dianabruk Posted September 4, 2012 Share Posted September 4, 2012 I've been agonizing over this decision for the last 6 months and I need to give the department a final answer this week and STILL have no idea what I'm going to say. I just finished a Masters in Comparative Literature (English and Russian) at Oxford, and I've been accepted into the PhD, but without funding. Now, at $20,000 a year for three years, it's manageable, especially since I got a loan for tuition and a teaching job that will roughly cover living expenses. But it's a lot of money and, despite weighing the options ad nauseum, I still don't know what to do. The Pros for the PhD are as follows: I love Oxford, I have a great social life there, the name attracts a lot of scholars and opportunities so it's a very stimulating intellectual environment, and I have no doubt I want to be an academic, so the PhD is necessary for my career. The Cons. I feel it's unfair for me to have to pay $60,000 (plus the 20,000 I already paid for my Masters) when the course really is just me doing research. There aren't many teaching jobs available, and I don't like the idea of putting myself into financial insecurity for the next few years to live in further financial insecurity. There are other concerns as well, but these are the predominant ones. Everyone I meet keeps telling me to do the PhD, but I don't think they can really sympathize with the situation since they're not in academia. Because I'm an overseas student (American) not doing the DPhil means having to come back to NY, which is hard since I have such an established life in Ox now. If I can get a good job, flat, etc. here, then that's great, but I'm aware that it's incredibly difficult to get a job right now, and spending the next few months living at home with my parents with nothing to do will actually make me shoot myself. I was considering perhaps deferring just for a term, this way I have time to explore other avenues in NY and then go back to Ox in January if that feels right. But the downside of that is that I am really tired of living in transition and that obviously makes things unstable and prolong my indecisiveness. Sorry for the long post, but I'd appreciate any advice people have. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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