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Found 191 results

  1. Hi everybody, I'm back from my long hiatus and am doing exactly what I did last year: starting the new thread for new applicants right before CSDCAS opens. Hopefully by 2018 I'll have gotten in and won't be here doing this anymore, lol. This thread is for everyone applying for 2017. That includes spring, summer, and fall applicants from any and all countries! Are you guys ready for this round? Who else is applying again that didn't get in before? How's life? etc.
  2. How do I make myself the most competitive English PhD candidate possible? I'm currently pursuing an MFA, but I'm considering getting my PhD in either Lit or Rhet/Comp in order to better my job prospects. Of course, all the writing I've been doing for the past two years has been creative, and I only have poetry publications to my name. I plan to take off a few years between the MFA and the (potential) PhD. What could I do in that time to improve my application? Publish scholarly papers? Audit a literature class?
  3. There seem to be a lot of threads asking the same thing popping up lately and I figured it might make sense to make an overall guide thread and then those who feel their answers still haven’t been adequately answered can post below for an idea of what their chances are. Here is a brief rundown of factors affecting your likelihood of getting into top-tier and well respected programs. If you fall below par in any one of these factors you can bump it up by being stellar in one of the others. I'll add to this if others point out other things I've left out. School requirements: Your first stop should be the school admissions website – this will tell you what prerequisites you need, give you an idea of GRE and GPA requirements and what work experience is expected (if any) GPA: From what I’ve seen/read over the years any GPA over 3.4 and you should be competitive. That’s not to say if your GPA is lower than 3.4 you’ll have no chance, but if you have a GPA above 3.4 you should be in good shape. GRE score: GRE scores seem to be most important for schools with demanding quantitative programs and for securing the top financial aid. Most schools will state the average GRE scores for their incoming classes on their website – use these to see how competitive you are. By and large you should be competitive if you score over 650 on verbal and quantitative and over 4.0 on the AWA. For the top schools over 700 seems to be closer to the mark. Work experience: For most programs it will be expected that you have at least 1-2 years of relevant experience in your field. This can be lowered a little if you have other pseudo-relevant work experience (management in the for-profit sector etc.) but you should have shown some level of professional interest in the area you hope to study at grad school. Applicants coming straight out of undergrad may find it very hard to get into the programs aimed more at junior/mid-career professionals such as Johns Hopkins SAIS and Princeton’s WWS. Language skills: For a lot of programs being able to speak a second language is a must, while for others it is just a very good selling point. If you can show experience working in a foreign language this will show adaptability and will endear schools looking to enrol a diverse group of applicants. Quantitative requirements: A lot of schools will want you to show experience in micro/macroeconomics and some maths/statistics courses. You can fullfil these through undergrad classes or by taking courses at a community college/diploma program. Overseas experience (work, study and teaching): Work overseas and study abroad are also viewed extremely favourably by admissions committees and if you have taught English abroad, worked in the Peace Corps or otherwise gained experience living in a developing country this will really strengthen your application. It also shows you to be a go-getter, and that you can bring this outside experience to grad school study. Statement of Purpose: This is where it all comes together. This is your chance to impress the admission committee and show how your personal 'arc' has brought you to this point - being the perfect addition to their grad school. This more than any other part of your application will determine how admit committees view you as an applicant and it's also one of the only application variables that's completely under your control. Having a cohesive narrative that brings together life experience, past academic history and professional experience is a must. It also gives you a great chance to showcase your writing style - so make sure no grammar/spelling mistakes make it into your final revision. Great list of SOP pitfalls If your profile matches at least 3 or 4 of the criteria listed above then you are competitive to apply to an MPA/MPP/IR program. What is most important about any grad school application is showing fit – that is how your profile matches the speciality of that school and its program. If you can’t articulate compelling reasons why you are a good match for them and vice versa, question whether you should be applying to that program. A note on applying to top schools: It is worth noting that nobody here can tell you what your chances of getting into a top program (Harvard, Princeton, Georgetown etc.) because getting into a top program requires a certain amount of luck as well as a great profile. Some people get offers from Harvard with a 2.9 GPA, but also happen to have singlehandedly retaken an allied command post in the Korengal valley. It’s down to who reads your application and what they happen to be looking for with the current application cycle. Spend time improving the elements of your application that you can (GRE, work experience, languages) and don’t waste time freaking out about the things you can’t change (GPA). If you’ve read all of the above and really still can’t tell if your application is competitive, post your profile below.
  4. I'm a third year Physics student at Imperial College London, who is considering applying to an Econ PhD program. I cuurently have offers for a Maters in both Theoretical Physics and Economics, and am heavily weighing up both options. I have the following questions: (i) Which Masters program would suit best for the transition? I have an offer for MSc Finance and Economics at the LSE, but I also have offers in Physics from ETH and Imperial. It seems like there could be a possibility to take Econ classes whilst purusing the Physics Masters, which is what I will do if I choose physics. Also, if I do choose the non-physics masters, will other LSE Masters courses, such as the MSc EME or 2-year MSc Economics be more beneficial? (ii) Is it necessary to have research experience in economics? I have set up an RA placement for the summer in the Imperial Finance department, but it is not necessarily in the area I am interested in, namely behavioural economics and decision-making. I have tried (but failed) to successfully cold e-mail professors into giving me a summer reserch in these areas (which is partly why the 2 year LSE course might be better, as it gives more time to be involved in research before the PhD). Would appreciate any insights on this.
  5. Hey! Curious if anyone out there applied for UC Santa Cruz's MA/C program for summer 2017? Let's wait together! I'd love to hear which credential you seek and what your application was like. It's only been one day since app's were due and I'm already so stressed!
  6. Hello everyone, This is my first post on this forum. Please excuse my mistakes if any. Due to having bad grades in my undergrad, it was and still is very tough for me to manage funding. I am an international student with no experience of applying abroad. Nevertheless, I've been trying to get in contact with professors who have similar research interests to mine. Last month however, One professor agreed to interview me over Skype. I presume my interview went good because I was told at the end of the interview that I am smart and passionate about research and I was also told to apply before the deadline. When I asked him whether I could mention my interest in working as his research assistant, he told me to go ahead. As my grades are abysmal, he also advised me to read a book which I am currently studying. He also encouraged me to apply for PhD. As of this moment, I have been waiting for two weeks since the deadline and trying to infer the possibilities by connecting dots and crosses which I know is not a good idea. I know it's rather discrete question but what would you suggest I should do now? Thanks.
  7. Hi everyone! I haven't seen any love around these forums for people with interests in perception, cognition, vision, attention, memory, etc etc etc. Thought I'd get one going! I've applied to Berkeley, Davis, San Diego, Harvard, Johns Hopkins, U of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Brandeis, NYU, Tufts, and U of Delaware. Been quite a journey. I'm so pumped that the applications are finally out of my hands, and I've made a number of good connections with POIs, but I'm not looking forward to the wait to hear back!
  8. Currently, I am researching Quantitative Psychology PhD programs and trying to select potential PI's for applications in the Fall. I was wondering if anyone had advice for picking PI's beyond research interests. For example, I'm interested in limitations to longitudinal models and dealing with missing data in these models. There are a surprising number of people working with longitudinal data. I would like to push my criteria for selecting a PI beyond just research interest. Here are some things I've started looking at... 1) How often the PI publishes, 2) The amount of grant money the PI receives, 3) Status of Professor (tenured instead of non-tenured), 4) Number of previous graduate students and current employment of said graduate students Does anyone have any other advice on what I should be looking for in a PI? I personally am interested in Quantitative Psychology programs, but I am happy to hear from all areas if applicable.
  9. Hi all, I spent two years researching and visiting programs in order to find the right MFA, and I got into my top choice and I’m super excited to start this fall! I applied to five programs and was accepted, and offered a teaching position and full tuition remission, at three. I picked up some helpful advice along the way and I thought I’d share. My disclaimers are, 1. Obviously this is my opinion, and others might feel differently. 2. I’m enrolled though I don’t actually start school until September. My perspective on my choice could very well change after a year of grad school! Here's my advice: Visit the school I scored big points with future advisors by visiting schools the year before I planned to apply. (ie. visited in 2014, applied in 2015) They remembered my name when calling back for interviews, and knew I was serious about their program. I also saw a highly ranked program that was a complete shit show in person, and was grateful I didn’t waste my time applying there. Look for advisors, not highly ranked programs Your advisor will have a huge impact on your experience during school and after. Whether the program is highly ranked according to US News and World Report will have much less bearing on your success. Those rankings are notoriously inaccurate and meaningless anyways. Find an advisor you don’t mind having dinner with, and who seems like they have enough interest in your work to give you the time of day once you’re a student. Recommendations matter more than essays I asked a potential advisor during a visit how much the essays mattered, and his response was, “We don’t read as much as we should”. Yikes. I still worked super hard on my essays, but per his advice, worked harder to get recommendations from important names in his field. He also said that the name/reputation of the recommender matters more than how glowing their opinion of you might be. (ie. Big name > person who knows you super well) **Note!** You’re going to need to send your recommenders near-final drafts of your essay and portfolio in order to get a good letter, and then to give them at least a month to write your letters. So start your applications a few months before the due date for best results. Play to your strengths I had this wacky idea that I had done enough printmaking in undergrad, and should pursue a grad degree in one of my other areas of interest. I started emailing professors of sculpture about their programs and kept having my emails forwarded to the print professors. Finally I was given the advice that you can explore all you want once you get in (if you choose a program without rigid departmental divisions) but you need to put your best foot forward to get in at all. IMHO, Don’t Pay for an MFA I've heard this from several artists with MFAs, though I also know lots of fantastic artists who did take out large loans to get their degree and felt it was worth it. For me, in an uncertain job market, I find debt to be too large of a liability to be worth a degree that brings no guarantee of employability. There are funded MFAs out there – the trick is to look for universities that keep programs small enough to give each grad student a teaching job. There are also scholarships at private schools (Stanford!). Don’t obsess over this forum I visited grad café a few times during my search and definitely got some helpful stuff here. The level of anxiety on the forum in general though was… unhelpful to say the least. I referenced it during the early stages of choosing schools and then intentionally stayed away from the wanton freaking out. I hope this was helpful! Good luck!!
  10. Hello! Somehow, this year, no one seems to have started a Canadian Thread for applicants for Clinical and Counselling Psychology. I figured, I would start! Applied to: University of Manitoba (Clinical), Queen's (Clinical), McGill (Counselling), New Brunswick (Clinical) and Wisc-Madison (Masters/PhD - Counseling) No, news yet except for Wisc-Madison PhD - rejected, but one of my referees didn't put in my reference in time (a week after the deadline) Let's start talking because I think we all need an outlet and to find out from each other what is happening in the world of invites, acceptances and rejections. (PS, if someone does know about another link - 'cause I cannot find my fellow applicant peers)
  11. Hi everyone. I'm considering applying to PhD programs (specifically in Education with a STEM focus) next year. I have a Masters in CS so already have GRE scores and I have professors that would be more than happy to write me letters of recommendation. I do not, however, have any published research. This would be the weakest point of my application. My grades and references are/would be excellent, and I have an idea of what I want to research. I do not, however, have an exact thesis in mind. I more or less have a "theme" and I was somewhat hoping that my exact research topic could develop after I started a PhD program. Is this realistic or do I need a more specific idea before I apply? Also, I would like to make contacts with professors in prospective schools to discuss my research interests and perhaps meet them face to face. Would most professors be willing to do this? How would I go about contacting them? Would a simple email be fine? I have points of contacts that can probably introduce me to some, but definitely not all of the professors I'd be interested in working with. tl;dr: 1) Do I need to know exactly, down to details, what is want to research in a PhD program when applying, or is a general theme okay? 2) What's the best way to reach out to and make contact with professors I'd be interested in working with? Thanks in advance.
  12. Hi. I'm looking to apply to Culture Studies, English, and Interdisciplinary Humanities programs and it seems like some of them have language requirements. Does anyone have a sense of whether I should take some time in the next few months to learn another language or whether I can do that after I am admitted?
  13. Hey guys, I was wondering about who has applied to bachelor of education or teaching programs in Ontario! I have some questions: Which schools have you applied to? For what age concentration? What are your teachables? What was your GPA? What relevant experience did you have? I've applied to OISE, UOIT, and York for intermediate/senior. My teachables are biology & social science. I had a ~4.0 GPA in my last 2 years. I worked in a local high school for the past 2 years.
  14. I know the Oxford website says decisions are made and sent out 8-10 weeks after the deadline. Since the Jan. 20th (2017) deadline, that would put decisions around March 17th-31st. I'm wondering if anyone has heard any additional information regarding Oxford results and, additionally, what departments/ strands your application was for. Thank you!
  15. Hi all! I'm currently a junior in undergrad at University of Cincinnati and I'm wondering if anyone else in my position is already thinking about the application process that we'll be going through this fall? Does anyone have advice on how to choose which schools to apply to besides the obvious factors? Is there anything I should be doing now to prepare myself for what's coming? When is the best time to start GRE prepping? Recommendations on how NOT to get completely overwhelmed?? Any advice will help! Thanks!
  16. In order to be considered for scholarships (graduate assistantships offered by the school and things of that sort), did you need to have submitted a FAFSA report? Or is that after you are admitted and then you submit the FAFSA to then receive funding? Is it too late to already send it in to be considered for funding? I'm just a little confused...there was no indication on my application to send in FAFSA before the grad application deadline and some applications asked about tax info but I thought that was it....?
  17. Is there anyone applied for TUM Summer semester 2017? Waiting for admission results :/
  18. Hello, Like many, I am anxiously awaiting the results of my applications. Anyway, I haven't been offered any interviews, and I am not really sure if that is a major problem or not. Three of the schools(including the one I was rejected from) are campuses that I visited and met with some faculty and the DGS etc. pre-application. Schools I applied to are: Kentucky, Clark University, University of Oregon, University of Minnesota If anyone knows whether these these schools offer interviews I would really appreciate it. It might lessen some of the anxiety of waiting.
  19. Hey All, I was wondering if someone could read my SOP and give me feedback ? send me your email to send the sop Thanks
  20. Hi guys, I am a 23-year old French student who has applied for the PhD in Public Policy & Administration at Bocconi University, Milan. Wondering if anyone could evaluate my profile to get an idea of whether I have some decent chances of being accepted. - Undergraduate studies: Bocconi University, Bachelor in International Economics, Management and Finance - Top 5% of the cohort - Graduate studies: Sciences Po Paris, Master in International Economic Policy (2-year programme) - Top student of the cohort (expectef to get my diploma in July) - GRE: 166 Q; 161 V; 4.5 AW - Reference letters: 1 from former Italian Minister of Finance + 1 from Chief Economist of top insurance company who hired me for an internship at his office (both were my professors at Sciences Po Paris) - Work experience: long internship (> 6 months) in the Economic Research Department of a top insurance company (writing of client-oriented publications) + summer internship in a small research centre in Rome focusing on economic thought (co-authored a book with two senior researchers) + chief editor of a fairly well-known Italian online youth-based magazine Thank you very much for your help!
  21. Hi, For the people who received decision notices already - did you get a decision soon after your interview or did you have to wait several weeks? I'm totally biting my nails waiting for a response.
  22. Hi there, A few months ago, I applied to UC Berkeley's (UCB) ecology PhD program. I thought that now all that was left to do was to await UCB's response. However, a recent conversation with a friend (PhD, Engineering) got me wondering as to whether I left stones un-turned. Granted, his advice might not be applicable to my case... Can anyone offer thoughts on the following: (1) Is it bad that I have not met with my prospective mentor? I contacted my would-be mentor well before applying to UCB. He responded (via email) that I have an impressive background, that I should apply, and that we could talk by phone after his travels. Then, after his travels, he wrote: "Apologies I haven't had time to connect on all this - it's been busy. These possibilities [research options] are intriguing - I suggest you apply and indicate interest in my lab. Then, if I receive your application among those highly ranked by the admissions committee, we can follow up and dive more deeply into possibilities and the potential fit of your interests/aspirations and my lab and funding." l took this at face value... but am now having second thoughts. Should I have been pushing to meet/talk with him before he sees my application, despite what he wrote? I recently emailed him to ask if he'd be at a conference that I might attend, but no response. (2) Should I have met with the Dean & the Department Head? Some folks think that I should be meeting with these people, telling them about my research plans, persuading them that my research would be a great addition to their program, showing them that I'm already finding funding, and making sure that they remember me. But, if I have no project plan yet, is this even applicable?... (3) Why do so many people tell me that I can raise my chances of getting into a PhD program if I find grants in advance? After I got my MS in biology, I've been working as a field tech on seasonal jobs, but none of these projects are "my own." I'm not a regular employee at a university or organization, so I don't see how and with whom I could put together a project and apply for grants in advance of applying to a PhD program. Am I missing something? Are there organizations that would actually award would-be PhD students money, even if they don't have a project plan yet? Any thoughts about these questions that are tormenting me in my sleep would be appreciated
  23. When I go to check my email, I estimate the probability of something new having arrived from a prospective university: 12:00am; 5% Highly unlikely, but still not zero 1:00am; 3% Less likely than midnight, but some professors are burning the midnight oil 2:00am; 5% My poor math deduces that if they are awake in the middle of the night, 2am sounds like a good time to email me after all. Check email. 3:00am; 2% If they were going to email in the middle of the night, they probably would have done so already 4:00am; 7% Some professors are cray-cray morning people after all 5:00am; 12% Better time for a morning person to consider it appropriately late enough to send an email out without seeming strange 6:00am; 12% Some of the early morning folks may have gone for a jog first and then had a snack or walked their dog and are only now getting to their email 7:00am; 15% Before leaving for work, someone may wrap up a few pending tasks, like sending me an email 8:00am; 25% First thing in the morning when getting to the office, a fantastic time to both accept and reject someone 9:00am; 20% A slightly less acceptable time to accept someone, but still perfectly acceptable for a rejection 10:00am; 25% An email after a brief meeting to finish making those final applicant decisions 11:00am; 20% They may send me something during a late morning meeting, from their phone, while ignoring the speaker, and acting like they are doing important business on their phone 12:00pm; 20% Right before lunch, they send out some satisfying emails that have been weighing on them, so they can go out to lunch satisfied 1:00pm; 6% The back from lunch now, forgotten email, rush send they intended to send during the morning and have recollected only now that they are well fed 2:00pm; 20% Final decisions were made after a long lunch meeting where some fights broke out and coffee was thrown 3:00pm; 15% After-lunch meeting closes calmly with no thrown coffee, applicants decided 4:00pm; 10% Private meetings in dark corners bring final decisions to a close in the late afternoon 5:00pm; 15% They save the feel-good happy acceptance email message for the end of the day 6:00pm; 20% "Oh crap, I totally forgot to send those acceptance emails" -on the way out the door 7:00pm; 12% Professor arrives at home, "Oh crap, I totally forgot to send those acceptance emails." 8:00pm; 10% Over dinner, "Oh crap, I totally forgot to send those acceptance emails." 9:00pm; 6% Late night fighting continued over final applicant decisions in office overtime. Pizza was thrown. It wasn't whether or not to accept me, but who got to have me. Rawr. 10:00pm; 10% The meeting transitioned into primetime TV watching and over soothed nerves they finally decided to throw some dice 11:00pm; 8% The toughest of decisions was resolved by transforming applications into paper airplanes and competing for flying distance Note: These numbers do not add up to 100%
  24. Question: How can I tailor my application with a low gpa in the next 2 years? I am in year 3/5.5 in my dual degree engineering program. I would like to go to Georgia Tech for a PhD. 1)I have a 2.8 gpa and really want to go to graduate school. 2) I have started research and will continue through the next year with hopes to do more. So far I have this semester and next year lined up with undergraduate research at my institution. 3)I will have my 4th internship this summer. 4) I have a low gpa because in high school I had 2 jobs while helping my chaotic family pay the bills and taking dual credit college courses. I still do that but considering I started at a 2.5 and am now at a 2.83 I believe I can get to at most a 3.3 before I graduate. How do I overcome this? I want to get a start on the grad school application mindset early. Thank you for any and all help
  25. I posted this in the Social Work thread but thought it would be better to post it here: I applied to CSU San Marcos on January 3rd with my transcripts from the 4 year university i went to, the 3 letters of recommendation and my personal narrative. Today I get an email stating that I need to send in transcripts from Mira Costa Community College ( I took a summer class there years ago). I'm very frustrated that it took the university a whole month to contact me. On top of that I have now found out that I am not in the priority applicant pool anymore. I know it is my responsibility to have the transcripts in, but it is also the universities responsibility to communicate accordingly and I don't feel that has happened. To make things worse, my father has emailed the Department Chair of the MSW Program asking that once my transcripts are recieved to be put back in the priority pool. Now I didn't ask him to do this, he did this on his own without talking to me. So my question is: am I in the wrong to feel this way? What can I do?