PhD Applicants 2019 Watch

PhoenixFortune
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#21
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#21
Just submitted my application. I think I'll hear within the next few weeks as to whether I've got an interview or not. :teeth:
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Lmort003
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#22
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#22
(Original post by PhoenixFortune)
Just submitted my application. I think I'll hear within the next few weeks as to whether I've got an interview or not. :teeth:
Good luck Phoenix, I hope it goes well. I got a self-funded place which I expected as I did my masters a very long time ago lol. I’m very excited and I’m confident I’ll sort the finances out.
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aniza12
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#23
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#23
wow funded phd how nice! Im not funded but I can pay it myself. the problem is motivation huhu
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Lmort003
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#24
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#24
(Original post by aniza12)
wow funded phd how nice! Im not funded but I can pay it myself. the problem is motivation huhu
No unfortunately I got a self funded place. How have you found being self funded?
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discogirl
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#25
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#25
I've heard I have an interview for funding next week. It's only 20 minutes long, so it's going to be interesting to see how much detail can be crammed into that!
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PhoenixFortune
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#26
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#26
(Original post by discogirl)
I've heard I have an interview for funding next week. It's only 20 minutes long, so it's going to be interesting to see how much detail can be crammed into that!
It's interesting that they told you how long it will be, I wonder if they do that so you prepare more concise answers...
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RaastaMousee
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#27
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#27
I applied for the NERC DTP at Exeter in Zoology. Just heard I've been nominated after interview for funding but still don't get confirmation whether I have it until the end of the month. The interview was also 20 mins requiring a 5 minute presentation at the start, then a panel of 9 people on a literal round table each asked me a question about the project/ my past research / why Exeter and more out there questions like "if you were given 1mil what research would you do?" I'm in the Kalahari desert in South Africa on a years research assistant position so had to Skype, and even with the best connection I could find in the area they had to turn the video off so we could hear each other properly, still managed to apparently do well.

This whole process has been exhausting. Firstly you have to compete to get shortlisted for a project, then you might not even be selected for an interview, then even if you get nominated depending on who's been nominated across the other institutions in the partnership you may still not get the funding. Felt like I've been in limbo for three months over this.
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PhoenixFortune
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#28
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#28
(Original post by RaastaMousee)
I applied for the NERC DTP at Exeter in Zoology. Just heard I've been nominated after interview for funding but still don't get confirmation whether I have it until the end of the month. The interview was also 20 mins requiring a 5 minute presentation at the start, then a panel of 9 people on a literal round table each asked me a question about the project/ my past research / why Exeter and more out there questions like "if you were given 1mil what research would you do?" I'm in the Kalahari desert in South Africa on a years research assistant position so had to Skype, and even with the best connection I could find in the area they had to turn the video off so we could hear each other properly, still managed to apparently do well.

This whole process has been exhausting. Firstly you have to compete to get shortlisted for a project, then you might not even be selected for an interview, then even if you get nominated depending on who's been nominated across the other institutions in the partnership you may still not get the funding. Felt like I've been in limbo for three months over this.
Wow, 9 people! That must have been intense! I know what you mean about the level of work involved, just to get from one stage to the next. In the DTP I've applied to, I've heard that 95% of nominated candidates do end up with funding, so hopefully it's similar odds for you too.

I applied 2 and a bit weeks ago, and interviews are meant to take place in late February/early March, so hoping to hear (one way or the other) soon. What makes it worse is that I can't remember if the DTP informs people if they aren't successful, or whether they just don't contact them at all...
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RaastaMousee
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#29
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#29
(Original post by PhoenixFortune)
Wow, 9 people! That must have been intense! I know what you mean about the level of work involved, just to get from one stage to the next. In the DTP I've applied to, I've heard that 95% of nominated candidates do end up with funding, so hopefully it's similar odds for you too.

I applied 2 and a bit weeks ago, and interviews are meant to take place in late February/early March, so hoping to hear (one way or the other) soon. What makes it worse is that I can't remember if the DTP informs people if they aren't successful, or whether they just don't contact them at all...
I applied for a few within the same department at Exeter, some for the same partnership so meant my second/third choice didn't shortlist me. I got emails from Exeters's doctoral enquiries email confirming I wouldn't be interviewed for these rather than the DTP/NERC themselves so may depend on the uni.

Yeah would have been intense if I was there in person lmao. That's the one thing about Skype interviews that are good is you don't have to do the nervous walk in and your generally less intimidated since you're in your own space so it feels like you're more in control. Especially helps if when you start the call they're fidling with the camera which is falling all over the place and they're laughing with you which is what happened to me. Took the edge off a lot. Added bonus for them having to turn my camera off so they couldn't see my face to get a better audio feed. Was a very sereal/odd experience.

Good luck! Hope you get the interview. If it seems like a similar format to mine don't hesitate to ask me any questions. My supervisor gave me a huge amount of advice which was extremely useful and may be applicable. The findaPhD interview advice pages are your friend most of the questions that came up were an almost exact match.

Also, I didn't receive confirmation for the interview until 8 days before the date so it's probably still a bit early.
Last edited by RaastaMousee; 4 weeks ago
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PhoenixFortune
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#30
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#30
(Original post by RaastaMousee)
I applied for a few within the same department at Exeter, some for the same partnership so meant my second/third choice didn't shortlist me. I got emails from Exeters's doctoral enquiries email confirming I wouldn't be interviewed for these rather than the DTP/NERC themselves so may depend on the uni.

Yeah would have been intense if I was there in person lmao. That's the one thing about Skype interviews that are good is you don't have to do the nervous walk in and your generally less intimidated since you're in your own space so it feels like you're more in control. Especially helps if when you start the call they're fidling with the camera which is falling all over the place and they're laughing with you which is what happened to me. Took the edge off a lot. Added bonus for them having to turn my camera off so they couldn't see my face to get a better audio feed. Was a very sereal/odd experience.

Good luck! Hope you get the interview. If it seems like a similar format to mine don't hesitate to ask me any questions. My supervisor gave me a huge amount of advice which was extremely useful and may be applicable. The findaPhD interview advice pages are your friend most of the questions that came up were an almost exact match.

Also, I didn't receive confirmation for the interview until 8 days before the date so it's probably still a bit early.
Thank you! What kind of advice did your supervisor give you?

I have a feeling I might not find out if I have an interview until pretty close to the time, so I'm not surprised. The only problem with that is the university is 6 hours away by train, so I would have to travel the day before and stay at least one night. Hopefully if I get one I'll have time to arrange everything!
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RaastaMousee
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#31
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#31
(Original post by PhoenixFortune)
Thank you! What kind of advice did your supervisor give you?

I have a feeling I might not find out if I have an interview until pretty close to the time, so I'm not surprised. The only problem with that is the university is 6 hours away by train, so I would have to travel the day before and stay at least one night. Hopefully if I get one I'll have time to arrange everything!
It'll depend on what format the interview is but if there's a similar 5 minute presentation then it's mostly supposed to be about you rather then the PhD project itself. I had 4/5 slides about my research/field work/ lab experience and what relevence this has to the project, but only on the last slide did I talk about the background/aims/hypothesis/predictions of the project itself. Then you conclude with reminding them of how your past experience makes you the best candidate for it. Mine was an advertised position though, it'll be completely different if you came up with the project yourself. Your supervisor will know more about exactly what this DTP wants I'd make sure to ask them before accepting this advice.

I'm not sure what field you're applying in? If it's science then apart from knowing in and out the PhD project, any masters/bsc projects you've done and the reading around them, you need to show you see the "big picture" which means read at least a couple of other interesting papers not related particularly to your field. They might be mean and ask you what the biggest development in your field in X years has been too, so just make sure you have something to say.

Lastly, make sure you have questions. The stability of funding arrangements is a good one (lol Brexit), but I got a really good response when I asked about what this particularly DTP offers in terms of training/ what the partnership offers you and alumni support. Before you should have a deep look at the DTP website anyway, and their aims/background so you have some idea of what they stand for and how your project fits in.
Last edited by RaastaMousee; 4 weeks ago
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Salll93
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#32
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#32
In December I sent my CV and undergraduate academic transcript (it was requested) before getting more information on the actual application. I did not apply for the PhD as I completely forgot the deadline was during my MRes exams. However, 11 days after the closing date I received an email asking if I was still interested and that the professor looked at my resume and was encouraged. I replied and said I was still interested but I was still doing my MRes and would finish in July. They have put it on their system to get in contact with me when my MRes is over and told me I could get in contact with them at any time if I submit it earlier - this gives me hope! It is fully funded and abroad which I really wanted. Ill keep an eye out for other options in the mean time!

Fingers crossed for everyone else applying for PhD's!
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discogirl
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#33
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#33
I wasn't successful with the funding, but my proposal apparently shows considerable potential and I've been invited to pursue it as a self funded candidate.
This was never part of my plan. Does anyone have any thoughts/experiences on self funding please? My supervisor is keen to work with me, and it's at a Russell Group Uni. But obviously having no funding is a huge commitment and I am just not convinced this is the way to go.
Any experiences or views would be most welcome.
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PhoenixFortune
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#34
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#34
(Original post by discogirl)
I wasn't successful with the funding, but my proposal apparently shows considerable potential and I've been invited to pursue it as a self funded candidate.
This was never part of my plan. Does anyone have any thoughts/experiences on self funding please? My supervisor is keen to work with me, and it's at a Russell Group Uni. But obviously having no funding is a huge commitment and I am just not convinced this is the way to go.
Any experiences or views would be most welcome.
If I get an interview, I don't get it hear if I've secured the funding for another month! You're lucky in a way that you can start making plans now rather than having to wait even longer to hear the verdict. I know that's not much comfort.

I considered going down the self-funded route, but after sitting down and working out how much money I would need to have on top of the doctoral loan, and whether I wanted to work part-time alongside a part-time PhD, I realised that that route just wasn't viable for me. It's a shame that it comes down to 'funding or bust' for some people, but it's better to realise that now than after you've already committed yourself to 3+ years without knowing how you will fund it later down the line.

Is it worth waiting for a year and reapplying for funding again, given that they said that your proposal showed great potential?
Last edited by PhoenixFortune; 3 weeks ago
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PhoenixFortune
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#35
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#35
Just heard this afternoon that I've got a PhD interview in the next couple of weeks! I was starting to think that they'd forgotten about me!
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RaastaMousee
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#36
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#36
(Original post by PhoenixFortune)
Just heard this afternoon that I've got a PhD interview in the next couple of weeks! I was starting to think that they'd forgotten about me!
That's awesome! Good luck - hope you smash it! I'm still stressing about my nomination. Haven't heard back yet! They just said I'll be told "shortly after" the 28th of Feb when they came together to decide. Have no idea how long they actually meant.
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PhoenixFortune
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#37
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#37
(Original post by RaastaMousee)
That's awesome! Good luck - hope you smash it! I'm still stressing about my nomination. Haven't heard back yet! They just said I'll be told "shortly after" the 28th of Feb when they came together to decide. Have no idea how long they actually meant.
In the DTP I've applied for, previous applicants said that they had to wait about a month between being nominated and hearing the final verdict. I don't know whether that's similar for other DTP/Cs though. :dontknow:
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Lmort003
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#38
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#38
(Original post by PhoenixFortune)
If I get an interview, I don't get it hear if I've secured the funding for another month! You're lucky in a way that you can start making plans now rather than having to wait even longer to hear the verdict. I know that's not much comfort.

I considered going down the self-funded route, but after sitting down and working out how much money I would need to have on top of the doctoral loan, and whether I wanted to work part-time alongside a part-time PhD, I realised that that route just wasn't viable for me. It's a shame that it comes down to 'funding or bust' for some people, but it's better to realise that now than after you've already committed yourself to 3+ years without knowing how you will fund it later down the line.

Is it worth waiting for a year and reapplying for funding again, given that they said that your proposal showed great potential?
I’m too old to wait another year. I’m going for it. A lot can happen in a year, who knows what opportunities might arise.
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discogirl
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#39
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#39
This is fantastic, well done. Just getting an interview can feel like climbing a mountain. You have time to prepare too which is good news.
I had an interview on the phone today as stage 1 of an application for a funded place elsewhere. I sent my proposal in the morning and had an interview in the afternoon! I am guessing the rest of the process is a great deal slower.
I'm still considering self funding, but meanwhile I am also pursuing funded routes. How anyone funds 3 years with no income, a mortgage and family, I do not know, but I am open to ideas! Good luck to you.
(Original post by PhoenixFortune)
Just heard this afternoon that I've got a PhD interview in the next couple of weeks! I was starting to think that they'd forgotten about me!
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TomBomo
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#40
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#40
(Original post by PhoenixFortune)
In the DTP I've applied for, previous applicants said that they had to wait about a month between being nominated and hearing the final verdict. I don't know whether that's similar for other DTP/Cs though. :dontknow:
I think a lot of DTPs had to rebid this year so that might have caused the delay.
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