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About hantoo

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    Sociocultural Anthropology

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  1. Oh my goodness I'm sure you didn't sound like an idiot AT ALL. The fact that you got an interview already speaks volumes about how search committees view your qualifications and experience. Maybe if you get this question again going forward or if it's a major concern, you can reframe the way you answer. Be honest and say something like "I haven't yet had the opportunity to build a strong foundation in theory, but here's what I hope to expand on" or, even better, "I hope to explore theoretical areas that help me to address x y z in my fieldwork or to use these methodologies that interest me..." Honestly and clearly answer interview questions but it's okay to direct them towards your own areas of experience. Hope you get good news on your acceptances soon, sending good vibes your way!
  2. Hey There! I would say if you can be a little more specific than "postmodernism" in terms of theoretical frameworks in which you frame your research, go for it, but I don't think there's any need to come up with something super complex. For example, in broadly discussing my cultural anthro research approach I would say something along the lines of "I'm very interested in using political ecology to explore questions of x y z." But, unless you have a good foundation in the theory you hope to use and they ask you about it directly, I wouldn't stress a lot over it. I think interviewers will be much more interested in your research questions and why their program is the best place for you to go to address them. As a side note, when I had my interview for the program I now attend, theory was not something that came up. For me, and I'm sure for a lot of students entering an advanced program in anthropology, I basically had 0 background in anthro history and theory because it just wasn't something my undergraduate courses ever covered. I think interviewers know you're coming back to school to get that specialized training so they're not going to expect you to be incredibly well-versed in theory from the start. Also as you go through a grad program it can be very likely that your theoretical approaches will change or you will add to them, so that's also something to keep in mind. Hope that helps!
  3. Hey there! So there is a good amount of literature on this, and I would recommend doing some research on digital ethnography, it's a pretty hot research area in anthropology at the moment. I haven't done much in terms of Twitter research, but I did do a social media study focused on visual content on primarily Instagram, snapchat and other platforms, and I drew on visual and digital anthropology scholarship. I am not sure exactly what aspect you're looking into, but you should be able to find methods articles on social network analysis on Twitter, and you may find useful resources through the Social Media Research Foundation as well. In terms of software, I haven't used any personally for social media research, but I do know of Node XL which is a free visual network analysis plug in for Excel, and that could be especially useful for a content analysis.
  4. Hi all, This is a multi-part question! I am in the third year of my PhD program and I am feeling torn still about pursuing academia vs. non-academic positions. I still have a ways to go in my program, and will no doubt cast a wide net in terms of my job search down the road, but I feel it's important to address these things now so I don't get to the end of my program and feel unsure. My first question is: if I ultimately decide to seek out a career outside academia, is it recommended or necessary that I do a post-doc in a related position, or should I go right on the job market? Second, if I want to gain industry experience while still in graduate school, what might be some recommended ways to go about it? My research focuses on questions of development in Latin America so I'm considering incorporating ethnographic fieldwork not only at my research site but with NGOs/development agencies working in my geographic area of interest to see another side of things. Would this be the best way to go about it or should I consider internships as well? Lastly, and maybe this is more personalized to different jobs/fields, but for any of you who are now working outside academia, do you feel that you're still able to do enough research, apply the skills you learned through your PhD, etc. in your non-academic position? Again, I am about halfway through my program now so I'm sure I'll gain more insight along the way, but I feel all of this is important to think about now. Thanks everyone!
  5. I agree with RepatMan on discussing SOP structure with POIs in your communication with them. I also think it would be appropriate to request a conversation via Skype if you have already established contact with potential advisors. During the application process for my current program, I had established contact with my now advisor and several other faculty members, and they offered to review my SOP before I submitted, as well as a Skype call to answer my questions. I don't necessarily think that's the norm, but if a POI offers, take the opportunity, and if not, I think it's very appropriate and useful to ask for general SOP advice. Students who are asked to interview for funding purposes and program fit are also typical contacted for Skype conversations, based on my and my peers' experiences. Establishing strong points of contact with potential faculty advisors is critical in the application process for Anthropology, in my opinion. Good luck!
  6. Hi! In my program, we formed an informal writing group that meets once a week at a local brewery. It was started as an ethnographic writing group, but really we welcome anyone (from any grad program or subfield) who wants to be productive and get some writing or other work done for a few hours each week. We work quietly for 2-ish hours, then we socialize for another hour-ish. It helps create a sense of community and is a productive space to get feedback from other students in different stages of their program, whether it's applying for grants, courses to take, software to use, teaching tips, etc. I've found it useful, and I don't think it would be too difficult to generate interest from other grad students at your own school! Try posting to a social media group or sending an email out, even putting together a flyer to share. You might find more people are interested than you think. Or, if you're already part of any working groups or student orgs, share the idea with them as well. I think it also helps to hold this type of group in an informal community space or setting.
  7. They are as far as I know! Also, to my knowledge summer FLAS was not affected by any of this. I'm still keeping my fingers crossed that things might work out by the end of the summer--a lot of anthropology students at my university rely on FLAS and it's really essential for gaining language skills for the field.
  8. Hey all-- I'm currently alternate listed for FLAS (2018-2019) but from my own department, I've been told that academic year FLAS for 2018-2019 will likely not happen, the way things are looking If anything, I was told that accepted students might get something for Spring 2019, if at all. It's super frustrating and terrible timing--I really was hoping to get FLAS to help me get through to my MA as my department does not prioritize pre-MA students for funding. Not trying to discourage anyone but this is just what I've been told so thought I'd share in case anyone else is trying to find a back up plan like I am.
  9. @mrs12 Thanks so much for the helpful information! That's what I was thinking would be best so all of this is good to know!
  10. Hi! This is probably a question that will best be answered by someone who has or has had a FLAS in the past. I'm applying for a FLAS for the first time in Brazilian Portuguese. I am already fluent in Spanish language. For the application I need a recommendation from a language instructor. My question is, should that instructor be one of my former Spanish instructors, or is it meant to be a Portuguese instructor? I am a beginner in Portuguese and have never taken courses in that language before, which is why I am confused. In the FLAS eligibility instructions it says that graduate level applicants can be beginners in the language for which they are applying, so I assumed a recommendation from a Spanish instructor would be sufficient. Any feedback would be appreciated!
  11. Hi! I have a friend in anthropology who did a post-bacc program before entering a PhD program, and she found it really useful. I think they're a good move if you don't necessarily have a strong background in anthropology and would like to build some foundation and maybe get some research experience. My friend had done her BA in Communication and worked full-time for about 5 years then decided she wanted to go into anthropology. She did one or two field schools and the post-bacc program (usually they're 1-2 years I believe) and then applied to PhD programs and got into a few great schools. The one thing I'm not so sure about is funding---I don't believe post-bacc programs offer assistantships or other financial assistance, but there may be some out there that do! I would also suggest thinking about your research interests before choosing a program. For example, UPenn has a post-bacc program in Classics, so there are some out there that are tailored to specific interests. Also, you might consider the MAPSS program at UChicago--it's a one year intensive social sciences degree that is usually a good start to gain research experience and build your resume/CV for either PhD programs or a new career.
  12. @BeachySpeechy Oh I am definitely aware it requires more than just living here for a year----there were a lot of other steps involved in the process that I already did/am doing now. I'm sure it's not the same for every school/program and everyone's situation is different of course, but for my program, it says right on the department page that it is "expected"/"highly recommended" that grad students establish residency if they are moving here from a different state. It just makes the most sense for me anyway because I'll be living here for a long time. A lot of grad students I know are doing the same thing. For my program, so long as students hold an assistantship they get a tuition waiver no matter what, but in case something happens it's good to know that we won't suddenly be slammed with out-of-state tuition which, for my school, is SIGNIFICANTLY more than in-state tuition.
  13. I agree with @TakeruK that you should (if possible) apply to all of these programs you're interested in, and if you plan to apply to U.S. programs again, apply to more than four. I certainly don't think it would be a waste of time to apply to an additional program that might turn out to be a great fit for you! I don't know what your exact area of research is within anthro, but so long as this other program is at least related to your interests and experience and not something completely different, I think it would be fine. I'm pretty sure I remember you from the Fall 2017 application thread in anthropology as well, so maybe I can give some feedback on what I found helpful and what worked for me, and what I would do differently if I had to apply again! (Sorry if this goes way beyond your original question, but I thought this info might be helpful/relevant to you) I actually think it's great that you have a very specific research topic in mind. Depending on the schools you apply to, some programs request a very specific statement of purpose that outlines your proposed research. That was true of a few schools I applied to. For other programs, their guidelines requested that applicants gave at least their subfield, geographic area of interest, and a few broad questions on the topic they hoped to study. I think that for anthropology PhD programs in general, it's better to be specific. Of course it's always possible for your research interests to change, but I think anthro adcoms like to see right away that you're a serious researcher and student and can explain your interests in a succinct way. If you haven't done so already, I would also recommend contacting faculty members you hope to work with in the programs you're applying to. I did communicate with several faculty members during the application process, but I honestly regret not doing so for every program. Unless a department page specifically says it's not necessary to get in touch with faculty members (one program's website did say this for a school I applied to) I would just try to email at least one person from each program. Even if they don't respond to you, I think it's absolutely worth a try. For the program I'm attending this fall, I was in contact with two faculty members, both of them helped me specify some of my research questions in my SOP, and I was able to Skype with one of them before I submitted my application. When the time came to commit to a program, it made my decision easier because I had had so much communication with them and felt very sure of my choice. I'm pretty sure there's a bunch of field-specific threads on here already about what to include in a strong SOP, how to write those emails to faculty members, etc. so I won't ramble on here. Best of luck in the application process and it seems like you're already improving your chances of getting in by casting a wide net and applying to a lot of different programs!
  14. I've never taken online courses or completed an online program, so I'm not totally sure if this will fit well with the format of your online Masters, BUT here are a few ways I like to take notes: 1) For the majority of classes I've ever taken, professors usually use some sort of slide show to display main points, charts and tables, and images during lectures. In many of these classes, my professors would upload the slides to the class website prior to the lecture. I always found it helpful to print out the slides (like ~6 to a page) and then take it to class with me and write additional notes/things to remember during the lecture. This helped me pay better attention to the lecture and take more comprehensive notes. Nowadays I like to just type my additional notes right on my computer to save paper! I've also found it much easier to review for exams later on using these notes. 2) Of course not all professors use lecture slideshows. When I have a professor who just likes to talk, I make sure I do a pretty thorough reading of whatever course material or articles we're discussing in class that day, and I come to class with my notes on that material that I can just add to during the lecture. 3) Similar to the second option, sometimes I like to bring either a paper copy of the readings we're discussing and add notes to them during class, or I pull them up on my computer and make notes there. In reference to your school supply question, I agree that you probably won't need tons of stuff. But I like spiral ring notebooks for taking handwritten notes. And I pretty much only take notes in pen, so I always return to school with tons of pen packs Most importantly, I would just make sure you have a reliable computer to take your courses and do your work on. Also if you don't have one already, I would recommend getting an external hard drive to back up your work. I have one and it once saved me from losing literally years of work when my last computer crashed. Hope this is at least a little helpful! Good luck!
  15. I agree with everything listed above. I'm not sure how it specifically works in your department, but at my school the online academic profiles can be updated pretty frequently. Also, the webmaster for the department site is another student, so when changes need to be made we can just contact that person. If your interests change, just change the profile!
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