I am now applying for a Ph.D. in electrical engineering.

I have read Mor Harchol-Balter's very helpful guide in applying for computer science Ph.D., where she said

...Note that prior research experience does not mean that you need to have published paper...Create a website that has links to all of your papers in English. Explain in your application that all of your papers can be found on your website... (Page 12-14)

Even though I am not applying for computer science, but I guess the this piece of advice also applies in my case, where I have a undergrad thesis and several preprints I am proud of.

The question is how do I list these works in my CV, there seems to be two options.

  • Upload these papers to arXiv and then generate citation in my CV. The concern is that these early works may make me look bad if I get my Ph.D. (hopefully) and go onto the job market (maybe I am worrying too much).
  • Include some links in my CV. I do have a personal website to demonstrate my academic history. However, the issue is that I am not sure the committee members will actually type the long link in their browsers and read these works (someone told me a CV is at most skimmed 30 seconds), especially knowing that many other applicants have already published in some big famous conferences.

I would suggest a slight variation to how you can present such work: Research Projects section in your CV. Give a short (1-sentence like) info about each research project and your contribution right inside the CV and include a link to your website, where these unpublished papers/reports are available.


  • you want to show the research experience that you had
  • this research is not published formally through a peer-reviewed process and you are unsure if that publication record (even if it is mere arXiV one) will serve you any good after being admitted to a Ph.D. program
  • you want to provide an opportunity for a potential advisor to take a closer look at the details of your previous research
  • Really good advice! I have never thought about this. Really helpful. – Mr.Robot Dec 11 '19 at 5:13

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