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Is it recommended to go for a MS at the same school you hope to get your PhD at?


NewDex
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Hey everyone,

 

I already asked this in another thread, but thought it'd be better to start a new one for this specific question since others could be facing the same dilemma.

 

I'm hoping to go for a PhD at UChicago. I was taken for a MS there and also at a couple of other equally prestigious schools. Which would make my application to their PhD program stronger: to go to there (UChicago) for my MS or to venture out to a different school for that? The area of these programs is nanotechnology (or, more broadly, physical sciences).

 

Thanks for your feedback!  :)

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You might consider going somewhere else for your MS so that you can expand your academic network. But on the other hand if you get your MS at Chicago then maybe you won't have to retake a bunch of coursework once you start the PhD program. Sorry if that wasn't of much help, just throwing out some thoughts!

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I think its generally good to go to as many institutions as possible if you are wanting to go into academia. The more people that know and like your work, the more likely it is that you can get a position. 

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I think its generally good to go to as many institutions as possible if you are wanting to go into academia. The more people that know and like your work, the more likely it is that you can get a position. 

I will probably still apply to multiple schools for PhD after my MS (in case funding issues, etc might make me want to move on to a new place) but will also be petitioning to continue on to PhD at the same school I do my MS at and will have it as my number 1 choice for a few reasons...

 

1. I'll know my adviser already, know how we work together, and know that they like me enough to want to spend another 3 years with me (you need their recommendation to continue). This could lead to getting RA/TA easier than some external candidate since you will have relationships with several professors already.

2. I'll know the work I'm doing, that might have to change at another school (while staying might let me just continue on in the same problem). This could be a good thing for leaving though, if you wanted a change. But I don't see doing a thesis for 1 year burning me out on a certain topic.

3. When looking at professors at different schools that would be great to work at (profess at?), a lot had either direct PhDs from BS, or MS and PhD from the same school. So if tenured professors are doing it, it must be a good idea.

4. As isilya mentioned, coursework. NCSU in particular allows you to use up to 36 credit hours of work toward your PhD if you just got your MS there. If you are from a different MS? Only half that. 4 semesters of work done rather than just 2 so you can quickly move in your PhD is a good advantage.

Edited by <ian>
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Hey y'all, thanks for your feedback!

 

So, I was thinking, would it be a good idea to contact the program coordinator of the PhD program I'm thinking about applying to see what he/she thinks would be best as far as which program to go for? Is this standard practice in academia?

 

Thanks for your input, again!

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