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cowgirlsdontcry last won the day on June 10

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About cowgirlsdontcry

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  • Birthday June 19

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    English PhD in American Lit
  1. How are my GRE scores?

    There were only 4 English MA students on campus. The rest were far away and online. Three out of the four of us applied to PhD programs and we received enormous support and assistance from the department's professors. I might add all three of us were accepted into PhD programs.
  2. How are my GRE scores?

    nywnorb states he is interested in statistical ethnographical studies, at least from what I can tell. That would imply a need for a statistical basis, which his Q score doesn't support, even though his grades in statistics were above his other math grades. I'm just saying that his Q score is low enough that, based on the both the Magoosh humanities and social science charts, it is the one to be concerned about. I didn't ever say he shouldn't apply, but I think that many opinions given on this site are way more optimistic about chances of getting admitted to top programs, which then leads applicants being even more upset, if they are rejected by programs than they should be. I was in the pool last year and to say some of the people appeared very distraught about not being admitted to their top choices is putting it mildly. The odds of getting admitted to top programs is very slim even with superior GPAs/GREs, which is why selection of programs must be a very close fit, in order to be admitted. There are also unknown variables that cannot be measured. My SOP and WS were vetted by 3 full professors, as well as my 3 recommenders (associate professors) who looked at them through several drafts. I had excellent specimens, not because of my superior ability, but because I had superior people making comments, which I followed. Having said all of that, the reasons why I said what I did about mine become more apparent. I only applied to programs that were good fits and I still was not admitted, which leads to the unknown variables that could possibly affect admission. I believe that it is very interesting to note that while I was not admitted to any T25 program outside the South, I was admitted to the one T25 program in the South I applied to. However, their funding was not as good as the large flagship university I eventually chose to accept. Programs are all different, but very similar in their requirements and actions within humanities and social sciences.
  3. How are my GRE scores?

    If you look at the humanities chart I posted by Magoosh, you can see that nywnorb's verbals are right in the middle of all of the top 10 humanities and social science programs ranking each by field. Since he also states he is looking at the social sciences, I am posting those scores below. I would be more concerned about his Q scores because they are either on the edge of the average or lower than the average top 50 in either field, especially because he is seeking to emphasize ethnography. I had GPAs of UG-3.85 and G-4.0 with scores like his, with SOP and WS vetted by three full professors (also my recommenders), and every T25 English dept. I applied to rejected me, which leaves to me to think that my Q score, the fact that I went to a Southern UG/G school, or my age (non-traditional) were contributing factors. Magoosh Social Sciences:
  4. How are my GRE scores?

    What is the exact field you want to apply to? Ethnography falls into a combination of history, anthropology and other doesn't it. Below is a link (copy & paste into browser) that shows Magoosh research indicating what top humanities programs' GRE scores are and it's rumored that humanities usually care less about Q than V. But look for yourself.
  5. What's a good score in verbal?

    I think that it's a good score. That's what mine was and I was accepted by a program of my choice. It's the 93rd percentile. Copy the following link into your browser because my links never seem to work. Magoosh shows a breakdown of scores at various ranked schools. The top 10 schools in Foreign Languages/Literature had scores from 161-166. Your score of 163 is right in the middle. I would not take it over for a couple of points when you are definitely within the parameters. You don't have time to study for any kind of increase other than 2-3 points max and, as you point out, it's an expensive test. Here is a chart that Magoosh prepared regarding whether to retake the GRE. Copy into browser.
  6. If the department will tell him who is on the committee. When I was applying I never had much luck with getting those names (I wanted to know if my interests were in-line with any of them). Most of the time the departments never even answered my query. I ended up reading some of the Americanists' publications to figure it out for myself.
  7. Number of school's you're apply to?

    I'm from central Louisiana and made the drive to NSU almost every day for six years through my MA, so understand how a 100 mile drive, in addition to having a little one is just too much. Hate that drive over the basin. I always ended up going 190 into BR, but that's way out of the way for you.
  8. Leaving PhD program - reasons and advice

    I am white and attended undergrad and MA at a smallish tier one-regional university in Louisiana. The diversity at that school was about the same as the population of the state was (55:45). I did a year-long exchange at a large flagship university in the northeast and was surprised when I saw no diversity at the university. When I looked at demographics, there was a diversity rate of under 10%. The towns surrounding the university were all white with even less diversity. So I can only imagine how you feel. Having said all of that, it sounds like you have a great relationship with your advisor and the program is very good. Those are difficult to replace. There are always things you are going to have to deal with and may not be able to have such a good work environment in a top program. I'm in an English PhD program where the MFA students act as though they are all that (NOT). Wherever we are, there are going to be things we don't like. Get some counselling to help and keep working.
  9. I applied to present at the Hemingway Society's Biennial Conference in Paris next summer, and was accepted. I know there are hundreds presenting at that conference as it lasts 7 days. My attitude about conferences is not to worry what the odds are. If my abstract fits exactly into what their CFP is looking for, I will usually get accepted. If not, then I won't. It's good practice to simply apply. You get better and better at writing abstracts and improving on your bio and it's always a pleasant surprise to get accepted at a prestigious conference that improves my CV. I get to go to Paris (where I have never been) with my university paying for a good portion of the cost. I try to go to at least two conferences a year.
  10. Number of school's you're apply to?

    I have a friend in the English PhD program there. Why don't you go ahead and apply to LSU at the same time? It's only about 40 miles from Lafayette to LSU. From your info it looked like you were, but then I read that you were only applying to ULL. I was admitted to their English PhD program, but was accepted where I'm at earlier.
  11. Getting in from wait list

    I was waitlisted at two schools last year, and one of them accepted me after I had already accepted another offer. My field is English, and waitlists for different fields could be different.
  12. Have I been played?

    I agree that once we are rejected for something, we have more difficulty reaching out. Don't allow the one rejection that's occurred to do you in. I sent out an email last week asking a professor if he would be interested in chairing or being on my committee, but haven't hard back. He is the director of a scholars program within A&S so he may be very busy and although he is a POI, and in exactly the right spot to be the chair of my committee, his other responsibilities may not allow him to accept. All sorts of things happen that are outside of our control. It's easy to perceive that everyone else is having it easier, but even if they are, you can still get out of this what you need. I'm also a literary scholar, except my area is 20th century American. I absolutely do not expect or even want to publish as a secondary person under a professor. My university offers a publisher in residence program that I am taking advantage of to give me the leg up I need, in order to get started working on pieces of my thesis for publication. I suspect that when you hear others talking about working with a professor for publication in the literary field, it may not be all that you have heard. It takes months to get something published, after the months it takes to write and get peer review. This is your first semester as a second year. Logically, when have other students had the time to meet professors and get to know them well enough to be asked to participate in publishing together, much less write it, take it through peer review, then have it accepted for publication? Remember that some insecure students must make everything they do appear greater or better than everyone else's. In the meantime, when the rest of us hear such stories, we wonder what we are doing wrong. We are doing nothing wrong--they are just tooting their horn for attention. Grad students take 2 classes per semester at my university because we have a 2/2 teaching load and are expected to make efforts to attend conferences and publish. This semester, I'm taking both a British modernist lit and an American modernist poetry class. While the British is not my area, it is still modernism and I'm finding that the professors teaching either class are well-versed in the other. In the Spring of 2018, I'm taking a class that, as best as I can tell, is a pairing of an African-American author with a white author (second class is literary theory). That's not exactly my area either (at least as defined in my mind), but it contributes to my overall understanding of American literature. I've talked to others in the PhD lit program and they are having the same difficulty getting classes that are in their field. Availability of classes may not be an unusual thing at any university. I complained throughout my undergrad and MA about availability of classes. Now I'm finding that my literary education is very well-rounded, and I have gained applicable knowledge that supersedes those whose education actually focused on the area they want to work in. I tell my students that writers do not live in a vacuum. Neither do literary scholars. Our education is way more comprehensive within the overall field of literature than we imagine it to be. We contribute to actual area knowledge with our independent research, reading and writing. Although departments have advisors, etc. to assist us, we must be very proactive in getting promoting ourselves. You can do this!
  13. Overlap in degree programs

    Some universities have programs called "New Degrees" or something similar where you get to design your own degree. I really have no idea how that would work in a PhD program. You would probably have to pitch the idea to different departments or try to find the one most likely to go along with it.
  14. Lit review in feminist theory class

    I have a guideline that my professor gave our Research/Bib class during my MA. I write all proposals for seminar papers based on this guideline. The lit review is part of a longer essay (not a standalone doc), usually created from an annotated bib that allows the audience to see "enough ties to the literature that they feel confident that you have found, read, and assimilated the literature in the field" (McGranaghan). This particular guideline is geared toward the literary scholar, but is general enough that it can be used as a general outline for other areas within the humanities. All you need this week is the proposal. Work on it one step at a time and it will all come together. Let me know if this is useful. Guidelines on writing a research proposal.docx
  15. Tips of academic writing

    A freshman in one of my comp classes was having difficulty creating clear, concise sentences and, as a result, I sat down with her for 45 minutes with some model examples of sentences. Then we went over her whole rough draft, sentence by sentence, breaking each apart and restructuring. She understands what I want now, but whether she can accomplish it is something else because it wasn't much time. It's not only ESL grad students who have issues with structure. Students from small high schools all over the US do not get prepared for college level writing either. I asked her to go to the Writing Center after speaking with the director, who said the tutors are first year English MA students and they can assist students with sentence structure. This is also a very good method of learning to how to teach composition. If a grad student doesn't have the funds (honestly, we're all in the same boat here) to hire a copy editor, then the WC is the best place to go. I doubt if they would be willing to correct a whole thesis or dissertation, but they will definitely teach one how to create clarity within sentence structure and that's the best option in the end. Students are not limited to one or two visits. Another option, and probably one a PhD student would not want to take, is to take a remedial English composition class. Those classes teach English grammar and beginning writing. Most universities either have them or are connected with a nearby community college that has them. If studying English as a foreign language is anything like when I learned French and Spanish, then English grammar and writing is very much needed because it's taught from a perspective of the person already speaking English, rather than as a foreign language. Even grad students in English sometimes have difficulty expressing themselves clearly through the written word. It's a difficult, burdensome language that is unruly in its behavior.