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  • Application Season
    2017 Spring
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    American Studies

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amstu's Achievements


Decaf (2/10)



  1. Just took the garbage GRE and got a 160 on the verbal. I'm applying to Philosophy programs. One of my academic mentors told me that departments use them to simply filter the numbers down to something manageable. Does anyone in or around philosophy have any knowledge of GRE scores and cut-offs for Phil programs?
  2. I have checked the "results" board for Iowa Writer's Workshop Stuff, but nobody has posted so presumably even rejections haven't been sent out (?)--which isn't great. Did anyone else apply?
  3. Cheers to disappointment! I am currently at one of the schools in your list that you are applying to, so let me know if you need any information.
  4. I'm applying to 10 PhD programs and am in the same boat. I'm constantly looking for ways to trim, but my list will probably still be 10 in December.
  5. I don't know anything about your program or field, so this question may not be helpful: Is a writing sample submitted as part of your application and how much does your field value writing? Is it the expectation of the program that a piece of publishable policy will be produced? I ask because, in my mind, spending any extra time on bolstering a writing sample seems much more sensible--provided its a field where that is valued. If this were my field, I would skip the expensive course and pour all my time, energy and research (if applicable) on writing, revising and, polishing.
  6. I have a similar mentor. Its kind of his schtick. This doesn't sound like a terribly big ethical breach (if at all: maybe administrative breach?) but I think valuing your own internal boundaries is more important at this point than anything else. Politely standing your ground now or disengaging from it, may make a harder ethical ask down the road a lot less emotionally involved. If networking at this event is important to you then pay the entrance fee and attend.
  7. I agree with Old Bill. (Although, reflexively I'll add U Chicago). Your bio says "English lit." What are you looking to do/research/study as a 20th C. Americanist?
  8. Hi all. I have tried to create an American Studies thread a couple times in the past as we approach the Fall semester and graduate applications become due. I may be doing it incorrectly (or people may not be interested!). I will be applying to a mix of American Studies and English PhD programs for Fall 2018 admission (and may or may not be applying to an MFA program in Nonfiction). I am currently interested in the Colonial through the antebellum period and would be cheerfully content in either a targeted English or an American Studies program. "Targeted" meaning that I am not applying simply to "top" schools because they may be "top". My school-list focuses on programs that have strengths in Colonial, Early Republic or nineteenth century American textual studies (or some combination thereof). I am still editing my list. It currently stands at 12, which feels like a lot. I'd like to get it down to 10. Maybe it doesn't matter. I am still working on my writing sample. I'm also slowly working through my Statements of Purpose. I would be open to finding an American Studies application pen-pal (either through this thread or via direct message). I have a small support network at my current school, but it would also be nice to find someone whose trajectory is closer to mine. And perhaps we will end up in the same cohort! I was fairly anxious at the beginning of the summer, but I'm not especially bothered right now. (Caveat: If you are here to give me a "reality check" that I have a greater chance of being struck by lightning than getting into a program I would kindly ask you to redirect your helpful energy to a more worthy soul.) Good luck all!
  9. I thought I'd start a thread for those applying to MFA Nonfiction programs, as I didn't see one. I'm currently trying to wrap up my writing sample and letters of intent. I think I have my final list of schools down. My writing sample is not memoir, which may or may not be risky. I'm hoping to be mostly done with things by the time Fall semester starts. I'm fine with doing edits during the semester but don't want to be scrambling with large-scale changes. I'd like to keep this thread positive-minded. Who is applying for MFA Nonfiction programs? And how is preparation going?
  10. I appreciate the numbers. I'm surprised to see that Wisconsin Madison received so many MFA applications. However, as unfair as it is to compare Chicago and Iowa, those are two of the schools I am comparing, as an applicant. I'm pretty targeted in my applications and I am already working on my book project. If non-fiction programs are receiving so few applications then that that's advantageous. I can't control the PhD admissions process so I'm applying to MFA non-fiction programs as a back-up.
  11. I haven't seen numbers but I would be surprised if more people apply to Iowa's Nonfiction MFA than to University of Chicago's English program. Does anyone have numbers?
  12. That would be great! Trigger warning: As of right down I'm too salty to study for the GRE but I'm happy to be a resource for everything else: exchange of thoughts/anxieties/writing samples/letters of purpose. I think I'm going to add some Non-Fiction MFA programs to my list because its a real possibility that I won't get in anywhere. Are you going into History or Literature? I looked at the literature subject test but I don't think I want to take it in addition to the GRE (more to prep on top of everything else) so I've reduced my list to schools that don't require the subject test. Have you started your writing sample?
  13. I have someone like this at the undergraduate level and I've had to re-consider the longevity of the relationship. I have an official mentor who I think spoiled my expectations for how faculty ought to be (punctual, thoughtful, constructive) and coming across this other person (who I still need certain things from) has been similarly disconcerting. Considering the power differential between faculty and students, I am especially hard-minded on issues like this: fostering student independence does not, for me, include missing appointments/calls/check-ins. I don't think you're being unreasonable at all and I don't think you're expecting too much. I do think that it means considering what you want your relationship with this person to look like, considering all this.
  14. Do not spend that much of your stipend on housing in New York. I paid 700$ for a room in Washington Heights to get to CUNY recently, which is reasonable for Manhattan and I know that NYU and Columbia pay at least 30,000$ in stipends. New York is an international city, with many people in a similar situation. Finding a living situation is nearly a full-time job--anyone in NYC will tell you that. So, put aside time daily to look, to follow up, to contact, to set up alerts. If you're confused or scared about NYC crowd-source it.
  15. I feel fairly late to this topic, but I'd like to join. I'm an Americanist also applying to a number of programs this fall. I'm doing nineteenth-century stuff with an interdisciplinary emphasis and currently working on an essay-as-writing-sample that I really love. I've registered for the GRE, reading, writing and drinking a lot of beer. I'd be down to set up goals and benchmarks with folks to stay on top of things. I haven't started studying for the GRE because every atom of my being despises it as a metric of student success, let alone intelligence, and I have a melt-down once a week about the thought that all of my hard work might be thrown out the window by a bad test score.
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