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  1. So... my ultimate goal is to attend a PhD program in Creative Writing. This year, I applied to various MFA programs because although I have a Master's degree already it is in Clinical Counseling. So far, I've been accepted to 5 programs, my two favorites being North Carolina Wilmington and the Stonecoast Program in Maine. Former is a full residency program that is considered one of the most innovative programs in the country (but otherwise, I believe it is only a mid-tier program), Stonecoast at Southern Maine U is a top ten low residency program. My questions is this: would it hurt my chances
  2. How would you compare other schools to each other? For example, how would you rank the following Ph.D. in Finance programs: Carnegie Mellon, Michigan Ross, SFI Lausanne, Boston College, UBC, Washington University in St. Louis, HEC Paris, University of Texas at Austin, Ohio State, Cornell, INSEAD, University of Southern California, VGSF, and Stockholm School of Economics. It would be great if you could delineate why
  3. Hello everyone, I've made a few posts on gradcafe that were unsuccessful, probably due to how wordy and niche the questions were.. Hopefully this question is more straightforward/understandable. I was wondering if there's any guideline for getting a sense of a PhD program's strength given that there's often 2 "types" of rankings-- overall ranking and the PhD/field's ranking. Specifically, a school may be well known in a general sense (i.e. Rice or Dartmouth), but are ranked below top 50 for the specific PhD program of interest (i.e. psychology). The reverse can also happen, where a schoo
  4. Hey all, Does rank correlate with placement? by that I am asking if on average does the higher ranking of a program correlate with better placement of its grads? In theory this should be true, right? like the obvious thinking is that the higher ranked a program is, the better placement its grads will have. But then there are cases that I've noticed where top 20 programs have fairly poor placement, or lower ranked schools have pretty high placement, so does it really matter? Also, I realize that you can obviously get great placement even if you go to a lower ranked program, I a
  5. Hey Guys, I wanted to get your opinion on university ranking systems. For this I am specifically talking about the International Relations field. The two main ranking systems that I am talking about are those complied by Foreign Policy Magazine, "The Best International Relations Schools in the World", and US News and their list of the top political science schools. (Links at the end). While the rankings do have some similarities, like the obvious choices at the top, there are some major differences. Mainly the placement of the DC based schools at the top of the Foreign Policy list,
  6. Hey y'all, so I guess the name says it all, in your opinion what schools are the best in the IR sub-field? And any idea on more middle-tier programs and schools? Thanks!
  7. Hello! While rankings are less important when applying for a PhD, I do believe that they provide some money-saving guidelines when applying. So I am curious as to what you know in regards to rankings (general/overall vs subject). While many of the top schools retain their position even when specifying the field of study, some schools differ greatly. As an English Literature applicant, some schools that come mind are, Indiana U, Illinois UC, Rutgers, CUNY and so on. These are schools with great english programs but somewhat down the rank when considered overall. WashU, Rice, USC are ranke
  8. Who has been accepted to The University of Arizona, who has been waitlisted? Does anybody know their rank on the waitlist? I’m on the waitlist and I’m getting so nervous! I’ve been accepted at Arizona State, Central Michigan and Western Michigan. I’m definitely choosing either ASU or UA(if I get in). I’d definitely prefer UA though. I wonder if it would be inappropriate to ask for my rank on their(UA’s) waitlist.
  9. I am trying to choose between two offers, but I feel like the brand of one of the schools affects me too much. Ultimately, how much does the brand name / ranking really matter in making a decision? Would you choose funding over brand name, or vice versa? Those of you who chose one over the other, do you have any regrets? What would you consider given what you know now? Thanks in advance!
  10. Hello guys, I have been accepted to the MA program at Johns Hopkins SAIS, the MIA program at Elliott School of International Affairs and the MIA program at UC San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy. As I would like to pursue a career in international economics, with a regional focus on Japan, which one of these institutions offers best job opportunities and preparation?
  11. Advise desired for selecting a school. For context, I'm pursuing a PhD in environmental engineering with the hope of landing a career in academia. I know I still have some schools to visit but I'm trying to start figuring it out. School A is relatively well-known. It's in a neat location and feels like a good fit, like I could be happy there. I'm a little concerned that other students in the department aren't as ambitious as a whole (there are obviously exceptions). There's a very very well-known professor working there that is trying hard to recruit me for their project/team. I think I w
  12. I'm currently applying as an out-of-field (psychology and Spanish double major) student to graduate programs that offer 1.) the opportunity to complete prerequisites upon admission and 2.) bilingual opportunities, whether that be through a specific certificate program or they verified that they offer bilingual placements. I obviously have no idea where I'm going to get accepted, if anywhere, but since I won't have much time and all the schools are far from me I want to have an IDEA of where I want to go and what I want to base my decision on once I know where I have been admitted. How im
  13. Hi! I've already applied to most of my schools for clinical psych Ph.D.s, but I was wondering, is there a good site to look at for the rankings of these programs? I'd like to use it if it ends up that I get into a program to show my parents how prestigious or not a school is (unfortunately this is the majority of what they care about when deciding whether they'll allow me to leave them or not, which is a whole different issue). If I knew ahead of time, I could better prepare myself for the rejection(s) and future, or come up with a good argument in the meantime. Thanks in advance
  14. Hi, I was wondering if anyone knows what the ranking/reputation is like for UMass Amherst? I am applying to the Sociology program, and I keep hearing differing opinions about it. US News ranks it 36 in Sociology and 75 National. My professors suggested I shouldn't even bother applying there, but I think at the time I may have accidentally told them Amherst College (which is not the same). I am applying to UMass as a safe school, but I still wanted to know, if anyone can pitch in. Thanks a lot!
  15. Are there any general rankings for history grad programs that are newer than the US News list from 2013? Thanks!
  16. I wanna get some information about ranking in Biostatistics Ph.D. program in the US. Furthermore, could you evaluate Ph.D. program in New York University, IUPUI(Indiana University), and University of Miami? Thank you very much, in advance!
  17. I've applied to a number of PhD programs in hydrogeology. One of the schools I would really like to go to has a pretty low ranking (though the placement reports do indicate people get jobs in research and academia after graduation), but the fit is much better for me than most of the other schools I applied to. The ranking shows quite a bit of difference on US News rankings compared to most of the other schools I applied to (113 ranking versus 42 to 77 rankings for other schools I applied to). Ranking aside, it seems like an amazing fit for me. I would be working with two people I really
  18. When asked which are the best (or proper) universities to study, we are usually tempted to repeat the mantra: "if you are not able to say whether the university X is a top 5/10/20, it means it is not". Nonetheless, for some of us, especially foreigners, it is quite hard to identify the best 5/10/20 universities in the U.S.. Things get even harder if we are supposed to assess the quality (in terms of employability) or compare less known universities. Let's say, to decide whether to do a PhD at UC Irvine or UC Santa Barbara, or between UC Riverside and UC Merced. There are some rankin
  19. A bit more complicated than that, but a big part of the choice. I've been given funded offers to two programmes: one private in Texas, and one public in Washington state. The private university has deep pockets, and has offered me a) about $5k more stipend per year than the public, and b) an extra year of guaranteed funding (so 3 years instead of 2). My concern is that additional funding (and grants for travel, conferences, etc) might be easier to come by at the private university than at the public. In either case, it's livable, although I might be eating more noodles in Washingt
  20. Hi Everyone, I have been accepted to several schools, a couple are close to home, but not highly ranked (#120-140), and the others are out of state, and higher rank (Top 30). How heavily should I weigh school ranking into my decision? Does it really affect job prospects upon graduation or salary? Thanks!
  21. How difficult would it be to attain a job in academia with a PhD from Texas A&M in the field of history? How about outside of academia? My specialization is Vietnam War/Southeast Asian history and foreign affairs. I was just wondering if universities looking to hire would brush it off, especially if I want to look for jobs in California (where I'm from). I assume Ivy League and top California schools would look more appealing than a degree from TAMU.
  22. Hey everyone, I was admitted to SPEA MSES, with the intent to study applied ecology and wildlife conservation. While I know the MPA program to be highly regarded, I don't actually know too much about the MSES department's reputation itself. Is this degree valued without the MPA component? Not that selectivity is the best metric, but I can't seem to find that information either. Does anyone know how many students are admitted to MSES and how many apply? I've also considered adding on the MPA once enrolled, so does anyone have experience with/info about adding the MPA mid-program?
  23. Hi all, I've gotten admits from A&M and Virginia Tech so far, I applied for the MSEE program. I believe they're both very strong in terms of power electronics research, but A&M is ranked higher overall (like #12 for graduate EE rankings), while Virginia Tech is ranked #21 (or something close to that). I wanted to aim for R&D or design after school, like Sandia or Boeing/Raytheon. However, after comparing the career fair companies between the two, the companies and National labs that visit VTech are slightly different than the ones that visit A&M (VTech h
  24. Hey, I would like to know some of the criteria you are using (or have used) to choose the best offer. Among many many questiones, I've wondering if I should prioritize the university ranking or the ranking of the program. This is the first questions that I have. I also wonder if rankings are that important. Some people tell me I should choose based on where I would feel better, or live better, and that I should not choose ranking as a criteria. So, what do you think?
  25. I've started to hear back from some of the schools I applied to, and I'm now faced with a dilemma. I was recently accepted by two programs -- UT Austin and Rutgers. UT Austin is a top 10 school for my field (chemical engineering), but none of the faculty do research directly related to my interest. Rutgers is one of the few schools that offer a specialized program that fits exactly with my research interests, but is ranked near the middle to bottom of all the U.S. chemical engineering programs. Since I'm in an engineering discipline, both the research and coursework are integral components
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