I recently applied for a PhD position in Europe. The deadline for applications was the 30th of September (so almost a week ago) and the starting date for the position is January 2021. I won't graduate until June 2021, but nevertheless, I decided to send my application since I'm really interested in the position. After sending my application (3 weeks ago), I contacted the professor with the question if it's possible to start later, after graduation, and he told me that they need to discuss this and that I could apply.

I would like to send an email to ask if they already decided if it's possible to delay the starting date and to ask when I can expect to hear back from my application (there is little information about the admission procedure on the website). I don't want to be pushy, but I really want to show that I'm really motivated. Should I send an email or should I just wait until I hear back from them? How long should I wait?

  • 2
    I would wait at least 3 weeks to be honest. 1 week is not nearly enough, committees meetings like this are usually a bit spaced (AFAIK) and organizing them must be being more complicated than usual with the pandemic going on. Just be patient, you already did what you had to.
    – Ivo Terek
    Oct 5, 2020 at 22:54
  • 1
    My guess would be they won't bother with your request to start late unless in considering all the applications they decide they would want to admit you. Probably that process will take awhile.
    – Bryan Krause
    Oct 5, 2020 at 23:18
  • The deadline for application was a week ago, is it anywhere specified the deadline for the first round of evaluation? You should wait at least for that
    – AnOrAn
    Oct 7, 2020 at 5:29
  • @AnOrAn No, unfortunately not. I have no idea.
    – MDG1999
    Oct 7, 2020 at 15:14

1 Answer 1


Always insist on what you want. But: Always be polite. Never be too pushy or write too quickly if you can avoid it. 1 week seems too quick.

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