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About Macrina

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  1. I've been told by several different academics that they like to see coursework for languages rather than independent study. I think #1 is your best bet, and I would try to pass one of the language tests in addition. So, really, what marXian said
  2. If you're looking at MA programs then you aren't applying to the divinity schools and the more rigorous admissions standards will be a factor. Have you considered the MTS degree at the divinity schools? Both Harvard and Duke offer this program and it may be a good option if you want access to the resources of the institution but don't make it into the MA programs.
  3. How closely did your masters level thesis match your doctoral proposal? And how long was the thesis? I'm currently in an advanced masters program, starting to think about my thesis. The topic I'll be writing on is pretty close to what I would propose for a doctoral program. Bad idea? Or good idea? The topic is big enough for several books' worth of research/writing, and I hope that my thesis will help me to fine-tune and focus before I do doctoral apps. On the other hand, I would hate to look like my focus is too narrow and perhaps overdone. If you've moved on to doctoral work after a significant thesis, how closely related were they? Any advice to someone thinking about two research projects on related/similar topics?
  4. Congrats on the offer. I would choose the place with the better reputation, especially with your update re loans. Plus, Durham's a pretty cool place to be. I'm a little bit envious of people who get to live in Durham
  5. Thank you, Theophany and MarXian. I appreciate your insights. I'm not sure I'm any closer to a decision about applications, but you've named some of the issues and questions I need to think about. I suspect that on paper my application would be fairly strong, and that I might or might not have a small issue with languages, depending on how I present myself and how I formulate my academic interests. Hopefully all will become clear in a couple of months. Maybe.
  6. I've been planning for doctoral apps this fall, but I'm not sure I'm ready. I have a language issue that I want to strengthen, and I'll need the reference from a course this fall. Trying to decide if I should go ahead and apply a little bit before I feel really ready, or if I should wait a year and line things up better. Will it harm me to apply before I think I'm ready? Do applicants get stale, or do they look persistent if they come back a couple of times? What's the limit for number of apps you can reasonably toss at a single institution? (Fwiw, I'm thinking about 2-3 application cycles, to a limited number of institutions. If I try for two or three years and don't get in, it wasn't meant to be - I'm not planning to spend 5 years trying and failing at an ever-expanding list of possible institutions).
  7. Classes start in less than a month and you don't have an offer from Duke? Unless you get a firm commitment from Duke, stay where you are. By now they know who's coming and who isn't and the odds of someone canceling in the next couple of weeks are slim. I think at this point, you could ask Duke point blank for a yes or a no, but don't let go of what you have for a definite maybe, even if the maybe is highly likely. Also, if you do get a yes from duke, go! It's a great school in a fun place. Just don't throw away your current place until you are certain.
  8. I need Greek and I need Latin. I could do both this year or I could do one this year and then add in the second in fall 2015. Would I be crazy to do both Greek and Latin this semester? Or Greek and Coptic? I would not take any other courses if I did this. Anyone work on two new ancient languages at once? And if I do this, which two languages would be easier to learn together? Greek and Latin? Greek and Coptic? Or (probably not) Coptic and Latin? Thanks!
  9. Thanks, everyone. Greek it is!
  10. thanks, AbrasaxEos. I'm planning on applying for doctoral programs in Late Antiquity/Early Christianity in 2015 for 2016. I have ok reading comp of Latin, poor Greek, and no Coptic. Modern Langs are excellent but of course that doesnt do much for me. My original plan was to take Latin at an intro/grad student level, but the course was cancelled due to lack of interest. So now my options are Latin or Greek at the 100 level/undergrad, or Coptic (introductory, but a 900-level course). Because of the types of language work I've been doing (trying to read ancient texts, not focusing on 'conversational'), I've been told by my adviser that the graduate-level courses are a better fit, but they aren't being offered this year, and the current greek option is classical Greek. I'm feeling stuck. I dont have quite enough Latin to be comfortable taking a graduate non-introductory course on my own and Latin 101 may not be a good choice. above all, I need a 'paper trail' for my languages. So. Coptic 900? Latin 100? or Greek 100? Or is there another option I just dont know about? any online (legit) courses?
  11. My ancient languages are weak and I know I need to strengthen them. Unfortunately, the easy, cheap solutions for Greek and Latin aren't available in my city this year. But I do have an option for graduate-level coptic, and since one of my interests is ancient monasticism, that's not completely out of my range. Should I take the coptic course? Or work to find something to give me credit in a more mainstream language? I guess the real question is: should I take a less common language at a more appropriate level or should I focus on the basics, even if I end up doing them at an undergraduate/very introductory level? (fWIW, i do have a bit of both Greek and Latin, but nothing 'on paper') All of my great language options haven't come through this year so I'm scrambling to firm up my plans for the fall. Any advice is much appreciated. Thanks.
  12. Before you sign away the next two years of your life on an MA that likely won't get you into a TT PhD program, you may wish to ask for actual stats on the program's graduates. How many go on to PhD work? Where do they go? Have any of the graduates over the past 2-5 years been accepted for a funded PhD at a TT school? I don't mean to sound negative but doctoral admissions at TT schools are extremely competitive and the degree you currently have (a 3-year Bachelors with a solid B average from a bible college that is not ATS accredited) is not going to get you there. You will need something stronger than an MA from a small Divinity College. Have you considered TST? Because it really is the only TT option in Canada. To answer your initial question: the length of your degree is not an issue, at least not for MDiv admissions. For more academic masters programs, the length may be an issue but if they are concerned about the length, they will be equally concerned with the relative quality of the degree.
  13. I'm in end of semester essay madness, so no time to actually write a response, but here's another list that sometimes gets mentioned on here. http://www.firstthings.com/web-exclusives/2012/11/ranking-theology-programs
  14. Thanks folks. Drat. It appears that the course I'm taking is used to exempt students from the institution's language exam. Only I have no intention of applying to that institution for doctoral level work, and I may not be able to use it where I hope to go. Oh well, it's a good course, was suggested by my POI, and costs about $5k less than the same language taught at a lower level at my current institution.
  15. I am wondering if taking certain graduate-level language classes will get me out of potential language exams. I'm signed up for a yearlong pass/fail course (two separate classes) beginning next fall and the instructor mentioned in passing that it was designed for students like me to get us through to doctoral level language competency and that I would then be able to avoid the usual language exam. Does this seem right? It didn't sink in until after I had finished speaking with the instructor, so I figured I would ask here before going back to them I had no idea there was a way to not have to write language exams... Thanks!
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