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fuzzylogician

Any decisions yet?

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Hey there, I'm in a real tight spot but consider myself lucky to be so. I have offers from places that do work that I like very much. 3 PhD offers and 1 funded MS offer. I'm leaning towards the MS offer though. I am motivated enough and love the areas of work enough to be able to successfully complete a PhD and lead a happy life in the academia but what this MS offer has put on the table for me is a chance to train myself in all technical skills required to make me a more independent researcher and also the option to take 2 more years to decide if I really want to go do a PhD. Also this MS is a fairly new program but in a well regarded university and people tell me that even if I decide to work in the industry after the MS, it would give me a lot of options towards that as well. I'd love to hear your thoughts on this. I'm leaning towards this as my undergraduate major was Physics and these PhD offers are in Linguistics (to which I've had decent exposure) and Psychology (almost no prior experience).

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I am motivated enough and love the areas of work enough to be able to successfully complete a PhD and lead a happy life in the academia but what this MS offer has put on the table for me is a chance to train myself in all technical skills required to make me a more independent researcher and also the option to take 2 more years to decide if I really want to go do a PhD. Also this MS is a fairly new program but in a well regarded university and people tell me that even if I decide to work in the industry after the MS, it would give me a lot of options towards that as well. I'd love to hear your thoughts on this.

It sounds like you prefer the MS offer over the other ones. I think the question is really, what you want to do with your life. If you *know* that linguistics/psychology is your passion and you want to continue on researching in that field, then you should get your PhD. If you're not sure yet or think you might want to go into the industry, then the MS might be the better option. You'd get a funded way to improve your skills, enabling you both to get a good job in the market or to get a good slot in a PhD program, whichever one you choose.

stuck between UMass, MIT, and UCSC. Haven't visited UMass yet.

I am growing less sure by the day of where I ought to go...

Definitely visit before you decide. My opinion about one place changed drastically following my visit.

I've been struggling with the fact that most of my profs think that I should go elsewhere than where I currently think would be best for me. I'll probably go where I think is best, but it worries me that others suggested a different place, so I am holding off on actually announcing where I'll go for at least another week. I want to be sure I've made the right choice before I let go of my other options.

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I've been struggling with the fact that most of my profs think that I should go elsewhere than where I currently think would be best for me. I'll probably go where I think is best, but it worries me that others suggested a different place, so I am holding off on actually announcing where I'll go for at least another week. I want to be sure I've made the right choice before I let go of my other options.

My professors seem set on not telling me where to go...which is nice, except that each time I tell them I've turned someplace down, they tell me that they think I made the right decision to do so. So clearly they have very definite opinions and are just not telling me. All I hear is "well, you can't make a bad decision," which I know is true, but nevertheless.

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Going into the process, everyone had very clear opinions about where I should go. Now that the decisions are in, they are being very vague about which school I should choose. I think (hope?) that it's because I'm considering choosing something different than they originally suggested, and they're trying to be supportive of my decision.

I just had this conversation yesterday with the head of my department, waiting for the elevator:

her: so, do you know where you're going yet?

me: well, I'm seriously considering going to school X.

her: huh...

me: do you think that school Y would be better for me?

her: both schools certainly have great advantages.

*elevator arrives, conversation ends*

I've had similar conversations with most profs at my department, and it's creeping me out. I know "I can't make a bad choice", as they say, but I want to make the best choice! ugh.

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I am going to UCSD because:

- They are willing to provide rigorous theoretical background the first year. Coming from a socio-heavy school, I need this.

- The research interests of the faculty interest me.

- I got a more generous funding package than I expected.

- I really liked all the people that I met, and instantly knew with which faculty I would like to work.

- Proximity to Mexico is a plus for me.

- I like the West Coast.

- Recent graduates from the department are finding jobs, even in this economic climate.

:)

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Definitely visit before you decide. My opinion about one place changed drastically following my visit.

I couldn't agree more!

I've been struggling with the fact that most of my profs think that I should go elsewhere than where I currently think would be best for me. I'll probably go where I think is best, but it worries me that others suggested a different place, so I am holding off on actually announcing where I'll go for at least another week. I want to be sure I've made the right choice before I let go of my other options.

This is a hard place to be in. But they haven't been in grad-school in a long time, and they aren't you. Remember that it isn't necessarily irreversible; transfers are possible. And, finally, if it helps, I'm friends with a linguistics major who just turned down MIT, UPenn, and UMass for UCSC. And he's thrilled about it!

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This is a hard place to be in. But they haven't been in grad-school in a long time, and they aren't you. Remember that it isn't necessarily irreversible; transfers are possible. And, finally, if it helps, I'm friends with a linguistics major who just turned down MIT, UPenn, and UMass for UCSC. And he's thrilled about it!

Thanks.. I know the decision is not set in stone, but it's not that easy to reverse either. I'm happy for your friend for making a decision and feeling that confident about it! I know it's a "good" type problem to have, but receiving so many great offers is making my life difficult. Several professors I talked to during my visits have said that I cannot go wrong, whichever place I choose, but I think what another prof said, that I'm sure to have regrets and second thoughts - no matter what I choose - is more likely. But you're probably right, I should ignore irrelevant and biased opinions and concentrate on what I feel is right. "Our semantics graduates have always chosen school X", or "school X is my alma mater and it's a great place to go to" aren't really convincing arguments for choosing a graduate program.

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Thanks.. I know the decision is not set in stone, but it's not that easy to reverse either. I'm happy for your friend for making a decision and feeling that confident about it! I know it's a "good" type problem to have, but receiving so many great offers is making my life difficult. Several professors I talked to during my visits have said that I cannot go wrong, whichever place I choose, but I think what another prof said, that I'm sure to have regrets and second thoughts - no matter what I choose - is more likely. But you're probably right, I should ignore irrelevant and biased opinions and concentrate on what I feel is right. "Our semantics graduates have always chosen school X", or "school X is my alma mater and it's a great place to go to" aren't really convincing arguments for choosing a graduate program.

And if you're finding it difficult to make a decision, I imagine that it just means that you'd expect to enjoy any of the ones you're having to choose between. The 'having regrets and second thoughts' and 'can't go wrong' stances don't sound at all mutually exclusive to me!

(Pity we can only select one program each, eh? * grins *)

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I'm finding it difficult to decide because I think that my main contenders have strengths in almost complementary ditributions. Where one is more appealing to me, the others are lacking.. but yes, I can see myself going to each of them. That's what's making this all so painful.

The 'having regrets and second thoughts' and 'can't go wrong' stances don't sound at all mutually exclusive to me!

True. Thinking about it, they're two sides of the same coin. But right now I'm having more second thoughts than anything else.

(Pity we can only select one program each, eh? * grins *)

I kinda think that one is more than enough for me, haha.

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I'm going to attend University of Chicago. Interesting professors, interesting students, introduced to some new fields during my visit, and there's lot of interdisciplinary cooperation there.

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A comment about UCSD: I've heard that the funding only appears generous, but the cost of living is so ridiculous that you're living hand to mouth.

I got one one place, Wisconsin, and my wife got in to four places (for astronomy). Luckily she also likes the place I got in, so we're hedging our bets and going to Wisconsin. I'm nervous about the program, because I don't have much of a theoretical background, more experimental. Anyone else going there?

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I'm going to attend University of Chicago. Interesting professors, interesting students, introduced to some new fields during my visit, and there's lot of interdisciplinary cooperation there.

I really like the program at Chicago. It was an incredibly difficult decision for me. Good luck! - I thought the faculty and students were both excellent and there was a really great departmental dynamic.

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I'm going to Hopkins. I turned down Stanford after being accepted off of their wait list. It was an extremely difficult decision.

Job placement won out in the end - Hopkins phonologists have been taking up fantastic positions. Let's hope it works for me too!

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I'm going to Hopkins. I turned down Stanford after being accepted off of their wait list. It was an extremely difficult decision.

Job placement won out in the end - Hopkins phonologists have been taking up fantastic positions. Let's hope it works for me too!

Congrats on the decision!

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I'm going to Hopkins. I turned down Stanford after being accepted off of their wait list. It was an extremely difficult decision.

Congrats - I'm sure you'll love it there!

The ling board's been quiet the past few days...anyway, thought I would mention I'm going to Berkeley! After 4 years of being in freezing cold, middle-of-nowhere NY it will be a welcome change.

Congrats - and see you there! (I didn't know anybody else in our cohort was lurking around here...)

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Congratulations to all!

By process-of-elimination after a really disappointing set of outcomes, I'm off to my safety-school, the University of Waterloo, to get an MA in cognitive psychology. Over the course of that I'll think about where I want to get my Ph.D., and in which of the two fields.

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Congratulations to all!

By process-of-elimination after a really disappointing set of outcomes, I'm off to my safety-school, the University of Waterloo, to get an MA in cognitive psychology. Over the course of that I'll think about where I want to get my Ph.D., and in which of the two fields.

Congratulations on having made a decision.. you deserve some rest now! Get an MA and then come to OSU, they have a higher stipend for people with a masters :P

Btw, can you post a link to their coursework? I have no idea about what my MA coursework (years 1 and 2) is going to be like at OSU (as it has to be decided in consultation with the adviser after I get there), and I'm a little apprehensive as I'm a physics major as I may have told you earlier. So I really need to know what the courses are going to be like and at what levels they would start off, etc.. I hope they start off basic enough.

http://cog.psy.ohio-state.edu/documents ... ts_003.pdf This talks about some of the course requirements but I have no idea about what they will be like. People with a background in cognitive psychology, if you can take a look at these and tell me what to expect, that'd be great! Also if you can suggest preliminary reading, that'd be awesome as well since I can get hold of the reading material and try to read some in the summer..

An excerpt from that link:

Course Requirements

1. Statistics 826, 827, 828 must be taken in the student's first year.

2. The following courses must be taken by the end of the student

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Thanks!

Btw, can you post a link to their coursework? I have no idea about what my MA coursework (years 1 and 2) is going to be like at OSU (as it has to be decided in consultation with the adviser after I get there), and I'm a little apprehensive as I'm a physics major as I may have told you earlier. So I really need to know what the courses are going to be like and at what levels they would start off, etc.. I hope they start off basic enough.

I don't actually know what the coursework is like there, nor whether it's at all similar to that of OSU. I'd email the department and ask them for some details, and for advice on whether you should do some background reading over the summer.

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Looks like I'll be doing a (2nd :)) MA at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, then reapplying places next year.

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