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ResilientDreams

Anybody else applying to a PhD straight out of undergrad?

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Hi everybody!

I'm currently a senior in undergrad and I'm applying to PhD programs in developmental psychology and some in linguistics. I just wanted to reach out and see if there's anyone else here who is also applying straight out of undergrad...I feel like a lot of people here already have a master's or have been working for a few years and I would love to talk to someone who's in the same situation as me. :) 

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I applied and did my PhD straight out of undergrad (now a postdoc). Yes, many students have been working in the lab as research assistants for a while, which means they have more research experiences, but you will catch up eventually. Don't worry about being younger than most students. Doing a PhD requires a lot of time commitment and it can be challenging to fit that in when you also have family commitments like young children. So it is actually an advantage to do a PhD earlier in your life. 

I am happy to talk more about my experience if you are interested :)

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4 hours ago, Hope.for.the.best said:

I applied and did my PhD straight out of undergrad (now a postdoc). Yes, many students have been working in the lab as research assistants for a while, which means they have more research experiences, but you will catch up eventually. Don't worry about being younger than most students. Doing a PhD requires a lot of time commitment and it can be challenging to fit that in when you also have family commitments like young children. So it is actually an advantage to do a PhD earlier in your life. 

I am happy to talk more about my experience if you are interested :)

Thank you so much! I sent you a PM. :) 

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1 hour ago, mcfc2018 said:

I'm applying to a neuroscience PhD right out of undergrad, so I'm in the same boat as you :)

Yay!! Glad to know there are others. I'm a little intimidated by some of the people on this site because I feel like they have a lot of publications and experience, and my biggest contribution was that I co-authored a rejected manuscript. 

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I applied to and am starting a neuroscience PhD program this fall after graduating this spring!! I don't regret going straight in from undergrad ... yet :P

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18 minutes ago, eevee said:

I applied to and am starting a neuroscience PhD program this fall after graduating this spring!! I don't regret going straight in from undergrad ... yet :P

Oh good, so it doesn't seem to be completely overwhelming so far?

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I just started my PhD right out of undergrad. I do think that those who have done a masters are slightly ahead, but only by a little. People say the difference evens out after the first couple years.

But I have some advice for applications. Look at the National Science Foundation's Graduate Research Fellowship Program. If you're competitive and have good advisors now, I would try to apply now (it's due the week of Oct 22), and if you don't get it, you can apply again once you're in a program.

Best of luck!

Edited by SwelSeal
clarification

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4 hours ago, SwelSeal said:

I just started my PhD right out of undergrad. I do think that those who have done a masters are slightly ahead, but only by a little. People say the difference evens out after the first couple years.

But I have some advice for applications. Look at the National Science Foundation's Graduate Research Fellowship Program. If you're competitive and have good advisors now, I would try to apply now (it's due the week of Oct 22), and if you don't get it, you can apply again once you're in a program.

Best of luck!

Oh wow, I didn't even think of looking at that. 

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It had appeared to me that applying straight from undergrad was more common.  Also, many (around here) do Masters programs first as way to mitigate low uGPA, pick up more research experience, and so on in effort to make themselves stronger candidates for Ph.D. programs. 

I did apply to Ph.D. programs during my senior year but I did not first step foot onto a college campus until age 23 and that was at a community college taking random courses to get a feel for what college was all about.  I already knew I wanted to study Biology, though, and I certainly did not graduate within 4 years. 

Edited by Crucial BBQ

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It really depends on your area/field, the schools you're shooting at (i.e., ranking), how you did during undergrad, etc. I know people who immediately got in, and there are people who failed to get a PhD even after doing a Master's at a prestigious school. There's so much more to getting into a program than your status.

I personally decided to a Master's (this is also faaaaaaaaar more common in Europe - you need a Master's before even applying to a PhD in Europe). Partly to really narrow down my research interests (happy I did) and to enjoy travelling and the like a little bit more :)

It is very very personal I'd say.

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Thanks everyone! This thread is making me feel a lot better. I have a high undergraduate GPA and a pretty well refined research interest, so hopefully it's enough to make me stand out from the competition!

 

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Hi Resilient! I'm in the exact same boat--in my senior year, looking to hopefully move right into an English PhD program out of undergrad. I'm totally with you on feeling intimidated by everyone's publications and such! I've won a few small awards at my university, but I'm not published at all, and I'm getting nervous for sure...

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On 9/19/2018 at 11:13 AM, Bopie5 said:

Hi Resilient! I'm in the exact same boat--in my senior year, looking to hopefully move right into an English PhD program out of undergrad. I'm totally with you on feeling intimidated by everyone's publications and such! I've won a few small awards at my university, but I'm not published at all, and I'm getting nervous for sure...

Yay! Welcome to the club. :) 

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Friends, I have a 3.5 undergrad CGPA (with a 3.6 for senior and junior year); went to a small school with a liberal arts program. I don't have research and work experience in my field of interest (sociology). What kinds of schools should I be applying to? Yale is #22 in Sociology. Is it worth a shot paying the application fee for it, or is it still a long shot?

Edited by purpleatheart1994

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