Turn on thread page Beta

applying to your current uni and elsewhere for PhDs watch

Announcements
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    I'm pondering where I should apply for PhDs (in English).
    For 2007 entry, you understand.

    I could stay where I am - and from talking to my supervisors, I'm pretty sure I'd be accepted. I like and get on with the people who would supervise me, and the resources are excellent.

    On the other hand, all the people whose research most aligns with what I want to do for my PhD are based in the States. The competition is tough, and there's no guarantee I'd get in, so I'd want to apply to places in England as well - that is, to the place I'm doing my MA. But is it rude/bad form/a bad idea to apply elsewhere as well as to your current institution? Since it's tantamout to saying that staying where you are is not your first choice.

    Or might it in fact be best not to be supervised with someone whose work too closely relates to your own, lest you become too in the grip of their way of seeing things?
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    I was wondering the same thing. I came to the conclusion though that they won't think you rude to apply elsewhere becuase it shows that you are not taking yoru acceptance at your current university for granted. Because, think, if you apply only to that school and for some reason don't get accpeted (maybe because a student applies whose interests match exactly what your supervisor is doing or something like that), you'll be up the creek without a paddle, and I'm sure your supervisor understands that.
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    I think the question whether it is rude to apply to somewhere else sshould not be a criteria in your thinking - you are not doing a degree for your university or your professors, but for yourself. As such, you have the duty to yourself to chose a university best suited for you. If a different university just has a pofessor who you want to work with then of course this university will be a priority for you. I also doubt any university would find it actually rude; Rather it is natural that people move around with their studies. You are a young person, not an old employee who is already inflexible and does ot want to move to different places.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    Well, I wouldn't be worried if I wanted *only* to apply to other places. Then it would be quite reasonable to ask for references from the current place and move on. My point is more that I want to apply to the current place as a back-up option. But possibly it's true that given the funding lottery of UK PhDs, they'd understand the desire to apply for places in the States too. Though I still suspect that it's harder to get in there than to get funding here.

    I would've thought that in most cases you do rather take acceptance at your current university almost for granted - simply because you talk to the people who've supervised you and seen your work, and you don't bother applying unless they're enthusiastic about supervising your PhD.
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    I had the same difficulties as you zig. Can I ask where you are at the moment? I wanted to move to a more prestigious university (Cambridge/London/Bristol) but when it came down to it I chose to stay at Exeter because my PhD supervisor is a top bloke who knows the field extremely well and the department he works in is one of the best anyway. If you have a potential supervisor in mind in the current university, ask them their opinions - I dont think they will be offended (especially if youve known them for such a short period of time). Further, you are really running out of time if you want AHRC scholarships etc so do it asap!

    Can I help any more?
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    The uni that would best suit your academic needs is the first principle. After all, you have to work closely with your supervisor(s) for at least 3 years.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by The Boosh)
    I had the same difficulties as you zig. Can I ask where you are at the moment? I wanted to move to a more prestigious university (Cambridge/London/Bristol) but when it came down to it I chose to stay at Exeter because my PhD supervisor is a top bloke who knows the field extremely well and the department he works in is one of the best anyway. If you have a potential supervisor in mind in the current university, ask them their opinions - I dont think they will be offended (especially if youve known them for such a short period of time). Further, you are really running out of time if you want AHRC scholarships etc so do it asap!

    Can I help any more?
    Ah, no, I'm not going to apply this year. Will take a year out and apply this autumn for entry next year. In retrospect, that was probably a mistake, but I have to live with it now.

    I'm at KCL at the moment. It's OK. I do like the staff, and I think it's probably rather better for postgrads than for undergrads. It's that same thing: the academics in my area of my department are big in the field (or clearly will be in a couple of years), and nice people to boot. So even though I do have lingering thoughts about applying to Cambridge (not least because I did my BA there and I adore the place), I probably wouldn't benefit much from it. Except that I could live in Cambridge; but that probably shouldn't be a consideration....

    But maybe you're right and I should just talk openly about it to the people at KCL. That would be much the simplest thing.

    Are you glad you stayed at Exeter?
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    Im very pleased I stayed at Exeter - lots of opportunities for development i.e. research projects/conference papers/publications/scholarships/lecturing etc - my cv has improved no end in the last 2 years. This is partly because I work my arse off and make myself known, and partly because Im the only student in the department that pushes myself so much and have research interests very akin to my supervisor, hence lots of opportunities in the field to work along side him and others. I still wish that Exeter were higher in the general league tables but this will probably change by the next RAE (I hope!). At conferences people know about Exeter which can only be a good thing.
 
 
 
Poll
Do you think parents should charge rent?

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Write a reply...
Reply
Hide
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.