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Sandmaster last won the day on July 23 2018

Sandmaster had the most liked content!


About Sandmaster

  • Rank
    Double Shot

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Pronouns
    he, him, his
  • Location
  • Interests
    Distance Education and Learning Technologies.
  • Application Season
    Already Attending
  • Program
    Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction

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  1. Sandmaster

    Loan Forgiveness?

    Usually it is just federal loans and it can only be Stafford direct loans, not the older FFEEL loans. You have to apply for it and qualify every year for working in specific places of employment and you have to make 120 qualified payments before you would qualify. If you have started this process and then go back for an advanced degree, you would need to talk to your servicer. I am not sure how that changes things. I hope this helps!
  2. Sandmaster

    So this interview thing...

    Yeah, I was rejected after interview weekend from a fairly prestigious school. I don't want to scare you, but the POI and I were on the same page and the fit was really good. We both really enjoyed each other and the current students in the lab all liked me too and gave me good marks from what I was told. However, there was someone they liked just a little bit more due to slightly more experience. So I got waitlisted without ever being told that was the case. Eventually, I got rejected, but it really didn't matter since I personally liked another school far better as the fit and culture was closer to what I was looking for. Long story short, yes you can still get rejected even after doing a phone/virtual interviews and them inviting and paying for you to come do an in-person interviews. I did go to the happy hour for students and faculty that they had as that was part of their culture after the interviews had finished. I wouldn't say it was a part atmosphere, but it was far more relaxed. I can almost guarantee that we were still being evaluated at that point too, so keep that in mind.
  3. Sandmaster

    2019 Education Applications

    Hey there! Congrats on your acceptance as well! I know I was extremely excited when I got mine too. So next steps for me may, or may not, be similar to your's just since the department could have changed things from last year in their process. In the next few weeks, you will probably get an email from our grad studies coordinator with details about setting up a campus visit with other admitted students. The actual visit is sometime early in March (or it was last year). It gives you and your fellow potential colleagues the chance to meet each other, faculty, staff, and current students within your program area and across the department. It is common for domestic students to attend, or try to attend, but it can be expensive for international students so none came in my year but still accepted to attend regardless. This event is particularly useful when I came because I also placed a ton of emphasis on the fit of a program when I was attending all of the schools I was accepted to. I found UMN to be my perfect fit, so the event only solidified my choice. Other's may not, it is personal preference of course. Also, keep in mind that your initial advisor can be changed at any point in time too, it is just who the department felt could be a good first point of contact until you solidify research ideas and interest. As for funding, that is where the timing can get a little complicated. Usually the program areas meet in March just after the visit day to discuss funding for all current and incoming students. Which means that you may not get your offer of funding until late March, or early April. (mine came April 6th I think). I know I can not offer you a guarantee of course, but if you selected you would like to be considered for funding on your application and are planning on being a full-time PhD student in the program, then you will be given at least a 50% appointment which covers all of your in-state and out-of-state tuition and you will be offered health insurance at a pretty awesome rate in addition to your stipend which is like your paycheck bi-weekly. You will still be required to pay fees out of pocket (~$800 a semester) though so keep that in mind if you are a budgeter like me. I do not know of a full time PhD student in any of our department programs who did not get funding that wanted it one way, or another. If funding is tricky in your case, the department works to try to find you funding. Also, one of the best perks (in my opinion) about UMN is if you want to teach here, you are usually given Instructor of Record assuming you already have a master's degree. Other places do not give you that level of responsibility and freedom, but I have loved my teaching experience here. If you have any further questions, please feel free to keep reaching out here or in pm if it is more personal. I am happy to chat more about the exciting things happening in the department and how things work. I know I had a ton of questions when I first got admitted to.
  4. Sandmaster

    Measuring Value in an M.Ed

    While I can not speak to K-12 as my domain is higher education, I know that a lot of people usually do a M.Ed. as their first master's not as a second one. What I have typically found with teachers who have a second master's - they usually first get a master's in their specific content discipline and then get the teaching job (assuming they already have the license and certification requirements for that state) and then wait and do a second master's in education and curriculum specific once the school district is willing to pay for it (to avoid the some of the cost). The problem is, if you do not have the requirements to teach in your state you might find a private school who doesn't require the license or certification process, but public schools will. You can look into a post-bac program and see if that option is cheaper. Initial Teacher Licensure students are still typically eligible for federal and state financial aid, but are limited to the undergraduate aggregate level/amounts. Just some food for thought.
  5. Sandmaster

    2019 Education Applications

    Congratulations to you as well! That is my department, so if you have any questions, feel free to reach out!
  6. Sandmaster

    2019 Education Applications

    Congrats! Let me know if you have any U of M questions! I am happy to answer from the perspective of a first year there.
  7. Sandmaster

    2019 Education Applications

    Hi all! I hope you are all doing well given deadlines are coming up for most places quickly! Remember to relax, breathe, and stay confident! I remember this was a stressful few weeks for me last year! For LORs, it really depends on what type of a program you are applying to (not just a master's vs PhD). If the program is very research focused and they want applicants who are wanting to do research and will be doing research throughout the program, then your LOR should be someone who can speak to those important research skills and experience. The master's at my institution is heavily research focused and has an even more rigorous master's track for people who want to "springboard" into the PhD. If you are applying to a PhD then I would recommend all of your letters at least mention your ability to conduct research. Strategically select people who can attest to your success as many PhD students burn out by the time they get to their dissertation research and it is quite common to not finish because the research is overwhelming. Also, if you have a good idea of what you want to research, maybe not a specific research question, but a general topic, include it in your statement of purpose. Lastly about the age of students, in my program, most PhD students are between 25-40. Master's students are between 23 and 50.
  8. Sandmaster

    2019 Education Applications

    Hi all, good luck to the applicants in 2019! I just went through the application cycle (2018) and got admitted to a variety of programs. Feel free to reach out if you have questions about the process. Also, if interested in educational technology/learning sciences, let me know also. :) Best of luck!
  9. Sandmaster

    How many of you were called doctor at commencement?

    I have never heard of this practice except maybe at medical schools/programs. Usually they just recognize that the degree they are conferring is a doctorate level degree and that is it. I have never heard of an institution using the doctor title for graduating students.
  10. I would say send the first scores. AW is not heavily looked at to begin with and you can easily make up with a stellar SOP and writing sample to showcase your writing ability. Any red flags the 3.5 would raise would probably be quickly extinguished once your essays are read. But, I am by no means an expert so do what you feel most comfortable doing.
  11. Sandmaster

    Application rescinded?

    Yeah I agree with E-P. It is very rare they would rescind an offer of admission. Unless you did not graduate with the bachelor's degree (an admission requirement), or your GPA was just so terrible (like a 1.0) for your last term/year, I would seriously doubt they would rescind the offer.
  12. Sandmaster

    How much to reveal

    Different field here, but I would not mention it anywhere in your application materials. It may come across in a way you do not intend.
  13. Sandmaster

    Underwhelming Undergrad GPA??

    Hey there. Different field, but I had a similar situation. I did not have a strong UGRAD GPA at around 2.9 when I first started to apply to graduate programs and I had a very difficult time getting a graduate program to say yes to be even for a master's degree, but luckily I did eventually find one. (They took me because I had a pretty good GRE score and they felt it was worth the gamble admitting me) I completed the master's degree in a year and a half and applied to PhD programs with a master's GPA of 3.67 (Not great, but a huge improvement from UGRAD) and I got in to most of the programs I applied to. I ended up graduating with a 3.60 from the master's but I think as long as a master's GPA is above a 3.5 I doubt many ad committees will even care about your UGRAD GPA or your Master's GPA. Unless you are applying to highly competitive programs (like Ivy League) I would say you are probably fine. Most programs only care about your most recent academic achievement. They will probably view it all and you will need to send them transcripts for it all, but will base the decision on overall trend and the most recent academic success. Last note, GPA is probably not even in the top three aspects of the application they care about. Believe it, or not, GPA and GRE are just boxes they tick off that you passed some threshold and only take a closer look if there are concerns. Focus a lot of attention on your SOP and securing exceptional recommendations as those are the two most important pieces of the application dossier.
  14. Sandmaster

    senior year first semester gpa

    Then I would assume you will apply with unofficial transcripts that include fall grades and spring classes.

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