Na09
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Hi,

I am a bit anxious about my reference. I am in the middle of applying for a PhD position. So, I applied a PhD from my previous university where I did my master and I am accepted. I used my supervisor from my master studies as my reference and another from my undergrad studies. My supervisor from my master will be my 2nd supervisor for this future PhD. However, I have not accepted the offer as I am waiting for another university.
Is it appropriate for me to use my supervisor from my master degree as a referee for applying to this other university? I am worried if he/she will be reluctant. However, she did agree to be my reference before I started all my applications.
Could someone give me some advice?
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CCC75
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There should be no issue with this. Your supervisor has agreed to references for whatever employment/study you make application to. As long as it is relevant to their role as your supervisor, it is within their professional capacity to provide the reference (within reason of course). It is normal for students to complete several applications for study at different institutions.
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Na09
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(Original post by CCC75)
There should be no issue with this. Your supervisor has agreed to references for whatever employment/study you make application to. As long as it is relevant to their role as your supervisor, it is within their professional capacity to provide the reference (within reason of course). It is normal for students to complete several applications for study at different institutions.


Thank you very much. I'm just a bit a worried about this. I guess that it is fine then.
Thank you again
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username2228735
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Absolutely. You should definitely be OK using your referee for other applications too. If asked, you could go with something like:

"I just want to see my options before I make a decision."
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Na09
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(Original post by Aceadria)
Absolutely. You should definitely be OK using your referee for other applications too. If asked, you could go with something like:

"I just want to see my options before I make a decision."

That is the question that I hope my referee would not ask. Thank you for giving me the idea how to reply.
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username2228735
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(Original post by Na09)
That is the question that I hope my referee would not ask. Thank you for giving me the idea how to reply.
I understand the issue completely. But if you know you can get a good reference from him/her then it's definitely worth the risk. But I do think that most academics are rational and will most likely sympathize.
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Klix88
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(Original post by Na09)
Hi,

I am a bit anxious about my reference. I am in the middle of applying for a PhD position. So, I applied a PhD from my previous university where I did my master and I am accepted. I used my supervisor from my master studies as my reference and another from my undergrad studies. My supervisor from my master will be my 2nd supervisor for this future PhD. However, I have not accepted the offer as I am waiting for another university.
Is it appropriate for me to use my supervisor from my master degree as a referee for applying to this other university? I am worried if he/she will be reluctant. However, she did agree to be my reference before I started all my applications.
Could someone give me some advice?
It should be fine. Many people have to apply multiple times before they secure a PhD place, so it wouldn't be unusual. Your referees won't be surprised at being asked for more than one reference.

However....

Every PhD will be very individual and different. It would be a wise move to discuss each project you apply for with your referee, before they write the reference. You want what they write to be as specific as possible about how suitable you are for each PhD. If your referee doesn't want to know details, that would be a warning sign. A generic reference which doesn't go into specifics, could damage your application.
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Nathanielle
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Honestly it depends on your supervisor. Professional capacity or not, no one is happy, when you state, you want to leave them, after they gave you an offer. That is just human. I mean, you may be rejected by the other PHD positions and then you won't want o have harmed your future relationship with your supervisor. As you already have an offer, you don't fall no more in the category of "applying multiple times is the normal way to do, because nobody can be sure to get an offer". With applying now to others, it is kind of "you are only my second/third/fourth/... choice".
At the end only you know your supervisor, so decide how approaching this specific supervisor for a reference is the best way. It depends of course of your reasons. Things like "more money/enough money to live", "closer to wife husband" are way easier to get accross, than "I actually just applied for an isurance". So be honest and open (applying with a generic reference request without further explanation will only do harm) and then - depending on your reasons - he may be totally okay with that. But you are the only one knowing your reasons and your supervisor.
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