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About kittyball

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  • Application Season
    2017 Fall

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  1. I think @GreenEyedTrombonist has a very important point. Those who make broad generalizations with often just one story are annoying! And in this case and in the case you mentioned, that some students don't do readings and only talk about themselves have something in common, that is students in both cases are not learning new things, only pouring out what they already have. Perhaps if we raise the threshold of the discussion, talk more about theories, this type of students would back off because it's more difficult to talk about something you don't know what it is. Anyway, it's just my quick guess on the practical level. But to answer your question directly, whether talking about personal experience is a bad thing itself, I certainly don't think so. Personal experience essentially makes who we are. Or we perceive the world through personal experience. And in fact, doing ethnographic work is technically personal experience as well. I know a very successful professor who couldn't be stopped talking about his personal experience(I tried. Because he changed the subjects too quickly before they were fully discussed.It was like whack a mole!), and he once said, we are the instruments of understanding the world(something like that, sorry I don't remember the object of the sentence, I just remember "instruments"). So in that sense, connect readings to one's personal life is an excellent and engaging way to study anthropology. Of course, personal experience could be misinterpreted or wrongly used, ets., which tends to happen a lot, and it could get very annoying. But that's really not the right reason to give up on that perspective. I believe the better we connect our own experience to readings, the better anthropologists we would be.
  2. kittyball

    How long did it take to hear back from POIs?

    Wow your experience is really interesting! I'm surprised that professors would reply after so long. I mean wouldn't your email be buried in a huge pile of unanswered emails? It sounds like a tough job to dig it out. I agree, there is no harm to keep waiting. But I have to ask, did you send a follow-up email to all those who answered you after months? I mean, it's fascinating that they didn't forget about you! Anyway, I think many would remember this amazing story you told, like I do. So far I've written to a few professors, but mostly(except for the first one) with very simple questions, asking them about whether our interests fit, or whether they still take new students. Except for the first professor, which took 4 days to say "I will respond" and then another 10 days to respond to my follow-up email, which taught me a lesson on "don't write long emails, they are difficult to reply", other professors all respond very quickly: two Yale professor responded within 2 hours, a Harvard professor replied after a day. I think in general we should not give up hope until told otherwise. The 4 days rule is just a way of scheduling/managing our anxiety, and try to move on with other things in our life.
  3. How about learning a new language?
  4. kittyball

    How long did it take to hear back from POIs?

    @timetobegin Wow, thanks! What a vivid picture! And a good idea! Yes, moving your body is an excellent way to release stress. I will try to do something same as you. Thank you again for the advice! And it's good to know that someone feels the same way. I'm not alone .
  5. kittyball

    How long did it take to hear back from POIs?

    By the way, a quick question. Does anybody feel anxious before, during and after composing an email to a POI(and terrified to send it...) as I do? I'm from a country where professors consider talking with students a waste for their time. I heard professors in the U.S. are way more friendly, but I have no idea what that feels like.. I wonder whether what I'm feeling now is normal comparing to American students...
  6. kittyball

    Contact with POIs/ Institutional contact policies

    I don't think you should be worried too much about the no contact rule. Because even if you contact them not knowing the rule, it would be buried in their inboxes, nobody would know it was you. The worse result is no reply in any scenario. If you are still worried, check the department pages. There would be information on whether to contact professors before admission. Contact them as long as they didn't say explicitly "don't contact professors"!
  7. kittyball

    Prepping for the 2018 cycle!

    Agree. I've read an article written by a student who got a few top offers talked about the results of reaching out and the application results, the conclusion was there was no clear connection : there were programs she had good conversations with eventually turned her down, programs never responded gave her offers(and programs she had good connections gave her offer). So I think it's better to rule out programs don't fit that well.
  8. kittyball

    How long did it take to hear back from POIs?

    I think the 4 days rule is very reasonable. Here is my own experience. I recently wrote to a POI, who is a friend of a professor who has been helping me on everything. He promised to the professor who introduced me to him that he would reply if I wrote to him. I wrote him a very long letter, which was probably unwise, but at that time I thought if he were to decide whether to take me, the more information the better... Anyway he wrote back 4 days later, said that he would try to reply soon. Now it's another 4 days since he said he would reply, and I haven't heard anything more from him yet. Now I'm a bit anxious... Anyway I will write to other professors and see how it goes.
  9. kittyball

    Fall 2017 Applicants

    I feel for you. The disappointment comes naturally. But it could be the best result you can get from this school. Here are some other possible scenarios: 1, The professor find someone to be second at first, but during the procedures the second change his/her mind. You feel bad and maybe it cost you other opportunities. 2, The professor works hard to get you a second, but eventually you decide to turn UCL down. You feel bad. 3, You get into UCL, start a life worrying about fundings and other sunk cost, which affects your academic performance in a bad way. And now, they have made the decision for you. When things get rough in the future, you will never have to wonder what if I chose UCL... I hope this could make you feel a little better at this rough time.
  10. kittyball

    Fall 2017 Applicants

    My GUESS would be, you are accepted, but they sent you that email too early. So technically it was not a mistake. And if you weren't accepted, they are more likely to tell you it was a mistake. Anyway, I think I just panicked a little. Sorry if that make you guys more anxious.
  11. kittyball

    Fall 2017 Applicants

    Yesterday I asked a Harvard professor(who was but is not currently at the admission committee) I know when would Harvard send the results. He said he suspect they would make decisions at mid to late February. I thought OK I would not start to worry until then. But today I see somebody has already posted a Harvard acceptance, on Social Anthropology. My heart breaks. Anyway, congratulations on that acceptance! I haven't heard anything yet, but I assume UC Berkeley, Stanford and Chicago are no go for me. Perhaps I have to go another round next year, too. Good luck to whoever still have hopes!
  12. kittyball

    Fall 2017 Applicants

    I think it's crucial to express your motivation - why you are passionate about your project, and your commitment to this discipline. Also some schools want to know what your career goal is, and why our school is your best choice. These are elements that don't appear in a standard proposal. And that's why it's called SOP not proposal. Anyway, it's my two cents.
  13. Stop worrying about things you cannot change - this is what I have been telling myself. Just work on the most important part - your SOP. Good luck!

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