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2019 Neuroscience PhD Applicants and Admission Results


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I know there aren't many Canadian applicants on this thread, but I just got an email from University of Western Ontario stating that I am conditionally accepted upon me securing a research supervisor!! They said that some supervisors will reach out to qualified accepted students, but they do recommend us being the ones to reach out to potential supervisors as well. I was wondering if anyone here, whether at Western or any other school, is or has been in a similar situation! I've never seen a system like this before. 

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Just got a call with an offer for the Brown Neuroscience PhD! With my gpa from undergrad being 3.27 (3.07 in major), i really wasn't too hopeful for this round of applications- But I'm ecstatic! 

Ugh I need to stop refreshing my email... my heart jumps every time i get a notification. stupid stores need to stop emailing me I DONT CARE ABOUT THE SALE YOU'RE HAVING I JUST WANNA GET INTO GRAD SCH

Ahahahah I'm accepted by Harvard PiN :)))))) So happy

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1 hour ago, FirstYear said:

Okay well it's the end of the 30th and still no BU email :(

I haven't heard either, and I don't see anything in the database (except someone about to lose their shit lol). I guess they're going to make us wait for it this year.

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Hi guys! I've been creepin' on this thread for a while and thought I would finally contribute. My updates as of today: 

Boston--> like many of you, haven't heard back yet

NYU--> zilch

Princeton --> nada

Cornell--> Interview soon!

UC Davis --> Interview soon!

Mt Sinai --> ACCEPTED!!! 

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Hey GECIgecko!

I'm also sitting here with one acceptance so far (and waiting for BU). The temptation to just accept that one and escape from the stress of the rest of the process is pretty real. (But of course I won't because I know I'd regret it.)

The weight lifted off my shoulders after the first one was amazing though, because I've been worried for the past year and a half about an iffy advisor who I just barely eventually got a LOR out of, and I really didn't want to have to apply again.

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3 hours ago, fearfulocelot said:

I haven't heard either, and I don't see anything in the database (except someone about to lose their shit lol). I guess they're going to make us wait for it this year.

The rejection from the Behavioral Neuroscience PhD someone posted gave me a nice jolt of panic ?

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13 hours ago, blarn_4349 said:

Hey GECIgecko!

I'm also sitting here with one acceptance so far (and waiting for BU). The temptation to just accept that one and escape from the stress of the rest of the process is pretty real. (But of course I won't because I know I'd regret it.)

The weight lifted off my shoulders after the first one was amazing though, because I've been worried for the past year and a half about an iffy advisor who I just barely eventually got a LOR out of, and I really didn't want to have to apply again.

Oh my god! That's LITERALLY how I feel. I'm fighting the urge to click "accept," as if it will disappear if I don't do it now! I'm barely holding it together waiting for other schools and going to interviews (because interviews are hella stressful--you need to be "on" like all the time). 

And yea the relief is real. we're going to grad school!!!! One way or the other!!! Congratulations to you:)

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1 hour ago, thinhtran said:

Just curious, did you hear anything from them today?

Yes, but it was not a decision, after all. They said there is another interview next week, and that my app will be reviewed for a final decision in that meeting. They said they should be able to give me a decision by Feb. 15th. 

Did anyone else get a similar email? 

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On 1/21/2019 at 2:15 PM, JHML said:

Just heard from the Oxford Wellcome Trust 4-year Programme today! I'm interviewing on Jan. 31. It'll be a 10-minute presentation about my research, followed by 20 minutes of discussion with a panel of faculty. They will reimburse me up to £500 in travel expenses to and from the UK.

Aaaaahhh, I'm so excited!!! This is my dream program!

Congratulations! Have you or anyone else heard the final results of the interview yet? I also interviewed on Friday. They told me that they would be making decisions that evening, but I haven't heard anything yet. Wondering if that means I didn't make it... 

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Hey! So I heard back from UCLA, Drexel, UTSW and Vanderbilt a few weeks ago. For the most part they said my app is still under review. However, I found out I was waitlisted at Vanderbilt. 

Has anyone heard from UCLA, Drexel or UTSW? Should I abandon hope? 

Also, what's the deal with waitlists? Do people typically get interviews from them? 

Hope everyone is hanging in there and surviving! 

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To those who have already had interviews- what was your overall experience talking with faculty? did you find it to be an intimidating interrogation or more of a candid conversation? I am in the process of preparing some answers to obvious questions they may ask but I don't want to sound too scripted but I also don't want to sound unprepared. If anyone has any insight on this I would appreciate it! I'm super nervous lol 

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47 minutes ago, _kb said:

To those who have already had interviews- what was your overall experience talking with faculty? did you find it to be an intimidating interrogation or more of a candid conversation? I am in the process of preparing some answers to obvious questions they may ask but I don't want to sound too scripted but I also don't want to sound unprepared. If anyone has any insight on this I would appreciate it! I'm super nervous lol 

I just got back from my interviews at Carnegie Mellon and I interviewed with 10 faculty for 30 minutes each. IMO it really depends on the faculty member as to how intense or chill the interview will be. I also think that they are less trying to assess your ability (although I had one friend asked to solve some differential equations on the board) than to assess that fit and your level of scientific maturity. They all asked me to explain my research and long-term goals and would probe me deeper about them until they were satisfied. I will warn that if you at all say something about a subfield that they understand well, I had several professors attempt to drag me into deep water but I have 7 years of experience in neuroscience so I was able to keep up. If you say something incorrect, some professors will try to corner you with the phrase "define what you mean by that" so be very careful with what you say. Several other interviewees were pretty shook by a few interviews they had because they're not used to the types of professors that will put it to you straight. There was also a professor here that hates hates brown-nosers and would tear apart anyone who he suspected of trying to do that. Try to talk to the grad students ahead of time to figure out which are the tough professors but I think that made it even more difficult because it makes you more anxious/on edge.

A lot didn't care that my research interests were entirely different from their's at all and also I think appreciated that I didn't pretend to be interested in their work when I was not. I think professors are great at sensing if you're not being forthright or are being hand-wavy. They also didn't expect that I be familiar with their work although I've heard some professors will be offended if you hadn't read some of their best work (say their nature or nature neuro paper). One professor asked each why they did/didn't list him as their first choice for interview and I think that made them squirm.

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3 minutes ago, HawaiiLee808 said:

I just got back from my interviews at Carnegie Mellon and I interviewed with 10 faculty for 30 minutes each. IMO it really depends on the faculty member as to how intense or chill the interview will be. I also think that they are less trying to assess your ability (although I had one friend asked to solve some differential equations on the board) than to assess that fit and your level of scientific maturity. They all asked me to explain my research and long-term goals and would probe me deeper about them until they were satisfied. I will warn that if you at all say something about a subfield that they understand well, I had several professors attempt to drag me into deep water but I have 7 years of experience in neuroscience so I was able to keep up. If you say something incorrect, some professors will try to corner you with the phrase "define what you mean by that" so be very careful with what you say. Several other interviewees were pretty shook by a few interviews they had because they're not used to the types of professors that will put it to you straight. There was also a professor here that hates hates brown-nosers and would tear apart anyone who he suspected of trying to do that. Try to talk to the grad students ahead of time to figure out which are the tough professors but I think that made it even more difficult because it makes you more anxious/on edge.

Ah that sounds pretty stressful! But thank you for the helpful insight! Hopefully, my diverse experience will set me apart but I will definitely try and be concise in what I'm saying and not leave much to interpretation. I don't have the most confidence when talking about neuroscience (my weakness is public speaking) so I am focusing on formulating good, intellectual answers. Thanks again and best of luck to you!

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3 minutes ago, _kb said:

Ah that sounds pretty stressful! But thank you for the helpful insight! Hopefully, my diverse experience will set me apart but I will definitely try and be concise in what I'm saying and not leave much to interpretation. I don't have the most confidence when talking about neuroscience (my weakness is public speaking) so I am focusing on formulating good, intellectual answers. Thanks again and best of luck to you!

Thanks you too! Try to rehearse what your spiel is with a mentor or trusted friend. It can be super stressful to be in a room with faculty and I won't lie and say it's easy: some faculty are assholes and, if they smell unsureness/weakness, they go for the throat. One of my friends said that a person in her program made 4/8 of the people they interviewed cry :( but that's probably an extreme case and a sign you want to stay far away from the prof/program. There's always sometimes sadistic toxic old-school professors who want to try to treat the interview like the oral examination for quals and want to test you under extreme duress

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5 minutes ago, HawaiiLee808 said:

Thanks you too! Try to rehearse what your spiel is with a mentor or trusted friend. It can be super stressful to be in a room with faculty and I won't lie and say it's easy: some faculty are assholes and, if they smell unsureness/weakness, they go for the throat. One of my friends said that a person in her program made 4/8 of the people they interviewed cry :( but that's probably an extreme case and a sign you want to stay far away from the prof/program. There's always sometimes sadistic toxic old-school professors who want to try to treat the interview like the oral examination for quals and want to test you under extreme duress

Yeah that's a good idea, I have a mock interview planned with my current lab tomorrow and one on Friday with an old mentor so hopefully that helps calm my nerves. Yikes that sounds honestly terrifying and I hope that's not the case for all institutions but I will definitely prepare for the worst. Thanks again! 

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2 minutes ago, _kb said:

Yeah that's a good idea, I have a mock interview planned with my current lab tomorrow and one on Friday with an old mentor so hopefully that helps calm my nerves. Yikes that sounds honestly terrifying and I hope that's not the case for all institutions but I will definitely prepare for the worst. Thanks again! 

You'll do great :) You seem like a person who is well-prepared and you're interviewing at some good schools --- you're there for a reason! 

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