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  1. No decisions on fall 2021 yet!
  2. My first recommendation would be to do an EdD rather than a Phd if you want to work as a school administrator.
  3. I think that they (admissions) clearly state that there's no master's-doctorate pathway because of the numbers. If you have 800-ish master's students and 30 doc students, giving new master's admits the impression that the PhD is a likely next step isn't fair, accurate, or in anyone's best interest. I think their message is, " come here for your master's if you truly want a master's, not just as an intermediate step toward the doctorate". I can imagine that if you came to HGSE for a master's, applied for the PhD while you were here and were denied admission , you'd find out during your spring quarter and there's a potential that you'd end your year bitter about getting rejected. The bit about doing master's/doctorate at different schools: If you look at the top-5 ed school graduate programs and you ask all the deans, " what makes this program unique?", they'll all have an answer. Each school has a different identity. Exposure to more than one of these schools can give you a broader perspective of the top of the field, and I think that's helpful. On the other hand, I know of a person in my HGSE cohort who did their undergrad, master's, and PhD at Harvard and one of my TAs who did their master's and PhD at HGSE. They might feel differently. Mostly personal preference!
  4. Classes: There's a period at the beginning of the semester where you can kind of sample courses before making your final decisions. I would recommend being extremely active during that period. Even if you choose not to take a course, just the exposure to the subject matter and the professor could be helpful later. My only courses outside of the Ed school were language courses at GSAS. There will almost definitely be more courses that interest you at the Ed school than you can possibly take, so I think that quite a few people who like the idea of cross-registering don't quite get around to it. Obviously, some people do. As far as independent studies, I think they're hard to arrange, without support. My advice would be to plan to do an IS second semester, and get everything in order to do so during the first semester. I would chat with my advisor and share my interest -> Ask for their advice or a connection to target-> meet with target professor -> Offer to volunteer/support their work -> try to set up IS for spring. Activities/Clubs: There's so many interesting talks and events every week, and a number of affinity groups. No specific recommendations, just a promise that if you look hard enough, you'll find your people. If you just google [your interest] Harvard, you'll find something! In my experience, admission decisions are usually Friday afternoons. I got my email at 2:47pm. I'm going back through previous years of HGSE threads and I'll post a retrospective soon. As far as the doctorate piece, it's so tough if you want to go straight from master's -> doctorate because you don't even really have time to get a recommendation from an HGSE professor. I can remember attending an applicant information session and asking a question about the masters to doctorate move. The admissions rep stressed that there is no pathway from master's -> doctorate. If that's your plan, you need to make moves on your own. I'm glad to expand on all of that in another post. I'd also say that there's a great benefit to doing a master's at HGSE and doing your doctorate at a different top-5 or top-10 program, so keep that option in consideration.
  5. You just need to make a choice, for admission's sake. It's going to be unnecessarily challenging to get accepted if you try to craft an SoP and incorporate all of those things. I'm not sure what kind(s) of program(s) you're applying to, but if you're thinking full-time and funded, then you'll have to make a direct connection with a professor or a department. This professor will most likely have very focused interests and their willingness to bring you in as an advisee will often be based on how your interests align with theirs. Personally, I crafted a super-focused SoP, but assessed the schools that I got into based on my ability to branch out and learn a number of different things if I were to enroll. I spent my first doctoral year all over the place. Psychology, law, foreign languages, jazz guitar, business. It wasn't easy, but it helped me to narrow in on a focus. To find my little corner of academia. You have to have a focus as a late-stage doctoral student, but I think you'd be able to do some really interesting interdisciplinary work if you pursue your interests broadly during the first few years. Just make it easy for someone at a university to imagine you in their department as a first step. Best of luck. Glad to chat more if you'd like.
  6. Hi Everyone! I'm a recent HGSE graduate and writer for a graduate admission tips/advice blog called The Evolved Graduate ( evolvedgrad.com ). On the blog, I draw heavily on my experience at HGSE, and I hope that it's helpful to you as you make your way through the application process. I thought I'd get the ball rolling here for 2021 applicants. The HGSE 2020 thread has a longer life this season because of the second around of admissions, but I can imagine that 2021 applicants will soon arrive in larger numbers. I really enjoyed my time at HGSE, learned many lessons ( some on time, some too late!) and I'm glad to be a resource to any of you who'd like some perspective from former student. If there''s any graduate admission topics that you'd like covered in the blog please let me know. Additionally, I'm still in a facebook group with my HGSE class, so any questions that I can't answer, I could share with that larger group. Best of luck!
  7. You said " it seems like you're just supposed to know how to do this", but I wonder if having conversations with folks at schools you're interested in would provide you with a bit more clarity.
  8. When I earned my first master's degree, I had an interest in teaching, but no real training. I wanted to teach ESL and wanted more than a certificate, so I choose applied linguistics for my program. That degree got me going. Once I finished that program, I found that teachers wanted me to do reading groups with ESL students, and while I was figuring it out slowly but surely, I wanted an opportunity to read foundational texts and research, and I wanted to complement my practical experience with a deeper understanding of the literature. I bring up these two examples to highlight the way that the degrees were filling gaps in my knowledge. A master's program would be a great opportunity to fine-tune and improve your practice. You have practical experience that will help you to make the best of the coursework. I should note that your degree will not automatically help you get jobs, but you'll have consistent exposure to ideas that'll make you better if you apply them to your work. If you can find an affordable program (if money matters), I'd say you should go for it. Best of luck, shoot me a message if you have any questions!
  9. Language and Literacy at HGSE
  10. I'd say activism is a part of it, but you're really there to teach children. The activism might live in how you teach them, what you teach them, and how you advocate for them and their families with other stakeholders. I've seen teachers erode any standing they had in their school community by conflating advocacy and education, but I've also seen teachers propel themselves more quickly toward better pedagogy because of their activist ambitions.
  11. Hello! Good on you for thinking about this early. Here are my answers to your questions: How many papers published? 1-5, depending on your field and the focus of your school. Some universities push this harder than others. Do lots of PhDs do postdoc? It's a calculated decision, and I wouldn't say it's super common. Students/Faculty that I know who've done it did so for reasons like " There was a phenomenal lab that I wanted to work in, and this was the best way to get that experience", " The economy and job market were sh*t", or " I wanted to see how another university was approaching my topics of interest before going out into the world for professor jobs" Best of luck, shoot me a message if you have any questions. Jeremy
  12. Hi all, Congrats to all those who've been admitted! I was 3/3 admit as Harvard/Stanford/Upenn, and glad to support all of you in this process in any way that's helpful. People are always looking for tips about how to get in, so I thought I'd offer one: "Write" your letters of recommendation without actually writing them. When you ask someone to write you a letter, you are hoping that 1) the person that you've asked is a great writer and 2) that they highlight some aspect of your story that will make you desirable for the schools to which you apply. You have no control over their writing ability, and I assume you wouldn't ask them if you weren't confident that they were a solid writer( I had an experience where I asked a professor that I loved to write a letter for a lower-stakes fellowship and the letter he sent was full of typos and poorly written! The Horror!). You do, however, have some control over what they highlight about you. My letter writers asked for a resume, and I provided it , but I also gave them bullet points about things that I hope they'd mention, for each school. This way, I didn't feel so bad asking a person to write me three different letters for three different programs, because I gave them additional support in doing so. These schools want to know you, and also know what you've done that might interest them. Supporting your letter writers in differentiating is helpful. Shoot me a message if you have any questions. Again, congrats to admits, and best of luck to those future-applicants!
  13. To echo previous comments, nothing about what you've posted would preclude you from getting in to HGSE. My questions would be about your recommendations and your SoP. Absolutely critical parts of your application, and any assessment of your chances without them wouldn't be accurate. I'll say that increasing access to high-quality education for the children who are not currently getting it is something they look for. Best of luck! 3/3 admit at Harvard/Stanford/Upenn, shoot me a message if you have any questions! Jeremy Evolvedgrad.com
  14. Seconding what @iheartscience said, it's the essays. There will be some folks in each cohort who have academic/testing profiles similar to yours, whether they post on GradeCafe or not. Some of you will get in and some of you won't, and the ones who get in will be those with the most compelling reasons for pursuing a career in education. In the programs you listed, you would spend varied amounts of time in actual classrooms in schools. As you are crafting your statement, I think it would benefit you to include something to the effect of, " among the top teacher ed programs in the country, this program has a significant student-teaching component, which I think will be a critical part of my success after I finish the program". Often, the folks to lead this programs pride themselves on the things that make them different. You should know what those differences are, and call them out.
  15. Hi Folks, I'm currently a 1st-Year PhD student at Top-5 program. I remember how nerve-wracking this period was about a year ago, and I see on this forum that many of you are going through the same thing. As a first-year PhD student, particularly closer to the beginning of the year, there's a fair amount of discussion among us about our application and interview processes. As these discussions are happening, I often think to myself, " Gosh, I wish I'd known this when I was applying!". To ask my question more concretely: Would you be interested in hearing the perspectives of Doctoral Students accepted at places like Stanford, Harvard, Northwestern, Upenn, Vanderbilt, UCLA, Teacher's College, U of W? If so, what kinds of questions do you have? If you'd rather message me directly, please feel free. Thanks, and best of luck.
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