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Accepted offer from UC Riverside 

I just wanna give a shout out again to Schopenhauerboy. I think he was the first or one of the first to make a decision.

Just accepted an offer from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. :-)

On 3/5/2017 at 5:05 PM, Coconuts&Chloroform said:

I'm finding the decision between Wash U (PNP) and Rutgers much harder than I thought it would be. Rutgers obviously has an excellent program, and made me a very generous offer, but I have an unshakeable suspicion that having something of a more ostensible background in the empirical realms of cognitive science - like what is offered at Wash U's PNP program - might make me more attractive to future hiring committees than even a degree from a program as well-ranked as Rutgers. Am I crazy to even consider this, considering Rutgers' overwhelming advantage over Wash U in PGR rankings?

It's probably worth asking someone in the department at Rutgers how closely they work with their CogSci department and/or other local departments. I know they mentioned that they offer a Cognitive Science Certificate too! 

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On 3/6/2017 at 11:08 AM, HarlanTheTechnician said:

Hey everyone,

This is my first post. I have been sifting through these forums for the past couple weeks. I am currently a MA student at a program that has a decent placement record. My primary interests are, broadly, Political Philosophy, Epistemology and Africana Philosophy.

I applied to 12 schools this season: 2 acceptances (UVA and Rutgers), 1 waitlist (Rice), and 4 definitive rejections (Georgetown, MIT, UCSD, Brown) with the rest expected rejections. I have already contacted Rice that I would not be attending their program, and that they should free up the waitlist spot. So, my decision is between UVA and Rutgers. (I will make a definitive decision after my visits to both schools.) But the distinction of Rutgers' faculty, the generous funding and the alignment of my interests makes it hard to turn down. I am really in shock that I got in. Thoughts or useful anecdotes?

I think it is also worth taking into account the relevant strengths of each subfield at the schools. Gauging it based off of rankings is probably somewhat useful (even if only marginally, since rankings are a messy business). 

Here are some links you might find useful:

http://leiterreports.typepad.com/blog/2016/10/best-phd-programs-for-political-philosophy-for-2016-17.html (UVA > Rutgers)

http://leiterreports.typepad.com/blog/2016/09/best-phd-programs-for-epistemology-for-2016-17.html (Rutgers > UVA)

http://leiterreports.typepad.com/blog/2016/10/fall-2015-update-to-the-pgr.html (details on faculty changes at programs)

http://leiterreports.typepad.com/blog/2016/10/fall-2014-pgr-seen-from-2016-17-taking-account-of-faculty-changes.html (general groupings for overall rank)

I would also reach out to Dr. McGary at Rutgers, since his interests seem to perfectly align with yours. :) They've got a couple of people retiring, including Dr. Goldman, so you might want to check in with them to make sure the people you want to work with will still be there in the next few years. 

I don't know much about UVA, but their political philosophy offerings appear to be much more substantial than Rutgers. 

Edited by Witsclaw
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2 hours ago, Witsclaw said:

I think it is also worth taking into account the relevant strengths of each subfield at the schools. Gauging it based off of rankings is probably somewhat useful (even if only marginally, since rankings are a messy business). 

Here are some links you might find useful:

http://leiterreports.typepad.com/blog/2016/10/best-phd-programs-for-political-philosophy-for-2016-17.html (UVA > Rutgers)

http://leiterreports.typepad.com/blog/2016/09/best-phd-programs-for-epistemology-for-2016-17.html (Rutgers > UVA)

http://leiterreports.typepad.com/blog/2016/10/fall-2015-update-to-the-pgr.html (details on faculty changes at programs)

http://leiterreports.typepad.com/blog/2016/10/fall-2014-pgr-seen-from-2016-17-taking-account-of-faculty-changes.html (general groupings for overall rank)

I would also reach out to Dr. McGary at Rutgers, since his interests seem to perfectly align with yours. :) They've got a couple of people retiring, including Dr. Goldman, so you might want to check in with them to make sure the people you want to work with will still be there in the next few years. 

I don't know much about UVA, but their political philosophy offerings appear to be much more substantial than Rutgers. 

Thanks for the response. I am familiar with the leiter reports and other relevant rankings. I was in contact with a professor at Rutgers today, and it seems that my interests would fit quite well there. For me, a big concern is placement at the end of the program, and, in this case, there is no comparison between the two. The non-standard political philosophy I am interested in (Weberian/realist thought) is hard to identify by the rankings, and it is closely linked to epistemology. Also, my interests go beyond these areas. The only factor still left is 'atmosphere' which is very ambiguous and contingent. I appreciate your response.

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1 hour ago, HarlanTheTechnician said:

Thanks for the response. I am familiar with the leiter reports and other relevant rankings. I was in contact with a professor at Rutgers today, and it seems that my interests would fit quite well there. For me, a big concern is placement at the end of the program, and, in this case, there is no comparison between the two. The non-standard political philosophy I am interested in (Weberian/realist thought) is hard to identify by the rankings, and it is closely linked to epistemology. Also, my interests go beyond these areas. The only factor still left is 'atmosphere' which is very ambiguous and contingent. I appreciate your response.

Yay! That sounds like excellent news then (re: interest fit). And yeah, it's tough to beat Rutgers' placement record! :D 

Are you planning to go out for the official visiting days? 

Edited by Witsclaw
typo
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8 minutes ago, Witsclaw said:

Yay! That sounds like excellent news then (re: interest fit). And yeah, it's tough to be Rutgers' placement record! :D 

Are you planning to go out for the visiting days? 

You should be convincing @HarlanTheTechnician to reject Rutgers' offer, not encourage her/him to accept it! (I'm looking at your signature) xD

Edited by To φ or not to φ
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14 minutes ago, To φ or not to φ said:

You should be convincing @HarlanTheTechnician to reject Rutgers' offer, not encourage her/him to accept it! (I'm looking at your signature) xD

Hahaha, point taken. Given the unpredictability of it all though, I am quite alright with however things shake out (and would be thrilled if we ended up as interlocutors!). I'm just here to offer any helpful information I've dug up along the way! :P

Edited by Witsclaw
syntax! ahh!
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47 minutes ago, Witsclaw said:

Yay! That sounds like excellent news then (re: interest fit). And yeah, it's tough to beat Rutgers' placement record! :D 

Are you planning to go out for the official visiting days? 

Yes, I will be attending the official visit day. I am looking forward to having a somewhat captive audience with some of the greatest thinkers in the world. It's a once in a lifetime opportunity! ;) 

HAHAHA! @To φ or not to φ The potential conflict of interest is not lost on me. 

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1 minute ago, HarlanTheTechnician said:

Yes, I will be attending the official visit day. I am looking forward to having a somewhat captive audience with some of the greatest thinkers in the world. It's a once in a lifetime opportunity! ;) 

HAHAHA! @To φ or not to φ The potential conflict of interest is not lost on me. 

Same! Just the opportunity to visit is totally thrilling, I am so excited! :lol:

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3 hours ago, Turretin said:

I just wanna give a shout out again to Schopenhauerboy. I think he was the first or one of the first to make a decision.

My soon to be supervisor made me an offer I could not refuse - godfather style.

Edited by Schopenhauerfanboy
Accuracy
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  • 2 weeks later...
On 3/6/2017 at 9:18 AM, VeiledByIgnorance said:

Hi all,

I usually just lurk in the forum, but I have a tough decision to start weighing, and I was wondering if anyone would be willing to share their thoughts on the situation. Right now I am split between a BPhil at Oxford and a PhD program in the US, which is T15 overall and ranks very highly in my AOI. Oxford seems to offer the strongest overall placement (from what they report), but the PhD is not bad either, especially at placing people in my AOI. My biggest concern is what I've heard about funding at Oxford (whereas the PhD is funded). What are your all thoughts on this? 

I have exactly the same dilemma. I emailed an Oxford department admin asking what's the number of BPhil students who proceed to the DPhil in a typical year, and how many of them get funding. Her answer was an unhelpful "It varies from year to year". :S

If anyone has any info, please do share it.

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FYI, Carolyn Dicey Jennings has been collecting a bunch of updated placement records (including breakdown by R1 vs any permanent position) from 2011-2016 and releasing them on her twitter over the past few days (https://twitter.com/cdj140). It's info that's probably relevant to those of you who need to make a decision in the next few weeks.

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22 hours ago, Ibycus said:

I have accepted an offer from Colorado Boulder. Is anyone else on here either going to attend or considering attending CU? 

Congrats! Must feel good to have a decision! (even if your hand were forced, so to say)

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40 minutes ago, Duns Eith said:

Congrats! Must feel good to have a decision! (even if your hand were forced, so to say)

Thanks! I was lucky to escape the fate of Buridan's ass this time. 

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For those that have made a decision this year or in the past, what is the etiquette for turning down other offers? I am specifically wondering: is it proper, and expected, that you inform them of where you will attend otherwise? Not sure this matters a great deal, just trying to be courteous. 

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14 minutes ago, Cherwell said:

For those that have made a decision this year or in the past, what is the etiquette for turning down other offers? I am specifically wondering: is it proper, and expected, that you inform them of where you will attend otherwise? Not sure this matters a great deal, just trying to be courteous. 

Not expected. I wouldn't unless they ask for it. Some do ask.

I would say something along the lines of  I'm turning down in favor of another offer.

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Accepted to LSU about a month ago; I had written them off because the acceptance offer explicitly said "without funding" - but they just came through with a pretty generous (for an MA) assistantship/funding package yesterday. 

I'm waitlisted at GSU and accepted at NIU (unfunded) and the New School (40% off). Also presumed declined/hidden waitlist at 3 PhDs. 

I'd love to go to GSU if I get off the waitlist, otherwise I'm leaning towards taking the LSU offer (assuming no movement on the PhDs).

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2 hours ago, Naruto said:

Does anyone have any thoughts on choosing between the University of Cincinnati's and the University of Miami's philosophy PhD programs, especially as a phil of mind person?

Of the two, I only got into/visited Cincinnati, but I was really impressed. If you're interested in phil of mind, especially new and interesting approaches, it's a great choice. Plus it's starting to draw some notice in the rankings, so whatever value that holds is likely to increase during your time there.

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On 4/7/2017 at 2:15 PM, MentalEngineer said:

Of the two, I only got into/visited Cincinnati, but I was really impressed. If you're interested in phil of mind, especially new and interesting approaches, it's a great choice. Plus it's starting to draw some notice in the rankings, so whatever value that holds is likely to increase during your time there.

This. I don't do phil mind, but my very strong impression when visiting was that the phil mind work that's going on there is super cool. Plus, it's all very empirically informed, and empirically informed philosophy is the best philosophy. Plus, Tony Chemero is a ridiculously nice and supportive guy, and very well respected in phil mind/psychology/cog sci circles. Also, the program has been placing very well over the last 5-6 years.

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