Jump to content

Help make my decision (or completely confuse me)!


obrera
 Share

Help make my decision (or completely confuse me)  

50 members have voted

  1. 1. Which school should I attend?

    • School A
      45
    • School B
      5


Recommended Posts

Hello everyone,

I have been accepted into two programs, both of which are excellent. Both programs are for an English Lit MA, and both are at Canadian schools (I am a Canadian student). I would like some help choosing which program to attend.

School A

  • one of the top schools in Canada
  • well-known (so I could apply out-of-country for a PhD)
  • farther from family, but partner is moving there for school as well
  • would be sharing housing with partner (cheaper)
  • would be sharing moving costs with partner (gas, accommodations)
  • funding consists of half TAships (marking only, no teaching) and half fellowships
  • 10 month program (course based), no project at the end
  • 4 courses in Fall, 3 in Winter, one in Spring (two of the Fall courses are pass/fail pedagogy courses)
  • I would be able to transfer my current job to this city and work a few shifts every so often to earn some extra money to limit debt

    School B
    • well-known for excellence but not internationally
    • smaller school, but same size English departments
    • much closer to family, but partner will not move there with me
    • would be renting alone (couple hundred more dollars per month, at least)
    • would be taking on moving costs alone, but is closer
    • funding consists entirely of TAships (heavier workload, but actual teaching experience)
    • they have offered to top my funding from School A and offer me a moving subsidy (not sure how much)
    • I would not be able to transfer my current job there, since I would not have much spare time to work
    • 12 month program (course based), project at end (30 pages)
    • 3 courses in Fall, 3 in Spring, 2 in Summer with project completed by end of summer (one course in both Fall and Spring is pass/fail pedagogy course)

    Both Schools

    [*]I have professors to work with at both schools

    [*]both have comparable course offerings

    [*]both schools have offered me a similar dollar amount of funding

    [*]both schools have similar-sized departments

    [*]both have large bodies of water (I like swimming and boating

    [*]both cities are nice, and i don't know anyone in either of them

    [*]both will let me keep my funding if I win a large award such as a SSHRC

Edited by obrera
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I said school A, but it's a hard choice! On the one hand, prestige is really important if you use the MA as a strpping stone to the PhD... on the other hand, being able to TA and to have a project would reflect well on you during the next application cycle.

For me, partner support and prestige (as well as the ability to do either a US or Canadian PhD afterward) won out. But it's obvious that school B wants you, and if you think you can do a really good job there, then there is something great about being wanted at a program. Just make sure that if you go to program A, you'll really work on getting a great writing sample together 1st semester.

Best of luck!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • they have offered to top my funding from School A and offer me a moving subsidy (not sure how much)

How did you manage that?! Any tips?

I'm having a REALLY hard time deciding, and some extra money from this particular school I'm leaning towards would really help my decision...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can only assume school A is U of T....

I just moved to Toronto with my partner, and since rent can be expensive and apartments can be difficult to find, it was great. Since housing prices are so high so many people are renting that I found landlords to be very picky but was very happy to find a decent affordable place in a good neighborhood. I had to choose between U of T and a less reputable school, and I must say the reputation definitely factored in. I don't really know what my future plans will be, but I think a name brand degree can help a lot.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

How did you manage that?! Any tips?

I'm having a REALLY hard time deciding, and some extra money from this particular school I'm leaning towards would really help my decision...

You know, I just sent an email that said "I'm really sorry and very grateful but I will most likely have to decline your offer as I received a higher offer from a different school. The living costs associated with University B are just too high." And they basically sent back an email 20 minutes later saying "Oh, well we can top that blah blah blah Come here." I didn't really do or say anything special. And my GPA isn't very high at all, so they either have extra money or see something promising in my program of study.

I can only assume school A is U of T....

I just moved to Toronto with my partner, and since rent can be expensive and apartments can be difficult to find, it was great. Since housing prices are so high so many people are renting that I found landlords to be very picky but was very happy to find a decent affordable place in a good neighborhood. I had to choose between U of T and a less reputable school, and I must say the reputation definitely factored in. I don't really know what my future plans will be, but I think a name brand degree can help a lot.

It is not U of T, actually. I didn't even apply there because I didn't foresee actually getting accepted to any programs and didn't just want to give them a hundred bucks and forget about it. Haha.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Seems like an easy decision...

Perhaps I just need justification for a decision that I feel like I kind have made but am concerned about still. I'm worried that I will pick one and regret it later. Buts there's a whole different thread on that. ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If your partner is willing to move with you to School A, then you should choose School A as both offer funding. How about weather for both. Are both in cities?

Both are in cities. School A has snowy but mild winters and hot summers, and School B has a lot of rain.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you plan on going on towards a PhD, do you have a program in mind? If so, are they looking for teaching experience and a project? That is really the only thing that sets the two things apart so I would try to ask some PhD programs or grad students in those programs what they had. Is not having TA experience and a project going to hurt your acceptance potential?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

How did you manage that?! Any tips?

I'm having a REALLY hard time deciding, and some extra money from this particular school I'm leaning towards would really help my decision...

There must be some criterias in the process deciding. My main criteria is the reputation of the university. For instance, if I got an admission offer from UBC, I would choose it because it is one of the top 50 universities in the World. But, if I get an admission offer from UCLA, I would choose UCLA because it is even better than UBC.

On the other hand, my second criteria would be the city. If it is a very cold place I would never choose it since social life is also very important. I would never go to Montreal, Toronto or Boston (Even Harvard) but I do not hasitate to go Vancouver, Los Angeles, San Fransisco or San Diego. I mean the place where you live is very important. The best place in Canada, for instance, is Vancouver since it is much warmer than other cities in the country and it has a wonderful environment.

I hope this can help you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There must be some criterias in the process deciding. My main criteria is the reputation of the university. For instance, if I got an admission offer from UBC, I would choose it because it is one of the top 50 universities in the World. But, if I get an admission offer from UCLA, I would choose UCLA because it is even better than UBC.

On the other hand, my second criteria would be the city. If it is a very cold place I would never choose it since social life is also very important. I would never go to Montreal, Toronto or Boston (Even Harvard) but I do not hasitate to go Vancouver, Los Angeles, San Fransisco or San Diego. I mean the place where you live is

very important. The best place in Canada, for instance, is Vancouver since it is much warmer than other cities in the country and it has a wonderful environment.

I hope this can help you.

I agree with you Vancouver is the best place in Canada for living and for studying.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.