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Questions tagged [application]

This tag refers to application process for an academic course or an academic employment.

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77
votes
11answers
18k views

Should I answer this question about diversity?

There is an optional prompt on my PhD application: censoredSchoolName University regards the diversity of its graduate student body as an important factor in serving the educational mission of ...
70
votes
5answers
57k views

What does it mean if a professor asks you to draft his reference letter for you?

This question is, honestly speaking, probably somewhat opinion-based, but I still want to give a shot. A professor acceded to my invitation of writing a reference letter for me. Nevertheless, unlike ...
68
votes
8answers
13k views

Is it considered normal to publish job offers inviting candidates to apply based on their gender and/or race in academia?

I was browsing PhD position offers in Europe on different websites and I was quite surprised to find that several offers contained sentences such as University of X value equality and diversity. We ...
65
votes
6answers
14k views

Should I explain that I cannot finish my current master due to religious discrimination when applying for another graduate program?

I am currently enrolled in a master’s program in the Middle East, which does not seem to be possible to finish / worth finishing for various reasons. The main problem is the lack of research ...
64
votes
1answer
20k views

Choosing research ideas to include in a statement of purpose

The internet is littered with information on what makes a good SOP, but I would like to ask a specific question regarding mentioning one's research interests in SOP. What points should a student keep ...
61
votes
11answers
28k views

Dismissed from PhD due to disability-related misconduct: how to answer question about dismissal?

I committed plagiarism at the end of my PhD. My psychiatrist found that the plagiarism is related to a psychiatric disorder (mental health problem). I have published many papers in top journals and ...
59
votes
3answers
4k views

How to evaluate potential advisers on grounds other than their research/publications?

While accepting an offer to grad school, one is basically entering into a lasting relationship with one's adviser - most likely, someone whom the applicant has never met before, and the only exposure ...
58
votes
8answers
17k views

Why does a UK university need to know my sexual orientation and religion?

I want to apply to a postdoc position at a UK based University. They want me to fill a "Equal Opportunities Data" form with questions about my marital status, sexual orientation, religion and race. ...
57
votes
8answers
9k views

How to politely respond to generic emails requesting a PhD/job in my lab? Without wasting too much time

As I transition to faculty, I have increasingly gotten requests from people who want to do PhD's with me or want postdocs in my lab. Often these emails are extremely generic and don't suggest they ...
55
votes
4answers
26k views

Should I waive my right to view my recommendation letters?

Most graduate applications provide a choice for applicants to view their recommendation letters at a later date. There is a mention of some US mandate alongside. Is it a better option to forgo this ...
54
votes
5answers
18k views

How to handle not having my PhD advisor as a reference?

I received my PhD in 2009 and my adviser will not provide a good recommendation for me. This is mostly because we have fundamentally different approaches to science, and in retrospect I see that I ...
52
votes
5answers
11k views

Will flat earth society membership affect my graduate school application?

Just to be clear: no, I don't believe in the flat earth theory. However, a few years ago, I thought that the flat earth society forum is a good place to practice my debating skills and to have fun. ...
51
votes
7answers
13k views

I know that there is a preselected candidate for a position to be filled at my department. What should I do?

There is a rather attractive position to be filled at my department. The heads of department are already quite sure about who should fill this position. Jobs being filled with preselected candidates ...
50
votes
5answers
31k views

How to find a good topic for a PhD research proposal?

In many countries an application for a PhD position includes a written research proposal, so my questions is what are some advises/strategies to come up with a good topic/idea for a PhD research ...
43
votes
6answers
18k views

Letter writer snapped at my reminder email. What can I do in the future to prevent this, and should I still accept his letter?

I sent a reminder email one day before the due date for a couple of my applications to grad school. It said something along the lines of This is just a reminder that first due dates are tomorrow: [...
43
votes
4answers
8k views

Dismissed from PhD program and reapplying; how to answer question about dismissal?

My story is that the research in my department did not match with my background. I worked hard and my GPA is 3.5+, but the research topic was hard to develop. Unfortunately, I was dismissed from the ...
42
votes
3answers
2k views

Unsolicited CVs from grad school applicants - ignore or try to help?

I am a graduate student in physics and every other month or so I get an e-mail from someone who wants a grad school or even postdoc position. These e-mails often start out "Dear Professor (my name)," (...
42
votes
2answers
5k views

Graduate school admission with a degree in a different field

Can I be admitted to graduate school in a different field from my degree? Specific cases include: If I've taken plenty of advanced courses in field X in the process of completing a degree in another ...
41
votes
2answers
4k views

Do my articles published in local newspapers count as publications?

I'm applying to Columbia's journalism school and it asked me if I have any publications. Since I worked as a reporter before for the local newspaper, and I did write a few headline stories, I thought ...
40
votes
13answers
14k views

How to judge a Ph.D. applicant that arrives “out of thin air”

I just received an email from a student from a distant country, asking me to accept him as a Ph.D. student. I do not know this person, his advisors, his references or even the university he studied in....
38
votes
4answers
8k views

Details an applicant should include/exclude in an introductory letter to a prospective grad school adviser?

I'm applying for graduate school (PhD in computer science), and I'm considering writing to faculty whose research areas match with what I intend to pursue, to understand: Whether they'd be looking ...
37
votes
7answers
9k views

Photo requirement on CV?

I came across an advertisement of an academic position (in Europe) that states explicitly: Application package should include:  (1) a complete curriculum vitae (with a photo), (...) I have ...
37
votes
4answers
2k views

Value of light-to-none peer reviewed pay-to-publish articles

I have been approached by an international student about doing a PhD with me. As an MSc student in his home country he has published 3 articles in pay-to-publish venues, that are known to have little ...
34
votes
3answers
5k views

Why do some universities charge an application fee?

In the high competition of admission in top universities, it is common that every applicant must send lots of applications to different universities/programs to get approval for a PhD program. Some ...
34
votes
3answers
8k views

Accepted by European university, rejected by all American ones I applied to? Possible reasons?

I've been wondering this for a while. I'm currently doing the first year of my PhD in Frankfurt. Originally from New Zealand. I'm not complaining about my situation but if anyone asks me I'll ...
33
votes
5answers
13k views

How do academics make money from applying their research?

There are a lot of very smart people in academia. They are at the front of human knowledge and push it further. Obviously, the research that comes out of academia is very new. My question is who ...
33
votes
4answers
21k views

Should I disclose academic misconduct on a grad application?

I am applying to a master's programs right now and am in a bind. My professor accused me of academic misconduct in one of my undergraduate classes. After I submitted my assignment I had asked a ...
33
votes
4answers
4k views

How do I deal with diverse interests when applying for a PhD program?

I have a master's degree in Computer Science. I have applied to PhD programs, and decisions are trickling in. I may soon have to choose between two or more PhD programs. Unfortunately, I have diverse ...
32
votes
5answers
2k views

How to remove gender bias from an academic job search?

I overheard some professors discussing the next round of hiring at my university and several were concerned about gender bias possibly playing an issue in the hiring process. An initial thought is to ...
31
votes
9answers
13k views

“Upgrading” PhD

I have recently read many questions about doing a second PhD and (to my surprise) most people consider it a bad move. Also - it looks like some universities (for example Berkeley) even have formal ...
31
votes
8answers
4k views

Will anybody actually read your research and teaching statements?

When applying to faculty jobs, how much weight is given to your research/teaching statements? Talking with a few folks on admissions committees at Very Good Departments in Big Research Universities, ...
31
votes
4answers
9k views

For undergraduates, is publishing “weak” research better than not publishing?

As an undergraduate student, I have worked on some projects for my own interest, and recently a professor said that one of these works can be published (in a Elsevier journal with impact factor of ...
30
votes
7answers
8k views

Should I simplify my writing in a foreign country?

As a native English speaker studying in the Netherlands, I often find myself writing (not published) English papers for a Dutch audience, and I worry I'm alienating my superiors with my writing. I ...
30
votes
7answers
6k views

Should seemingly arbitrary things like “play piano for Church” or “intramural badminton” go on M.S. or PhD applications in sciences/engineering?

And if they should, I assume that these things should go on a resume under something like "Activities and Community Service". I mean I consider being able to sight read music to play at my Church as a ...
30
votes
2answers
5k views

Can a blind person do a post-doc in the humanities?

I’m about to finish my PhD in Sociology. I’m from Pakistan, and I’m totally blind. My PhD research was quite interdisciplinary. I studied factors influencing environmental concern about environmental ...
30
votes
1answer
2k views

What to include for a strong research statement for a faculty position?

An application for a faculty position normally needs a strong research statement, but what is included in a good research statement? Highlighting the past successful research projects evidenced by ...
29
votes
5answers
15k views

Professor wrote me a letter of recommendation, but sent it to both me and the institute

So after all these crazy days of trying to finish my application and encouraging professors to finish the letters of recommendations (LORs) for me, there is the next thing - my professor sent the ...
29
votes
5answers
7k views

How serious should I regard the “compliments” in an email denying my application?

A school, whose PhD program I applied to, denied my application with words such as "Your record is strong, but...". I am kind of confused. Is such a reply simply a "polite" way to decline a person? ...
29
votes
3answers
95k views

How much detail to include in first email to potential PhD supervisor?

First, I must mention that I found these questions helpful: Prospective PhD contacts potential supervisor but receives no answer after 2-3 emails, what to do? What to do when emails to a potential ...
29
votes
1answer
4k views

I missed an application deadline, but it wasn't entirely my fault. How can I still be considered?

About a week ago, I went to submit the application for the mathematics PhD program at one of my top choice schools. The form told me I had missed the deadline, which was December 15th. I had January ...
29
votes
5answers
2k views

Crippling anxiety when writing grant applications

I find it very difficult to make strong research proposals, where I am trying to convince the audience that my proposal is important (possibly more important than the other applicants'). I write "...
28
votes
12answers
20k views

I asked for a graduate student position from a professor. He replied “welcome”. What does that mean?

I emailed a professor, saying I'm looking for a position. I introduced myself and wrote about experiences that I thought would be relevant to his work. I read on his website that he was recruiting ...
28
votes
11answers
15k views

Can I hide my bachelor and master degrees in CV when I apply for a PhD position?

I have 1 Bachelors degree and 2 Masters degrees. They are in different subjects, not closely related. I am now planning to apply for a PhD program. Question: Do you think that I can only mention the ...
28
votes
8answers
43k views

How should I fill the “First name” and “Last name” in an application if I have two given names and two last names?

How should I fill this information if I have more than one given name and more than one last name? For example, if my name is Juan Eduardo González Rodríguez. I have 2 given names: "Juan" and "...
28
votes
2answers
4k views

Is having a “too good to be true” recommendation bad?

I am applying to grad school and I asked one of my professors to write a letter of recommendation on my behalf. He happily agreed. He submitted a recommendation and forwarded the confirmation email to ...
28
votes
6answers
6k views

Applied for PhD, professor asked me to disclose offers from other universities, why?

I have applied for PhD student positions at different graduate schools. During most interviews I was asked whether I have applied to other programs, which I affirmed. One professor also asked me to ...
27
votes
9answers
129k views

How to show extreme gratitude in an email?

When contacting universities, in many cases, I find the replies to my emails extremely well detailed and helpful, therefore in such cases I find a simple "Thank you" to be just insufficient. For ...
27
votes
6answers
3k views

Should I mention that I worked as a professional online poker player on my university application?

I'm 27 years old and I'm applying to university. On the applications it ask the student to list activities and employment during time away from school. I played online poker for living for ≈4 years, ...
27
votes
1answer
4k views

How do I, or should I, bring up research that I did under someone who was fired for another reason?

I worked under a professor whose research was funded by a non-profit organization. They were released from the university for some inappropriate behavior. The research that they have been publishing ...
25
votes
4answers
3k views

Applying to work where I said “no” in the past?

I'm currently applying for lecturing jobs at a couple of universities (in the US), and one of these is a place that had accepted me in its Ph.D. program a few years back, an offer which I ended up ...