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socialpsych last won the day on July 25 2010

socialpsych had the most liked content!

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    organizational behavior

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  1. I was accepted to several programs and did not email any of the profs beforehand. (I did email a lot of grad students, including, at one school, grad students who were part of the adcom. But that wasn't my intention when I emailed them.) Personally I was advised (by professors) that it is annoying to receive email from applicants. But I know a lot of people do it. I think it's defensible either way and comes down to what feels most comfortable to you. I did not feel comfortable cold-emailing professors so I didn't. And things turned out fine for me. However, I would strongly advise against telephone cold-calls. Profs may or may not be annoyed by unsolicited emails but I'm pretty sure they'd be annoyed by unsolicited phone calls. Profs are very busy, and a ringing telephone is more disruptive than an email -- even if your intentions are good it may come off as presumptuous. However, if a prof offers via email to speak to you on the phone, by all means do it.
  2. Sadly, I think it may be difficult for you to have a shot at the top programs and maybe even lower-ranked ones. The reason is that adcoms will be unsure that you have enough understanding of the worldview of social psychology to believe that you could really spend the rest of your life in that field. Social psychology is more than just "people are not necessarily rational" and you will have to demonstrate that you understand that. (For a start, I would read the first couple chapters of Ross & Lepper's "The Person and the Situation" if you haven't done so already.) What are you hoping to do with your PhD in psychology? As you have probably heard, psych adcoms will expect you to claim that you are hoping to become a professor of psychology. Even if you are not committed to this career path, there should be at least some possibility in your mind that you may decide to become a psych professor. Otherwise, there may be other ways to achieve your career goals. Adcoms are aware that getting a PhD is difficult (in psych more so than in econ, probably) -- pay is very low, funding is very tight, and the pressure can be pretty immense. They will be trying to make sure, when reading your application, that you are doing it for reasons that make sense and that will keep you productive and prevent you from leaving. That case will certainly be harder to make when you have no background in the subject. My goal here is not to just be negative; the point is that your SOP will be really important, and that you should think hard about the reasons you want to do this. Not just for the SOP, but for yourself as well. If you are well informed and have thought a lot about it and still feel that this is the best decision for you, then include that thought process in your SOP. Finally, unless you're in a hurry for some reason, you may benefit a lot from taking a year or two to work as a research assistant for a social psychology professor. Both because it will give you personally a lot of insight into the field and what exactly you want to do, and because it will dramatically increase your chances of getting in to a good program.
  3. I think the level of specificity of your research interests is appropriate for your stage in the process, but you should probably come up with something more specific to put in your SOP. The statement of research interests in the SOP serves a few different functions: it demonstrates that you know what a workable and interesting research question is, that you can talk about research topics in the same way the pros do, and that you're the kind of student who would be able to get started right away instead of just waiting for direction from professors; plus it could help the program assign you to an advisor if you express interest in the research of multiple professors (which you should). However, you will NOT be committed to actually following up the specific research questions you raise in your SOP. If you feel uncomfortable presenting your interests as possibly more specific than they really are, you can present the more specific questions as examples of the types of things that interest you. Maybe this will help: think about the study you would want to run right now if you were already in school. What seems to you like "low-hanging fruit" in the broader fields in which you're interested?
  4. Carolyn, one place to start might be the JDM preconference page for the SPSP conference. The profs named on those pages do JDM-related work, and several of them and their collaborators (whom you can track down looking at the individual profs' CVs) are in psych departments. Good luck!
  5. I'm a current student stalking the thread, and I don't think you're crazy. Palo Alto itself is not great for apartments, but nearby Menlo Park and Mountain View have some good options. If you can get here early I'm sure you'll be able to find something.
  6. OP, if you are going to attend this program, I recommend trying to get the info once you're there. I do think the question might sound a bit strange, and you have a much better chance of uncovering info like this once you're socially integrated and people trust you with gossip more generally. There is even a chance senior students might know and you'll never have to ask the profs for it. Good luck.
  7. If you haven't heard from Stanford it is probably bad news, sorry to say.
  8. Few entering doctoral students in business actually have business backgrounds. Especially with your graduate degree and quantitative background, not knowing much else about your profile, I don't think you sound like an unlikely student at all. Plenty of business professors do sociology-related research or even have their PhDs in soc. In addition to that program at Wharton, you may also want to look at org behavior, org theory, and management programs (usually a given school will have only one of those; if it has both OB and OT, then OT would probably be a better fit for you). With some exceptions, the more prestigious a business school is, the more discipline-based the research its faculty do -- which may not even be a good thing for you if you are tired of sociology, but would certainly make a transition to business natural given your background. Best of luck!
  9. The only ballet flats I've been able to find that aren't incredibly uncomfortable are a shoe called Festive by Corso Como. The sole is thin but if you don't mind that they are really comfortable. They come in several different colors. I got a couple of my friends on to them, so I'm not the only one who thinks they're great!
  10. My friend who is waitlisted there has been getting updates from them every so often, which is nice of them. I think last time she heard from them was earlier this week -- they said they could not make an offer yet.
  11. I think it comes to the same thing. They have made offers to other people, and you are above the bar for admission to the program but for whatever reason not their very top choice. You will get an offer if enough others decline. Good luck! (...Unless I am reading your post wrong. In the "alternate" case, were other people interviewed? I was assuming not. I don't think I have ever heard of a program that doesn't interview people it is thinking of putting on the waitlist. Not to say that that doesn't happen, but I personally have no experience with it.)
  12. I don't have any UCI-specific information, but don't worry about not hearing on the day they told you that you would hear. It's totally par for the course for a program not to be able to get back to you by the deadline, and it doesn't mean anything bad (unless, indeed, others have already gotten good news).
  13. Here is one reason, but it has nothing to do with being conceited or narcissistic (which, I agree, is kind of the point of FB). Schools where you are a serious candidate for admission are trying to figure out whether you are likely to attend if given an offer. Even if your security settings are friends-only, if you have attended interviews and have become FB friends with current students at those programs, information indicating that you are excited about other offers or especially about your "top choice" or your preference for other programs could actually hurt you. I am not just being paranoid; I'm speaking from experience. But if that worry doesn't apply to you, I don't see any reason not to share your excitement!
  14. Hi there, I see that Stanford is on your list. Unfortunately, if you have not heard, that's probably a bad sign, since they contacted interviewees a couple of weeks ago. I am not 100% sure that they interview everyone they are considering, so there is a very small chance you could still get admitted. Either way, you should hear sometime next week or the week after (they usually notify everyone around the same time).
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