From reading this forum, I know that it is a bad idea to mention the name of a faculty. However, can I talk about he/she indirectly. For example, I could say something like this: "I have always been fascinated by topic X. one of the areas in which professors at Y university have been working on. For example, recently, in paper Z, it has been shown that... This is a remarkable result because... "

X is name of topic Y is name of university Z is name of the paper


1 Answer 1


From reading this forum, I know that it is a bad idea to mention the name of a faculty.

I do not know where you got this impression. In the question you linked, the (excellent) answer simply points out that if you write "I want Bob to be my advisor," then the fate of your application probably hangs on whether Bob wants to (and is able to) advise you. If Bob is the only professor you'd be interested in working for, then this is fine. But if you've never spoken to Bob and have no idea whether there are other professors who would be a good match, then you might want to leave yourself more flexibility.

But there is generally no problem in saying something like "I could see myself working with Bob, James, or Mary," ideally with some well-reasoned explanation of why you think these advisors would make sense.

would it be bad to mention the name of a paper he has published

There is no problem in saying that you found a particular paper interesting or relevant to your past research. You can even say "I'd be interested in collaborating with Bob because this paper was great" (and explain why).

The trick in both of these is to mean it -- if you mention a professor or a paper, you should have convincing, logical explanations for why these factors influenced your decision to apply. Finding some random paper and saying vague things about it will do more harm than good.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .