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About dogman1212

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  • Application Season
    2018 Fall
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  1. 2018 Philosophy Applicants, Assemble!

    I think both of the inferences you make are fair: Depending on how admissions teams process their applications, they may indeed be bogged down. I imagine most programs have processes, schemes, metrics, and cutoffs that they use to minimize applicants and eventually select students. Those programs that don't employ these sorts of methods may need to start, and those that already do may need to make their methods more sophisticated to prepare for potentially up to 300+ applications. Also, yes, if it's the case that applying to more schools is to a student's advantage and the student can't afford to apply to an optimally high number of schools--which, I think many on this forum would argue isn't much higher than 15 or 20--then this student would be at a disadvantage. Personally, I have only applied to around a dozen programs because beyond that number it becomes difficult to find desirable schools with solid faculty working in my area of interest. In the end, it's to the advantage of graduate programs to make offers to the most promising students, and it's to their advantage to use whatever metrics or vetting processes accomplish that goal. Maybe it would be simpler if philosophers hired economists to simplify the entire process like NYC did for their public school system.
  2. 2018 Philosophy Applicants, Assemble!

    Thanks, goldenstardust11. It is funny that you mention Gilmore Girls: I discovered that showed during the summer and just finished the second season yesterday. The characters are very witty and I'm able to relate to some of the academic/life pressures that many of the characters experience. Great show. I certainly think over-speculation is unfruitful. At this stage, I am mostly trying to get a sense of what to expect during decision season and how I can make informed decisions based on my options. It seems that most of the programs I'm applying to inform students of their status sometime between early February and April 15. I do plan to refer to the philosophy results page to understand where schools are at in the process. I'd imagine that it makes sense for an applicant to wait until hearing back from all of the programs they've applied to before making an ultimate decision of where to go. Also, if an applicant is fortunate enough to receive multiple offers, it would probably be smart to learn more about each program--especially through visits and communicating with faculty. After considering additional factors like location, funding/financial questions, placement, etc., the applicant will hopefully be in a position to decide which offer to take. Let me know if anyone has any additional advice or perspective on preparing for decision season! I'm eager to learn anything I can at this point and I know that many of the people who browse this forum have been through the process before (or at least know someone who has).
  3. 2018 Philosophy Applicants, Assemble!

    I figured I would post an update. I just completed a dozen or so applications to PhD programs and a few MA apps. My main area of interest is political philosophy. All of the PhD programs I applied to have strong faculty working in political philosophy. The programs I applied to are a fairly even-spread sampling of top 40 PGR schools. I applied to many of the American programs found on the link below: Leiter Reports - Best PhD Programs for Political Philosophy On the whole, my application seems to be strong: 3.65 GPA and nearly 3.8 philosophy GPA from a liberal arts college known for its philosophy program; GRE: 168V, 162Q, 4.5 AW; graduated with honors; attended a summer program at Oxford; received some fancy academic awards, etc. Additionally, I have a strong writing sample in my area of interest; letters from three tenured philosophy faculty (all of whom have PhD's from strong programs); a clear and precise SOP. Now that I've completed my applications, it's hard to refrain from speculation about where I'll get accepted! The application process is very hard to predict. My main concern is GPA cutoffs that admissions teams may employ to narrow down applicants. I started in engineering and had some health problems during freshman year: for these reasons, I think my philosophy GPA is more indicative of my abilities than my overall GPA. I'll just have to wait at this point I guess! I graduated last spring and am working towards getting a temporary job--tutoring, writing, etc.--to keep me busy and help me save some money until next fall. Additionally, I've been reading A LOT since graduation. I completed Plato's Republic and Nozick's Anarchy, State, and Utopia, am working through Rawls's A Theory of Justice and Pogge's World Poverty and Human Rights, and have read many articles from academics in my area of interest (Thomas Christiano, Elizabeth Anderson, Mathias Risse, Derek Parfit). I just ordered a number of other philosophy books as well that I am eager to crack open, including Sidgwick's Methods of Ethics. I've also read a number of novels and plays: some Jane Austen, Virginia Woolf, Shakespeare, Philip Roth and so on. I've also developed a habit of reading the New Yorker front to back every week (my brother subscribes to the online edition). Anyways, if anyone has any advice for me at this stage of the cycle I'd be glad to hear it! I'm very eager to hear back from programs, but it's difficult to know that I'm most likely one of around 100-300 other excellent applicants at most of the programs I'm applying to.
  4. Retake GRE?

    Hey everyone, I'm a 2018 applicant who plans to apply 10 to 15 different PhD and MA programs, particularly the ones strong in political philosophy, such as Arizona, Princeton, Virginia, Michigan, etc. Yesterday I took the GRE and scored a 168V and 162Q. Based on the discussions I've seen here and the statistics posted on the few programs that do post their GRE scores, this score seems fairly competitive. I haven't gotten the writing results back yet, but I feel confident that I scored a 4.5+. I am inclined to not take the test again, although I'm eager to hear input from any of you regarding whether or not I ought to consider retaking it or other aspects of my application strategy. Thanks, and good luck to anyone applying for next year!
  5. Looking for GRE writing graders

    I am looking to have two of my practice GRE writing responses graded. See attached. Feel free to use either Magoosh's criteria or the ETS guidelines. Thanks!! Dogman's Practice GRE Responses.docx
  6. 2018 Philosophy Applicants, Assemble!

    I plan to send out several applications for the fall 2018 semester. I have a lower undergraduate GPA (3.64), yet my in-major GPA is higher (about 3.8). I come from a liberal arts college in the midwest with a strong track record of getting students into top philosophy programs. I'm most interested in political philosophy and ethics, but I am also interested in philosophy of religion and philosophy of language. I have a 22 page paper that I wrote on a political philosophy topic in order to graduate with honors at my college. I will likely modify that and use it as a writing sample. Top 15 PhD programs seem to be a bit of a long-shot for me. I plan to apply to a mix of top 40-ish PhD programs and top masters programs. I will apply to Northern Illinois and UW-Milwaukee for sure, maybe San Fransisco State as well. It would be nice if I could stay in the midwest if possible because of a relationship I'm in, yet I still plan to send a few applications to programs farther away as well. I haven't taken the GRE yet, but I'm spending about an hour a day studying right now. I just graduated this last May and am taking a gap year of sorts while working to save money and think things over. If anyone has any questions or advice, let me know!!