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Found 84 results

  1. 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?
  2. I thought there might be some benefit in creating a forum where (1) people can post if they are declining an offer, and (2) where people can post where they are wait-listed. Sure, there is no guarantee the wait-listed person will get the spot, but it's still nice to know, right? Or we can put anything related to wait-lists here.
  3. I have heard back from every English MA program except for the University of Washington: Seattle. Does anyone know when they generally make decisions?
  4. https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2017/03/20/suit-alleges-ohio-u-sat-complaints-professors-sexual-misconduct-decade?utm_content=bufferba9dc&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook&utm_campaign=IHEbuffer (This is a link to more info from Inside Higher Ed about the charges being brought against the alleged harasser- Prof. Andrew Escobedo.) https://www.ohio.edu/cas/about/directories/profiles.cfm?profile=escobedo (This is a link to his profile on the OU site.) I would encourage grad students, particularly female grad students, to be wary of OU's English department in light of these allegations. It looks like he is in the process of being fired, as the Inside Higher Ed article states: "Ohio has already moved to fire the tenured full professor and says its processes ensure that all complaints are 'investigated thoroughly and handled appropriately.'" Nonetheless, a department that would allow this type of alleged conduct to go on for a decade is one to be leery of. (I highly doubt they would be in the process of firing him had the allegations been found to be untrue in the subsequent investigation.)
  5. Let's say everything else about the program is a good fit. Top tier program, lots of great professors, close to home, good funding, good city -- but the program has terrible job placement. Would a poor record of job placement be a deal breaker for you? What if your alternative is a program that's less ideal in terms of funding (although, still perfectly livable), location and fit (slightly less ideal), but much better with placement? Should we first and foremost consider job placement when choosing between programs that are a "good" fit?
  6. Anyone on here going to the Welcome Days? I booked my flight last week and will be bringing my partner.
  7. I got into my second choice and they gave me a great package. I think I am getting accepted into my first choice program, but waitlisted for funding and won't find out until April 15th. My second choice wants a decision on the TA-ship by March 15th (next week!!!) What do I do???? Any advice is welcome. Trying not to make myself sick over this.
  8. 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!
  9. Anyone on here applied with a postcolonial sub-field? Where did you apply? Here's my list: Columbia (anyone get an interview here? idk if they are doing interviews for PoCo) Princeton Cornell UW Madison Indiana Bloomington UCLA NYU
  10. Does anyone know if Penn or Temple are starting to notify of acceptances / rejections for their programs? I've seen smatterings of updates thus far, but nothing too substantial. Hope everyone is doing alright during the waiting process!
  11. I've been accepted into the PhD in English Language & Literature at Queen's U. My dilemma is... I'm unsure if academia is the path for me. I've become much more interested in journalism as of late. My questions, basically, are as follows: Would a PhD be of any use in a journalistic career? Would it be a good idea to accept the PhD offer, to try it for a semester/year? If I did end up leaving the program after one year, is that incredibly bad form? Would I be better served rejecting the offer and applying to journalism schools for next year? Do I even need any additional schooling (I'm in the midst of completing an MA in English), or am I better off attempting to get an internship/job in journalism immediately? Any help is appreciated. Thanks.
  12. Hey all, Congrats to those who received acceptances this go around. I never thought I'd find myself among you, yet here I am faced with the challenge of picking one off the top shelf. My proposed research area is 20th/21st century postmodern lit -- lots of experience with magical realism, afrofuturism, historical fiction that seeks to rework the master narrative of 1492. Feminist, Poststructuralist and Postcolonial theory is pretty essential to my work. I'm looking for a program that's super interdisciplinary, allowing me to work in the realm of cultural studies, critical race studies, and media studies. I need coursework that's theory heavy and a department that's not afraid to ask those metaphysical questions that push the boundaries of the discipline. Now, it seems to me neither NYU nor Cornell are afraid to play in this territory, but who does it best? According to USNews' 2013 rankings, Cornell is top 10 while NYU is top 20. Does this matter? Cornell is Ivy and NYU is honorary Ivy. Thinking of the job market, do either of these positions and distinctions hold weight when pinned against one another? In terms of practical matters, NYU's funding is better. The McCracken Fellowship has to be one of the best fellowship offers out there. $26,000+ and an additional $22,000 for those who choose to teach. I live in NYC, and if I stay in NYC, I won't have to pay rent. I'll basically save up my fellowship funds, and in 5 years, buy a house. Cornell's Sage Fellowship offers $25,000+ a year with 4 years of added summer support, and Teaching Assistantships during years 2, 3 and 5. Of course, I'd have to live in Ithaca, which is 4+ hours away from NYC, pay rent, and be away from my support system. It seems to me that NYU is the more practical option, but Cornell romances me. Cornell English actively seeks to push the envelope. (Although, a website communicates only so much truth. Is there anyone out there who can speak to this point?) Being outside of the city is also a temptation. NYC STRESSES ME OUT, but because it is NYC the resources are infinite. I just have to be willing to get up every day and travel an hour and a half to get there. Though, I'm so jaded by it all that I'm afraid I won't even bother to hit NYPL to get that one book that can be found nowhere else. Ultimately, however, I'm not interested in making unnecessary sacrifices. If Cornell isn't worth it, then Cornell isn't worth it. I'll go to NYU, which is an awesome program, do my research, collect my funds, graduate, buy a house, and *maybe* get a job to pay for it. The wisdom of the experienced is MUCH appreciated. Upvotes for all.
  13. Hi all, I have posted here before on other issues (thank you so much for all of your comments, by the way!) so some may remember me–I'm an undergrad junior in the middle of a leap from medicine to English literature. One of my chief concerns is my GPA... I'm majoring in the sciences, as it had been drilled into me by my parents–since middle school, if not earlier–that I must become a doctor. Now, however, I'm realizing all too late that medicine is not at all where my passions lie, and I would rather pursue a graduate degree in English lit. Here's the thing, though: I performed decently well in my first year, but in my second year of undergrad I got involved in a lot of extracurriculars, my science classes suddenly became much more challenging, and I suffered from my time management issues quite terribly (GPA was 2.62 in the first semester and 3.08 in the second). This was due entirely to my poor performance in courses like Calculus or Orgo or Neuroscience. Since that year, I've gotten over my time management failures and improved drastically (3.84 GPA last semester, looking to be similar this semester as well). I've spoken to some of my advisors but keep getting different input – some say since the low GPA is due to my science courses and thus won't be weighed as heavily by admission committees, others say it looks too bad nevertheless, and my chances at a top PhD program are slim. I had some hope in the beginning, for I have always done well in my English courses and rationalized the low GPA as, to some degree, irrelevant to these subjects... and I planned to also pursue an MA first, to give me more experience (since I wasn't an English major) and dilute my poor undergrad performance with my grad experience... but now after following several threads here and seeing the admission statistics, I'm losing hope completely... Students are applying with GPAs in the 3.90s and being rejected... I guess I'm just looking for some input. Would the MA really not be enough to give me a little push upward? To help counter that one awful year of undergrad? Should I just give up hope for any shot at one of the top PhD programs? I can't even express how much I regret that one year... I know this sounds incredibly melodramatic, but it truly feels like it's beginning to ruin my life (apologies for the extra long post)
  14. Hey, new user here! I applied to MA programs in English, and I am starting to hear back. What I'm wondering now (to decide how much to factor it into my decision) is how much the name of my MA school will matter on eventual PhD applications. Obviously I haven't even heard back from many of my programs, but I have already received a tempting offer from Salem State University. It's not exactly a "prestigious" school, but I like the program and the area. I'm slightly ahead of myself, I know. But I just don't want to find out that good PhD programs are going to write me off if they don't know my MA institution. If I (hopefully) get a solid GPA and have a strong application otherwise, will it be a factor that PhD programs weigh heavily?
  15. Hi! I'm a student of English Studies from Poland and this year I'm writing my BA dissertation on "The Influence of the Norman Invasion on English Language". In the 1st chapter I wanted to present how Old English and Norman French looked like before the invasion but I lack any information on the latter. If you could direct me to some websites, books, or articles on the topic, I would appreciate it very much. These may include linguistic records of the language of Normans and the language before the Vikings had settled in Normandy. Thanks in advance! PS. Perhaps some of you are able to translate the above into French. If you could, I would post this on some French speaking blogs and maybe receive some feedback there as well.
  16. I received a letter stating that I was placed on the wait list for the University of Tennessee's English Ph.D. prgram (Fall 2017). When I emailed to check to see where I am on the list, they said that they didn't have the list finished yet so they couldn't tell me. But they did say "But if we do get a no from the first round then you are the second person in your division. So it is very likely you would get admission and funding." What does the division part mean, and do you think its likely that I'll get an acceptance offer? This is my first choice in schools, no other acceptances right now, but I still have a few I haven't heard from yet. Thanks!!!
  17. Application season was horrible for me, so I'm not really expecting an acceptance. While waiting for results, I'm contemplating what to do if rejection is my future. Would a gap year be good? Or should I consider a Masters programs? Are there any funded English Masters programs? Post-Baccs? Any programs/jobs/internships that would be good to consider while waiting for the next round of applications for the English phD? I'm feeling discouraged, but hoping that other opportunities might actually allow for a better application next go round.
  18. Hello there! I'm currently a second-semester junior majoring in neuroscience, minoring in English. It's a tale as old as time: a student pushed toward one field by her family, realizing all-too-late that she has more interest in another. Long story short, I'm beginning to consider pursuing a graduate degree in English lit, but am growing more and more worried about whether it would really be possible to accomplish that, given that my undergraduate degree will be in an unrelated subject. I'm not sure how much the minor in English will really matter, but I suspect it won't be significant. I'm considering pursuing an MA in English before even attempting to apply for PhD, as that will give me much more experience and allow me to more fully expand the skills I already have, improving my chances for the PhD. My question is, though, most (if not all) PhD application deadlines here in the US close in the winter, and I will have only begun my MA by then. If I apply at that point, how will my undergrad transcript be weighed against the fact that I'm in the middle of my MA? Will I have any grades ready by then to show for my grad work? Would it be best to wait, finish the MA, and apply then? Additionally, my undergrad GPA suffered significantly during my sophomore year (particularly the fall semester), largely due to a heavy load of difficult science classes & my time management failures (it was quite bad; there was an F, a D, and a C). I really can't say I have any decent excuse; I was very young and very foolish, and it was entirely my fault. I've improved drastically since then, but I can't help but kick myself over those mistakes and how they will probably come back to bite me in my grad apps. How much do you think these one-time poor science grades affect my prospects? My English/lit grades have always been quite high... I apologize for the length of this post! Hopefully someone can answer some of these questions... Any additional advice is very much welcome
  19. Hi everyone – I have a quick question, one which may or may not require some degree of vague speculation: that is, does anyone know if it might hurt my chances at receiving an offer from a school's PhD program if I apply to their M.A. program a year prior, receive an offer, and turn it down? Does this depend on a particular admissions committee? Any and all perspectives are welcome, thanks!
  20. Hoping I'm not duplicating another post, but are there any other Columbia applicants to English here? I saw a couple of interview requests posted on the results board, but I was under the impression that Columbia didn't do interviews. It also seems really early. Can anyone shed any light on this?
  21. I know it's still crazy early, but I applied to the Literature PhD program at KU, and the English Dept. secretary said applications would be reviewed in January. Anyone who's been accepted to the program before know if that means I might actually hear before April? Don't mind me. Just torturing myself here. Thank you!
  22. Hello, I'm looking for some general advice on applications, letters of recommendation, etc. I graduated about 5 years ago with a Bachelor's degree in English Lit, during which I focused mostly on creative writing. After a few years regretting that choice's limitations, some wandering, lots of strange jobs, and a few personal crises, my own experiences in therapy have helped me to realize that I want to pursue a Master's in Counseling or Social Work, with an eye toward working as a mental health counselor. I understand that most programs in this field accept students who do not have a Bachelor's in a directly related field, but I'm wondering what I should focus on in order to be a competitive applicant. I've gotten pretty good at selling my Bachelor's degree as having imbued me with powerful critical thinking skills, and have gotten a few jobs on the basis of my writing ability, but I'm new to the grad school thing and I'm not sure how to sell what feels to me like a career change. I think I can use my personal experiences with therapy to make a pretty compelling case in a personal statement for why I want to take this path and why I would be right for it. But one thing I'm really unsure about is letters of recommendation. I didn't take any psychology classes in undergrad, and most of the professors and instructors that jump out in my mind as people who would happily write me a letter are creative writing instructors, and I'm not sure how relevant their letters would seem to the programs I'm applying for. Any advice on how to frame myself as a competitive candidate (and especially who I might consider asking for letters of recommendation) would be much appreciated! Thanks!
  23. Hi everyone! I'm new to thegradcafe.com but I desperately need some advice, guidance, ideas, etc. I'm really torn as to what my next move is academically and life-wise. I will be graduating in the spring of 2017 with an overall GPA of 3.2, my degree will be a BA in Political Science with a French minor. I want to go on to get an MA & PhD. The two fields I am leaning towards are History and English/Writing. Clearly I don't have a high enough GPA to get into an upper-level school, so to speak. However, I really want to get my PhD from a top 20 school. My GRE scores were: 148 quant, 162 verbal, 5 writing. I plan to retake the GRE in the spring to see if I can get higher scores. So, what next steps would you recommend? Here is what I've considered. -Go home, work for a year (maybe two) and attend a local university to take one or two graduate courses to make a firm decision on what to get my degrees in. Then apply for an MA/PhD program or just an MA and then my PhD at another school. -Begin an MA program at my state school (a good one) and get that degree, then go on to a top 20 school for my PhD. Basically what I'm wondering is this: -With my current academic standing, would it be beneficial for me to take a few grad courses at my local school, excel in them and then attend a matriculating MA program somewhere that better suits my interests? -Is it frowned upon to get an MA at one university and go to a different one for a PhD? -Would working for a year or two while taking classes (and getting the best grades possible) improve my application package for programs? -Should I take some extra undergrad classes at my local university in history or english since those fields weren't my major field? -Is there any chance, if I excel in an MA program and prove to be a valuable asset, I could be fully funded for a PhD program/get assistantships, etc? -Is there a chance I could go to a lower-ranking school for my MA and potentially get funding if my GRE scores were fantastic? -Is it bad to take a few years away from my undergrad, work and such, and then formally apply for an MA program? I'm dead set on getting a PhD so I know I will go back to school no matter what. I'm leaning towards going home to work, save money, and try a grad class or two to confirm it's what I want to pursue. However, what is realistic for me to pursue after I take those classes and excel? Thank you so much for your time and thoughts! Any and all advice is welcome.
  24. I'm having a tough time deciding between two directions for my PhD - English Literature or Film and Media. I have a Master's degree in English Literature and a Bachelor's degree in English with minors in Theatre and Film as well as Linguistics. I've always been drawn to interdisciplinary theories, such as structuralism, post-structuralism, psychoanalysis, critical theory (the Frankfurt School), feminist theory, queer theory, postcolonialism, and deconstruction. My literary interests have been almost exclusively contemporary and postmodern, and I don't particularly value literature as a medium above popular culture (e.g. television shows), film, media (e.g. advertisements), etc. My master's thesis analyzed literature in conjunction with film and advertisements and my primary theoretical focus derived from film and media studies. However, I lack the background in the technological aspects of media and film (I don't know coding and I've never made my own movie or other digital project). I've been debating for a while about whether to switch from English Literature to a Film and Media direction, but I'm also concerned about the job opportunities available to Film/Media PhDs vs. English Literature PhDs. I've ruled out the possibility of going into Gender and Sexuality, Cultural Studies, or Critical Theory programs because of my concern that they are too specific for the post-PhD job hunt. However, from what I've noticed, many universities are strongly embracing the digital humanities and seem to be going in the direction of Media/Film studies. I also feel that Media and Film would offer me the opportunities to learn practical technological skills rather than only the theoretical foundation that PhDs typically offer. Just wanted to check out other peoples' opinions on this matter. Thanks in advance for the help! Clearly I'm not the most decisive person out there haha.
  25. Thanks to a generous donation by the Estate of Daphne Davis Kendis, the University of Mississippi's Department of English annually awards the Harold J. Kendis Fellowship to the top-ranked Ph.D. applicant pursuing Medieval Studies. Please visit http://medieval.olemiss.edu for more information. Harold J. Kendis Fellowship 2017.docx