting until you hit the lowest tier. This makes more sense. I am thinking a combination of the two is ideal. But perhaps you have another idea? Maybe you should just ask your advisor and see what they say: is this a good paper, enough that I should submit it? If so, where should I submit it? Resources APA and BPA did a survey of various journals for their acceptance rates and demographics http://www.apaonline.org/?page=journalsurveys Any other resources you lean on for considering publication? I think this may be helpful, though it is for the other APA (american psychological association): "Preparing Manuscripts for Publication in Psychology Journals: A Guide for New Authors " https://www.apa.org/pubs/authors/new-author-guide.pdf
  15. Yeah. I'm a fan anyway. Also, this forum is good for asking philosophy questions irrespective of applications. E.g., you have questions about being professional. I'll be asking some questions on publishing I'm sure.