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Applying to study a PhD in the US

I'm seeking assistance regarding pursuing a PhD in the US. Although I began a master's program this year, I found the course unfulfilling and a burden on my finances, leading me to drop out. Nonetheless, I'm still keen on pursuing a PhD, especially given the integrated nature of master's and doctoral programs in the US, unlike the UK. Also, most US colleges I have researched guarantee full funding for PhD students.

I aim to start my applications by the end of this year, and hopefully begin the academic year starting in 2025. However, I'm aware of the intense competition for spots in US doctoral programs. I graduated with a first-class degree in History from a mid-tier Russell Group university, and I want to continue doing History for my PhD.

I have researched several American universities such as Chicago, Columbia, NYU, and UPenn, among others, and I'm continuing to explore more options. Could anyone provide any advice on crafting a competitive application? And what steps should I be exploring next?
Reply 1
Writing to your POI during summer break may help, some say PhD is more about fitness. So if anyone is a perfect match for you, email them.

If funding bothers you, you can also check Canadian universities, schools like Toronto offer funded PhD programs for undergraduate direct entry too.

I am an international history undergraduate student and applied for grad schools in UK and US. It’s extremely competitive in the US, I applied for 5 schools and rejected by all PhD programs while the only master accepted me cost more than 67000 USD. At the mean time I am admitted by all UK schools I applied, including Oxford🥲 so I think it’s really difficult for undergraduates to apply directly to US PhD.

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