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fj20 last won the day on August 28 2010

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  1. Regarding Buffalo's decision process: if you haven't been notified by them yet, I'm pretty certain it means they're considering offering you an MA spot--but not a PhD spot. I was in this position last year, and when I called to ask they said that "PhD admissions had been decided upon a long time ago," but not MA admissions.
  2. Probably no one here can answer this question, but: is there any possibility that Brandeis is still making decisions? Two acceptances were posted, and 1 waitlist was reported just a few days ago. And, since some rejections were received a while ago, I'm inclined to (foolishly) think those who haven't been rejected may still have a tiny chance.
  3. respect. i'm thinking peace corps--you can teach university with just an m.a. in the peace corps.
  4. I don't know, but I think the earliest acceptance reported last year (on the results board) was in March.
  5. I agree, it does seem like the Interfolio process requires a great deal of time. However, the application instructions on Binghamton's website say that you can just electronically upload your transcripts, even though your department will probably prefer an official transcript mailed directly to Interfolio. So I think you can still apply to Binghamton, fast-approaching deadlines notwithstanding.
  6. Yes, I'm pretty sure they don't contact MA applicants until quite a while after the PhD letters go out. (This is confirmed by the results from past years.)
  7. When I sent my transcripts to the schools I'm applying to, my midyear grades (from my current MA program) had not yet been added to the transcript. Now that they've been reported, should I send a second transcript, or just let it go? Since my grades were pretty good, I wonder if I'm selling myself short by not reporting them to these schools.
  8. ". . . these forums are simply evidence of our very human impulse to understand what's beyond our control." [i don't know how to quote people on this forum, but this is from lifealive's post two posts up.] A legitimately profound statement--doubly impressive seeing how shallow the subject matter can often seem.
  9. Thanks, I'm glad I read this, because I was planning on cutting out a section of my paper and giving a brief summary, in a footnote, of the bit of analysis I had left out. So I guess I'd better not do that.
  10. [i'm afraid this is another rather finicky question that should really be directed to the admissions committees in question, but that's partly what this forum is for, right?] What are people's thoughts on this subject? In particular, I'm concerned about Yale's writing sample, which, unlike most, is only 10-15 pages. At the moment, I have just over 16 pages, and I'm inclined to think that will be okay. Also, it just occurred to me that they may not find out you're over the limit until they get to the end, whereas if you cut out important passages, they'll find out fairly early on that your argument has holes in it. A related question has to do with excerpting longer papers. Some departments explicitly say it's okay to submit excerpts as writing samples, but others do not (Yale for instance, as far as I can tell); I don't know of any that say not to. Any thoughts?
  11. This isn't really about formatting, but it is about MLA guidelines. Looking through the MLA handbook, I was surprised to find under the section about using italics that MLA advises you not to use italics for emphasis (that is, not to italicize words you want to place special emphasis on, as I just did with the word "not"). They say it "rapidly becomes ineffective," and "is rarely appropriate in scholarly writing." Really? (joke) I agree, you don't want to italicize too many words, but I hardly thought it was considered unprofessional to do so occasionally. A more pertinent question: for those of you who write on Shakespeare, what's your policy with citing act and scene and line numbers when you've already made it clear in the text that you're quoting from Act 2, for example? Will you still write the full citation, 2.3.58-59, or will you just write 3.58-59?
  12. Here's the statement from Cornell's website: "Your writing sample must be between 3,000 and 7,500 words (12-30 pages), typed and double-spaced." As far as I can tell, 30 pages of double-spaced type can get up to at least 10,000 words. Has anyone else come across a discrepancy between a department's length requirements in terms of pages and their length requirements in terms of words? I'm thinking that so long as I'm under 30 pages, I'll be alright, regardless of the word-count. Any thoughts?
  13. Actually, Chesterton's right, that first question I ask is pretty much the same one that is addressed throughout this thread. But I actually do ask at least one quite different question, namely "Is it problematic to claim [in your SOP] that you have two distinct subjects of interest (while at the same time being quite specific about your interest in at least one of those subjects)"?
  14. A related question is: just how much do the writing sample and SOP have to align? The writing sample I'd like to use (because it's my best work) is on Milton, and in my SOP I discuss my (growing) interest in early modern lit., but also say that my primary focus is on Romanticism (although I'm considering tweaking this to suggest that I'm equally interested in both). So this presents two problems: 1) Is it a problem that my writing sample does not discuss Romanticism, when it is my stated area of interest; and, perhaps more seriously, 2) Is it problematic to claim that you have two distinct subjects of interest (while at the same time being quite specific about your interest in at least one of those subjects). Any thoughts?
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