Caffe_sean1
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Hello fellow PhD buddies

I wonder if anyone has gone across the pond to complete their PhD in the US after obtaining an MSci (or equivalent UK 4-year integrated sciences master). Do institutions in the US take MSci as equivalent to US B.S. degree or do they regard MSci as a master's level degree?

I know some PhD programmes allow advanced standing if incoming students have had a relevant master's degree; however I don't see any information regarding their view on MSci degree.

Any insights would be greatly appreciated! Cheers.
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Helloworld_95
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I didn't go, but I was close to. Most universities worth their salt will consider it as being equivalent to an M.S./MSc.

Some universities will give you advanced standing for it but I was largely advised to ignore this as it effectively voids the reason to do a PhD in the US instead of in Europe, having more time to familiarise yourself with a wider variety of topics while also searching for your supervisor. You really want to be taking as many classes as possible and taking as long as you can to find your supervisor.
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mnot
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(Original post by Caffe_sean1)
Hello fellow PhD buddies

I wonder if anyone has gone across the pond to complete their PhD in the US after obtaining an MSci (or equivalent UK 4-year integrated sciences master). Do institutions in the US take MSci as equivalent to US B.S. degree or do they regard MSci as a master's level degree?

I know some PhD programmes allow advanced standing if incoming students have had a relevant master's degree; however I don't see any information regarding their view on MSci degree.

Any insights would be greatly appreciated! Cheers.
I do not know, but MSci means master of science in the same way an MSc post-grad does.
I would assume US institutions just assume it is an equivalent, same level as a US masters degree.

The only thing is, i considered applying for US PhD's but never did (mainly because my current has Uni fully funded my application very quickly, in the topic i want to do) but my impression was a lot of of US PhD's are 5 year programs ie 2 year Masters then 3 year PhD following on directly.

But if you only apply for 3 year PhD's it should be fine.
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Helloworld_95
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(Original post by mnot)
I do not know, but MSci means master of science in the same way an MSc post-grad does.
I would assume US institutions just assume it is an equivalent, same level as a US masters degree.

The only thing is, i considered applying for US PhD's but never did (mainly because my current has Uni fully funded my application very quickly, in the topic i want to do) but my impression was a lot of of US PhD's are 5 year programs ie 2 year Masters then 3 year PhD following on directly.

But if you only apply for 3 year PhD's it should be fine.
Integrated Master's have a fairly varied and in some cases dubious reputation internationally so it's not a foregone conclusion that it will be held in the same regard when you go outside of the UK. The US can be a trouble spot in particular as admissions staff can be a bit lazy, their education department literally had to send out advice on hiring 3 and 4 year bachelor's and equivalent graduates because admissions departments were rejecting 3 year degree holders from world renowned universities while taking in unqualified 4 year technical bachelor's-ish graduates.

The US PhDs don't quite like that. They are all 5 year-ish programs (most people will take 5-6 years though you can keep going as long as you're doing RA/TAs which will keep you funded), with approximately a master's worth of taught component. If you don't want to continue the PhD then you can just graduate out with a master's, but it's not really the same as a 2 year MS + 3 year PhD as you're expected to do PhD related stuff during those 2 years.

I was in a similar situation except I had a bit less hope for funding in the UK as I'm sort of an international student so places like the US offered me comparably good options, however there are better options than the US like HK which is an easier switch for a UK educated student and has good funding opportunities across the universities, whereas options are more limited in the US.
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Criscardonab
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(Original post by Helloworld_95)
Integrated Master's have a fairly varied and in some cases dubious reputation internationally so it's not a foregone conclusion that it will be held in the same regard when you go outside of the UK. The US can be a trouble spot in particular as admissions staff can be a bit lazy, their education department literally had to send out advice on hiring 3 and 4 year bachelor's and equivalent graduates because admissions departments were rejecting 3 year degree holders from world renowned universities while taking in unqualified 4 year technical bachelor's-ish graduates.

The US PhDs don't quite like that. They are all 5 year-ish programs (most people will take 5-6 years though you can keep going as long as you're doing RA/TAs which will keep you funded), with approximately a master's worth of taught component. If you don't want to continue the PhD then you can just graduate out with a master's, but it's not really the same as a 2 year MS + 3 year PhD as you're expected to do PhD related stuff during those 2 years.

I was in a similar situation except I had a bit less hope for funding in the UK as I'm sort of an international student so places like the US offered me comparably good options, however there are better options than the US like HK which is an easier switch for a UK educated student and has good funding opportunities across the universities, whereas options are more limited in the US.
hi there!

just a quick question - did you mean HK as in Hong Kong? just want to double check

thanks in advance.
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Helloworld_95
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(Original post by Criscardonab)
hi there!

just a quick question - did you mean HK as in Hong Kong? just want to double check

thanks in advance.
Yes, that's correct
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Mr Wednesday
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(Original post by Caffe_sean1)
I wonder if anyone has gone across the pond to complete their PhD in the US after obtaining an MSci (or equivalent UK 4-year integrated sciences master). Do institutions in the US take MSci as equivalent to US B.S. degree or do they regard MSci as a master's level degree?
A number of my final year project students have gone on to do a PhD at elite US institutions following a good performance on a UK MSci, so the qualification is well understood and respected by the people that count, e.g. PG admissions teams and potential PhD supervisors.

When we do PG admission in the UK we have access to a VERY comprehensive database of qualification equivalence for courses from all over the world. "MSc with distinction from university X in country Y = GPA X.XX from University A, Country B" and so on. US institutions will have the same "translation" capability built up over many years of observation and benchmarking.

PS My ex students usually found themselves paid to teach UG maths courses in the US as their training on their UK MSci was so much stronger than a standard US BSc education.
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Criscardonab
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(Original post by Helloworld_95)
Yes, that's correct
thank you

What do PhDs in Hong Kong have in special may I ask?
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Helloworld_95
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(Original post by Criscardonab)
thank you

What do PhDs in Hong Kong have in special may I ask?
Good funding for internationals combined with being highly ranked and respected worldwide including in the UK for when/if you come back home, conducting internationally renowned research, and relatively easy to get into.
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Caffe_sean1
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(Original post by Mr Wednesday)
A number of my final year project students have gone on to do a PhD at elite US institutions following a good performance on a UK MSci, so the qualification is well understood and respected by the people that count, e.g. PG admissions teams and potential PhD supervisors.

When we do PG admission in the UK we have access to a VERY comprehensive database of qualification equivalence for courses from all over the world. "MSc with distinction from university X in country Y = GPA X.XX from University A, Country B" and so on. US institutions will have the same "translation" capability built up over many years of observation and benchmarking.

PS My ex students usually found themselves paid to teach UG maths courses in the US as their training on their UK MSci was so much stronger than a standard US BSc education.
That actually sounds interesting - some of my potential supervisors have no clue what an MSci is - from email conversations... but I'd imagine they probably have some sort of database available for the admission committee...
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Mr Wednesday
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(Original post by Caffe_sean1)
That actually sounds interesting - some of my potential supervisors have no clue what an MSci is - from email conversations... but I'd imagine they probably have some sort of database available for the admission committee...
You may find a few that are not individually up to speed on every possible qualification, however a good referee's letter from a UK University will also explain this just in case. For a US reference (I have done these for Caltech, MIT, Princeton, Harvard, Berkeley, Yale recently) I always include the fact that an MSci is a 4 year Masters + BSc equivalent with competitive entry, and for our course, a minimum 2:1 requirement for continuation to year 4, major project work (for the best students resulting in peer reviewed publications) etc. just to clarify things. US references also tend to be a bit more "in your face" than UK to UK, so that also needs to be taken into account, the students who have a good chance with these applications tend to be in the top 5-10% of their year, so they usually come with a stellar transcript and assorted "extras", published project work, Deans list, etc to draw on.

Moral of the story, make sure anyone writing you a reference for a US application knows the system and has a complete record of your achievements well in advance.
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