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24Fall philosophy US Phd application - email the professors or apply directly?



Hi all! 

I'm a Chinese student preparing to apply for a philosophy phd program, mainly from U.S schools. 

Just wondering if I should email prospective professors first or just apply directly? I understand that in U.S universities, it is the committee rather than individual professors deciding whether to take in a student. But I'm not from US and I literally don't know anyone there. And I've heard both sides of the story, that someone emailed a professor and it turned out he liked him so he just got in and got double scholarships. Also, someone who just applied to the system and got in. 

Also, another question I have is, I'm a Chinese female, which makes me a minority, presumably. Would it be a factor that negatively affects my applications? 

Could you please give me some advice??

Thank you so much!! 

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On 6/17/2023 at 5:20 AM, ConshohockenArizona said:

1. For US programs, it’s not required or expected to contact faculty before applying, unless you have a specific research or program question that only they can address.
2. No, that will not be a negative factor.

Best wishes for your philosophy journey!

Thank you!! 

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