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Found 95 results

  1. I’m applying to a mix of Ph.D. programs, about half of which are in Philosophy and the rest are in English/Literature. I imagine these programs will likely emphasize the Analytical Writing score more than other sections of the GRE, even though they will also expect a very good Verbal score. I took the GRE 4 years ago before applying to Master’s programs and received 161V/149Q/4.5AW. After retaking the GRE last month, I received 159V/147Q/5.5AW. (I'm quite devastated that a month of studying didn't improve my V & Q scores.) I am tempted to submit the newest scores, as they will have a recent date and will demonstrate, along with my Writing Sample, the strength of my writing skills. However, I would be devastated if rejected from programs because the Verbal score from that retake is below 85th percentile. Which scores would you suggest I submit? Would it make sense in my case to submit both scores, or do you think that might hinder my chances? Thank you in advance for any help you can provide.
  2. Oxford MSt programme?

    Hello! I was wondering if there were any Oxford students who are doing a MSt programme. I was curious what the personal statements should be like/contain and if I should reach out to the faculty in the programme now (I am entering my final year of my undergrad). Also, I am interested in applying for the English literature (1900-present) programme specifically - if anyone is in that one, what has their experience been like? Pros and cons? Etc.?
  3. I'm having a bit of a dilemma with my pursuit of a second Master of Arts degree. Let me preface this by saying that while a second Master's degree may not seem like a good idea to some, since my first Master of Arts degree is in Museum Studies, the second degree would be complimentary to it in some way. My issue is that I need to attend my second Master of Arts degree as a distance learning/online program, as I do not have access to these programs at the local university and cannot afford to move at this moment and am working a full-time job now. Therefore, the dilemma I face is the following: do I apply to multiple graduate schools in the different fields I am considering as my second Master of Arts and attend the one that I feel is best suited to my goals, or should I focus solely on what I know will help the end goal the most? The issue is this: my local university does not have Classics, Classical archaeology, ancient history, or art history offered at the graduate level here, and those are the areas in which I desire to combine into an interdisciplinary PhD (such as the NYU ISAW or UPenn's AAMW program), but I am seeking out a terminal MA at the moment because I am not able to move yet. I have found that Villanova University offers their Classical Studies MA online but it's synchronous, so I would have to attend at the offered course time, which is doable but challenging. Thus far, that is the only university that I have found that offers a program that would be competitive enough to gain me entry into an eventual PhD. My question is: Should I apply to the Classical Studies by itself or should I apply to Villanova, but also for the second MA programs I am considering, such as Art History, History, Library Sciences (which would help as I work in a museum and often collaborate with the research library, so it would be relevant but not to my end goal of a PhD), and/or English/Creative Writing MFA - it's a hard call because I know it makes me look like I don't have one concentration or focus, but as I will have a Master's in Museum Studies soon, any of these degrees would pair well (I know many will tell me to take the MFA out, which I have considered anyway, since I could always pursue that later if I felt like it). The issue with the art history and history options, is, of course, not many online programs will allow you to focus on ancient history. I know that there are a decent schools in the UK that would be able to offer this (such as the University of Wales Trinity Saint David), but I cannot afford to pay that much out of pocket, so for now I am looking into American schools only. I think the root of my issue is worrying that I won't get into Villanova and then not know what to do with myself if I don't, since there's not that many other options. Help?
  4. I'm planning to apply for a PhD in English (Literature) and I'm wondering about the foreign language component. All of the schools I'd most like to apply to require 1 or usually 2 foreign languages examined by the end of the second year or so. Yale also mentions on its admission requirements that they want 'preparation in languagessufficient to satisfy the language requirement' and Harvard says that 'While there are no specific prerequisites for admission, a strong language background helps to strengthen the application'. None of the others seem to mention languages at all in their admissions sections, only in the details of what's required during the course. Does anyone know how important the language background is relative to other elements of the application? My personal situation: I have a UK A-Level in Latin and a GCSE in German. I've been working on my German online (duolingo etc.) but I have no new qualifications to show evidence of progress. I did an informal assessment at the Goethe Insitut in London, and they reckon I could probably handle a B1 exam, which the internet reckons is about equivalent to a UK AS-level, halfway between GCSE and A-Level, but I don't know if it really counts for as much on an application. If I did take the exam, it might show that my German is ongoing and improving, but I have relatively little time to prepare for the exam, it's alarmingly close to the application deadline, so if my results don't come on time it might count for nothing anyway, and I think it might be a better use of time to work on my writing samples/preparing for GREs etc. Any advice would be very much appreciated. Thanks a lot.
  5. Does anyone know which flagship schools have a really strong emphasis on theory/cultural studies? I'm only a literature person via my interest in theory. Specifically Foucault, Derrida, Lyotard, Frankfurt School of Marxism, Zizek, and/or Jodi Dean. I have yet to find one bio of someone saying they are an expert on foucault...
  6. Early Modern Lit PhD

    Hi guys, I am looking for some advice about applying to PhD programs. I don't want to go to schools simply because of their reputation or name, I really want to apply to places that will be the best fit for me and my studies. I am interested in Early Modern literature, Animal Studies, and the Early Modern drama (specifically the politics of the stage). Does anyone have any ideas about what programs would best suit that?
  7. Hello! I am currently in the process of sorting out what I would like to go to graduate school for. (I know, I know.) I would like to go back for some combination of literature, media, the environment, dystopia, and possibly internet subcultures but am not totally sure what cohesive form all of those would take (and, moreover, if all of them will make the final cut). One thing I *do* know is that I would like my ultimate focus to be on the written word. I was an English undergrad (and absolutely loved it!) but am wondering if my desire to stray beyond specific literature periods and into more digital materials means I should look into less formal programs.
  8. British survey respondents needed

    Hi, Could spare 15 minutes to help me with my survey? I’m a student on a teacher training programme in Germany, and for my degree thesis in English linguistics, I’m researching dark humour in the British TV comedy The League of Gentlemen. You’re not required to know anything about The League of Gentlemen, you’re going going to rate a couple video clips. If you don’t want to that’s fine, too. Thanks! Link: https://www.soscisurvey.de/humourdiscourse2017/ Password: laugh
  9. · A few weeks ago, I was asked to talk to first-year M.A. students about the Ph.D. application process. I prepared a list of what I figure to be key elements, and I figure it might be useful to many on GC who are preparing to go down this path as well. I'm quite certain that some of these points are purely subjective and open to discussion / debate, but having gone through the process a couple of times now, these items ring true based on my experiences and observations. ---------------- Others have surely told you about the state of the industry, so I’m just going to assume that you already know the “there are no jobs” spiel. · Others have also surely told you about how relatively difficult it is to get into a Ph.D. program—I have yet to hear of a program that admits over 10% of applicants. o Because of this, if you are committed to applying to Ph.D. programs, I strongly recommend considering applying to at least ten. Even though merit is a critical part of determining who gets in, there is a very real element of “luck of the draw” which pure numbers will help to mitigate. · With that in mind, NOW is a good time to get started on your program research · Your first consideration when entering the process should be to determine what era you would like to study, and ideally a general sense of methodologies you want to employ. These elements will be reflected in the two most important components of your application: the Statement of Purpose (or SoP), and your Writing Sample (WS). · Some basics: o The SoP and WS should ideally work together o When thinking about potential areas of study, avoid proposing transatlantic or transhistorical concepts: admissions committees are still very much set up by period, and your application should be easily sorted into a field group (i.e. you’re clearly a Romanticist, or you’re clearly a 20th century Americanist). o GRE scores, GPA, and other elements are important, but remember that the things you can control the most at this stage are the WS and SoP. o Given the importance of these two documents, you will want to get as many eyes on them as possible as soon as possible. § My SoP and WS were read and commented on by at least five professors and several fellow students, and ultimately went through at least six rounds of revision each—several of them top-to-bottom revisions. · There are multiple factors to consider when looking at programs. Some of the most important include: o Are there multiple professors actively working in your chosen field § I personally used a “rule of three”—if a program had three professors with significant research overlap with my interests, I would consider it. § By “active” I mean that you should be able to find publication credits from within the past five years—they need to be in touch with current scholarship. o What level of financial support do they offer—not just the annual funding, but whether they fund in summer, and how many years of funding are guaranteed o What courses have they offered in the past? What courses are they offering in the fall? o What is the teaching load like, and how do they prepare you for that load? o So-called rankings matter to a certain extent, but remember that those rankings are almost completely arbitrary. USNews rankings are helpful as a list of all programs offering Ph.D.s in English…and a very, very general sense of the strong programs vs. the less strong. But FIT with your interests trumps all. § (E.g. the Strode program at U of A is highly regarded, even though U of A itself is somewhat less so) o Location and cost of living. A 20k stipend will get you a lot further in Lincoln, Nebraska than in New York. And elements like small town vs. large city, cold vs. warm climate etc. are all perfectly valid factors when looking at programs. You’ll have to live in this place for 4-6 years, after all! · A few quick and random tips: o It can be helpful to contact professors ahead of time to determine research fit etc., but it can also be quite valuable to contact current grad students to get a sense of the program and the environment. o Remember that an important part of professionalization in a Ph.D. program is publication. More than anything, this means that before you go down the road toward application, give some serious thought to whether or not your writing and research inclinations have that kind of potential. And whether or not that’s something you really want to deal with at all. o Also remember that teaching is a huge part of your job, and always will be. If you don’t enjoy teaching (or the prospect of teaching), you’d better really love the other components of your position, because there’s not going to be any getting away from it for many, many years. o It might go without saying, but be very courteous in all of your communications with professors and other graduate students. And that courtesy should be sincere! o Consider the total cost of applications: application fees average about $75, sending GRE scores is $27 (more if you need the subject test), and if you have multiple transcripts, that can tack on another $10. In other words, each application will likely be upward of $100. Given that I recommend applying to at least ten programs, you’re looking at a commitment of over $1000. There ARE fee waivers you can find, however. o Forums like GradCafe are a good way to socialize with fellow applicants, and commiserate with people in the same situation. Just remember to take all advice you see on those forums with a grain of salt. o Finally, there are NO SAFETY SCHOOLS. Just to reiterate, rankings are arbitrary, and almost every program gets ten times as many applicants as they can admit (let alone fund). As a result, you want to look at the best overall fit for you.
  10. Yo, Two things: 1. I'm having trouble finding people doing what I want to do. My goal is to apply to Comp Lit programs (F 2018), but I'm not sure I'm competitive or whatever. I have a reading knowledge of Russian, German, Biblical Greek, and Biblical Hebrew (I feel like most programs want more than a reading knowledge, but I'm finding it hard to get further w/o spending much $$$). I went to a whatever Christian liberal arts college, got a B.A. in English, minor in Theology, 3.75 GPA, some good papers, good recommenders, albeit unknown. I want to look mostly at biblical, theological, and philosophical influences on 19thC Anglophone and Russian lit, mostly novels. Do any schools, scholars, or programs come to mind where that would even make sense? 2. Who's doing anything similar? Anything comparative between ancient and modern(ish) influences? Anyone doing bible stuff in a lit dept?
  11. Advice on English Ph.D.

    Hi all! I'm hoping for some advice regarding the strengths of various graduate programs in English. I plan to apply to Ph.D. programs in the next cycle so as to begin in Fall 2018. I'm interested in studying the confluence of trauma and postcolonial discourses, particularly as they pertain to cultural memory studies, genocide studies, and American Indian studies. I have a list of programs that seem like a reasonably good fit, but I'm unsure if I would actually find appropriate coursework and mentorship there. Any advice would be much appreciated, particularly if you have insight into a particular department or program! Thanks in advance! Penn Johns Hopkins Princeton Rutgers Cornell Emory UW - Madison UC Santa Cruz Illinois UC San Diego UVA Michigan
  12. I thought there might be some benefit in creating a forum where (1) people can post if they are declining an offer, and (2) where people can post where they are wait-listed. Sure, there is no guarantee the wait-listed person will get the spot, but it's still nice to know, right? Or we can put anything related to wait-lists here.
  13. How do I make myself the most competitive English PhD candidate possible? I'm currently pursuing an MFA, but I'm considering getting my PhD in either Lit or Rhet/Comp in order to better my job prospects. Of course, all the writing I've been doing for the past two years has been creative, and I only have poetry publications to my name. I plan to take off a few years between the MFA and the (potential) PhD. What could I do in that time to improve my application? Publish scholarly papers? Audit a literature class?
  14. I have heard back from every English MA program except for the University of Washington: Seattle. Does anyone know when they generally make decisions?
  15. https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2017/03/20/suit-alleges-ohio-u-sat-complaints-professors-sexual-misconduct-decade?utm_content=bufferba9dc&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook&utm_campaign=IHEbuffer (This is a link to more info from Inside Higher Ed about the charges being brought against the alleged harasser- Prof. Andrew Escobedo.) https://www.ohio.edu/cas/about/directories/profiles.cfm?profile=escobedo (This is a link to his profile on the OU site.) I would encourage grad students, particularly female grad students, to be wary of OU's English department in light of these allegations. It looks like he is in the process of being fired, as the Inside Higher Ed article states: "Ohio has already moved to fire the tenured full professor and says its processes ensure that all complaints are 'investigated thoroughly and handled appropriately.'" Nonetheless, a department that would allow this type of alleged conduct to go on for a decade is one to be leery of. (I highly doubt they would be in the process of firing him had the allegations been found to be untrue in the subsequent investigation.)
  16. Let's say everything else about the program is a good fit. Top tier program, lots of great professors, close to home, good funding, good city -- but the program has terrible job placement. Would a poor record of job placement be a deal breaker for you? What if your alternative is a program that's less ideal in terms of funding (although, still perfectly livable), location and fit (slightly less ideal), but much better with placement? Should we first and foremost consider job placement when choosing between programs that are a "good" fit?
  17. UW Madison

    Anyone on here going to the Welcome Days? I booked my flight last week and will be bringing my partner.
  18. I got into my second choice and they gave me a great package. I think I am getting accepted into my first choice program, but waitlisted for funding and won't find out until April 15th. My second choice wants a decision on the TA-ship by March 15th (next week!!!) What do I do???? Any advice is welcome. Trying not to make myself sick over this.
  19. Oxford MSt Application Results?

    I know the Oxford website says decisions are made and sent out 8-10 weeks after the deadline. Since the Jan. 20th (2017) deadline, that would put decisions around March 17th-31st. I'm wondering if anyone has heard any additional information regarding Oxford results and, additionally, what departments/ strands your application was for. Thank you!
  20. Anyone on here applied with a postcolonial sub-field? Where did you apply? Here's my list: Columbia (anyone get an interview here? idk if they are doing interviews for PoCo) Princeton Cornell UW Madison Indiana Bloomington UCLA NYU
  21. Does anyone know if Penn or Temple are starting to notify of acceptances / rejections for their programs? I've seen smatterings of updates thus far, but nothing too substantial. Hope everyone is doing alright during the waiting process!
  22. Should I Do the PhD?

    I've been accepted into the PhD in English Language & Literature at Queen's U. My dilemma is... I'm unsure if academia is the path for me. I've become much more interested in journalism as of late. My questions, basically, are as follows: Would a PhD be of any use in a journalistic career? Would it be a good idea to accept the PhD offer, to try it for a semester/year? If I did end up leaving the program after one year, is that incredibly bad form? Would I be better served rejecting the offer and applying to journalism schools for next year? Do I even need any additional schooling (I'm in the midst of completing an MA in English), or am I better off attempting to get an internship/job in journalism immediately? Any help is appreciated. Thanks.
  23. Hey all, Congrats to those who received acceptances this go around. I never thought I'd find myself among you, yet here I am faced with the challenge of picking one off the top shelf. My proposed research area is 20th/21st century postmodern lit -- lots of experience with magical realism, afrofuturism, historical fiction that seeks to rework the master narrative of 1492. Feminist, Poststructuralist and Postcolonial theory is pretty essential to my work. I'm looking for a program that's super interdisciplinary, allowing me to work in the realm of cultural studies, critical race studies, and media studies. I need coursework that's theory heavy and a department that's not afraid to ask those metaphysical questions that push the boundaries of the discipline. Now, it seems to me neither NYU nor Cornell are afraid to play in this territory, but who does it best? According to USNews' 2013 rankings, Cornell is top 10 while NYU is top 20. Does this matter? Cornell is Ivy and NYU is honorary Ivy. Thinking of the job market, do either of these positions and distinctions hold weight when pinned against one another? In terms of practical matters, NYU's funding is better. The McCracken Fellowship has to be one of the best fellowship offers out there. $26,000+ and an additional $22,000 for those who choose to teach. I live in NYC, and if I stay in NYC, I won't have to pay rent. I'll basically save up my fellowship funds, and in 5 years, buy a house. Cornell's Sage Fellowship offers $25,000+ a year with 4 years of added summer support, and Teaching Assistantships during years 2, 3 and 5. Of course, I'd have to live in Ithaca, which is 4+ hours away from NYC, pay rent, and be away from my support system. It seems to me that NYU is the more practical option, but Cornell romances me. Cornell English actively seeks to push the envelope. (Although, a website communicates only so much truth. Is there anyone out there who can speak to this point?) Being outside of the city is also a temptation. NYC STRESSES ME OUT, but because it is NYC the resources are infinite. I just have to be willing to get up every day and travel an hour and a half to get there. Though, I'm so jaded by it all that I'm afraid I won't even bother to hit NYPL to get that one book that can be found nowhere else. Ultimately, however, I'm not interested in making unnecessary sacrifices. If Cornell isn't worth it, then Cornell isn't worth it. I'll go to NYU, which is an awesome program, do my research, collect my funds, graduate, buy a house, and *maybe* get a job to pay for it. The wisdom of the experienced is MUCH appreciated. Upvotes for all.
  24. Hi all, I have posted here before on other issues (thank you so much for all of your comments, by the way!) so some may remember me–I'm an undergrad junior in the middle of a leap from medicine to English literature. One of my chief concerns is my GPA... I'm majoring in the sciences, as it had been drilled into me by my parents–since middle school, if not earlier–that I must become a doctor. Now, however, I'm realizing all too late that medicine is not at all where my passions lie, and I would rather pursue a graduate degree in English lit. Here's the thing, though: I performed decently well in my first year, but in my second year of undergrad I got involved in a lot of extracurriculars, my science classes suddenly became much more challenging, and I suffered from my time management issues quite terribly (GPA was 2.62 in the first semester and 3.08 in the second). This was due entirely to my poor performance in courses like Calculus or Orgo or Neuroscience. Since that year, I've gotten over my time management failures and improved drastically (3.84 GPA last semester, looking to be similar this semester as well). I've spoken to some of my advisors but keep getting different input – some say since the low GPA is due to my science courses and thus won't be weighed as heavily by admission committees, others say it looks too bad nevertheless, and my chances at a top PhD program are slim. I had some hope in the beginning, for I have always done well in my English courses and rationalized the low GPA as, to some degree, irrelevant to these subjects... and I planned to also pursue an MA first, to give me more experience (since I wasn't an English major) and dilute my poor undergrad performance with my grad experience... but now after following several threads here and seeing the admission statistics, I'm losing hope completely... Students are applying with GPAs in the 3.90s and being rejected... I guess I'm just looking for some input. Would the MA really not be enough to give me a little push upward? To help counter that one awful year of undergrad? Should I just give up hope for any shot at one of the top PhD programs? I can't even express how much I regret that one year... I know this sounds incredibly melodramatic, but it truly feels like it's beginning to ruin my life (apologies for the extra long post)
  25. Hey, new user here! I applied to MA programs in English, and I am starting to hear back. What I'm wondering now (to decide how much to factor it into my decision) is how much the name of my MA school will matter on eventual PhD applications. Obviously I haven't even heard back from many of my programs, but I have already received a tempting offer from Salem State University. It's not exactly a "prestigious" school, but I like the program and the area. I'm slightly ahead of myself, I know. But I just don't want to find out that good PhD programs are going to write me off if they don't know my MA institution. If I (hopefully) get a solid GPA and have a strong application otherwise, will it be a factor that PhD programs weigh heavily?