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Skype call with faculty


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I have been applying to PhD programs.


Very recently, this professor has contacted me saying he was impressed with my application, wanted me to get to know his lab, and told be we was happy to discuss about potential thesis projects over Skype. I have not received any official decisions yet.



I replied that I was very interested in his lab and the program, which is very true. Thinking back, his reply to that worries me a bit however. He said something along the lines: "I've been discussing with my past graduate students the thesis subject during the admission process."


I haven't officially heard from any other school yet. I am not in a position to give him a definitive answer over skype yet and I don't know if that is something he is expecting from me. I don't know how I should behave with him. Other than discussing about science - which I am comfortable with - I am afraid to say something like "I have to wait until I receive the other decisions". He might have someone else on Skype and I could loose my place. Maybe he is not playing that game; I'm just confused a bit. What do you think?



I haven't "ranked" my schools yet in any way but that program is defiantly one I am very seriously considering and I really like the lab and the PI.


Thank you for sharing our thoughts on this! :)


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It's unlikely he's expecting a definitive answer during a Skype conversation. It sounds like this POI wants to get to know you and your interests better (including a potential thesis topic) as well as give you the chance to learn more about him and his lab. The reason I say it's unlikely he'd expect you to make a decision is because it's incredibly unlikely that this POI will have the information you would need about funding to be able to make a decision. After all, they know you won't go without a good funding package and people don't generally make snap decisions like that via Skype (there are exceptions but, again, these are rare). 

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I agree with rising_star! I am sure he realizes that you are applying to multiple programs. This is a great opportunity to see if this lab is a good fit for you. I really doubt he will ask for an answer. If I was asked for an answer during a conversation like that then I think that I would just say something like "I am definitely very interested. I would like to do some more research on the school and program and will let you know as soon as I have made a decision."


Again, I really doubt he would ask something like that. Good luck... this sounds like a great opportunity.

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