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Found 138 results

  1. Ok, it is different everywhere in the planet, but we sort of have to do it. Those of us who sat for comps, let's pass on our tips, what worked for us and what didn't, for upcoming fellow exam-takers. Some guiding questions (not binding, of course) Can you briefly describe the format of your exam? (No need to name school) How did you organize your fields? How did you organize your notes? What have you learned in the process? What was useless/didn't work? My two cents Format: Three fields (one modern, one colonial, one of my choice), 24hours open book in the span of ten days, plus oral exam. Roughly 120 books per field. Fields: The first two were given. For the third field I framed it as my theoretical framework for my dissertation. It was tough, because I read theory and history from different places, but totally worth it. Notes: I used OneNote. I created one copybook for "exams", and there I had my three fields sections. Each book was one page. In my notes I included table of contents, reviews, summary, and general notes. Not for every book, of course, haha. Outcome: I read in a forum that we need to imagine exams as going to a conference, dropping by a panel and being able to have a conversation. That was very helpful for me (I am sorry I don't have the quote, I promise to look for it). My committee also saw exams as that: the opportunity to learn about fields (extensive coverage) and engaging in a conversation with someone outside your geographical field but within your thematic one. Also, exams are a test of character. I focused on not gaining weight (I gained it afterwards), but I was very stressed and feeling that my life swirled around something so trivial as exams. I mean, really, there are more important things in life than exams. That was very frustrating but I could talk about it with my advisors. I learned a lot about myself, as naive as it may sound. Negative results: I feel I forgot everything. It is good I have notes and I wish I had started studying earlier. I am not a very good self-disciplinary person and exams pushed me to be so. It was painful. Start with working habits super early, like the moment you come to grad school. Really, they will pay off. I mean, I have to write a prospectus now and a dissertation later on, so good work habits are never extra work. Additional note: ASK ASK ASK!!!!! Ask for advice from EVERYONE in your department. It helps a lot!!!!!! Hope this helps a little! AP
  2. Hi all! So I just recently graduated with my first masters degree in library science. It was exciting and I finished with great grades - 3.82 CGPA on a 4.0 scale. However, my ultimate passions are history and classics. I did a double major for them in my undergrad. In fact, I want to go back to do a second masters in classics or history (in 2 years as I would like to work and earn some work experience and money first so I can get married) and probably get a PhD after that. The problem is, my undergrad CGPA was mediocre - 3.14 on a 4.3 scale. I had an average of about 3.4 in the last 2 years but I really bombed the first year and a half. The program I want to apply to requires at least a 3.3 CGPA to get into the classics MA program, but I was wondering if having a really strong CGPA in my first masters will make up for my less than stellar undergrad CGPA. Has anyone experienced something similar? Thanks in advance!
  3. Hi all, I've applied to history PhD programs a few times at this point and have been rejected from my top choices. I'm now finishing up my master's, but I think my writing sample is the weakest part of my application. Any advice on what makes a great history writing sample? Also, does anyone have any suggestions on where to get it edited? Thank you.
  4. I'm fairly new to grad cafe so sorry if I'm doing this wrong but I need some advice. I'm an aspiring history professor but I only have one language under my belt (French) and know that I definitely need to pick up Latin before applying to Ph.D. programs. I also have an average undergraduate background and would like to improve my chances of getting into a top 30 history Ph.D. program. That being said, I realize that some of the programs I'm applying to will be a reach. I'm looking into getting my MA in either history or medieval studies. I'll detail some of my academic background below Some of my research interests: Medieval and early modern Europe, Women/gender/sexuality (this is the most prominent), Historical theology/church history, historical perceptions of witchcraft and magic, history of literature and culture (specifically Arthurian studies, folklore, and fairytales), female monarchs GPA: 3.58 (with a strong upward trend and a 3.85 history GPA). Other: haven't taken the GRE yet, currently completing an undergraduate honors thesis relevant to what I want to study in graduate school, participated in a study abroad research program which excavated medieval ruins in Italy TLDR: I'm looking into history and medieval studies MA programs and would like feedback if anyone has knowledge about the reputation of these programs or can recommend others. History MAs: -Baylor University -University of Missouri (although the POI I'm looking into doesn't seem to be taking students at the moment) -University of New Mexico -Syracuse -Clemson -Colorado at Boulder -UNC Charlotte -Tufts -Claremont -U Chicago MAPSS (I've heard so many mixed reviews on this program) -St. Andrews (also looking into other UK programs but I'm not sure I can afford it) Medieval Studies: -U Conn -Fordham -Colombia -SMU -St. Andrews
  5. Hi everyone, This might be early to ask given that I am just finishing second year of undergrad but I just want to know if there is anything I should do now or soon to strengthen my grad application to Oxford and Cambridge for their MSt and MPhil in history. I also have a bunch of questions as well! So I currently study history and minor in political science at a highly reputable Canadian university (if that matters). I have a 3.8 GPA right now and I expect I can maintain this if not raise it a bit by the time I graduate. I don't really have an history related ECs or work experience. In terms of awards, I have been on the Dean's List every year so far and received a huge entrance scholarship to the university I am currently at. Also got a few small monetary scholarships thanks to my GPA. Although it isn't related closely to my historical period of study, I also do have some training in ancient languages (Latin and Greek). I haven't really narrowed my historical interests just yet. I am mostly interested in British history from the 1800s to the 1990s. I plan on using the summer of my 4th year to apply so that I have lots of time. I have some questions below! 1. Do I need research experience to be a competitive applicant? By that I mean publications or to work under a prof and help them with their research. 2. How important is it to do a senior thesis? Okay so I have been told that in giving their conditional offers, Oxford often specifies a grade you have to get on the dissertation. But what if I did not or cannot do one (for any reason)? A related question is, how "original" does this senior thesis have to be? Brand new perspectives/research? 3. What would you say is the most important part of the application? LOR? GPA? Personal Statement/Research Proposal? Writing samples? 4. Do they heavily consider the GPA in your history major or do they care way more about your cGPA? 5. Given my research interests are still very wide, is it a dumb idea to look at some of the history faculty at Oxbridge and tailor my interests to theirs? Like, you probably don't want to get heavily invested in studying medieval depictions of the Black Death if there are no faculty with similar research interests. That's it for now I think. Thanks!
  6. nycBx

    Vanderbilt 2019

    Is anyone accepting a Vanderbilt offer? Or anyone who is already studying there? I just want some feedback/opinion on their History program as I am contemplating their offer.
  7. I'm in 3rd year and looking to do a history MA at Oxbridge or one of the Ivies. I was wondering if they look at your course load in admissions? Will they penalize you if you took a class less for a semester or two? I took some classes in the summer and as a result I took one less class then the usual. I was thinking of doing it again next year but wanted to check if that would cause some problems. Thanks everyone!
  8. Has anybody heard from William and Mary? I checked the response search and there aren't any history PhD entries. I have one acceptance but WM is my top choice and I want to hear from them first.
  9. Some schools never seem to have anyone post that they received an interview request.
  10. I am looking to apply to MA programs in the museums studies realm, but the funding has been pretty lacking thus far. I know there are programs out there with assistantships, fellowships, or other sources of funding, but I have not been able to dig any up. I am flexible to travel anywhere really, so that is not a barrier. If anyone could point me in the right direction or give their opinion that would be wonderful. I have found amazing topics on Grad Cafe regarding schools with funding for other programs, but I have not found any great topics on museum studies.
  11. Hi all, I thought I would start a new thread since last year's was created about this time a year ago. (Amazing how fast a year flies by!!!) A little introduction - I'm a longtime lurker with a few years of museum experience and several presentations under my belt. I'll be targeting MA programs in the history of medicine as well as MD programs. I look forward to meeting everyone!
  12. Hey! For those who were asked to interview with their POI for Yale's history PhD, had you spoken with your POI before submitting the application? (I spoke to my POI a lot before submission, and am wondering if I didn't get asked to interview because a) I've already talked to them a bunch, or b) I'm not a competitive candidate for the program) Thanks!
  13. I am looking to apply to MA programs in the museums studies realm, but the funding has been pretty lacking thus far. I know there are programs out there with assistantships, fellowships, or other sources of funding, but I have not been able to dig any up. I am flexible to travel anywhere really, so that is not a barrier. If anyone could point me in the right direction or give their opinion that would be wonderful. I have found amazing topics on Grad Cafe regarding schools with funding for other programs, but I have not found any great topics on museum studies.
  14. Hello, I am applying for 2019 MA in History at U of T. Is it acceptable to go over the word limit for a 500 statement of interest to 700 ? I have been trying really really hard to bring my word count down but I find it so hard to explain my background, my motivation and my thesis topic in 500 words. Just wondering if its a big NO NO to go over the word limit or generally acceptable ? Thanks in advance,
  15. Hi there! Just my 2 cents I'm an international applicant (nowadays rushing to finish all writing samples, SOPs...in short everything!) in Japanese History Anyone in the same field? Where are you sending your application to?
  16. Hi, I just finished my master degree and I'm considering apply for the DAAD short-term research grant hoping that I could research in some German archives. So, I need some advice from those with relevant experiences. According to the DAAD's notice, applicants are required for the confirmations from Doktorvater/-mutter(academic advisor) and the host institution. Following is the exact statement "Letter confirming supervision by an academic adviser in Germany, which refers to the applicant's proposal and confirms that the host institute will provide a workplace" I think this "supervision" means the case in which someone researches in labs, especially in the fields of engineering or natural sciences. But I don't think I would need advice or a workplace while doing my research because most I have to do will be find, read and collect primary sources in the archives. For historical researches, how should I prepare those 'confirmations'?
  17. Hello all, I've gotten myself into a bit of a bind, and I could use some advice. My name is Patrick. I'm a 23-year-old, underemployed, miserable gas station attendant. I graduated with distinction in history and archaeology from the University of Virginia in 2017. I barely remember how I got to this point, but I know I'm unhappy with how things have turned out. Following several months of post-graduation unemployment, during which time I had lived as a homeless freegan in Maine, I took a job as a history teacher at a shamelessly fraudulent for-profit private school chain called Fusion Academy in Washington, DC. I survived for a few months, but couldn't stand its toxic work environment and resigned in disgust. I then fled my parents' house in Fairfax, VA, for the cornfields of Urbana-Champaign, IL, armed with nothing but a couple thousand dollars in savings and the vague, tentative plan of establishing Illinois residency for in-state tuition purposes before matriculating into their Library and Information Science masters program. In the meantime, needing to pay rent and unable to find meaningful employment with my BA, I have found myself cleaning up vomit at a Circle K a block from my apartment. Here's the thing. I'm having trouble figuring out what exactly my options are for grad school, now that I'm here. For the longest time, I had wanted to pursue a PhD in history, but fulfilling that dream seemed like an increasingly remote possibility when one considers the collapse of my undergraduate honors thesis for mental health reasons, my distaste for teaching, and the larger employment crisis in academia. Failing that, a Masters in LIS seemed like a logical alternative, given my well-documented bibliophilia(/-mania?). That's why I'm in Illinois now, after all. As I learn more, though, I'm pretty sure I could get into the LIS masters at UIUC, the top-ranked in its field in North America, without breaking much of a sweat. They don't even require the GRE. Part of me wonders if getting the LIS rather than a PhD amounts to selling myself short. Part of me wonders if it makes more sense to sell out and get an MBA like all the bootlicking quasi-fascist turdnuggets I went to undergrad with. I earned an undergraduate GPA of 3.78 overall. I don't know my major GPA, but I suppose I could calculate it if pressed. I scored 169 V, 155 Q, and 5.5 AW on the GRE. I'm pretty sure I have (had?) killer recommendation letters, as I held prestigious research assistant positions during undergrad and won a competitive undergraduate research grant to support that thesis I didn't end up finishing for mental health reasons. But my work history since graduation is spotty. Like I said, several months of unemployment, during which time I lived as a homeless freegan in Maine, followed by my stint at Fusion, followed by several more months of unemployment, followed by Circle K. There's a ton of additional complicating factors. I'm happy to answer any questions readers might have. At the moment, I just need guidance from someone who understands the graduate admissions process.
  18. Hi everyone, just my second post in about 3 years, but I am faced with a dilemma. I recently earned my MA in history. For whatever its worth this particular college, per US World and News Report, is ranked #35 in history graduate programs (I know I know for PhDs). My final GPA= 3.85, and while I did not get straight As, professors (from my MA college and outside) told me I had written a "unique" thesis. Since filing my thesis, I've done some part time tutoring and most importantly, a respected professor hired me as a research assistant for his book. One benefit to this is that this professor has served on numerous admissions committees/has been the chair of the dept, so he has looked over numerous drafts of my personal statement/statement of purpose. HERE'S THE POINT: My GRE scores were mediocre. 154 v/139q/4.5 writing. Considering all that information I provided above, how much will this hurt my chances for history PhD programs? I've plunged hundreds of dollars into tutoring (yeah I know...but I want this) and prep material and while I'm only a couple weeks into it, I seem to be doing worst in the verbal section. I know this is an age old excuse but standardized tests just bring out the worst in me. Should I chance it with these scores? I signed up for a Sept. test.. IMPORTANT INFO: i'm not looking to apply to Harvard or anything. But I'm looking at some decent to ok- ranked history programs such as: North Carolina, University of Washington, University of California Santa Cruz, UT Austin, NYU, University of Illinois... I've been freaking out about this all summer. Please someone bring some perspective to this....
  19. Hello, I am considering applying to a doctorate program in history. When I visited the website of the history department of Stanford last year, Edith Sheffer was posted as an associate professor on the website, but now she is introduced as a senior fellow in Institute of European Studies, UC Berkeley. She is not posted on the Berkeley's. I really want to be advised by her later. So, which school should I apply to? Can I mention her as POI when I apply to Stanford? Please give me some tips
  20. Hello Guys, Planning to apply for PhD program in South Asian History, but still confused which Universities have the best Programs and faculty for the field. Opinions and Suggestions are welcome.
  21. Hi everyone! Instead of posting a new topic for every SOP, I decided to make a master post. If anyone would be willing to read my SOPs and give feedback, I would really appreciate it! Harvard - PhD Columbia - PhD Rutgers - PhD UCLA - PhD NYU - PhD George Washington - SOP Indiana - PhD UC Davis - PhD Michigan - PhD
  22. Hello everyone, I am currently an undergraduate student studying History at SUNY Oneonta. My current GPA at SUNY O is 3.93, and I am working for the department chair as a research assistantship (funded work). I have worked as a research assistant for another professor, and I will be working as a teaching assistant next semester. I am also learning Russian and French, and I will be studying abroad in Saint Petersburg. Unfortunately, my academic history is hardly great outside of SUNY Oneonta. I started college when I was 16 at SUNY Delhi. I did 100 level classes with a mix of A's and B's. I started the nursing program there, and the results were poor. I obtained largely C's (some A's and B's but they were online classes). It was an associate degree, and unfortunately in the last semester I obtained two D's, which did not allow me to graduate. I guess I couldn't get my mind to enjoy the nursing like I have the history. With that said I looking for answers and advice. How do schools (PhD in history programs) view my nursing school failures? Even though the GPA is good, does SUNY O, hardly a reknown school, not make it look like a great turn around? What schools would be within my reach? Any response is greatly appreciated!
  23. Hi, I graduated in December with a degree in Entertainment Design & Tech., and it was during my last semester that I realized my passion was really history and the arts. I applied at Rice and Emory (didn't make the cut, surprise!) because my fiancé's company has offices in Houston (where we currently live) and Atlanta. I'm not sure whether I should apply again, look elsewhere, finish the Master's program at UH and then try to find a Ph.D. only program? In the end, I've never had a good academic advisor so I've been making it up as I go. I'm not sure if my application/writing sample/supporting materials are strong enough, or if I should be reaching out to professors. I've never published any papers, so should I attempt that? I should also probably retake the GRE, but I don't do insanely well on timed standardized tests, so I'm not sure it's worth the time or money. In the end, I guess I'm just looking for a way to make myself more competitive, and perhaps clarify some of my confusion. I'd appreciate any thoughts you all might have. Thanks!
  24. Has anyone completed or in in the process of completing their Masters at SOAS in South Asian Studies ? How is the program ? Any thoughts and comments would be appreciated. Is it more politics based ? or history based ? What is the teaching faculty like ? Thinking of applying to this program...
  25. I wrote two introductions for my SOP for Harvard University, both taking a bit of a different approach. These are, of course, rough, and will probably not make it into my SOP without significant editing. My research interests center on the broad intersection of gender and ethnicity in American cities during the twentieth century. I am particularly interested in the way that second-generation immigrant- specifically, Italian, Greek, and Jewish -women were present in the public sphere. Using their involvement in sexuality, fashion, beauty, consumption, and political movements as a focal point, I intend to complicate the current historical narrative around immigrant women, which centers around their productivity. Further, I seek to highlight the attitudinal differences across generations and the place of non-Protestant religions in female life. I have an ancillary interest in the way that American culture and society reacted to these women, paying particular attention to media and cultural texts. Above all, I am interested in the immigrant identity in the second generation and its expression by women. or I am applying to the PhD program in history at Harvard University in order to explore the broad intersection of gender and ethnicity in urban America during the twentieth century. Using sexuality, fashion, beauty, consumption, and involvement in political movements as a focal point, I intend to research the lives of second-generation Italian-, Greek-, and Jewish-American women and the expression of an immigrant identity. I have an ancillary interest in the way that American society reacted to this expression, paying particular attention to media and cultural texts. Any feedback would be much appreciated!
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