akri Posted June 15, 2019 Share Posted June 15, 2019 tl;dr: I'm double majoring, have one year left at UCD, and do not have space/time to attach an English minor without taking a(n expensive) summer quarter when I want to graduate Spring 2020. I think destroying Literature Subject Test would ease any hesitation about my foundation + awareness of the basics. I need to decide now so I can spend a year scouring Norton Anthologies + taking notes while doing my normal studies, normal grad prep, and publishing a project that I started working on last Spring with an advisor. I would DM individuals from other threads but it looks like they're inactive. -- I've posted a few times on the forums because I'm taking the few weeks I have this summer to organize a study routine + timeline + gather resources. I am not applying for the 2019 cycle, but the 2020. I want to do this correctly, which ofc requires an enormous amount of forethought and time management. Given how expensive apps + prep are, I want to give myself as much time as possible to prepare and do this right. I've read + reread the threads on the literature subject test and I am evenly torn on it. While I understand it's out of vogue currently + not necessary, I myself would be applying to English/literature programs as an undergrad graduate who took very specialized classes in English, but no English degree. I am History + Science and Tech Studies. The English classes I've taken have been: Early LGBT Lit (late 19th/early 20th century), Asian American Lit, Science Fiction, 19th Century European Intellectual Thought, and a class on Science Writing this fall. The last three cross list to STS or History, therefore cannot be their own separate English minor. I didn't take English classes because I prefer History, enjoy the methodology, and science/tech is my beat. With THAT in mind, my logic is if I took the Subject Test, did well, & admissions were uncertain about my shaky background, then the subject test would show that I at least studied + have a foundation that they shouldn't worry about. I understand the test is difficult and there's no actual proof that this would work, I can't shake that it'd "help." Ofc it wouldn't tip the scale, but I think applications are accumulations of "little helps" that end up ultimately making you a strong candidate. I talked to a professor at UC Davis in the department and he said that if I did do well, it would signal a level of dedication + certainty that I want to do the program... as well as having a phenomenal SoP and WS. (I'm currently saving articles in the field I want to research & am going to read a few a day + research where the authors teach, or who mentored them, or who THEY mentored. My goal before September is to have a theme, topic, research interest for my SoP + WS, spend my free time during my last three quarters working on it little by little. I have what I think is the earliest draft for that.) I'm excited by the challenge of the subject test, but I want to hear some fourth/fifth opinions given the context that I am not an English student but want to pursue a PhD program. Grad cycles into these programs are extremely competitive and I'm trying to think of how my application appears holistically -- did this student do everything they could to give them edge despite having an unconventional undergrad background, etc. Thoughts? Advice? Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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