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About historicallinguist

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    2016 Fall
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  1. You do not need to worry too much about GRE in that linguistics PhD programs generally do not care too much about it. In fact, there is a trend in the recent years, probably starting from schools like mit and Ucla, to abolish the GRE requirement for admission. I think UCSB has a decent amount of corpus linguists, and I suggest you look into their website more carefully. Stanford and UPenn do as well. Iowa state is fairly easy to get in. I guess the real question for this school is whether you can get funding from them. For umichigan, robin queen is probably the one that fits your interests. But do not count too much on this one because admission to this school is very competitive. If you have luck, then you get it, but do put all your bet on this one. You could also look into umass Boston. This one is in a very good location. By the way, usually only candidates interested in experimental tracks are admittted by the prospective PI. For theoretical track, admission is made by the adcom (basically you need to get the majority vote in the adcom so as to get in). So, you probably want to approach your schools differently, depending which track you are applying to.
  2. Also, SUNY albany's anthropology Ph.D. program may be a safe school to apply to. The downside is that the stipend level of this school is pretty low. But it won't hurt to get a safe school first.
  3. Surely go to iowa state with funding. Neither school is top-ranked. Then, why bother to go to the one without funding?
  4. Hi, linguists. I am considering transferring to a better phd program, and wonder whether anyone has done this sort of thing before and succeeded. I want to do this because the advising available in our department is quite awful. Though I am doing probably the best among the phd cohort(winning university-wide award, best gpa possible, very good reports from instructors, etc), I am pretty much learning everything my own, and advising is like a 9minutes conversation per semester. Emails rarely got responded, or got responded after two weeks (which is useless after all). Then, for external fellowship and grant application, folks who barely spent time with students told me that they did not know well about my research and cannot write LORs that focus on research(of course they did not know because they did not bother to spend time in knowing mine or those of other students well after all). What has happned is that this department has not had anyone getting external funding for many years in a row. Surely a bleak future! what’s worse is the situation that it has so few profs that it is literally impossible to have a dissertation committee. Current 4th year or 5th students get bare minimal advising from the one or two folks in the diss committee, and sending emails back and forth with the external members who are the majority of the committee and the couple email communication is what it means to be advising. This is not anything new, I guess. Then, what ended up for MANY recent phds who completes their diss here is 1. Cannot find a decent job anywhere else and be an adjunct in this department for more than 4 years in a row, teaching 3-5courses per semester 2.cannot find an adjunct prof job even here, and stay here for another couple years as a TA 3. Ended up working in some wage-based job that has nothing to do with the phd whatsoever, and pay does not match the expected pay of the degree at all Finance and job matters aside, how about research? The output of the research is far below standard as well! Rarely, if ever, a phd dissertation completed here is of publishable quality. Not a single dissertation (correct me if I am wrong) completed here makes it to be published as a LI monograph. Citation of each of them barely gets more than 2 digits over many years(which is in a sad contrast with good departments such as umass where many outstanding diss. got cited hundreds of times or thousands of times). Of course, understandably, they could not, with such minimal advising and poor connection with the field and other well known folks in the field. Okay, research aside, how about course offering? Probably the biggest class size you could find in a phd program, with a single course crosslisted and taken by BA, MA, and Ph.D students. What this means is little to none personal attention from instructors. Plus, the quality of instructors is so low to the point that many courses are taught by nontenured people with little to none publication whatsoever, and they cannot address many questions about the materials they are teaching. Better to ask google than asking them! I am not saying adjuncts are necessarily bad, but adjuncts who are not interested in research and not doing research at all are bad fits to teach such research oriented courses. another problem is that course offering neither fits students research interests nor is marketable. Because the course intends for large enrollment from BA, MA, and PhD at the same time, it is impossible to make it specialized. Then, a so-called graduate level seminar here ends up being a general survey course that would otherwise be a lower division undergrad course in other better universities. These kind of course are majority of offering here and seem to me useless for research, and training in these courses are not the training marketable for academic job search in the future. These are some of the reasons that I want to get the hell out of here. Any Input welcomed !
  5. You definitely should not put all the interests you mentioned above in your PS. Stay focused on one or two sub fields (if two, between some sort of interface type of thing), and write about one or two particular thing(s) in the sun field(s) in your PS. UCLA’s anthropology phd program is probably a better fit for you than is its linguistics phd program. Also, for god’s Sake, please do not say you want to work with only a particular awesome prof X in department Y in awesome UNiveristy Z, as admission is made by a committee not a particular prof. You probably want to mention profs xyz and explain how THESE profs could support your interests to show your fit with the department as a whole.
  6. To be honest, it is really HARD TO BE REJECTED by UW Madison, because the program is really in bad shape right now there and they even have a rolling admission for their phd program. So, I think you will get at least into this school.
  7. I think you should stay for a while and see how things go in this new lab. One thing you could do is to take some GPA booster easy courses as your elective courses to bring up your GPA. For this matter, my bet is that you check out ratemyprofessor.com and see what students said about the instructor's easiness.(don't get me wrong, there are lots of problems with the website, but my personal experience seems to suggest that the evaluation of the easiness of the instructor is generally quite accurate)
  8. Usually, you cannot improve too much in 20 days, and you probably need more time.
  9. Being rather weak doesn't mean it won't be helpful for you to apply for Ph.D. programs. One thing you need to consider is private vs public schools. class size in private is usually much smaller than the public school, meaning that you will have more contact and personal attention from your professors. Also, in private school, masters level courses are almost exclusively taught by real professors, but in public school there is a good chance that masters level courses are taught by Ph.D. students. Because LORs written by Ph.D. students are rarely helpful, you probably don't want to be in a situation that you will have to ask Ph.D. students to write you letters because you have no one else to ask for. Also, some masters level courses in public schools are also online courses, which are something you probably want to avoid too. So, everything else being equal, choose a private school over a public one, for the sake of your letter of recommendation. Try some reach schools, but probably not too many. I guess 3-4 reach schools are enough. I guess that you could take advantage of the fact that you never took these courses and try to spend two years in Boston. That way, in the first semester of the second year when you apply, you have in your belt some course grades in linguistics in your transcript, some term papers already written that could be used for writing samples, and some professors who know you and can write you good letters. Thesis is not necessary if you already have some good term papers that could be used for writing sample and if your masters program doesn't require a thesis. These are just my personal thoughts about it. Like fuzzy said, check with the program, and see what they have to say. But be sure that, when you ask, ask in a way that you do not project yourself as someone who does not know what your career goal/research goal is, because this will undermine your chance to get into the masters program.
  10. I think your best bet is Boston University. The overall ranking of this university is high, but its linguistics program is somewhat weak, meaning it is not hard for you to get in. There are some other choices you can get if you absolutely need funding to go(you didn't know specify whether you can go without funding)Other programs in the States such as the one at university of Iowa may have partial funding (ie no funding for the 1st year but full funding for the second year) for international students, but you will have much fewer opportunities for both mentoring and jobs compared with BU. Don't go to a qualifying year program because that will get you to nowhere if you couldn't get a phd offer after that. Focus on MA program which could serve as a qualification for you to apply for a job if you couldn't get a phd offer after you graduate from the MA program. Also, I won't recommend the one year Master program at Chicago and any one year master program. This is because being in a one year master program means you will start apply for a phd weeks after you started your Master program in the Fall, and I don't think that is a good time for you to apply. So, applying for a two year MA program should be the better option, as then you will have at least a year to prepare a good writing sample, and get good letters from professors in the MA program after they knew you well.
  11. Hi. I went to the same institution, and was in the pretty similar situation as yours. Here is my 0.02$. Unfortunately, many tutors in Oxford care more about their faces than the welfare of their former students. So, what is happening is that, after they wrote your letters for the first time, and you did not do well when their colleague serves as your tutor (for no fault on your part, as I know some of the Oxford courses really suck, especially some the 12 months or 9 months master courses), they feel that they lose faces in front of their colleagues, and there is 0 chance to get letters from these people, even if you have legitimate reasons for dropping out or for not doing well. One way you can get out of the dilemma is to apply to some place where references are not needed and try to get good references from this place and and then transfer to a better place that requires 3 references. One place that does not need reference is Australia universities, among which Monash University is notable. Hope this helps.
  12. lacking of some specialized jargons in a specialized subfield as the target of research is a bad sign for a proposal to have the right scope within the prescribed timeframe.
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