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BabyScientist

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BabyScientist last won the day on August 15 2018

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About BabyScientist

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    Mocha

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  • Application Season
    2018 Fall
  • Program
    Neuroscience

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  1. You want an interview before your interview? Put them on your list of people you want to interview with - better to meet them in person. When I was interviewing the only people I put on the top of my list that I didn't get to meet with were people who were out of town. If that happens, you contact them to chat over Skype or the phone AFTER the interview weekend. Contacting them in advance won't necessarily make them like you more or help your admission chances.
  2. There isn't really any point. Request them for interviews when they're making your schedule, and you'll be able to talk to them in person. The interview is more of a meeting than an interview. It's a chance for you to get to know them and ask all your questions as much as it's a chance for them to see your personality.
  3. A small notebook might be a good idea. I found it helpful to jot down a few notes with my thoughts after each interview so that by the time April rolled around and I had to decide on a program, I could refresh my memory on what I thought of interviews in January.
  4. The 2 most common tracks are industry or academia. Industry being pharmaceutical and biotech companies. In those you could do well with just a bachelors, but a masters and a PhD would increase pay, and a PhD would increase autonomy (depending on the position/company). Depending on the field and what you want, academia could mean professor/principal investigator, or research scientist. Other than those there are "non traditional" options like science writing, science policy, consulting, etc. If you're in undergrad currently, I recommend looking for internships that would give you a taste for science application so you can decide what you want. If you want to do something that requires more specialized knowledge that your bio degree didn't get you, consider a masters. If you love research and see yourself doing it fora long time, consider a PhD.
  5. Most interviews go like this: They ask you about your research experience. You start telling them about it, they occasionally stop you to ask questions. They tell you about their research (this is why reading papers in advance is unnecessary). Ideally, you try to ask questions or relate their work to yours or things you've heard of. They ask you if you have any questions about the program. You ask questions about how their lab works (how big it is, if they send people to conferences, if they have space for you, where their funding comes from, what their students go on to do, etc). This shows them you know what goes into a PhD. You shouldn't be focused on one particular line of research. You should be open to studying many things within the general field. If that's the only professor studying it at that school but he isn't taking students, they won't accept you. Or if multiple do but aren't taking students, same thing. You should show that you're excited to talk about your own work, you are able to think about other people's work (by asking questions about their research), you know what goes into a PhD, and you know why you want a PhD. If you're not sure about the why, they'll likely be able to tell, and they won't want to accept anyone who might end up quitting their PhD.
  6. Unhelpful to ask for an informal chat before interviews. I found it completely unnecessary to read papers for my interviews in advance. I started off doing them, but the papers never came up. You should have an idea of what they do, but focus on knowing how to talk about your own research. Also know why you want a PhD and why that program is a good fit for you. They are unlikely to test your knowledge of their science, and more likely to test your knowledge of your own science. You also won't be expected to come in ready to do their research. You're expected to show interest and intellectual ability, they'd teach you whatever technical skills necessary to perform research in their lab. It's school, after all. I don't think any of my interviewers asked me about my strengths and weaknesses... Your goal in the interview is to show them you're passionate and dedicated and KNOW you want to be there.
  7. Didn't happen to me in all 7 of my interviews. Never heard of an interviewer trying to discourage anyone... They are trying to attract you as much as you're trying to attract them.
  8. I interviewed for one of them in the past. It's not awkward - everyone knows both programs exist and is super nice/treats everyone the same.
  9. They could send them out literally any day or time. BUT you should unplug and enjoy yourself. They aren't going to take your invite away if you don't pick up the phone when they call.
  10. Remember that not every applicant visits GradCafe. It's totally possible that internationals have received invitations but aren't posting.
  11. Some grad programs will let you start rotations the summer before starting. So if I were you I'd keep that time open.
  12. The only prep you should need (for any interview) is knowing about your research and having an idea of which faculty at that school are doing things you're interested in/you'd want to work with. Did you contact this person at any point or did they randomly reach out? My main tip is ask them questions about the program/location/their lab.
  13. They wouldn't know or care, tbh. The only people who would probably be upset are your letter writers, with short notice to write and submit letters.
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