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Showing content with the highest reputation on 01/02/2019 in all areas

  1. 11 points
    Me at 6am this morning: Okay folks, the holidays are over with. Let's get some interview invites in this inbox. Come on. I'm obsessed, sigh.
  2. 3 points

    2019 Applicants

    No worries, this is a community and we should make it a healthy and supportive one, even if that sometimes mean enabling obsessive behavior. We're not here to cure anyone, after all. So, I'll be honest, rejections are rough, especially when you get as many I did. Because it's so easy to obsess and overthink everything, any news makes you go into hyperdrive, so when your schools start notifying and you don't get hit, you analyze everything. Unless you're really lucky AND your applications were amazing AND you somehow figured out perfect fit and ONLY applied to perfect fit schools, you will get rejected by someone. I'd suggest expecting it. I was hopeful that at least one would fall ("come on, more than 15 schools? surely I'm among the the top 100-150 applicants out there") and none did, and that sucks. In my case, the process of hearing from everyone was so long, and the implied rejections were so many, that by the time it all ended I had already resigned myself to striking out. In that sense, having many can be helpful since you still have hope when the first body hits land but by the time the last ones come you already know you're losing. You will ALWAYS have that glimmer of hope that even if the school only takes 2 people and they have already sent out 10 confirmed acceptances last month, when you open that notification you will see "congratulations!". So don't fight it, but don't lean into it. Don't start looking for apartments or daydreaming about courses if you can avoid it. Try to keep yourself busy. The days will go by faster and you will obsess less. If it all goes to hell, give yourself some time to not think about it (I'm big on repression, my advice might not be long-term healthy). Once some time has passed, if you want to go through this again (up to you, but don't flagellate yourself), then you need to take a good hard look at yourself and ask: a. if I apply again next year, how or why will I be a better candidate? What will I have added to my profile between one deadline and the next? And b. what did I do wrong and what can I change? Answering A is easier than B, since even inertia will usually make you a better candidate, since you add some sort of experience along the way. B will make you go crazy because there's no way to know. Was it the sample? SoP? Grades? GRE? Were you perfect but there was just enough other perfect people in your field? I think any smart candidate can figure out what things were dubious though, even if they're not necessarily what got you rejected. So set up a plan. Figure out what stays the same and what doesn't. Are you retaking GREs? Are you gonna use the same WS, or the same idea for your proposal? Are you gonna try the same schools, other schools? Same schools but different project or approach? When I was talking to an advisor about this cycle, they asked me what I think went wrong and I told them what I thought and they agreed. Point is, you know yourself, you know what proposals were a stretch, what parts of your WS are weak, etc. Don't try to address these things immediately, but in time, as you inevitable wonder what went wrong, you'll figure out. I'll let you know if I was right in 2 months. Finally, something that helped me reapply as a better candidate, and maybe helped deal with rejection, was applying for and receiving an IRT grant. The IRT deadline is in March, I hadn't even heard back from everywhere when I applied but I figured I'd try and think about it later. I wound up getting accepted so that pushed me to try again, since it made the cost less prohibitive and increased my odds. Without IRT I might not have applied again, or certainly not to as many schools. That said, if I strike out again, I'm out unless some program makes some changes and makes my fit amazing. I really can't recommend the IRT enough, btw. They look for students who intend on becoming educators and emphasize minorities and underprivileged groups. If you're accepted as an associate, like I was (they have an intensive summer program, too), they will cover your fees to 10-12 schools within their 41-school consortium (every school in my list is a consortium school except CUNY). They will assign you an advisor who will assist you through the process of selecting schools and another who will assist with writing your SoP. That's a lot of help. I will say that I think a lot of it is common sense in that they make you evaluate your own work, but sometimes you need fresh eyes and someone with perspective to guide you. So if you're interested, check here, the deadline is March 1st: https://www.andover.edu/about/outreach/irt/irt-application EDIT: I forgot to add some important stats about IRT. Of everyone who received IRT support in the past two years (before my cohort), 96% got at least 1 offer with some funding. 66% got at least 3, and 33% got 6 or more. Admittedly, partial funding offers probably aren't what you're looking for so there might be some info missing in the data to get a real picture for fully-funded PhDs, but hey, it's something. Especially if you come from no-name schools like me. RE-EDIT: Oh, and I forgot to say that I heard about the IRT through Gradcafe, when I was ready to give up. So hopefully the cycle continues (but the real hope is that everyone gets in).
  3. 2 points

    2019 Applicants

    In the spirit of mutual panic, here's my story from last year, which was my second go around. The year prior I applied to an MFA at Uni Glasgow and was accepted, but declined after talking with my professors and getting a better idea of what I wanted my career to look like. I applied to dual MA/PhD programs at Ohio, Cornell, UW, and Amherst, and an MA at University of Denver. The first school I heard back from was Ohio, my top choice, which waitlisted me for their PhD program. That was January 29th. I was then rejected from Amherst, Cornell, and finally UW. The last I heard back from was Denver, an email to check the portal, which told me I'd been accepted to the MA program with 50% tuition remission. I considered the offer but ultimately turned it down. Although I had specifically stated in my SoP that I was looking for GTA/RA opportunities (I found Denver's website kind of vague about whether this was an option), I learned in a phone conversation with the director of the program that this wasn't possible for MA students. With that all my eggs were in the Ohio waitlist basket (more of a wet old envelope, really). I contacted them in the end of March for an update and they'd only had one student accept their offer and one decline, so there was really very little movement. Eventually I heard from them on April 17th I think, saying I hadn't been accepted. All of my decisions were communicated through the portal, not in the email from the school telling me a change in my status had been made. I was really naive last go around, I didn't do nearly as much research as I should have done and I didn't understand the process nearly as well. It made the process more pleasant, but hopefully less successful than this year will be.
  4. 2 points

    2019 Applicants

    I mean, my research interests have progressed ever since high school really. But really, I had never considered African-American literature (it wasn't really taught much at my university) until I did my MA in the US. By then I had already delved into trauma and psychoanalysis but I really got into it there, and wound up shaping my entire MA around it. Had I applied out of my BA I would have argued for some mishmash of post-WII drama, Samuel Beckett, and early 20th c. white male authors. I haven't touched any of those since I left. Sometimes I'll see faculty whose work I read or sounds interesting in relation to those interests but since it doesn't fit in the SoP it gets cut. Also, I have been obsessing over these apps now that we're in 2019, which, in case you didn't realize, is the same year we would be starting our PhDs, should we get accepted. Like, holy shit. In similar Panicville news, it's fucking January 2019. First responses could be out in about two weeks (I've got Emory down as a mid-late January interview notifier). Most if not all the places I've applied were done notifying acceptances by the end of February, which is NEXT MONTH. Why is no one else here? Panicking? I've been living on a diet of school reviews, undergrad acceptance reaction compilations, program websites, and gradcafe deepdives for the past few days. Lastly, did anyone else hear that Columbia is opening a new African American Studies department and will be hiring new faculty to fill it out? I don't know if this is good news or bad news for us African-Americanists (or, in all likelihood, irrelevant to us, since who knows what the timeline is anyway). On the one hand, one would assume more Af-Am work done at the university will mean more opportunities, more faculty to work with, etc., and English and Af-Am departments definitely collaborate. But is this something they will have in mind now (keeping in mind that the new department chair is Farah Griffin, from English)? Will they want to add more Af-Am scholars now so that when new faculty arrives they have some students to work with, or students who can help out with building the new department? Or is it the opposite? That since the university will soon have a significantly higher number of Af-Am specialists, they will want to restrict Af-Am intake in other departments (not sure this makes sense, since Columbia is late to the party and other English departments that coexist with Af-Am departments also have Af-Am scholars, just like they have Americanists despite American Studies programs, etc.)? Or maybe they won't want to add too many Af-Am students now before knowing who they are hiring and what their areas of expertise is? I mean, most likely this will have no impact since it will take time for the department to be formed and it's a separate department that doesn't necessarily concern itself with literature anyway. Still, hard not to obsess as we wait for news. Any other African-Americanist Columbia applicant got thoughts on this? January y'all, we're close.
  5. 2 points
    It's Jan. 2, holiday is over. How many of you have started checking your emails incessantly!?????
  6. 2 points
    Hi, it was Dr. Jeffrey Taube.
  7. 2 points
    If someone posted here instead of on the Results page you can DM them directly.
  8. 2 points
    I've scoured the results page from last year and compiled a list of dates that various departments released decisions. I think there's some variation in these dates from year to year, but I still thought you all might find it useful. These are all strictly for sociology doctoral programs (which is to say, I haven't included any development sociology degree programs or terminal masters programs). (I've only done this for the top 20ish programs though -- feel free to add any that I missed!) Berkeley - Acceptances released on Jan. 26 Michigan - Acceptances released on Feb. 9 Harvard - Acceptances released on Feb. 10 Princeton - Acceptances released on Feb. 1, 8, and 19 (not sure why so spread out) Chicago - Acceptances released on Feb. 6, interviews requested in the second-third week of January (not clear if interview is required of all admitted applicants or not) Stanford - Acceptances released on Jan. 26 UCLA - Acceptances released on Jan. 12, 20, 26, 30, and Feb. 13 (as with Princeton, not sure why so spread out) UNC - Acceptances released on Jan. 22, 25, 26, 29 -- most released on Jan. 26 UW-Madison - Acceptances released on Jan. 31 Northwestern - Acceptances released on Feb. 15 UPenn - Acceptances released on Feb. 23 Columbia - Acceptances released on Feb. 6 and 7, but mostly on Feb. 12 Indiana - Acceptances released on Feb. 2, 8, and 10, interviews requested on Jan. 30 UT-Austin - Acceptances released mostly on Jan. 25, some on Jan. 28 Duke - Acceptances released Jan. 29 NYU - Acceptances released Feb. 16 (REJECTIONS NOT RELEASED FOR A WHOLE MONTH AFTERWARD; this is not the case for really any other department) Washington - 1 Acceptances released Jan. 18, most acceptances released Feb. 5 and 6 Yale - Acceptances released on Feb. 15 and 16 Cornell - Acceptances released on Feb. 15 Brown - Acceptances released on Feb. 14 UC Irvine - Acceptances released on Jan. 15, 23, 24, 25 U of Arizona - Acceptances released on Feb. 3 Penn State - Acceptances released on Feb. 3, 5, and 20 Minnesota - Acceptances released on Jan. 31
  9. 2 points

    Fall 2019 Counseling Psych PhD Applicants

    A LOT OF programs send out interview invites in January. So keep being positive and prepare as much as you can for you upcoming interview! Ask advice from you supervisors or friends and find out what you might want to do differently from you previous interviews if you can. Good luck!!! And as for me: I’m so anxious now that the holidays are over and I’m not ready to hear bad news yet?? But I’m keeping positive and preparing for my upcoming interviews!!
  10. 2 points
    Just got my first interview (wooo!) at UC Davis for IGG. Somewhat annoyed though as I realized the recruitment weekends for IGG and Neuro are the same, so I believe I didn't get a neuro interview as I put my first choice as IGG. Just sad I spent the extra $105 on an application when there was no way I could have gotten an interview for both.
  11. 2 points
    Happy New Year everybody! Finally got all my grades back for fall semester and I can officially say I have a 4.0 major and minor GPA.
  12. 2 points
    Crawled last year's thread. These are the dates of decisions: Jan 24, 2018 Wisconsin Jan 30, 2018 Duke Jan 31, 2018 Berkeley Jan 31, 2018 Princeton Feb 02, 2018 NYU Feb 02, 2018 UCSD Feb 05, 2018 UCLA Feb 06, 2018 Michigan Feb 14, 2018 MIT Feb 15, 2018 Cornell Feb 15, 2018 Stanford Feb 19, 2018 Penn Feb 22, 2018 Columbia Feb 23, 2018 Georgetown Mar 01, 2018 Harvard Mar 01, 2018 Yale Mar 09, 2018 Chicago
  13. 2 points
    To the recent poster who got rejected at UNL, was this a mass email rejection? Sorry but thank you in advance!
  14. 1 point

    2019 Applicants

    My professors helped. They were all wonderful, so I knew my applications were the best effort I was capable of, after all their assistance with my materials. Also, they were shocked on my behalf, and said some very sharp things about departments which rejected me, and that took care of some of the initial sting. Just knowing they cared and believed I deserved to get in was very helpful. They also went through my materials with a fine tooth comb yet again after I'd heard back and helped strategize changes for this go around. Having people you respect in your court and a plan for how to persevere is the best way to process, in my opinion.
  15. 1 point
    From what I understand, fit is always really important, so I would highlight the ways that your research interests would work with and enhance what they’re doing in their lab, as well as what unique skills, experiences, or research/education you have that will be useful and bring a new perspective.
  16. 1 point

    MFA 2019 Freak Out Forum

    I finished all my applications today and will now try not to obsessively refresh my application status tabs ? all together I sent apps to UC Irvine UCSB Tulane U Michigan U Oregon ive got all my fingers crossed for everyone! Let’s keep updating with news!
  17. 1 point
    This is 100% me. Laptop open and email up all day. ??
  18. 1 point
    Side note- I constantly checked in last year, many of the programs I applied to took about a month to get back to me about an interview. Don't be afraid to check in as they tell you when they are meeting/when you should expect to hear back!
  19. 1 point
    Thank you. I really needed to hear this. This process is brutal.
  20. 1 point

    Spring 2019 ENMU admission

    Thank you! Best of Luck, maybe ill see you around next fall!
  21. 1 point
    I heard my phone vibrate, I panicked. Turns out to be Red Cross asking for blood donation. Trying to stay afloat here but I heard back only from one school out of 21. And it was a rejection LOL... Again, questioning if this is the normal wait time. My top choice is Temple.
  22. 1 point
    I applied to BU, Harvard and Vanderbilt and have yet to hear back from any of them. Harvard seems to typically a bit later in the season (if past years are any indication). I'm unsure about BU or Vandy's time frame.
  23. 1 point
    Small note here: We prefer GRE Writing to be in the "GRE/GMAT/etc" subforum of the Applications section because it allows Writing Samples for schools.
  24. 1 point
    No prob, just trying to help. Also if you add the school's name after "clinical psychology" in the search box, you'll be able to see the invites for that specific school (Ex: "Clinical psychology florida state university")
  25. 1 point

    The Positivity Thread

    I submitted a book proposal that would stem from my master's thesis to an editor I met a few months ago in person. Fingers crossed.
  26. 1 point
    This was my exact thought when I woke up too hahahaha Good luck!
  27. 1 point

    emailing schools about lower GPA on CSDCAS

    I graduated with my master's. It can be done, but your choices might be limited. Also, don't just apply to CSDCAS schools, but use ASHA to find other schools. I think the schools on CSDCAS are more competitive. My undergrad school used percentages and not the 4.0 system used by CSDCAS which gave a 2.9. I emailed over 200 schools to find out who is likely going to accept me. I got rejected by CSDCAS schools unfortunately, but got into others at that time. I think it's because my CSD GPA was a 4.0 so I highlighted that in my well-written and passionate personal statement which helped.
  28. 1 point
    congrats!! I applied to UCD as well and haven't heard from them yet. In fact, I only got a few rejections but no interview. Anxious and desperate, but you gave me some hope~
  29. 1 point

    UChicago, MSW 2019

    I was told by a rep from the MSW program that the application deadline should not impact the scholarship package, but I would suggest calling them and asking. The rep said that they give 95% of students at least $5,000 and that the average scholarship given is roughly $20,000, which makes it comparable to the cost of public education. She said that virtually no one receives a full ride and at most, one student per year may receive a full tuition waiver.
  30. 1 point

    Will my scores arrive in time?

    If you're taking the GRE in the normal computer format, you'll be able to download a pdf of your results as soon as you get them (after about a week). So if you need to upload them to your application, you'll be fine. As for the scores being sent, 27 days is probably enough time. If you're worried, you can always check with the grad school admissions office to see if they've received them a bit before the deadline.
  31. 1 point

    Question about "Relevant Experience"

    Thank you! That reassures me
  32. 1 point
    I did a NSF summer internship at OU this past summer and was really eyeing OU as my top. However, they still heavily rely on the GRE before looking at anything else, and with that being my only weakness in my application I was rejected. I got a personal email from my summer mentor expressing regrets. It wasnt a mass email but I received it on 12/21/18. My mentor also told me they usually get their application reviews done around now and start emailing applicants near mid to end January. Best of luck to you! edit: i just realized you wrote UO instead of OU... so apologies, I was referring to Ohio University
  33. 1 point

    2019 Applicants

    I can't really say when I first read A Room of One's Own (it was ages ago), but besides its message, I remember being so taken by Woolf's wit and language that I immediately started looking for, and poring through everything else that she's ever written. Certainly, there's much to admire and discuss in her novels (which explains my honors thesis topic), but it was always her non-fiction — her essays, letters, diaries, memoirs — that charmed me. Her words just brim with such personality that I couldn't help but seek the person behind them, so that led me to Hermione Lee's biography of Woolf (which I, too, fell in love with), and then her other books on life-writing... I guess that, and my general curiosity in the gossipy particulars of writer's lives (especially those of women writers), was what then cumulated in my current research interest in women's life-writing. On a side note, this really cracked me up, because my best friend's a psychologist who can't tolerate any serious mention of Freud, whereas half — if not all — of the work I do now can be traced, in one way or another, to his theories... so she teases me a lot about it.
  34. 1 point

    2019 Graduate Entrants

    Applying for a phil physics slot (hopefully we’re rare this season). Writing sample is on the recent effective realism literature from Williams, Fraser, and Ruetsche. Top programs: Michigan, USC, UC Irvine, Pitt, Princeton, but applying to quite a few. Was accepted to all the funded MA programs I applied to (~11), and am about to finish up the one I enrolled in. Still pretty worried about the results, but good luck to us all!
  35. 1 point

    MFA 2019 Freak Out Forum

    My first deadline is in A WEEK!!! How's everyone doing??
  36. 1 point
    I have heard the current graduate students at my lab talk about how they like to use the time to get to know the interviewees a little bit better, and form a stronger opinion. If you happen to hit it off with a grad student during the home stay, it can put you at an advantage. Opting out of a home stay is almost like giving up an interview. While it is stressful to have to be "on" the whole time, the increased face time allows you to make a better impression and get valuable insight into the program. My lab PI places a huge emphasis on feedback from her graduate students when discussing prospective students after interview weekends, so I would agree with what some other posters said and try and suck it up if you can. On the other hand, you know yourself best, and if you feel you may be irritable and not refreshed, you might rub your host the wrong way, and that could hurt your chances. Good luck on whatever you decide!
  37. 1 point
    Have you looked into UC Davis? I had a phone call with a current PhD student there who emphasized that the department is doing a lot with ecocrit and ecofeminism. And they have a good amount of 20th century American scholars. Margaret Ronda, Elizabeth Miller, and Michael Ziser might be good ones to look in to! And Frances Dolan isn't in your period, but she does some stuff on the history of books and printing and also stuff on agriculture that could send your research in cool directions!
  38. 1 point
    Check out the programs in my footer. UBC in particular might be a great fit! UCSB, UCSC, and Alberta as well. Also UCR, its ranking is lower, but they are great too. Good luck!
  39. 1 point

    Let’s talk books

    Why aren't you applying here? All my courses next semester are focused on Contemporary Drama or Gender and Sexuality! I'm currently waiting to hear back from 2 journals regarding pieces I wrote on Adichie and Suzan-Lori Parks. I think I should hear back sometime in February. Bummer that you didn't get to see Sweat. I've heard great things about the performance!
  40. 1 point
    I agree with @beardedlady, but would also encourage you to check into UC schools as well as USC. Lots of feminist and ecocrit scholars, many specializing in literature of the West.
  41. 1 point
    I don't have concrete suggestions re: specific programs, but one way to tackle this is to look at who's writing criticism that speaks to you and where they teach. When I was looking where to apply, I followed the trail of queer theorists, for instance. This may be productive also because it simultaneously provides you with some important information regarding your theoretical field of interest, and an understanding of who's who, increased exposure to the current debates, etc. Good luck!
  42. 1 point


    I just recently applied to University of Arizona as well! I definitely feel you on nothing ever being "done." I can't stop myself from constantly rereading and editing - it must be a writer thing? The advice I've been given with the SOP is that you should first and foremost answer the questions on the given prompt. Once you've answered them to the fullest extent (while still below word count) you can call it. Or another something I try to do is get another pair of eyes on it and mark it up based on their feedback and make those changes. Sometimes that gives me a sense of finality. Thanks for posting btw! I've been prepping for this cycle since February and I can't remember how it feels to not be anxious about this stuff. It's good to know I'm not alone
  43. 1 point
    ....................The radio silence on the results page and my inbox is killing me. LITERALLY, LAWD
  44. 1 point

    Interview Advice

    I don't know if there are really a lot of rules in asking questions. Just make sure they are thoughtful and cannot be answered somewhere on the website or by reading any recent publications by the POI. Some good ones might be based on specifics of their current research project and directions the lab is moving, the culture of the lab and the POI's mentoring style. Although I only interviewed at 1 school last year, I did get in on my 1st cycle so I must have done something right. I made sure to be up to date on my POI's more recent publications and the project they lab was currently working on. I asked questions specific to those things during the interview. I asked cohort culture questions to the student interviewer. Make sure you are prepared to talk about your research interests and goals, as well as any information on your CV, in depth. Also, be friendly with your fellow interviewees. If the culture of the program is that everyone is supportive of each other, then they are also looking for people who would fit within that culture. If you're being competitive and rude with fellow applicants, that can look bad.
  45. 1 point

    Where to begin?

    Minus the military spouse and kids, I was in a similar-ish position. I dropped out after my first year of college, took a 9-year hiatus, and did the rest of my undergrad degree and post bacc online due to my busy work schedule. If anything, the time off from school lets you gain real world experience and shows grad programs that you can handle responsibility. As far as LORs go, it might depend on the program, but every school I applied to required at least two LORs from professors. If you can get a recommendation from your kids' SLPs that would be great, but ideally try for at least one professor who can speak to your classroom abilities. It is harder to connect with online profs, but there are ways (which I didn't properly utilize). They might have online office hours through Hangouts or another program. Ask questions or even just share what interests you in class. If there are discussions, write thoughtful posts and connect to real world experiences. If they get a sense of who you are, not just how well you write, they can write a decent recommendation even without the face to face experience. As far as a leveling program, I did a 2 semester post-bacc at Pacific University and recommend it. It's shorter than many leveling programs, it has a good selection of courses that would cover most schools' pre-reqs, the professors are good, and it's a certificate program, which enables you to get federal loans if you need them. It was about 10 grand for the whole program. Good luck! I think even with so-so LORs you have a decent chance. I used three online Linguistics professors that didn't know me very well and still got in. Stress your experience and work hard on your personal statement!
  46. 1 point
    I applied to work with one professor (X) and then got invited by a different professor (Y). I didn't realize that this meant that X was not interested in my application even though Y was. I proceeded to tell all the people I met at the open house that I wanted to work for X, and they got confused and asked, "But isn't Y hosting you?" It was more awkward than I realized at the time.
  47. 1 point
    The best thing that I did was to get ahold of a successful proposal that was unrelated to my project. For example, I looked at a immunology related proposal, but I wrote about metabolism. This way, while I got some tips about organization and building aims, I still had to exercise my brain and really come up with everything. It made me feel like I actually did the thing at the end. In reality, I didn't use the sample proposal that much, but it kept me from forgetting some important parts and gave me something to refer to. I also spent a lot of time having what we call intellectual combat with my boss before and during writing. I would come up with aims, and then he would do his best to shoot them down. Once I was happy with that, I wrote my aims page, and we talked again. Then I wrote my proposal, and we debated once more. Then at the end of all of that, I put together my significance and innovation sections. Only after I wrote and debated the whole thing did I have some friends look at it. Doing it this way was perhaps a little stressful, but I was really happy with my proposal when I finished. I highly recommend setting "due dates" with friends that are also writing and trade your proposals back and forth. You get to learn from theirs, and everyone gets some editing done. I also had my committee review my fellowship proposal before I submitted it. I wish that this was the method I had followed for my dissertation proposal, but alas, I didn't learn to do this until I was submitting national fellowship applications. I highly recommend it. Something about talking it out really solidifies the good ideas and washes the bad ones out.
  48. 1 point

    Accepted PHD Students and GRE

    Verbal: 148 (32nd) Quantitative: 152 (48th) Writing: 4.0 (56th) I am horrible standardized test taker but I'm an excellent student. I was nervous about applying to PhD programs but I went for it anyway because I have a lot of hands-on experience and research experience. I also recieved excellent letters of recommendations and was told my statement of purpose was really good. I don't know how bad you did but I would just make sure (1) the scores are above the cut-off because even if the rest of your application is great, they will not look at it. (2) the rest of your application is amazing. The program may look past your scores if they can see that you have potential from all of your experiences and recommendations. (3) It also depends on the type of PhD program you are applying to. Some are more competitive than others. I performed horribly on the GREs. I applied to 9 schools. I received 6 interviews and 2 acceptances so far.
  49. 1 point
    The biggest thing I learned was not to take rejections personally. It's a hard pill to swallow.
  50. 1 point
    Most of the things I wish I had done differently were from way back in the day as a young undergrad. The things I messed up on during the actual admissions cycle were due to lack of energy/concentration (following a huge life disaster), so I'm not sure I would have been able to do them differently even if I wanted to. Here's my advice: 1. Do an honors thesis, or some other form of research. I feel so much more prepared and qualified having done my own independent research study, and I'm sure my applications reflected that. It was also a great way for me to get to know professors, since I'm incredibly socially awkward and had the hardest time just popping in for office hours. 2. Find a way to talk to professors high up on the totem pole. I personally hate how much reputation is valued in academia, but it's the way things are. When I was trying to find LORs, I realized all of the professors I was in contact with were actually only lecturers or assistant professors or whatever. One of my LORs did not want to write a letter for me because he thought his lack of prestige would hurt my profile. Obviously it's better to have ties with an assistant professor in your field than some famous tenured professor who knows nothing about your topic, but still. 3. Try to get published and go to conferences. It was only after I applied that I found out these things are expected nowadays. I didn't even know conferences were a thing that undergrads could and should go to. 4. Start looking at schools' requirements early. I had zero idea that I needed to know a language, for example, and now I'm scrambling to learn one. 5. Read posts on thegradcafe. Congratulations, you're already doing it! I found this website after I applied. I pretty much went through the whole application process alone. I got a little bit of guidance from a few professors, but honestly they didn't give me much specific, constructive advice. If you're here, you have access to so much knowledge and advice about what you can do to improve your application. 6. Be honest, both with programs and with yourself. Even though I have pretty stellar numbers (4.0 GPA, great GRE scores), I've been rejected from most of the schools I applied to. I applied to programs and schools I wasn't a great cultural or research fit with, just because I felt like I "should" have. I was more concerned about being a good student than about finding a program that suited ME. I think I included just enough of my weird interests to turn away the more mainstream folks, but not enough to really engage the other weirdos who would want to work with me. I wish I would have trusted myself more and just gone for it, instead of being wishy-washy and trying to force myself into a mold that I clearly do not fit. I would advise that you write truthfully, because even if you're more likely to get into a program with a fake/generic SOP (which you're not), you'll probably hate the program once you get there. 7. Be gentle with yourself. Despite the things I listed here that I messed up on, I think my biggest hindrance was out of my control. Your self worth is not tied to how many programs you get accepted to, or how prestigious your school is. Things will work themselves out.

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