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ChrisChen0820

University Selection for PhD.

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Hello everyone,

 

I'm currently applying for several PhD programs in Mechanical Engineering based in the US. I made a list containing all the universities that I planned to apply for but not quite sure if they match my background, so I really hope to get some advice on what universities should I aim for. Here is some information about me.

Research interest: Computational Engineering, Fluid Mechanics & Heat transfer related

GPA:

Undergraduate (Mechanical Engineering) 75.3/100 (3.83/4) Newcastle University, UK

Master (Propulsion and Engine Systems) 71.3/100 (3.78/4) University of Southampton, UK

TOEFL: R-30, L-29, S-27, W-25 (Overall-111)

GRE: V-164, Q-170, AWA-3 (Yup...17th percentile..one of my major concerns)

Award: Undergrad scholarships (3 times)

Research: wrote a thesis related to CFD analysis but was not published

Work Experience: 1.5-year Vehicle Engineer in SAIC-General Motors (Based in Shanghai) 

To admit to a particular PhD program, I think funding is necessary. That does add some limitations to the selection of schools, as I'm an international student. If you have any insights, please feel free to share. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!

Edited by ChrisChen0820

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Being an international student is tough. Being a chinese international student is some next level shizzle. I've heard that one of the biggest fears faculty/grad comm have about chinese international students is that they're real good at taking tests (some think there's cheating involved) but when the students come down for interviews, the can't speak well, and some cant write well either. Unfortunately for you (and to a lesser extent, me, also an international student) your AWA scores kinda reflect that. So i'd recommend that you get your SOP checked and vet by someone from america (having brought up in a british system, we spell everything 'wrong' ?). Make sure it's a killer SOP and get your recommenders to cover your AWA score. To reflect that you can speak and write well, maybe just not under pressure; but you can definitely articulate your ideas in speech and writing. Hope this helps!

(P.S. I assumed you're chinese from the chen in your handle. If i'm wrong, you can disregard the chinese part but the rest prob apply hahahaha)

Edited by loffire

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On 10/16/2018 at 3:40 PM, loffire said:

ernational student is some next level shizzle. I've heard that one of the biggest fears faculty/grad comm have about chinese international students is that they're real good at taking tests (some think there's cheating involved) but w

Thanks for the suggestions, mate. I appreciate it. Yes, good spot. I'm from China and I've studied in UK for a few years. 

The problem with me is that I'm not a quick writer, and the AWA score went particularly bad as I spent most of the time revising the verbal part. I will try to get it covered in the application with other supportive materials.

BTW, are you currently applying as well? How does it go?

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@ChrisChen0820

 yeah im applying as well! Applying to psych. I have one saving grace cos my ungrad was from an american university hahah. Have you started on your wes stuff?

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Oh I guess that's a great plus, especially for your letter of recommendation. So any specific one you're targeting to?

In terms of WES...Not really, I've heard about that, but I don't see any university's asking for it.

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16 hours ago, loffire said:

@ChrisChen0820

 yeah im applying as well! Applying to psych. I have one saving grace cos my ungrad was from an american university hahah. Have you started on your wes stuff?

Should have quoted you.

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