id quid Posted February 17, 2011 Share Posted February 17, 2011 I got my English BA from UC Berkeley in 2009, with coursework heavily focused on Anglo-Saxon to late medieval British literature. I was a transfer student - I began at UC Santa Cruz, transferred to a community college, then completed 5 semesters at Cal. I've got so many loose ends to tie up I don't even know where or how to begin my search for Fall 2012 degree programs! The hanging threads: 1) I received an Incomplete-lapsed-to-F grade in one of my English courses. My professor didn't get the paperwork in before the Incomplete lapsed. I have been trying to work with her remotely -- I live in the Bay Area still, but I work a Monday through Friday 9-to-5 desk job -- with limited success. She only seems to get every other of my emails, and her response rate is very slow even when they do get through. This is not incongruous with my experience with her during the school year, but it is admittedly frustrating when attempting to straighten out a grade from spring 2008! In our email communications, she had expressed interest in working with me on this. My most recent 'contact' with her involved making it to her office after-hours and leaving an envelope full of directions, appropriate paperwork, and copies of coursework for her review. I've heard nothing since, and I confirmed with the Registrar that the grade is still Incomplete-lapsed-to-F. I found out via the department website that she's currently on leave. What now?! 2) The aforementioned professor is one of my best potential sources for an LoR. To be honest, I feel confident in the potential reviews from 2 of my professors, and reservedly content with 2 others. In other words, I can't afford not to have this professor write on my behalf. Assuming I can find a way to contact her, is there any etiquette-friendly way to approach her about this while she's on leave? 3) I have been out of school since spring 2009, working this desk job which has nothing whatsoever to do with my field. It's not a long time, I know, but I've done absolutely nothing in my field since leaving school. Is this something I should remedy somehow (I envision summer courses), or is it only expected? In other words, need I be doing something concrete, outside of applications, to bolster my appeal? 4) I'm uncertain whether my application will be strong enough to apply straight to the PhD, or if I should instead consider obtaining an MA first. My GPA is somewhere in the 3.2-3.5 range, on the higher end of that range in English, and the GRE is ~700V/550Q. No Lit GRE score as of yet. I have a strong candidate for a writing sample - my final paper from a graduate course with Professor O'Brien O'Keeffe. My SoP is a sweet nothing at the moment, but I have a very clear path of intent for my scholarship and this should translate (with plenty of editing and rewriting applied, naturally) and is corroborated by the writing sample. My hesitation is re: my GPA, my lack of experience in the field outside coursework, and having been a transfer student. Any thoughts? I know everyone's in the thick of the dreadful waiting phase, and I wish you all the best of luck! I hope maybe taking a look at my profile will distract you a little. I've been an outsider looking in on this process for several years now, and I think I'm certifiable to want to join you all on this road given everything I've seen. Nevertheless, here I am. Any feedback is greatly appreciated! Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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