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Questions tagged [graduate-school]

On schools that award advanced academic degrees, such as masters and doctoral degrees. This tag is mainly for questions about the structure and organization of a graduate school or the fundamental experience of being a graduate student. Do not use this tag for questions about research in graduate school (use [research] instead), coursework in graduate school (use [coursework] instead), gaining admissions to graduate school (use [graduate-admissions]), etc.

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11
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4answers
6k views

Can graduate students be forced to leave graduate school under pressure from their advisers?

And how often does it happen? I know someone who was de facto kicked out of Harvard due to some conflict with his advisers, though he was later able to transfer to Caltech. As an example - what if ...
6
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2answers
3k views

Is it ever advisable for graduate students to go on sabbatical for several months?

Undergraduates have several-month long "sabbaticals" every years. While graduate students shouldn't expect to have the same thing, could it maybe be justifiable for them to take a several-month long ...
4
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3answers
2k views

Is the middle of May very late for graduate admissions in the same year?

Let me explain my situation a little bit, then I will try to make it more general for others to benefit. I am graduating in a month and getting my bachelor degree in computer science. I did apply to ...
19
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2answers
5k views

What are some good practices for applying to the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program?

Is it possible if I could get 4 letters of recommendation? How far in advance should I notify those who are writing my letters? Does activity on sites like Quora, Stack Exchange, and Reddit's ...
19
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3answers
507 views

Number of potential PhD advisors at a school

Past advice suggests that potential PhD students should be wary of attending schools with only one professor in their subfield. If you have problems with your advisor and want to switch, having that ...
9
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4answers
263 views

Do many academic institutions let students deposit their publications in the institutional repository?

I'm a doctoral student and I've published several academic papers. My institution maintains a digital institutional repository, but it doesn't look like I can put copies of my work in it. When I ...
14
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3answers
740 views

Rankings for university departments

The Internet is littered with information about university rankings and comparisons that it is very easy for an applicant to lose track of what exactly he wants to know. Apparently rankings which ...
39
votes
3answers
13k views

How to cope when PhD advisor quits midway

How does a PhD student come to grips with the situation when his/her advisor quits midway? What should be the student's considerations when the professor offers him a choice to move along with him? ...
10
votes
2answers
299 views

Etiquette to take external help

Assume that the student (during his PhD) is faced with a problem which he and his advisor are both completely new to. The advisor is trying to help the student but owing to his lack of experience/...
9
votes
1answer
173 views

How to find a good part-time programs by reputable business schools?

I have a bachelor degree and work for a marketing research company as a senior research analyst in Morris County in NJ. Having this day-time job, my options for further education remain part-time ...
3
votes
3answers
152 views

How should a “brief synopses of each paper” look like?

I'm a exchange student that just arrived in the US. The professor is asking us to do this: Please write and submit brief synopses of each paper before class which include the following: the ...
56
votes
10answers
7k views

Age and Graduate school

I am 33. I live in the US. I am a neither a US citizen, nor a green card holder. I have worked in various jobs as a research assistant (physics, biology, economics) usually involving programming, ...
14
votes
4answers
6k views

1 or 2 Year Master's Program

I originally posted this on math.stackexchange but was recommended to post here. I have been admitted to two Master's Programs in math (both with funding). One is 1 year long and the other is 2 years ...
7
votes
4answers
329 views

What is the academic route to study Archaeology?

I am really fascinated by ancient civilizations and cultures. I do not know what subjects one has to take up to study Archaeology (like what subjects in A Levels or High School) at an academic level? ...
13
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3answers
3k views

As a teaching assistant, how important are student evaluations?

I have seen a number of résumés of doctoral students, but only a few of them listed their evaluation scores when presenting their teaching experience. How important are these scores in evaluating ...
23
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4answers
4k views

How can one successfully run a reading group?

This is related to "Skimming through a math paper with a group" and "What do professors gain out of teaching reading courses with individual Ph.D students", but from the other side :) I've ...
28
votes
3answers
2k views

When does a PhD end?

When does a PhD end? I know this is a very general question on this forum, but let us consider a CS-engineering group. What is the usual and primary consideration for letting the student finish ...
20
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6answers
5k views

Is it possible to work on extra activities (start-up project) during PhD?

I am about to get my bachelor degree in computer science. I have applied PhD programs of US universities to earn doctorate degree in computer architecture subject. I kept my hopes high and applied the ...
12
votes
5answers
2k views

What are the 25th-75th percentile ranges for the annual income for graduate students in the United States?

And are there differences in average income between different types of fields, or different types of schools? The diagram below says that the average income for grad students is $17k/year. But I'm ...
12
votes
2answers
534 views

Is there generally a high amount of variability in the number of hours grad students put to work each week?

As in, it's certainly not a standard 8-5 job of 40-50 hours per week. Is it common (and expected) for them to sometimes put in 80 hours a week, and to occasionally put in 10 hours? (say, during times ...
5
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2answers
171 views

Is it the norm to allow professors from different departments on a PhD committee?

Or is this the exception to the norm? I know that it's allowed at Brown - but I wonder if it's unique.
34
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3answers
3k views

How to efficiently read mathematically and theoretically dense books in STEM fields?

When it comes to reading, there are literally thousands of methods from Speed Reading to SQ3R to Sequential(Word by Word till the end). My question is regarding reading mathematically/theoretically ...
11
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3answers
510 views

Looking for sources of online graduate-level education

Can anyone suggest sources of online graduate-level education, as well as some criticism of them? Both free and paid are valid. I'm familiar with these sources: Academic Earth MIT OpenCourseWare Kahn ...
12
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2answers
2k views

What are the primary causes of conflict between PhD advisors and their students?

Here's a very interesting analysis from a professor's point of view on the primary causes of conflict between PhD advisors and their students: In my experience, incompatible personalities account ...
3
votes
2answers
96 views

Are the Survey rankings for the National Research Council really more objective than the Regression rankings?

This blog post argues so, but I have my doubts since the author works at a graduate program whose S-rankings are much better than its R-rankings. I have a feeling that R-rankings do capture some ...
5
votes
3answers
270 views

How often do graduate students help connect professors with each other?

I know that a couple of UChicago professors told me that, especially if a graduate student ends up co-advised with two professors. Maybe there's an additional factor too: maybe students actually have ...
28
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6answers
2k views

When is it a good idea to let an academic department (or a professor) know that I have Asperger's (or ADD)?

With Asperger's, the trick is always when to explain it (in a non-awkward situation). I'd like to avoid mentioning it if possible, but it has gotten to the point that I only mention it after ...
8
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3answers
149 views

Are university counseling services usually able to help with the professional troubles that PhD students face?

The thing with PhDs is that it often takes someone who knows the politics and people of the field in order to really understand (or help) a PhD student's troubles (if any arise). At the same time, ...
19
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3answers
1k views

How many weeks of break (per year) should a graduate student reasonably expect to have?

Here are the details for one of my schools so far: At UChicago, my prospective adviser said that I should expect to have around a month off per year (probably 2 weeks in winter and 2 weeks in summer)....
39
votes
7answers
25k views

What are the advantages and disadvantages to completing a Masters program before applying to a Ph. D program?

I've been considering applying to graduate school of some form or another in Mathematics. During my undergraduate years, I did decently on my undergraduate coursework (mostly A-s, some As, a B) but ...
14
votes
4answers
520 views

How to fruitfully utilize faculty-student orientation sessions at institutes you don't want to attend?

More than once, I have had (graduate school admissions) orientation sessions where the faculty of the institute introduce their fields, their research and what they expect from potential students (...
12
votes
5answers
901 views

Any reason not to apply for funding as a grad student?

The question is hypothetical, but it came up in a conversation and I'd like to see if we can come up with a logical analysis and conclusion. For various reasons, graduate students might not be ...
8
votes
3answers
490 views

Good source for pre PhD level papers/dissertations in Mathematics

I am looking for a good source to get my hands on some pre PhD level maths papers/dissertations, because I want to get a better feeling what is expected. (i.e. BSc and MSc Dissertations) My ...
15
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3answers
2k views

How much guidance should I reasonably expect from an MSc Thesis Supervisor

As part of my MSc I have to produce a Thesis/Dissertation which forms an integral part of the program and classification (roughly 1/4 - I imagine the subject can make a difference, so I should say ...
25
votes
4answers
37k views

What are some good questions to ask current graduate students when visiting schools?

For the record, I'm visiting the University of Chicago as an accepted PhD student (in the geophysical sciences) next week. In particular, I'd especially appreciate creative questions that few other ...
9
votes
2answers
302 views

Do school-wide holidays count against personal vacation time?

I keep hearing different things from different people and it seems there is no clear policy laid out at my institution regarding the definition of graduate student vacation days; I'm curious how PIs ...
25
votes
5answers
2k views

Doing a PhD with significant external time obligations (e.g., marriage)

Graduate school has a reputation for being a tremendous time-sink. I'm currently married with kids, and I have a fairly busy extracurricular schedule. Is it common for married people - or anyone, ...
20
votes
4answers
768 views

Does Pop-Science involvement hurt one's reputation?

There is a divide between the scientific community about involvement in popular science. I would define it as involvement in NatGeo/Discovery type documentaries, writing columns for newspapers/...
15
votes
2answers
874 views

What is the typical time period after which an incoming grad student is expected to start publishing?

An incoming graduate student is typically required to help out as a TA, take courses both related to their research and required by the program, as well as to start reading up on the research topics ...
22
votes
5answers
1k views

How do I not get impatient when other people ask me to describe my research?

I mean, I really should be glad when they ask me this question. But inevitably, different people will ask me the same question many different times (over many different interviews), understandably so, ...
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 ...
16
votes
1answer
502 views

What are the options for fellowships for international grad students in USA?

I'm looking for fellowships that an international grad student can apply for, to support him/her while working towards a Ph.D. (additional to whatever funding that may be available as TA). So far, I'...
27
votes
6answers
56k views

Attending graduate school at my undergraduate university

I've been told by numerous people that (1) my undergraduate university will be disinclined to bring me on as a graduate student, and that (2) it's a bad idea to attend grad school where you completed ...
23
votes
3answers
2k views

Is it possible for a student in first year of Ph.D to secure funding for attending conferences?

Note: I'm primarily interested in answers relevant to Computer Science (Theory), but answers in different areas in CS / totally other disciplines are equally welcome. In most (if not all) PhD ...
21
votes
7answers
2k views

Are master's degrees in the US mostly meant to prepare you for a Ph.D?

I am a Canadian undergraduate student intending to get a master's degree, but not intending to get a Ph.D. A Canadian graduate student told me that master's degree in the US are really only designed ...
26
votes
2answers
2k views

Advisor isn't advising

I'm having the problem that my advisor isn't providing me with any real guidance. To avoid making this a rant post, I'll just state the facts: my advisor is an MD/PhD, working almost full-time as an ...
21
votes
4answers
15k views

What is the difference between Ph. D programs with coursework and those without it?

I have been looking into PhD programs in the Engineering field, and I have found different types of programs, such as some with coursework, and others without any coursework. What is the practical ...
13
votes
6answers
513 views

Evaluating Grad Schools on grounds other than research

Assuming that an applicant does his research and applies to a bunch of schools for a PhD. He gets accepted by a few of them with full aid. Assuming that the research and faculty at all places is more ...
19
votes
5answers
8k views

Usefulness of prior industry experience before entering grad school?

I'm wondering what impact does prior industry experience (by which I mean 2+ years in a non-trivial functional role in any established organization) lend to the profile of someone who is entering grad ...
19
votes
7answers
623 views

Should I take courses that are not directly part of my research topic?

I've received conflicting advice as to whether I should choose my coursework based on my research topic or not. The main pro usually is that I'll quickly be able to get up to speed on my research. The ...