would it be worth applying for a phd with a 2.1?

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browniecat
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So i’m studying an integrated masters in chemistry and i’m in my final year aka the masters part. Before i started this year i could not see myself doing a phd however after starting my research project, i’m really enjoying the research part and would like to continue doing this type of work rather than working in an office all day.

I’ve been doubting whether i can apply for phd however for many reasons

I feel like i’m not smart enough to be doing this kind of thing, will my 2.1 hold
me back? i’m
gonna try my best to get a really high average this year to bring my overall average to a first however i’m not 100% that will happen and will
most likely end up with a 2.1. My third year average was a low 2.1, i did have some mitigating circumstances but i didn’t end up applying for them, do you think i could still explain them
to a supervisor if my grades came up?

I feel like i still don’t know a lot, the post doc i work with is very smart, i know he’s got a lot experience in research but i feel like even if i ever reached his stage i won’t know as much as he does

The applications require references, i was gonna ask my academic advisor and supervisor for a reference and although they’re very nice i’m not sure they’ll give me one given my current grades?

Is it worth applying to any funded phd positions or would i be better off finding another job?
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heebeegeebees
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This might not help but here goes... I am also applying to a funded PhD postion with a 2:1 in an intergrated masters course and mitagating circumstances (applied in university and was accepted) :crossedf: I was encouraged to apply because of the amount of experience I gained after graduating, my extracurricular activities I did, as well as my high performance and dissertation in my masters year.

2:1 is usually the minimum grade needed to do a PhD and I know a person doing a funded PhD with a 2:1 and a good masters degree (not sure about the grade). I also know someone applying with 2:1 in an intergrated masters too. I only know one person with a 1st doing a PhD but she is self funding. So personally I think it depends on the individual especially in regards to the passion that they show, the relevance of their course/modules/projects and experience that they have.

Why not approach your supervisor about the prospects of doing a PhD and actually ask if they'd be willing to give you a reference...

If a PhD is really what you want to do (and need to increase your career prospects) then I'd say go for it. Funded positions are very competitive but it is worth a try especially you fulfill the criteria.

Good luck!
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gjd800
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It's not as important as you think in the sciences. Competition for funding is more fierce in the humanities and thus it matters more there.

Go for it, you have literally nothing to lose!

As for the imposter syndrome, this is just a fact of life. I have a PhD and I still think I'm thick
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Reality Check
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(Original post by browniecat)
So i’m studying an integrated masters in chemistry and i’m in my final year aka the masters part. Before i started this year i could not see myself doing a phd however after starting my research project, i’m really enjoying the research part and would like to continue doing this type of work rather than working in an office all day.

I’ve been doubting whether i can apply for phd however for many reasons

I feel like i’m not smart enough to be doing this kind of thing, will my 2.1 hold
me back? i’m
gonna try my best to get a really high average this year to bring my overall average to a first however i’m not 100% that will happen and will
most likely end up with a 2.1. My third year average was a low 2.1, i did have some mitigating circumstances but i didn’t end up applying for them, do you think i could still explain them
to a supervisor if my grades came up?

I feel like i still don’t know a lot, the post doc i work with is very smart, i know he’s got a lot experience in research but i feel like even if i ever reached his stage i won’t know as much as he does

The applications require references, i was gonna ask my academic advisor and supervisor for a reference and although they’re very nice i’m not sure they’ll give me one given my current grades?

Is it worth applying to any funded phd positions or would i be better off finding another job?
Definitely worth a go! Plenty of people have a 2i and go on to do research - a first isn't mandatory, particularly in the sciences.

I like the way you say 'the post doc I work with is very smart'. The clue is in the name...

Speak to your current academic supervisors about your plan and see what they think.
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heebeegeebees
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(Original post by gjd800)
It's not as important as you think in the sciences. Competition for funding is more fierce in the humanities and thus it matters more there.

Go for it, you have literally nothing to lose!

As for the imposter syndrome, this is just a fact of life. I have a PhD and I still think I'm thick
Wow I have been told that funding in general is really hard to get! That's more encouraging Thanks for this (sorry OP for casually hijacking your post).
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Reality Check
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(Original post by gjd800)

As for the imposter syndrome, this is just a fact of life. I have a PhD and I still think I'm thick
I know I am. Compared to some of the people in my department, I am a total idiot.
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gjd800
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(Original post by heebeegeebees)
Wow I have been told that funding in general is really hard to get! That's more encouraging Thanks for this (sorry OP for casually hijacking your post).
It is hard to get the money, but there is more of it in the sciences so the opportunities come around more often (comparably!)

Good luck with it, you have nothing to lose by trying!
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gjd800
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(Original post by Reality Check)
I know I am. Compared to some of the people in my department, I am a total idiot.
My (now ex) supervisor tells me a lot of it is just familiarity (i.e. the longer you are about, the more you pick up by proxy), but this does not help, true or no :laugh:
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Reality Check
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(Original post by gjd800)
My (now ex) supervisor tells me a lot of it is just familiarity (i.e. the longer you are about, the more you pick up by proxy), but this does not help, true or no :laugh:
Totally true. Holding a lab meeting which you've spent an age preparing, researching, going through all the possible questions you could be asked and then, ten minutes in, being casually asked a really simple, straightforward but devastating question by a post doc that you simply can't answer is a humbling experience...

You can tell it hasn't left me.
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gjd800
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(Original post by Reality Check)
Totally true. Holding a lab meeting which you've spent an age preparing, researching, going through all the possible questions you could be asked and then, ten minutes in, being casually asked a really simple, straightforward but devastating question by a post doc that you simply can't answer is a humbling experience...

You can tell it hasn't left me.
Hahaha I practice a radical transparency with our lot, I'm always telling em I don't know or I'd need a day to think about it!

Last year, one of the new 1st year cohort spent 30 mins arguing with me (some animal rights paper or another, maybe Roger Scruton). Finally, he brought up what was a cool point to which I had no immediate response, which I duly conceded

His response: punched the air and exclaimed 'yes! I finally got you with obe!'

Cue laughter and mild mockery from rest of room :laugh:
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mnot
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(Original post by browniecat)
So i’m studying an integrated masters in chemistry and i’m in my final year aka the masters part. Before i started this year i could not see myself doing a phd however after starting my research project, i’m really enjoying the research part and would like to continue doing this type of work rather than working in an office all day.

I’ve been doubting whether i can apply for phd however for many reasons

I feel like i’m not smart enough to be doing this kind of thing, will my 2.1 hold
me back? i’m
gonna try my best to get a really high average this year to bring my overall average to a first however i’m not 100% that will happen and will
most likely end up with a 2.1. My third year average was a low 2.1, i did have some mitigating circumstances but i didn’t end up applying for them, do you think i could still explain them
to a supervisor if my grades came up?

I feel like i still don’t know a lot, the post doc i work with is very smart, i know he’s got a lot experience in research but i feel like even if i ever reached his stage i won’t know as much as he does

The applications require references, i was gonna ask my academic advisor and supervisor for a reference and although they’re very nice i’m not sure they’ll give me one given my current grades?

Is it worth applying to any funded phd positions or would i be better off finding another job?
No harm in applying.

Get a good grade on the dissertation.

'i feel like im not smart enough' - very common feeling with PhDs, these are not an intelligence test, its a combination of intellect, motivation, work ethic.

Academic references: normally given out very easily, academics normally understand this bit and are nice about dealing with it.

Your post-doc knows a lot because he has just spent 4-5 years researching the field, he is an expert, your just coming up to the end of your masters (impossible to compare right now).

If you want to do a PhD just start speaking to people and asking questions no point regretting not trying. I had no interest till I was on my masters & got gripped by a subject, im very glad I did now. Just go get a meeting speak to your tutor or a academic in the field (or this post-doc , or ask if he can set you up a meeting). Ask about the PhD application process, tell them your interested but need some guidance, Uni academics are often very willing to help those who seek it (especially if they are a currently enrolled student).
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Reality Check
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(Original post by gjd800)
Hahaha I practice a radical transparency with our lot, I'm always telling em I don't know or I'd need a day to think about it!

Last year, one of the new 1st year cohort spent 30 mins arguing with me (some animal rights paper or another, maybe Roger Scruton). Finally, he brought up what was a cool point to which I had no immediate response, which I duly conceded

His response: punched the air and exclaimed 'yes! I finally got you with obe!'

Cue laughter and mild mockery from rest of room :laugh:
I love this. You just know that this made his TERM, never mind his day. Finally, he got the better of gjd...if only for a minute!
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browniecat
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#13
(Original post by heebeegeebees)
This might not help but here goes... I am also applying to a funded PhD postion with a 2:1 in an intergrated masters course and mitagating circumstances (applied in university and was accepted) :crossedf: I was encouraged to apply because of the amount of experience I gained after graduating, my extracurricular activities I did, as well as my high performance and dissertation in my masters year.

2:1 is usually the minimum grade needed to do a PhD and I know a person doing a funded PhD with a 2:1 and a good masters degree (not sure about the grade). I also know someone applying with 2:1 in an intergrated masters too. I only know one person with a 1st doing a PhD but she is self funding. So personally I think it depends on the individual especially in regards to the passion that they show, the relevance of their course/modules/projects and experience that they have.

Why not approach your supervisor about the prospects of doing a PhD and actually ask if they'd be willing to give you a reference...

If a PhD is really what you want to do (and need to increase your career prospects) then I'd say go for it. Funded positions are very competitive but it is worth a try especially you fulfill the criteria.

Good luck!
thanks for your response ill speak to my supervisor
(Original post by gjd800)
It's not as important as you think in the sciences. Competition for funding is more fierce in the humanities and thus it matters more there.

Go for it, you have literally nothing to lose!

As for the imposter syndrome, this is just a fact of life. I have a PhD and I still think I'm thick
I definitely feel like I have imposter syndrome haha, thanks for the response!
(Original post by Reality Check)
Definitely worth a go! Plenty of people have a 2i and go on to do research - a first isn't mandatory, particularly in the sciences.

I like the way you say 'the post doc I work with is very smart'. The clue is in the name...

Speak to your current academic supervisors about your plan and see what they think.
Yes I think ill speak to them, thanks for your response!
(Original post by heebeegeebees)
Wow I have been told that funding in general is really hard to get! That's more encouraging Thanks for this (sorry OP for casually hijacking your post).
no worries haha
(Original post by mnot)
No harm in applying.

Get a good grade on the dissertation.

'i feel like im not smart enough' - very common feeling with PhDs, these are not an intelligence test, its a combination of intellect, motivation, work ethic.

Academic references: normally given out very easily, academics normally understand this bit and are nice about dealing with it.

Your post-doc knows a lot because he has just spent 4-5 years researching the field, he is an expert, your just coming up to the end of your masters (impossible to compare right now).

If you want to do a PhD just start speaking to people and asking questions no point regretting not trying. I had no interest till I was on my masters & got gripped by a subject, im very glad I did now. Just go get a meeting speak to your tutor or a academic in the field (or this post-doc , or ask if he can set you up a meeting). Ask about the PhD application process, tell them your interested but need some guidance, Uni academics are often very willing to help those who seek it (especially if they are a currently enrolled student).
thanks for the response!
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