2.2 degree + MSc with Merit + Starting a second MA, chances for Phd at decent uni?

Watch
rbgpwer
Badges: 13
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 3 years ago
#1
Hey

I have a 2.2 degree and a master with Merit, both in law. I'm starting a new MA this September in an unrelated subject (Security).
I'm planning to apply for non-funded PhDs afterwards. The issue is, not many universities in London consider applications related to Security and War Studies, basically only UCL and KCL...

For example, UCL's website advertises as entry requirements: good upper second class degree. I would be tempted to say that I don't stand a chance, but I got a place in a KCL MA course which requires first class/high 2.1 degrees, thanks to my Merit in my first master.
Are PhD's different? or my 2.2 will still be an issue?

Also, how important is the university reputation when it comes to Phd's?

Thanks in advance!
0
reply
Reality Check
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#2
Report 3 years ago
#2
(Original post by rbgpwer)
Hey

I have a 2.2 degree and a master with Merit, both in law. I'm starting a new MA this September in an unrelated subject (Security).
I'm planning to apply for non-funded PhDs afterwards. The issue is, not many universities in London consider applications related to Security and War Studies, basically only UCL and KCL...

For example, UCL's website advertises as entry requirements: good upper second class degree. I would be tempted to say that I don't stand a chance, but I got a place in a KCL MA course which requires first class/high 2.1 degrees, thanks to my Merit in my first master.
Are PhD's different? or my 2.2 will still be an issue?

Also, how important is the university reputation when it comes to Phd's?

Thanks in advance!
1. Do you really want to apply for a non-funded PhD in something as niche as Security and War studies? You do realise how much of a massive financial commitment it is?

2. I don't know a single person who was admitted to a PhD with a 2ii in their undergrad. A merit at Masters won't negate the 2ii afaik.

3. The reputation of the uni isn't the important thing at posgrad level - it's the reputation and standing of your PI/supervisor and group which is the important thing.
0
reply
06moca1
Badges: 14
Rep:
?
#3
Report 3 years ago
#3
(Original post by rbgpwer)
Hey

I have a 2.2 degree and a master with Merit, both in law. I'm starting a new MA this September in an unrelated subject (Security).
I'm planning to apply for non-funded PhDs afterwards. The issue is, not many universities in London consider applications related to Security and War Studies, basically only UCL and KCL...

For example, UCL's website advertises as entry requirements: good upper second class degree. I would be tempted to say that I don't stand a chance, but I got a place in a KCL MA course which requires first class/high 2.1 degrees, thanks to my Merit in my first master.
Are PhD's different? or my 2.2 will still be an issue?

Also, how important is the university reputation when it comes to Phd's?

Thanks in advance!
You will need some good research experience. It would help if you have achieved 70%+ in your project during your masters. Would it be possible to do a MRes/MPhil instead of a MA? You will have a better chance at getting into a PhD with an MRes/MPhil
2
reply
rbgpwer
Badges: 13
Rep:
?
#4
Report Thread starter 3 years ago
#4
P
(Original post by Reality Check)
1. Do you really want to apply for a non-funded PhD in something as niche as Security and War studies? You do realise how much of a massive financial commitment it is?

2. I don't know a single person who was admitted to a PhD with a 2ii in their undergrad. A merit at Masters won't negate the 2ii afaik.

3. The reputation of the uni isn't the important thing at posgrad level - it's the reputation and standing of your PI/supervisor and group which is the important thing.
Thanks for your reply.

1. Yes, I want to apply for a non-founded Phd, as I already secured funding. So that won't be an issue.

A Phd, in my opinion, is about interest, pertinence, and willingness to see progress in the chosen area, so I don't think there are 'niche' subjects/topics.

2. Many universities do accept 2.2s, such as Birkbeck, for example. I think the lack of people with 2.2 is mainly due to the fact they are discouraged from pursuing studies, in my master's cohort no one had a 2.2, despite the fact the university could have accepted students with such grades.

3. Thank you for confirming. I thought that as well
1
reply
Reality Check
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#5
Report 3 years ago
#5
(Original post by rbgpwer)
P

Thanks for your reply.

1. Yes, I want to apply for a non-founded Phd, as I already secured funding. So that won't be an issue.

A Phd, in my opinion, is about interest, pertinence, and willingness to see progress in the chosen area, so I don't think there are 'niche' subjects/topics.

2. Many universities do accept 2.2s, such as Birkbeck, for example. I think the lack of people with 2.2 is mainly due to the fact they are discouraged from pursuing studies, in my master's cohort no one had a 2.2, despite the fact the university could have accepted students with such grades.

3. Thank you for confirming. I thought that as well
You're welcome. And good luck with it. I'll just draw your attention to this point, which you've written:

(Original post by rbgpwer)
in my master's cohort no one had a 2.2, despite the fact the university could have accepted students with such grades.
There's possibly another reason why no-one on the Master's course had a 2ii, and maybe that's something to think about.

Best of luck with it all.
2
reply
rbgpwer
Badges: 13
Rep:
?
#6
Report Thread starter 3 years ago
#6
(Original post by 06moca1)
You will need some good research experience. It would help if you have achieved 70%+ in your project during your masters. Would it be possible to do a MRes/MPhil instead of a MA? You will have a better chance at getting into a PhD with an MRes/MPhil
Hey thanks for your reply,

Unfortunately, the course I want to do is only available as an MA but has, to some extent, some emphasis on research, being a new course which opens this September.

Do you think they assess Phd applications with greater attention to grades obtained in dissertations/modules assessed by coursework?
0
reply
RamocitoMorales
Badges: 21
#7
Report 3 years ago
#7
(Original post by Reality Check)
2. I don't know a single person who was admitted to a PhD with a 2ii in their undergrad. A merit at Masters won't negate the 2ii afaik.
I got a 2:2 in my undergrad and it hasn't proven to be a problem with my PhD applications for fully paid positions (we're talking 2200 euros to 3600 euros a month). I don't know why people suffer in England when the opportunities are far greater and more rewarding on the continent. Even the funded positions in the UK pay pittance :lol:

P.S. I'm about to graduate from my master at a top 70 (in the world) university in Europe. I dread to think what would have become of me if I'd stayed in the UK, the land of oversaturation, limited opportunities, where people crawl on their knees to get paid 1100 pounds a month or something for a PhD project where they're still just students officially and with that salary, live like one too, and are not even employed by the university (unlike most positions on the continent)
4
reply
Reality Check
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#8
Report 3 years ago
#8
(Original post by RamocitoMorales)
I got a 2:2 in my undergrad and it hasn't proven to be a problem with my PhD applications for fully paid positions (we're talking 2200 euros to 3600 euros a month). I don't know why people suffer in England when the opportunities are far greater and more rewarding on the continent. Even the funded positions in the UK pay pittance :lol:
Yes, our system does seem different to the continental one with regards to 2ii and PhD's. I'm sure there are PhD candidates with 2ii's in Britain, but I've never heard of one! Where do you study by the way?
0
reply
rbgpwer
Badges: 13
Rep:
?
#9
Report Thread starter 3 years ago
#9
(Original post by RamocitoMorales)
I got a 2:2 in my undergrad and it hasn't proven to be a problem with my PhD applications for fully paid positions (we're talking 2200 euros to 3600 euros a month). I don't know why people suffer in England when the opportunities are far greater and more rewarding on the continent. Even the funded positions in the UK pay pittance :lol:
True, in France for example, there's isn't that obsession with classifications/grades.Yet, there, getting a master is a standard, not in the UK.
Completely another culture. And I pity that, because people aren't equal when they start uni, nor they should be punished forever. At least in Continental Europe, they give you a chance, based on experience and skills, provided you work hard.

I, personally, am proud of my 2.2. I started my first year of LLB with basic conversational English skills, not even enough to read a newspaper comfortably. And God knows what challenges other people had in their lives.

People evolve and progress.
2
reply
RamocitoMorales
Badges: 21
#10
Report 3 years ago
#10
(Original post by Reality Check)
Yes, our system does seem different to the continental one with regards to 2ii and PhD's. I'm sure there are PhD candidates with 2ii's in Britain, but I've never heard of one! Where do you study by the way?
I'm at the mathematics department in Utrecht University and I am confident of being admitted into TU Delft for my PhD (to name my preferred option)

(Original post by rgbpwer)
Completelly another culture
Let me tell you something about UK culture compared with the culture on the continent:

In the UK, if you apply for a university or a job, you are judged on your most recent degree, your degree before that and even your A levels (and sometimes they even dig deeper). The process is all very competitive and the filter is very strict.

For my applications on the continent for universities, they barely even look at the grades I got during my masters. What is important is the quality of my thesis, my references and consequently my suitability for the project. In the UK, I wouldn't dream of applying for companies like Shell et al either, but these are all viable options for me here.

Maybe the UK was a nice place once upon a time, but I will never go back to live or work there. It is not a place for young people who seek to prosper. Why should I suffer, as people do? People who get graduate jobs in London, for example, and still have such a poor quality of life with their seemingly good salaries...It'll only be to visit and catch up with friends and family during the holidays, I think

I guess people in the UK are just very insular and are fearful of new challenges or the "language barrier". Well, research (at least in science) is all conducted in English. And in industry, multinational companies also adopt English
0
reply
06moca1
Badges: 14
Rep:
?
#11
Report 3 years ago
#11
(Original post by rbgpwer)
Hey thanks for your reply,

Unfortunately, the course I want to do is only available as an MA but has, to some extent, some emphasis on research, being a new course which opens this September.

Do you think they assess Phd applications with greater attention to grades obtained in dissertations/modules assessed by coursework?
Yes, academics will look at your research capabilities rather than your taught modules. This depends on the PI and the University as well. You will have to ring up and as all honestly. I don't see why you would want to do another masters rather than trying your luck...
1
reply
Reality Check
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#12
Report 3 years ago
#12
(Original post by RamocitoMorales)
Maybe the UK was a nice place once upon a time, but I will never go back to live or work there. It is not a place for young people who seek to prosper.
But young people flock here in their droves for education and employment, because the prospects on the continent aren't really very good. We don't have the terrible unemployment problems here that they do in France for instance for the under-25s. You're entitled to your opinion, of course - but I'm not sure the picture you're painting is entirely accurate
0
reply
RamocitoMorales
Badges: 21
#13
Report 3 years ago
#13
(Original post by Reality Check)
But young people flock here in their droves for education and employment, because the prospects on the continent aren't really very good. We don't have the terrible unemployment problems here that they do in France for instance for the under-25s. You're entitled to your opinion, of course - but I'm not sure the picture you're painting is entirely accurate
Let's see. My A levels are BCCD and I got a 2:2 in my bachelors. How well do you think I'd do in England? I'd struggle to even get onto one of those crappy graduate schemes! What's not "accurate" about that? No one on the continent gives a crap about my A levels or bachelors. I am about to graduate from my master, from one of the top Dutch universities. If I went straight into industry, I'm looking at a starting salary of around €55,000 a year (trust me, I know such people who graduated with weaker grades then me in their master); but I'm opting for a PhD, for which the salary is, on average €32,000 a year and then I can expect good things thereon.

What's true though is that the UK, and London in particular, does a blindingly good job at advertising itself! Did I also mention that everything is cheaper here; people are actually friendly and it's much less cramped? It's also more developed too, with a higher GDP per capita; plus foreigners get tax breaks for the first 8 years or so.
0
reply
The_Lonely_Goatherd
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#14
Report 3 years ago
#14
(Original post by Reality Check)
2. I don't know a single person who was admitted to a PhD with a 2ii in their undergrad
:ninja: :wavey:

Granted I'm the exception rather than the rule, but still
2
reply
The_Lonely_Goatherd
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#15
Report 3 years ago
#15
(Original post by rbgpwer)
P

Thanks for your reply.

1. Yes, I want to apply for a non-founded Phd, as I already secured funding. So that won't be an issue.

A Phd, in my opinion, is about interest, pertinence, and willingness to see progress in the chosen area, so I don't think there are 'niche' subjects/topics.

2. Many universities do accept 2.2s, such as Birkbeck, for example. I think the lack of people with 2.2 is mainly due to the fact they are discouraged from pursuing studies, in my master's cohort no one had a 2.2, despite the fact the university could have accepted students with such grades.

3. Thank you for confirming. I thought that as well
I'm not too clear on what you mean when you say "I already secured funding", but you've been given some good advice on this. Self-funding a PhD is no joke (I should know!) and if having a PhD will not definitely enhance your job prospects, it is arguably a waste of money when those funds could go towards, say, multiple holidays, or a wedding/house deposit fund. So do think carefully about why you want to do a PhD and whether it's really worth that money...

As has been alluded to, there are good and reasonable reasons (imho) why you don't get many people with 2.2 at undergrad studying at postgraduate level, especially the top unis or the more challenging courses. It's because a 2.2 indicates that you were not (and thus probably are not) capable of high-level research. They may view it differently if there were extenuating circumstances, like illness or bereavement. I'm not too clear on whether your language barriers would count as an extenuating circumstance. Without meaning to be rude or disrespectful to you, I personally find it quite questionable that you were let onto a UK degree course with as basic language skills as you have implied. It's quite a dodgy move on the part of your undergrad institution! In the absence of extenuating circumstances, it may be assumed that you would falter on a PG course or possibly even fail it. Especially with grade inflation these days, it's not that hard to get a 2.1 classification at undergrad, so getting a 2.2 naturally leads to questions as to why you couldn't get what most undergrads get.

All this said, my personal experience of applying to postgrad courses with a 2.2 undergrad classification (in my case, with extenuating circumstances) has been that if you are self-funding and have strong references/written work, it's not hard to convince people to accept you. Particularly if you can get a strong reference from a "big name" in your field. Though since you're trying to move fields, this could prove tricky, depending on whether you'd be applying for PhDs during this second Masters course: you may not have time to form proper relationships with referees from that course.

Good luck with deciding what to do
1
reply
Dot.Cotton
Badges: 17
Rep:
?
#16
Report 3 years ago
#16
Not a chance. End of story, book closed.
0
reply
Reality Check
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#17
Report 3 years ago
#17
(Original post by The_Lonely_Goatherd)
:ninja: :wavey:

Granted I'm the exception rather than the rule, but still
- I think your 2ii was extremely exceptional - the one thing you're not is a typical 2ii candidate from an academic perspective.

Lovely to see you around! How's the summer writing going (are you writing?) - I saw a piled higher and deeper comic and thought of the summer writing process!
0
reply
The_Lonely_Goatherd
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#18
Report 3 years ago
#18
(Original post by Reality Check)
- I think your 2ii was extremely exceptional - the one thing you're not is a typical 2ii candidate from an academic perspective.

Lovely to see you around! How's the summer writing going (are you writing?) - I saw a piled higher and deeper comic and thought of the summer writing process!
Thanks! I'm trying to do some reading atm but it's not really happening :ninja: Just started a new part-time job, so trying to settle into that atm

Posted from TSR Mobile
0
reply
RamocitoMorales
Badges: 21
#19
Report 3 years ago
#19
(Original post by Reality Check)
I"m sorry you have an agenda against the UK, presumably driven by your inability to secure graduate level work or further study here due to your poor academic results. However, I'm pleased that you've managed to secure a position in which you are happy in Holland.
The OP asked if it was possible for him/her to be accepted into a PhD position in spite of his/her "poor" bachelor degree. I provided my own input based on my personal experiences, which should no doubt be enlightening to the OP, that in the UK it is highly unlikely but elsewhere (e.g. in continental Europe) it is more than possible and in far superior conditions. Perhaps you ought to retract your ad hominem remark?

(Original post by Reality Check)
presumably driven by your inability to secure graduate level work or further study here
I never tried. I'm also very pragmatic. For my bachelors, I went to a Scottish university which is easily superior to the ex-polytechnics who would have made for my only options in England.

Anyway, I shall write back here when I finally secure my desired PhD position (although I did already have an offer from an Italian university, which I subsequently declined (€16,000 a year with free accommodation and free access to the canteen; not too shabby, I think)).
0
reply
Reality Check
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#20
Report 3 years ago
#20
(Original post by RamocitoMorales)
The OP asked if it was possible for him/her to be accepted into a PhD position in spite of his/her "poor" bachelor degree. I provided my own input based on my personal experiences, which should no doubt be enlightening to the OP, that in the UK it is highly unlikely but elsewhere (e.g. in continental Europe) it is more than possible and in far superior conditions. Perhaps you ought to retract your ad hominem remark?
No. I see no ad hominem remark - just a factual observation that your academic record is poor.

Let's not make this thread about you, please. It's about the OP and his question.
0
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

Do you have the space and resources you need to succeed in home learning?

Yes I have everything I need (455)
56.38%
I don't have everything I need (352)
43.62%

Watched Threads

View All