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I am currently finding a supervisor for an MSc program. It is incredibly difficult to get research experience as an undergraduate student (especially since I attend a large school with an incredible amount of competition). However, I make the best use of resources available to me. I have joined several organizations at school which are directly related to my masters program. As a member, I have researched and published several student papers (not in scientific journals). These papers are well written and researched (as they go through an extensive editing process) and demonstrate my passion. I will mention these projects in my emails / CV. However, in my emails, should I mention that these are "available upon request"?

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    You should post your research material for everyone to see on the arXiv, then link it from your emails and CV. The market for cats in bags just isn't there anymore. Nov 3, 2016 at 16:10
  • What is the arXiv? Also, what do you mean by your last sentence?
    – aspire94
    Nov 3, 2016 at 16:27
  • Google up "arXiv". If you write papers, you will really want to know about it :) Nov 3, 2016 at 16:29
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    Be aware that if you have not previously submitted to arXiv, you may be denied access to posting. This probably has nothing to do with the quality of your paper, just the (maybe unfair) fact, that their screening for crackpots seems to emphasize whether or not you already have a name. Do not. I repeat, do not let yourself be tempted to upload your paper to one of the arXiv clones, eg. viXra. You should rather post it on your own blog or similar, then.
    – nabla
    Dec 14, 2016 at 7:18
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    @nabla Or they could follow the directions on arXiv on how to get endorsed (I very much agree with the advice to avoid viXra though). Dec 14, 2016 at 8:15

2 Answers 2

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As stated in comments, you should make the papers available to the potential supervisor online:

  • Create yourself a basic webpage with a sensible address.
  • List the papers, with full details and references.
  • Link to the pages of the places they are published.
  • If the copyright agreement allows, link also to a copy of the paper.
  • Given the option, make this copy on the arXiv (get the supervisor from the paper to endorse you, assuming it's in their field).
  • If you cannot use the arXiv, store the copies on the same website.
  • Alternatively, your current institution may have an eprint system you can use.
  • Make sure your co-authors are happy with this.
  • Include the web address when you contact potential supervisors (if it is long, perhaps use a tinyurl with preview).
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If you believe that these papers provide evidence of your abilities as a researcher, and you can make them available to a potential supervisor then I see no reason not to state that they are "available upon request". This way they can read them if they want to, but aren't being sent documents unsolicited.

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