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Everything posted by MissMoneyJenny

  1. Time Flies When You're in Grad School

    It has been a long time since I've even come onto the grad café. Moving to London and starting grad school has really taken any free time I used to have to just surf the web and engulfed it, but I am incredibly happy about that. First term has finished and I am now progressing into my second round of courses before I hit the heavy 4 months of dissertation writing that is to come in the spring. I'm more excited about finally getting to do some research but also nervous about the prospect of finding a supervisor, and actually working on it all. Something which has been on my mind lately is potentially moving on to doing a Ph.D. after this degree. Ideally I would be able to start as soon as I finished my Master's, but I don't think my first term has prepared me enough to be able to send in the applications for the March 14th deadline. I need more time to think, time to get a grasp on if I actually want to move away from industry and into academia, and to ensure my grades are stellar so I can get funding. Plus I've been in postsecondary education for nearly 5 years now. Most people would agree that it is time for a break (maybe I'm wrong, but I think I deserve one . . . not sure if starting full-time work would really be considered a break though).
  2. HCI - Anyone else?

    I'm going to be attending a Human-Centered Systems program in the Fall, coming from a Psychology background. I am hoping to get into UX once I finish, maybe eventually doing consulting when I have a breadth of knowledge in the field (I'm thinking 10 years time, maybe more). Anyone else going into the field? Where are you going to be/where are you applying to? Plans after graduation?
  3. Fiction About Grad Students

    I'm curious if anyone knows of any books or movies or tv shows where the main character(s) is/are (a) grad student(s) and it actually is a major plot point or something followed closely throughout. I know there is a lot of stuff about high school and college . . . so why not grad school? And yeah, i know, because grad students don't have time to read, but I actually will next month!
  4. I've been exploring the idea of Library and Information Sciences as a graduate program for about a month now (prior to this I didn't even consider looking into what it might be, focusing more on staying within the same field as my undergrad) and although the program websites have good things to say about their degrees, many blogs and magazine articles seem to be under the impression it's a pretty useless thing to go for. I'm just curious as to why, because from what I can gather from program websites, and personal research into potential careers afterwards, it seems like a pretty good thing to get into and just as competitive for grad school as most other programs. I'm looking at graduate studies in Canada only, if that makes any difference.
  5. I'm currently in a Master's program in a field I am very passionate about. It's a course-based Masters, although I will have a research project at the end of it (although it is more heavily weighted towards being a fairly comprehensive literature review with a small sample size study tacked on), and while I am enjoying my classes and am interested in the topic I really wish I had embarked on something more related to my personal interest in doing research. Unfortunately my undergraduate grades didn't really allow for me to take on that option immediately, but I think it is possible I could finish this degree with Merit or Distinction so that will be helpful for me in the future if I want to embark on more intensive schooling. Basically I think I want to do a Ph.D., but I'm not 100% sure yet. I'll be working between graduation and when I decide I am ready to take on the task, but I am curious as to how everyone else decided "Yes, I want to do intense research for the next 4-6 (or more) years and come out with a doctorate in the end."
  6. Facing Reality

    I had induction for my course this week and they were suggesting that I needed to put in 180 hours of work (including lab time, in course time, and course work) per semester per course for my Master's. In the 11 weeks of the semester that equals to about 65 hours per week. I spoke to a Ph.D. student who had just graduated from my course and she said "Say goodbye to your friends for 12 months. You'll have fun but you won't have time for them." My cohort is all professionals excluding myself and another student. It's not a bad thing, but it is definitely intimidating. Needless to say this has left me feeling really defeated. I just moved to a new city for this program, and was planning on both enjoying school and life while I was here. Based on what professors and this one previous student have told me . . . I won't be enjoying my life it seems. My life will equal grad school and nothing but grad school. I understand that grad school is a commitment and requires a lot of time and effort. But I really want to know how much these people are exaggerating vs what the reality actually is. I won't find out until I am in the thick of it, but part of me wants to run away now before I even start. Anyone else felt this way on their first week? Edit: For some reason 130 hours per course turned into 180 hours in my brain. The maximum I am expected to work on the program each week is 47 hours, which is much more like what I was expecting. Freakout unnecessary.
  7. Facing Reality

    My program is course based where I am doing 4 classes a semester for 2 semesters, then I have 4 months to work on my dissertation. It's also a Master's program, which is why I was so surprised about the amount of time they expected us to work on things outside of the classroom. If it were a Ph.D. program where I was doing research then I would be expecting to work this much, but not for a course based master's program where I am only in classes or labs 16 hours a week. I spoke with some friends this evening, other Masters students but none in my program and I was reminded that that much work is probably what is expected of a student trying to get into the Ph.D. program who intends on having no life outside of school. This is really not the goal for me. I want to graduate with good grades but I only intend to go into industry in the future. I'm really hoping I'm just panicking a little from forgetting what school was actually like.
  8. One out, one in

    Two weeks ago I was rejected from the University of Toronto. Thankfully their letter was not snarky or mean, but it was short and I feel like I wasted too much of my time impatiently waiting - not to mention the couple hundred dollars I spent to apply and to have a copy of my transcripts sent. I wasn't too discouraged when I first received the rejection, it wasn't my top choice of school and I had a conditional acceptance elsewhere. But, as time passed, I soon became more and more worried about my situation come the fall. The rejection slowly ate away at my self confidence concerning my acceptance at City University London, especially since I had that panic a few weeks back. From the realization I might not be going to grad school, to the blow of a rejection I have realized a couple of things. I want this degree, and the career that comes with it more than anything. At first I was most excited about the prospect of moving to London, or Toronto, places that I have dreamed about moving to for years. I forgot that this was all about my education. After the scare of not going I remembered what it really was about. Education and then career. I'm not going into academia like many of the other people here, but in Canada a Master's degree is worth it's weight in Tuition. Since I feared rejection from both schools so badly I began on my quest to learn the content I needed to succeed in the career of my choice, not an easy feat when you only possess about half the skills required (for those of you curious, I want to be a UX Designer/Researcher eventually becoming a freelance consultant in the field, something where I only possess the knowledge of Human Factors, and no design experience . . . about 50% of what I need to get a job). I could do it alone, but I'd rather go to school. It has been a whirlwind of a month, to say the least, my emotions have been all over the place in regards to this grad school thing. Additionally I am dealing with the repercussions of graduating during an economic downturn. I haven't worked for 3 months now and my bank account is running on empty. Thankfully my parents were more than happy to have me move back into their home, even if I am stuck in the now spare bedroom (which used to belong to my sister) because my room has been transferred to someone else. The situation has all culminated to this morning, when I got my long awaited UNCONDITIONAL ACCEPTANCE to City University London. The financial fears have long been dealt with, and I've already paid a deposit on a place to live so I needn't worry about that anymore either. AS of 12:30 today I began working on gathering my things for a Tier 4 VISA to the UK, and applying for OSAP (Ontario Student Assistance Program) once again - the fifth time in my life I've completed this task. The next couple of weeks are going to be filled with embassy and bank visits, and browsing the many websites which allow me to search for the cheapest possible flight to Heathrow. I'm feeling like a huge bundle of nerves from the excitement, and fear. But mostly I'm glad I don't have to keep trying to learn design on my own - I'll have a well versed professor helping me out in a couple of months. Now, to start brainstorming on a dissertation topic. Thank you to everyone who has followed along on this journey with me. I am so glad for all your kind words, and encouragement, as well as helpful advice and ideas for what I could do if I didn't make it in. This community is so wonderful and I am so glad to have found it to help me out.
  9. Can anyone tell me?

    It depends on your student Visa. Fuzzy mentioned the restrictions on a US Visa, and I know the UK Visa is similar. You can work 20 hours a week during school, and then 40 hours during holidays and on internships, but it is not restricted to only on campus work.
  10. Canadian universities are very stringent with their GPA requirements when it comes to applying to grad school. Through my applications I felt as though they didn't even bother looking at the rest of my application because my GPA was not what they wanted. Even in a not very competitive program. UK and European universities tend to be a bit more forgiving, looking at the whole package rather than just the GPA. If you're a well rounded application you'll stand a chance of getting in. I firmly believe my very passionate Statement of Purpose was what got me my acceptance in the UK.
  11. Living alone or with roommate(s)?

    None of the poll options apply to me. I am living in my own en-suite room in university halls designated for postgraduate students. No roommates, but I'm sharing a kitchen with several other people.
  12. Who drinks coffee?

    I'm at your pre-qutting Diet Coke stage, although I only drink 2-3 12 oz cans a day. But I know the feeling of cravings. I don't drink coffee myself, and I am too lazy to make tea as often as I would like to drink it. I'm hoping doing my graduate studies in England will help me get more into tea drinking and less into soda drinking.
  13. If you can I would recommend waiting a couple of months for the cell phone plan. The law changed recently so that 3 year contract plans are now illegal, but it doesn't come into effect until December 2nd. I don't have any suggestions for what to do until that time, but it'll be easier on you not having a 3 year contract - believe me.
  14. HCI - Anyone else?

    It is a little under 12 months, but not by much. I start courses on September 30th 2013 and finish my dissertation by August 31st 2014.
  15. how often do you plan to go home?

    Right in Central London, in halls. It's a tad expensive, but much easier than sending a deposit to a stranger for an apartment I hadn't seen.
  16. Ontarians Abroad

    I'm also really curious about this, anyone have any information?
  17. how often do you plan to go home?

    My program is only 1 year so I'm just going to go home at the end of it, otherwise I'll spend my money and holidays travelling elsewhere. I doubt I'll ever get a chance to be in Europe or England for an extended amount of time ever again so I'm taking advantage of it even though there will be the sacrifice of not seeing my family.
  18. Grad Schools offering AEROSPACE Engineering

    Carleton University in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada has an Aerospace Engineering program. http://graduate.carleton.ca/programs/aerospace-engineering-masters/ Other Canadian schools may as well. Tuition tends to be less than American schools, but Canadian schools are frequently sticklers for their grade requirements for admission.
  19. The sub-3.0 GPAs ACCEPTANCE thread

    Yes, definitely. Thankfully they looked beyond my conditions at the school I applied to. The UK seems to be more forgiving than Canadian schools.
  20. The sub-3.0 GPAs ACCEPTANCE thread

    I posted a little while ago saying my acceptance was pending on my grades. I didn't meet my grades, I was a little below, but I still got an unconditional acceptance. I am convinced it was based on my statement of interest. Sometimes passion gets you everywhere. Good luck everyone else!
  21. I Was Never Really In Anyway

    Anyone who has seen my most recent post on the forum knows that I did not meet what I thought my conditional acceptance average requirement was. After speaking with someone on admissions and going over my acceptance again at 3am I realized I was never going to go to City University. For some reason I had placed the idea that the B+ was only for fourth year in my head. It's not. I needed a B+ average over the course of my entire degree to meet the condition. This is the thing that prevented me from applying to universities in Canada; the high GPA requirement. I applied to schools in England in hopes of bypassing this and I thought I had after receiving an acceptance letter from City University London a mere 3 weeks after I had applied. It was even before my letters of recommendation were in. Alas, I was wrong. Unless, I get some amazing exceptional email about how they want me anyway, despite my shortcomings, I am not going to London in the Fall. I will probably not even be going to grad school unless I finally hear back from University of Toronto. But, like I said, I am in the sub-3.00 GPA group; acceptances are few and far between (so I've heard). I have no desire to continue desperately take courses at the University where I've done my undergrad, and I've already taken the majority of the Psychology courses offered and I don't really have the perquisites to take things in different topics. Maybe it's not a good idea to be making such a bold statement right now about my future due to how low this had made me feel, but the way I feel at this moment is that I am never going to apply for my Master's again nor am I ever going to get a Master's degree.
  22. I Was Never Really In Anyway

    Yeah, once your GPA is bad every new good grade becomes worth less and less which is incredibly frustrating. I wish I had known this from the get go rather than at the last year because I would have been a bit more careful with the classes I took that I knew I wasn't going to do well in, but wanted to take anyway. I'm already aware that I need to think about what to do next. I do not want to be an academic already, the Master's program I am going into would be vocational over academically inclined. Unfortunately I haven't been able to find other options for what I could do to prepare careerwise other than private online training, which I am unsure if it would actually be useful or not. I'll need to look deeper if I do not get in. Also, it's not really my father's prejudices limiting me, it is the high cost of education and living in the US. I can't afford to live there, and probably won't ever be able to thanks to health problems (which cause me no problems here in Canada, but would be a serious problem in a place without public healthcare).
  23. Canadian Universities' Ranking 2013

    Macleans is biased, they give bad ratings to Universities who do not participate in the ranking system. I believe the Times Higher Education Ranking is probably the best regarded ranking system; at least, most Universities brag about their ranking on this site more than their Maclean's Ranking. The top three on this ranking are generally considered the best schools in Canada anyway, although I have heard that McGill is slipping. Queen's is a lot of talk for their undergrads, I don't know much about their research levels. I know the University of Ottawa (my alma mater) is attempting to make leaps upwards in their research capacity. I really have no idea how comprehensive these ranking systems are though.
  24. Keep a Word, Drop a Word

    counter culture
  25. Good Sign, Omen or Hallucination - All Are Welcome!

    One application under review for 3 months now, final grades went out today so I will hopefully know in the next 2 weeks. Another conditional acceptance, but the condition wasn't met. They said they would look at my application again and decide then. I initially was conditionally accepted based on my statement of interest within 2 weeks of my application, the condition being I have a certain average and I provide 2 letters of recommendation (letters were received last month, grades will be sent this week). Hopefully all this put together leads to an unconditional acceptance despite my bad GPA.