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I am applying for Ph.D. in US universities and for that I already wrote a professor with my CV, asking if he has any vacancy in this lab or not. His reply was positive and encouraged me to apply. So I applied via GradCAS. Now one of my articles has been published in a reputed journal(which could have been enriched my CV). So is it ok if I send the prospective supervisor my article to read? Will it enhance my chance to get accepted?

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  • What is the application deadline? Is this for Fall 2022? Seems quite early for the typical US timeline.
    – Bryan Krause
    Jul 12 at 16:05
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    The deadline is Dec 1. Though I have applied for Fall 2022, I have already submitted my application. After submission, it's not possible to make any changes. Jul 12 at 16:25
  • What degree(s) will you hold when you enter the doctoral program? A bachelors or also a masters? Admissions are very different in Germany and US.
    – Buffy
    Jul 12 at 19:04
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You probably submitted far too early. Typically, the way admissions work in the US is that a committee reviews the applications and meets to discuss them shortly after the deadline. There's really no reason to apply 5 months before the deadline, your application will sit there unread. There's no bonus for submitting early, and no decisions will be made until the deadline in fairness to all applicants. As you've encountered, your application materials can change between now and the deadline, with new publications to add to CVs, hopefully additional research experience between now and then to report on, etc.

Additionally, although you can converse with a potential supervisor, at this point the admissions process is probably being done at the program level. A potential supervisor might be able to put in a good word for you, but they are likely not the ones making any final decision about you being admitted.

I'd update your CV nearer the deadline and ask the program if you can change it then. Even if the online portal won't let you update it, I think they'd probably accept. It's fine to send a paper to a potential supervisor if you think they'd be interested, but that won't be an effective way to get it added to consideration of your application. Probably it will sit in the professor's inbox and they may or may not look at the paper.

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    This is valuable information because in some countries deadlines are more "flexible". I remember my PhD interview was a week before the official deadline. (I also admit to start scanning applications early, though I read all applications.)
    – Aolon
    Jul 13 at 5:40
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    There's really no reason to apply 5 months before the deadline, your application will sit there unread. Are you sure? I distinctly remember reading in an admissions guide that for the most competitive programs, one should apply as soon as possible, well before the deadline, and this goes for both undergraduate and graduate admissions.
    – Allure
    Jul 13 at 7:27
  • @Allure But why? That advice makes no sense for US grad admissions the way I am familiar with them, except maybe as a short-sighted time management strategy.
    – Bryan Krause
    Jul 13 at 13:49
  • @BryanKrause I don't remember clearly. I think part of it was you can motivate late recommendation letter-writers, and the other part is that most people submit just before the deadline, leading to a pileup of work, and applying early means your application can be read sooner by fresh eyes and therefore stand out more.
    – Allure
    Jul 13 at 22:06
  • @Allure Got it. Definitely getting your applications in order in advance is a good idea, including asking and preparing your references. Submitting a month or 6 weeks early or something seems completely reasonable. 5 months is unnecessary. Start the process, sure, but no need to submit then.
    – Bryan Krause
    Jul 13 at 22:11

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