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Showing content with the highest reputation on 03/19/2018 in all areas

  1. 5 points
  2. 4 points

    NSF GRFP 2017-18

    I don't trust random redditors, especially not ones that avoid answering questions, but comment on their downvotes. I think it'll be next week based on what I've read while creeping through threads from previous years (um, this is a judgement free zone, right?). There seems to be a pattern to the fastlane closures: one the weekend before announcements (sat-sun), followed by the previous year's list of awardees/HMs being unavailable, which seems to be where we're at now, and results the following week (closure announcement typically day of-sometimes late at night!) Or maybe all of this waiting is finally getting to me and I am just losing my mind.
  3. 4 points

    NSF GRFP 2017-18

    Based on me skimming through the last few years worth of forums. Seems to be that the maintenance alert we are on the lookout for typically goes up the day before results are released (Monday if results are posted Tuesday). This alert could be posted as last as 9pm on the day before announcements. It is usually a maintenance alert that lists the end time at being 3am or 5am. Additionally, I would say that we are in the home stretch given last year's awards and honorable mentions are no longer listed. That list tends to go down a week or two before announcements.
  4. 3 points

    Fall 2018 Applicants

    Dear Professor X, Thank you very much for the encouragement to work with you at University A. I appreciated our conversations and I learned a lot. However, after much consideration, I have decided that University B is a stronger fit for my needs. I look forward to continuing our conversations and seeing each other at future conversations.
  5. 3 points

    DAAD 2018-2019

    hey man,, i called bonn just now nad they said that news should have been last week, but there is a delay... and that everybody will be informed in the next cpl of days.. goodluck. she said: ''this week, hopefully in the next couple of days ''
  6. 3 points
    What the grad students told me was that if you were admitted with the expectation of going from MS to PhD, a professor would have contacted you by now. When I said "Really? That's like the exact opposite of what we've been told all day" the current PhD students said that even though they've asked the professors and people in charge of admissions to be more honest and upfront about this, they just aren't. So they get a bunch of people to come for the unfunded masters because "people will pay for a masters from Stanford." I found this super dishonest. Honestly, just directly admit to PhD if that's the case. I emailed the graduate coordinator on Saturday asking if I'm being considered for funding or not (I was originally waiting until the end of march to be polite). My guess would be not since I haven't been contacted yet, but I'm checking because they did offer to reimburse some expenses from the visit day. I'll let post on here whatever I hear back. A few other negatives I got from the visit day: -It seems like funding is incredibly scarce in the department. I had one professor mention that it's not usual, but definitely possible, for your advisor to run out of funding for you, say during your last year as a PhD student. It kind of makes sense because when an advisor takes you on, they financially provide you the tuition and stipend money. But you'd think the university would wave your tuition so that each PhD student doesn't literally cost the advisor half a million dollars of grant money (not an exaggeration). -I heard a few other grad students say that their advisors are never around "because they're really important people." That might be true, but I'm looking for an advisor who has enough time to be a mentor, just not my cup of tea. -The master will cost $99.7K and TA and RA positions are reserved for PhD candidates so that their advisors aren't paying tuition from their own grant money. I was told there is practically no possibility of getting TA or RA positions as a masters student. -I got the feeling that MS students who do join in on the research groups (what they recommend you do to advance to the PhD) are pretty much free lab work (i.e. undergrads) and the likelihood of doing your own project is slim. I got this vibe from hearing some PhD students talk about MS students in the lab. Positives: -The program requirements are really flexible. The head of the department said you can even substitute the "mandatory" program requirements for whatever you want as long as you can make a reasonable appeal to your masters advisor. -Most of the PhD students seemed to enjoy the program, they just really don't like how the department handles admissions and the whole MS thing. My whole take on Stanford at the moment is a little jaded and I do realize that there are probably a million great things about the masters program and to be fair, one of the professors there started as a masters student with no funding at Stanford, so I guess transitioning to the PhD isn't impossible.
  7. 3 points
    If you are interested in sharing your responses, please submit below! I have left the responses able to edit as I know not all interviews have finished, so if you want to fill out now based on how you feel, you can always go back and edit after you've completed interviews. I will share the results once there are a decent amount of responses. Please be honest, but no trash talking programs (or individuals within the program!), I will delete those responses. It is completely anonymous though! https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfveStRW-jk2FIeM0qE6w9L7gxkTFrdCP9KuZJwnjZjG1wZOA/viewform?usp=sf_link
  8. 3 points

    Vanier CGS (2017-2018)

    @PsychBoy Tangibly, it's just given me more time to work on research. I only get one TA a year (as opposed to two pre Vanier) so it's freed up time. Additionally, I think in some ways it's added more pressure to be a "good academic", but much of that is probably concocted by me. Re: publications, I didn't have any peer reviewed journal pubs going into applying and I ranked middle of the pack of Vanier recipients. I remember what it was like for me this time of year, and it was unbearable. I was a wreck. Don't be like me. Take care of yourselves and remember that so much of this is subjective and luck of the draw in terms of who you get reviewing your application.
  9. 2 points

    NSERC PGSD 2018-2019

    For those of you waiting to hear back: The NSERC website states that results are sent out 17 weeks after universities submit their recommendations, or 23 weeks after the deadline for direct applicants. This means that results are expected on March 23rd.
  10. 2 points
    I haven't heard anything yet. I will be in Toronto this week and visiting Ryerson - I will check in with admissions about timelines if possible.
  11. 2 points

    Applying to Munk 2018

    Hey folks, just created the facebook group! Looking forward to seeing you all there! https://www.facebook.com/groups/219448248793589/
  12. 2 points

    Humor: The Reveal Cake

    @GreenEyedTrombonist Badger badger badger badger badget badger badger MUSHROOM MUSHROOM (Hopefully I'm not reaching too far back into the history of the Internet on that one!)
  13. 2 points

    Moving abroad with pets

    @E-P @bumbleblu Thank you both so much! Lots of great tips! I'm definitely gonna try feeding him in his carrier and getting him used to the travel harness. I also bought the Feliway calming spray but haven't tried it yet. I'll give him an extra pet/cuddle
  14. 2 points
    Averroes MD

    PhD Applications Fall '18 Season

    Georgetown must be waiting for the second coming of Christ...
  15. 2 points

    2018 Acceptances

    Congrats! I got in off the waitlist there too and will probably attend! Are you planning to go to campus on April 6? If so, I will see you there!
  16. 2 points
    Found out yesterday that I have been admitted to St. Louis University in rhetoric and composition. I was originally third on the waiting list. I’m pretty happy about this one. Admitted students day is April 6, which I will attend. I think I will most likely enroll, though I won’t make a final decision until I visit the department. For me this makes two admissions, two wait lists still pending, and two schools that I have heard nothing from. I finally emailed Purdue to find out what was up with them, and they replied saying that my application was still active and would remain so until April 15.
  17. 2 points

    Fall 2018 Cycle

    Finally heard back from my last school, and I have officially accepted an offer to University of Rochester’s Chem Inorganic program! Hang in there everybody!
  18. 2 points
    Great idea to compile all the lessons we've learned! Here's hoping it'll help next year's round of applicants. I was fortunate enough to receive interviews from all 5 programs I applied for, and offers from 4 (one waitlist). It's been a whirlwind, but an incredible experience! As a bit of context, I applied for Psychology PhD programs, specifically for Cognitive Neuroscience (memory). Below are my tips. Applications Choosing programs As a starting point, speak to your current mentor (if you have one) about where to begin your search. Post docs and PIs have excellent advice about big names in the field, up-and-coming researchers, mentorship styles, and the inside scoop about the atmosphere of different institutions. Only apply to programs that you would seriously consider attending. If you know that you would definitely not want to take an offer from a backup school, don't bother in the first place. I have friends who submitted a dozen applications, multiple to places that they weren't very excited about, just in the hopes that something would stick. When it came time for interviews, they realized that it was impossible to proceed with multiple conflicts, and they had to triage. Application components Letters of reference are SO important. I was lucky to have developed really fantastic relationships with PIs at my undergrad institution, and they apparently provided such high praise that it was repeatedly mentioned when I attended interviews. My current mentor gave me excellent advice about writing my personal statement. Of course you should convey that you are passionate about your chosen research topic, but bear in mind that when everyone says the same sort of thing, claims of passion fall hollow. Instead, focus on highlighting your own unique accomplishments right off the bat, in the first paragraph. What are the key points of your past experiences that demonstrate that you have the necessary skills and enthusiasm? I fretted over my GRE scores because the quant component was lower than I had been getting on practice tests. I considered re-taking, but ultimately decided not to, and I am very glad that I did not waste my time and money on another shot. It didn't pose a problem in admissions, and nobody commented on test scores at all in any of my interviews. One program that I applied to "strongly recommended" the Psych subject test of the GRE, but I decided that I didn't want to bother taking it (again, time and money). Omitting the subject test didn't seem to hurt my application at all. Interview Trips Travelling Always dress for your travel day in an outfit that you would be okay with wearing to the first interview event. At 2 of my 5 interviews, I experienced massive travel delays. I lost all the buffer time in my schedule and ended up going directly to the first event from the airport. If the travel agent sends you an itinerary that you don't like (e.g., leaving very early in the morning after the end-of-interview party), you can just ask for a different one. Travel-sized dry shampoo will save your life. Would recommend bringing some melatonin pills. Personally, I am a night owl, and interviews required shifting my sleep-wake cycle by quite a few hours. Combine that with nerves, and it can be very hard to sleep without some help. Interviews There will be many profs interviewing you, not just those you mentioned in your application. Many of them will conduct research that is completely irrelevant to your interests, but that's okay. You do not have to feign interest in joining their lab. I suggest looking up their lab website blurb and the abstracts of a few recent publications. Try to do some theory of mind and imagine what sort of angle they would take when hearing about your own research projects. You can change the way you frame your research to match the sorts of questions and methods that they clearly favor. The best possible preparation for knowing what to say in an interview is to have presented a poster on your research projects in the past. If you have that experience, then you have several versions (varying in brevity) of a walk-through speech about each of your projects. You'll also have learned how to deal with interruptions and questions. If you haven't presented a poster on your research, I would strongly suggest practicing telling that scientific narrative. When you meet with graduate students, remain on guard! Remember that they are there because they care about what they do, and they want a peer who will be like-minded. At my home institution, I overheard graduate students in my lab discussing how an interviewee had made a poor impression by asking "fun" questions instead of sensible ones (e.g., "What are your favorite pizza toppings? What would your lab mascot be?"). The "middle-school sleepover" vibes made them think that she did not take the research seriously. You may think that you have a "ranking" of your program choices in your head, but keep an open mind! I went into the interview process agonized about not knowing which school I wanted to attend. After my second interview, I was completely convinced that I had found the right place for me. I was wrong! Interview #3 changed my mind, but not until I had taken several days to process everything. I strongly encourage you to attend all interviews and treat each one as a serious mission to get all the information you might need, even if you think that you don't want to attend the school. Other applicants will have impressive backgrounds, but try not to succumb to imposter syndrome. If they invited you to interview, you earned that spot. As I am still finishing up my undergrad, I was a little intimidated to find that the vast majority of other prospective students were around 4-5 years my senior. We had different experiences, but each one of us deserved to be there. Making a Decision If a program wants you, you will know. They will make that very clear with strong and swift communication, friendly follow-ups from POIs, messages from current graduate students, offers to answer additional questions, etc. Personally, I thought that such positive and prompt responses seemed to reflect a department that values its students and has a solid organizational infrastructure in place, both important things to consider. You are in data collection mode until the end game. Don't worry if you're halfway through the process and you still have no idea where you want to go. Just keep on doing your best to learn more about each program! You can get a dozen opinions and attack the problem with rationality (I initially tried making a giant spreadsheet with 20 criteria weighted by importance...), but ultimately, you should choose a program that feels right. That comes down to research fit, interpersonal dynamic with the POI, and potential future peers (Could you see yourself being friends, or are people competitive? Do you care?). Personally, I was looking for a program that was interdisciplinary and collaborative, PIs who were approachable and responsive, and peers who would be friendly and genuinely passionate about their research.
  19. 2 points
    have formally accepted Columbia's offer!
  20. 1 point

    UCSD GPS 2018

    I still appreciate your information/perspective, because my other source (the grad office) has quite an incentive to paint everything in the most favorable light possible.
  21. 1 point

    Maryland Program Strength

    I wouldn't be so quick so as to brush off Maryland as some of you are already doing. Its placement record is quite great especially regarding how difficult it is to get a job in the political science field in the first place. Personally speaking as to some of my friends at Maryland, the quant is quite good (and according to them, the website hasn't been updated in ages) and I don't see any reason why one shouldn't go there. But as much as I disagree with @Comparativist on his other issues with the program, I do wholeheartedly agree on the factor where it's up to the student to make their own success. This isn't limited to Maryland at all, but rather to the general field of academia. I have had the fortune of having been grown up throughout my life surrounded by family and friends in academia, and, on top of my own observations, the current atmosphere of academia has changed a bit from what it was 20-30 years ago. Back then, the name of your school certainly limited where you could end up at, but nowadays, so long as you aren't attending somewhere like Hawaii (no offense but I grew up there and know all about UH as a "retirement school" for old professors), your own work will stand out for itself and help get you the position you want. No absolute guarantees, as with all things in life, but it can help immensely. Above all, you CANNOT be inactive during the summers and must be continuously researching/publishing/presenting in order to make yourself stand out. My professors have said themselves that they would rather take the Ph.D. candidate from West Virginia University who has a plethora of work and shows PROMISE rather than the Harvard candidate who has done nothing but just get a Ph.D. with no other recognizable skills. That being said, all else equal if both candidates are the same (which happens more often than you think), they will take the Harvard guy over the WVU as a tie-breaker. But in the end, the factors you control are what you make of them. Do all the work you can do to make sure you stand out and don't look like another factory degree who thought a Ph.D. alone was enough to get a job. It's not, and if you approach a Ph.D. program with the same mentality you did in undergrad, you will be lucky to make it past the qualification exam and have a microscopically low chance of even making use of that Ph.D. in the academic field.
  22. 1 point


    Between what schools are you deciding? I am strongly leaning towards Cal. It makes the most sense financially and for a lot of other reasons for me. Plus it’s also an amazing program and school. I’m still not sure how I feel about the new curriculums though. I wish I knew more about them. If you’re looking for a school that specializes in clinical practice, I’m not sure Berkley is your bet. At least not from what I understand. It definitely depends on what your options are though. I also don’t think Cal is going to set you up for failure in a matter what you do.
  23. 1 point

    MPH Canada 2018

    Just got a conditional offer for MPH at U of T (Health Promotion) - didn't meet the stats requirement but they are allowing me to take a class this summer. If any of you is stressing about their stats req just know that there's hope! Congrats to everyone accepted yet, and for everyone still waiting hang in there. Was rejected from McGill so an acceptance at U of T was so out of my mind. So excited!!!
  24. 1 point

    Fulbright 2018-2019

    Slack GroupMe Google sheet chat There's also a facebook group, although I'm not in it, and the subreddit, which is much less active.
  25. 1 point
    I have been in a long term relationship with my partner for quite a while now and we got our master's together and now in the fall we will be starting our PhDs together. Since we are both in academia our situation is a little different since we both have times when we are absolutely swamped, so it's really easy to understand that and just let the other person catch up with everything they need to do. But I'm gonna try and give some advice as best I can into how we make it all work. I think one of the biggest things for us is us trying to make sure we are on the same wake-up and bedtime routine because then that means the times surrounding those times of the day are spent together. Also we really try to make sure we spend time not working after we wake up or before we go to bed and instead enjoy our breakfast and coffee together or enjoy winding down for the night after dinner. I really think if you have the ability to be on a similar schedule as your partner then that allows you to see each other much more frequently through the day. If you aren't on the same schedule you can easily end up just barely missing the opportunity to spend a little time with your partner. I usually wake up when he does (5:30 a.m. )for his 8 a.m. classes even though I don't absolutely need to wake up at that time and I'm totally not a morning person. But this allows us to spend all that time together before we need to leave the house. Also when we are really on top of things that wake up time allows us to work out together in the mornings/meal prep (chop veggies) for that evenings dinner. I think one of the things that helps us a lot is even if one of us is working at home we try to be in the same room as the other person (unless we do need absolute solitude) so we can still chit chat when the person working needs a break or someone's brain to pick about something. Also while chores aren't fun we try to do them together when we can so we can have the time to catch up during that. We also almost always try to cook dinner together or at the very least eat dinner at the same time. I guess all of my advice so far is to just try and spend time together, even if it is just day-to-day stuff, but I would imagine that doesn't work for those who need a break from their partner now and then (I guess my partner and I do tend to be attached at the hip a bit...) But I do recognize that doing non day-to-day stuff also really helps keep relationships thriving. For you to be able to do bigger things outside the day-to-day activities together during grad school I think the most important thing is time management. It took me a looooong time to figure out time management during my masters, but once I did, my partner and I were definitely better for it. It did allow us to do non-day-to-day activities more frequently (i.e. going out to eat or to the movies, going fishing or hiking or other things that we enjoy doing together). I find that the best way for us to do these fun activities together was for us to plan on X date to do whatever it was we wanted to do. This allowed me to figure out what I needed to do before that date and usually meant I was very productive in getting things done so I could feel deserved in taking the break with my partner. Basically we had to prioritize spending time together and I think that is maybe one of the most important things we learned during out master's. Of course setting aside a certain date isn't exactly spontaneous and sometimes spontaneity is great for relationships. So at times we would just shirk our responsibilities (when we knew we could get away with it for a day or weekend) and just do whatever the heck we wanted to do besides work even if it just meant a day of Netflix together. It is absolutely OKAY to not constantly be working during grad school (take some weekends off!) and it's OKAY to take unplanned breaks to have some fun! If you want to go on a vacation with your partner then make those plans and do it! While during grad school you of course have to be productive and get things done in a timely fashion, sometimes you just need to make time for other things because that will ultimately make you a more productive student. When I realized that it was okay to not work all the time, I started to treat my grad school responsibilities as more of a 9 to 5 job (I mean more realistically I was working from ~8 to 6 or 6:30 with a lunch break) and became much more productive. It meant that I needed to make the most of those hours I set aside for work and I did. It meant that I had so much more downtime to look forward and wasn't as likely to goof off at school as I was before. It meant my partner were so much happier because we had made the point to prioritize our life in addition to prioritizing our responsibilities to grad school. I know this went a bit long but as I was writing it I came to the realization of just how much better off my partner and I were when we better managed our time and prioritized us. I think prioritizing your partner and relationship is one of the biggest things for a relationship to remain on solid ground. It allows your bond to remain strong and by making time for your partner that shows how much you care for them. I know I went a bit stream-of-conscious-y so feel free to ask me to clarify something if its unclear.


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