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About ltr317

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Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
  • Interests
    19th century U.S. history, modern Britain.
  • Application Season
    2018 Fall
  • Program

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  1. That's hilarious. Thanks for sharing.
  2. I'm only using ETS and Princeton Review practice materials. Princeton's sample questions are pretty close to the real deal, but you should also be using ETS if you want the real questions.
  3. I'm not sure if this is the appropriate section, but since it's history related I posted here first. The mod can move this post to the Applications section if he feels that's where it belongs. I have questions regarding the WS submission: 1) Should I omit the cover page and type the title and add my name on a header on the first page? Do admission committees care who the paper was written for? For my top choice, however, I wrote several papers for a professor who will be my advisor if I'm accepted into the PhD program. In this particular case, should I include the cover page? 2) Most programs specify a certain minimum or maximum page length. I'm an Americanist and every paper I've written exceeds the maximum page requirement for some programs. Would I be able to submit a shorter paper from a different sub-field (e.g. French Revolution, Early Modern Spain) to meet the requirement. Thanks all.
  4. I haven't started writing yet, but my advisor said the normal length expected is between 75 and 100 pages at my school. I looked at the Master's Thesis Repository in the library and found a few MA theses just short of the lower limit and a few way over, with one nearly 200 pages long.
  5. This is an excellent and interesting question! Having had no prior experience in history as an undergrad, all my learning and training is in my current MA program. After completing nine courses and soon to take my tenth and final one, I have not yet decided on the type of history I enjoy writing most, though I'm leaning in a couple of directions. Almost all of my research papers so far have been thematic, event based, or source based: political language of the U.S. Penny Press, 1877 Great Railroad Strike, British Gothic stained glass revival in the Victorian Era, British social services for West Indian immigrants during decolonization, and dueling newspaper presses during the first two years of the French Revolution. I have also written on a historical person and used a multidisciplinary approach: the early life of the abolitionist Charles Sumner, and historicizing the Spanish Picaresque Novel (using literature and visual art for my argument). At this point in my training, I write what initially piques my interest. If I get accepted into a PhD program, I hope to settle into one or two types of writing during the first year. Thanks for asking the question!
  6. This is more reason for him to be one of your LOR. He will reciprocate in-kind if he cares.
  7. That someone is giving you bad advice. Based on what you stated, the history chairperson should be one of your LORs, since he knows your work fairly well. I don't know how long since you last had contact with him, so you may need to refresh his memory by offering to email a paper you wrote in one of his classes. You should always have a backup because you can't predict the future. I only need three LORs for the PhD programs I'm applying, but I have chosen four just in case something happens making one drop out. If no one drops out, I will submit all four to programs that will allow more than the required number. As an added backup, I could pick two more professors for LORs from my MA program. It's best to have a wealth of riches. In my situation, I have had several phone conversations and emails with the professor on sabbatical, and he is eager to help in any way he can. He was my research seminar advisor and I took two other MA classes with him. He was the initial impetus in pushing me to apply for the PhD. In fact, he would be my POI if I was accepted to my top choice program. It certainly helps to have someone in your corner, so you should seek the LOR from your history chairperson.
  8. Email is an acceptable form of communication these days. I'm applying for the 2018 cycle, and will not be able to see two of the four professors for LORs. One is retiring and the other is on sabbatical--teaching in another state for a year. Both said to email them when I need the LOR.
  9. Vaz - You are spot on! I was asking all of you for advice since I dread taking any foreign language, but several of you have been helpful in me choosing French over Spanish, even though I find learning Spanish a little easier if I put my mind to it.
  10. I would like to thank everyone's advice so far. Based on what I've read on this thread, I think I will do a French rather than a Spanish reading course for the reason that there is more interaction between Britain and France during the modern era. I posted the question initially because I have always dreaded taking foreign languages in the past. I actually took both Spanish and French long ago in college as a requirement and found Spanish easier to learn; but in my current situation, I think after reading your responses French is more relevant at the Ph.D. level for my fields of interest. Actually, I find studying higher mathematics easier than learning a foreign language mainly because I don't like rote memorization of grammar. But we must do what we must to achieve our goals. Thanks again everyone. Just to clarify for those who asked, my major field in U.S. history is the long nineteenth century, from Independence to the beginning of WWI.
  11. I'm applying to several American History PhD programs for next year. My minor field of interest is Modern Britain, but since none of the programs are so narrowly focused, I will have to choose Modern Europe and pick at least one foreign language. I'm not sure whether I should take a French or Spanish reading course to prepare for the foreign language translation. I just can't decide. Do any of you have a suggestion?
  12. Hi everyone! I discovered this site about a week ago and decided to join. I'm currently in the latter stages of my MA in history, with one more course, oral comps and the Master's thesis to complete. Plan to finish my thesis by the end of next Spring. I was wrestling with the idea of applying to 2018 PhD programs for several months and finally made up my mind to do it this week. My main interest is 19th Century U.S. History, with a secondary interest in Modern Britain. Some brief background info about me: Earned a BA in Psychology and an MPA; then worked in budget management for 25+ years. Took early retirement after prolonged stress led to medical problems. Once I retired, I started on the road to recovery. After several years enjoying reading everything under the sun, I found learning history especially enjoyable. Knowing myself, I knew I needed a structured environment to sustain the interest, so I enrolled in the MA program. I dipped my feet slowly at first by taking one course, and found I was more motivated than I thought. I took a full load for the next two semesters and found I also had stamina. With the encouragement of my professors, I am taking the full plunge and hope to be accepted to at least one PhD program. My main concern is being denied because of my age, but I am going to apply anyway. Looking forward to gain wisdom from all the experienced grad students here. Good luck to everyone applying for the next go around.