Jump to content

Interview/Phone Interview Question


Recommended Posts

Hello all,

After searching the forum, I haven't found any threads specifically addressing this question (there's a lot on getting in contact with faculty but this is kinda different) so here goes:

Should I get in contact with the faculty at the schools to which I'm applying to set up a phone interview or, because it's just a phone interview or just introduce myself via email? Or should I just turn in my application and the faculty will want to set up such a kind of interview if I'm found to be interesting enough a candidate?

The problem is that, while I want to do an in-person interview and visit the schools to which I'm applying, I have NO money to travel around the country to do so, and don't want to create an awkward situation where I ask to get in contact with a faculty member but tell them that I can't have an interview in person but just a phone interview. I ask because I'm leaving the country in September to go work as an English teacher abroad for a year and many people have told me that it's best to visit the schools during the summer. For me, that would just mean calling to set up a phone interview during the summer because going out to visit the schools to which I'm applying is, for financial reasons, just seriously not an option.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

While it's obviously better to visit before applying, it's by all means not necessary. Many internationals apply from abroad without visiting and do just fine. I bet many Americans can't afford to visit schools either. In some fields its customary to make contact with potential advisors before you apply. In others it's really not. You need to find out what the norm is in your field. In any case, I'd make initial contact via email. You can ask any questions you might have right then, so I don't really see why you'd need to talk on the phone this early in the game. If a potential advisor reads you email and is interested in more details, that might be a good time to ask for a phone interview (or an informal conversation) and make a good impression (:. Anyway, I think you're likelier to be interviewed after your complete application has been reviewed, not during the summer. In that case, a potential advisor who has read your app will contact you for an interview, not the other way around.

Re visiting: The schools that accepted me payed for me to come over for a visit (transatlantic flight and all), so I was able to visit even though the trip was far too expensive for me to pay on my own. Maybe that could be an option for you as well. I probably would have made the same decision had I not visited, but I am certainly more confident in my choice having done so.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for the reply!

Making contact via email would be no problem at all. Sorry to ask even more questions, but, in that case, would it suffice for me to express an interest in applying to that department and working with that potential advisor, or should I be as upfront as asking whether or not that advisor is looking for potential students during the coming academic year?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ask yourself this question: would you apply to school X if you knew that advisor Y wasn't taking on new students? If the answer is 'no', then definitely ask. You could end up saving yourself the time and effort (and $$) applying to a school where you won't have an advisor. There are threads about how to make contact that you can search for, and I haven't done this myself, but I suppose you should introduce yourself and your work, ask about availability and any other questions you might have, and show interest in the professor's work. Most academics like to talk about their work, so if you ask good questions it could lead to a conversation, and the prof just might remember you come decisions day :) .

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
  • Create New...

Important Information

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