ellaken
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Hi all!I have an interview for the London Interdisciplinary Doctoral Programme (LIDo) programme next week and was wondering whether anyone has gone through the process and had any tips/ advice with what to expect question wise? PhD interview tips in general are also very welcome! Thank you!
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starlight00
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(Original post by ellaken)
Hi all!I have an interview for the London Interdisciplinary Doctoral Programme (LIDo) programme next week and was wondering whether anyone has gone through the process and had any tips/ advice with what to expect question wise? PhD interview tips in general are also very welcome! Thank you!
hey! i didn't apply to LIDo but I recently applied to a couple of other PhDs this year. Can I ask what the interview format will be?
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ellaken
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All I know so far is that it’s 20-30 mins through zoom with a panel that are tailored to the subject of my previous degree. And that there’s no presentation. Hope that helps
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starlight00
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(Original post by ellaken)
All I know so far is that it’s 20-30 mins through zoom with a panel that are tailored to the subject of my previous degree. And that there’s no presentation. Hope that helps
thats great! the presentation is always the most daunting for me so it's good if there isn't one i think. i guess my tips would be to make sure you know what you're applying for and why you want to do that specific programme, know all your previous research inside and out. read some background literature around your area of interest, prepare some answers for the typical questions on why you want to do a phd, what makes you a good candidate, your experiences, your hardships and how you overcame them, career goals etc.
mainly with these kinds of interviews though i think it's more of a discussion than an interrogation, just make sure to convey your enthusiasm and try and not be too intimidated. they might throw you a few curveballs to test you but if you prepare some answers i think you'll be able to think on your feet.

depends on your background and if you're applying from undergrad/masters/took a few years out but make sure you're able to explain why you want to apply now.

if you have anymore questions i'll be happy to help!
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elamle
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I just had my PhD interview, and key questions I got were about the theoretical and practical implications of my project. Like, how will it effect/have an impact on the current scholarship of the PhD's field? they want to know not just that you know your stuff, but that you can critically and realistically think ahead. I wouldn't make any outlandish claims, but you can reason out a lot of your answers. And no ********ting - it's better to acknowledge that you don't precisely know how you would go about doing this or that aspect of the project, since you haven't studied/got experience in that area yet, but that from your current understanding you would study this/get training in that/ follow key approaches moving forward etc.

One of my key questions was how, if I had to start now, would I go about curating the exhibition at the institute? and I started out by saying that I would first study similar displays by the institute, in order to make sure I could match the style and voice of the institute, to make sure I was representing it in a way that was in line with their current work. and then went on to say how I would follow the guidelines I learn about curation in my Masters, and talked a bit more about relevant audience and critical engagement etc. So I feel that a lot of a PhD is not just knowing your stuff, but knowing how to apply yourself. obviously they're not expecting me to be able to have a complete answer for this question, since my study of the project hasn't even begun. But the key here is to show that I have the foundation and capability to engage with the topic in the areas they are interested in. Does that make sense?

And show that you're interested in the topic beyond the scope of the PhD - that you'd be interested in/studying the topic regardless of the PhD. They're looking for a candidate that has the interest and motivation to see the whole project through, so your main motivation can't just be to get a PhD.

Also - try not to think about it as an interview! This is just a chance to nerd out about a topic you're passionate about, with other people who are also really interested in talking about it. Just show honest enthusiasm and a willingness to learn and you'll do great!
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sathy606
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(Original post by ellaken)
All I know so far is that it’s 20-30 mins through zoom with a panel that are tailored to the subject of my previous degree. And that there’s no presentation. Hope that helps
Hi,
I was just wondering what was your previous degree in? Also when did you find out about the interview from LIDo?
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nadinegerg
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Hey, I also have a DTP Interview next week. What kind of questions are you expecting seeing as we have not seen a list of projects so at the moment i'm just assuming the projects will be on a range of biosciences topics?
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sathy606
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(Original post by nadinegerg)
Hey, I also have a DTP Interview next week. What kind of questions are you expecting seeing as we have not seen a list of projects so at the moment i'm just assuming the projects will be on a range of biosciences topics?
Hi,
just wondering did you apply for DTP projects (where theres 200 or so) or one of the iCASE projects? or both?
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(Original post by sathy606)
Hi,
just wondering did you apply for DTP projects (where theres 200 or so) or one of the iCASE projects? or both?
Hello,

I've applied to both routes but the first set of interviews will be a DTP interview and if you get through then you will have an iCASE interview. I have now seen that there are examples of DTP projects on the LIDo website so I am assuming the projects will be very similar. What about you, have did you apply to DTP or iCASE?
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sathy606
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(Original post by nadinegerg)
Hello,

I've applied to both routes but the first set of interviews will be a DTP interview and if you get through then you will have an iCASE interview. I have now seen that there are examples of DTP projects on the LIDo website so I am assuming the projects will be very similar. What about you, have did you apply to DTP or iCASE?
Hi,
I applied to an iCASE project. I am guessing it will be a generic sort of interview then as it covers so many different areas. Have you applied to any other PhDs?
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nadinegerg
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Yeah I am expecting generic questions too. No, this is the only PhD that I’ve applied to this year. What background do you come from? I’m from Neuro.
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sathy606
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(Original post by nadinegerg)
Yeah I am expecting generic questions too. No, this is the only PhD that I’ve applied to this year. What background do you come from? I’m from Neuro.
Oh nice . I am from an Immunology background. Was your masters in Neurology? I looked at the panel members but they seem quite varied from a broad range of areas.
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nadinegerg
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(Original post by sathy606)
Oh nice . I am from an Immunology background. Was your masters in Neurology? I looked at the panel members but they seem quite varied from a broad range of areas.
Yes, i'm currently studying a Neuroscience masters. That is also the case with my panel members, they come from neuroscience/moleculer biology/immunopharmacology backgrounds.
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ellaken
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(Original post by starlight00)
thats great! the presentation is always the most daunting for me so it's good if there isn't one i think. i guess my tips would be to make sure you know what you're applying for and why you want to do that specific programme, know all your previous research inside and out. read some background literature around your area of interest, prepare some answers for the typical questions on why you want to do a phd, what makes you a good candidate, your experiences, your hardships and how you overcame them, career goals etc.
mainly with these kinds of interviews though i think it's more of a discussion than an interrogation, just make sure to convey your enthusiasm and try and not be too intimidated. they might throw you a few curveballs to test you but if you prepare some answers i think you'll be able to think on your feet.

depends on your background and if you're applying from undergrad/masters/took a few years out but make sure you're able to explain why you want to apply now.

if you have anymore questions i'll be happy to help!
That's great thank you for your advice!
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ellaken
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(Original post by elamle)
I just had my PhD interview, and key questions I got were about the theoretical and practical implications of my project. Like, how will it effect/have an impact on the current scholarship of the PhD's field? they want to know not just that you know your stuff, but that you can critically and realistically think ahead. I wouldn't make any outlandish claims, but you can reason out a lot of your answers. And no ********ting - it's better to acknowledge that you don't precisely know how you would go about doing this or that aspect of the project, since you haven't studied/got experience in that area yet, but that from your current understanding you would study this/get training in that/ follow key approaches moving forward etc.

One of my key questions was how, if I had to start now, would I go about curating the exhibition at the institute? and I started out by saying that I would first study similar displays by the institute, in order to make sure I could match the style and voice of the institute, to make sure I was representing it in a way that was in line with their current work. and then went on to say how I would follow the guidelines I learn about curation in my Masters, and talked a bit more about relevant audience and critical engagement etc. So I feel that a lot of a PhD is not just knowing your stuff, but knowing how to apply yourself. obviously they're not expecting me to be able to have a complete answer for this question, since my study of the project hasn't even begun. But the key here is to show that I have the foundation and capability to engage with the topic in the areas they are interested in. Does that make sense?

And show that you're interested in the topic beyond the scope of the PhD - that you'd be interested in/studying the topic regardless of the PhD. They're looking for a candidate that has the interest and motivation to see the whole project through, so your main motivation can't just be to get a PhD.

Also - try not to think about it as an interview! This is just a chance to nerd out about a topic you're passionate about, with other people who are also really interested in talking about it. Just show honest enthusiasm and a willingness to learn and you'll do great!
Ah I see! When your saying about the implications of your project do you mean a proposed version of your PhD project or a past completed project?

In terms of curating an exhibition do you think they mean like a poster exhibition/ conference type thing?

Thank you so much - your answer has been incredibly helpful! I'm coming from a general biology undergrad trying to move more into neurobiology so something I'm worrying about is having little formal neurobiology training!
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ellaken
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(Original post by sathy606)
Hi,
I was just wondering what was your previous degree in? Also when did you find out about the interview from LIDo?
Biology and Monday this week (15th)
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ellaken
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(Original post by nadinegerg)
Hey, I also have a DTP Interview next week. What kind of questions are you expecting seeing as we have not seen a list of projects so at the moment i'm just assuming the projects will be on a range of biosciences topics?
I've just been looking up general PhD questions! The projects do seem quite general so I imagine the questions will be quite general too?
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sathy606
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(Original post by ellaken)
Biology and Monday this week (15th)
Nice - found out this week on Tuesday. Did you apply for the iCASE/DTP projects?
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ellaken
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(Original post by sathy606)
Nice - found out this week on Tuesday. Did you apply for the iCASE/DTP projects?
Just for the DTP wbu?
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elamle
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(Original post by ellaken)
Ah I see! When your saying about the implications of your project do you mean a proposed version of your PhD project or a past completed project?

In terms of curating an exhibition do you think they mean like a poster exhibition/ conference type thing?

Thank you so much - your answer has been incredibly helpful! I'm coming from a general biology undergrad trying to move more into neurobiology so something I'm worrying about is having little formal neurobiology training!
It was about the proposed implications of the specific PhD project that I was applying for. I think its to show a good understanding of current scholarship, and how your project fits within it, what your work can actually add to the field.

For curating an exhibition, in my case it was curating an actual exhibition at the institute - my PhD has this practical component that engages with my theoretical research. For other people, I wouldn't be surprised if you were asked a question of how you might start working on aspects of/or the whole project. Helps show that you have realistic understanding of how to begin the PhD project, or at least critically reason out how you might approach it. Its not a requirement to have the specific experience needed, but its good to show you've read about what skills/approaches you need and how one might employ them.
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