The graduate students in the philosophy program at the University of St. Andrews are concerned about their teaching conditions, some of them tell me, but they don’t have a good grasp on how their situation compares with that of philosophy students elsewhere, particularly in the UK. (more…)
A philosopher writes with the following query:
In response to their questions, I have just had to write to two people who are applying to our MA program that I can’t tell them whether they’ll be able to attend, even if they are admitted. They are from Iran. There are several others in the same boat. (more…)
A philosophy professor advising an undergraduate, who did not major in philosophy, about her options for graduate school quite reasonably suggested she first pursue a Master’s degree. He let her know about a number of well known terminal MA programs (most of which are on Geoff Pynn’s list, discussed here). She had found out a little about some MA programs that mostl..
Departmental decisions—including hiring, budgeting and funding, curricular requirements, departmental policies, use of space, event planning—affect graduate students. What say do graduate students have in these decisions? What say should they have? (more…)
First we asked what graduate students would like to say to their professors, but felt like they couldn’t. Then we asked what professors would like to say to graduate students, but couldn’t. Less for the sake of exploring all of the available logical space (but of course partly for that) and more because it was requested and might be of some use, we shall now take up..
Comments are still coming in on yesterday’s post, “Grad Students: What Would You Tell Your Prof(s), But Can’t?” In future posts we’ll take up some of the recurring themes in those comments. In the meanwhile, a friend proposed that we hear from the other side. That could be interesting and constructive (I say, suggestively). And so: (more…)
Grad students of philosophy! And other relevant parties! Behold! Daniel Silvermint, assistant professor of philosophy and women’s, gender, and sexuality studies at the University of Connecticut, has developed a list of unhelpful thoughts that might occur to you every once in a while. He calls them “grad traps,” and the idea is that if you are able to recognize t..
It’s the start of the academic year,and for some people, the start of their graduate education in philosophy. Graduate students are getting oriented in their programs, and graduate programs are orientating their students. Are they doing a good job of it? (more…)
A student who is applying for admission to PhD programs in philosophy has noticed that at some universities, what the university’s graduate school asks applicants to include in their personal statements differs from what the same university’s philosophy department asks applicants to include. (more…)
A reader writes in with a question about applying to graduate programs in philosophy:
I applied to several Masters programs and PhD programs in philosophy last year, and got into a Masters program. I was wondering if you and/or your readers could answer the following question for me: when it comes time for me to apply to PhD programs again, is it alright for me t..
A reader of Daily Nous writes in with a question about admission into graduate programs in philosophy:
I’ve been asked to remind folks that graduate programs are not supposed to be asking their prospective students to respond to admissions and financial support offers before April 15th. There are reports of at least one violation of this practice.
A prospective graduate student in philosophy writes in asking for advice on “how to negotiate more money from the Ph.D. programs to which I’ve been admitted.” The student adds: “I haven’t found many tips on the internet that are specific to philosophy. I’d be really curious to hear what some admissions directors and other faculty have to say about what works and wha..
As some of you know, Geoff Pynn (Northern Illinois) has over the years provided an important service to the philosophy profession: maintaining a list of master’s programs in philosophy and the kind of funding they offer their students. The list now includes 31 U.S. MA programs:
- Cal State Los Angeles
- Colorado State
- Florida State
- Georgia State
“Ph.D. programs are one of the few parts of higher education where admissions decisions are made without admissions professionals.” So begins Inside Higher Ed’s discussion of Inside Graduate Admissions: Merit, Diversity and Faculty Gatekeeping by Julie Posselt (Michigan). Posselt observed ten different U.S. departments as they narrowed down their pool of PhD program..
From a philosophy professor who prefers to remain anonymous, a question about whether it is now the norm for successful applicants to PhD programs to have (or be on their way to having) a terminal MA:
When I applied to grad school, (I think) the norm was to apply straight from one’s undergraduate institution to PhD programs. Terminal MAs were seen as good fallbac..
A User’s Guide to Philosophy Without Rankings is a new site “intended for the use of prospective graduate students in philosophy, faculty (including chairs or heads) in philosophy, and deans, provosts, and other administrators, all of whom need resources for the decisions they make about philosophy programs.” It is based on the idea that “currently, there are no ran..
In light of the previous post, we might ask, are there too many philosophy PhDs? Some people think so, and take that as a reason to think that some departments should stop offering PhDs. Let’s talk about this.
First, a general point: though the number of PhD studentships is not the result of an open market, there are still good Hayekian reasons for caution about ..
The latest addition to the set of informational wikis about the strengths of PhD programs is on 20th Century Continental Philosophy. Developed by Noëlle McAfee (Emory), in consultation with a number of other philosophers, the aim of the wiki is “to provide an unranked yet searchable list of Ph.D. (and terminal M.A.) programs that have strengths in 20th (and early 21..
The American Philosophical Association (APA) has released its 2014 Guide to Graduate Programs in Philosophy. The guide provides information on faculty, program strengths, placement, financial aid, and demographics. The APA notes: “All data in the guide are self-reported by representatives of the institutions, and data are included only for institutions that complete..
Our doctoral programme can now be run on either an attendance or distance learning basis. The principles are the same – i.e. a course of high-level supervised research leading to a substantial and original thesis. However, the supervision happe..
A philosopher who prefers to remain anonymous has noticed a marked drop in applications to his graduate program and is wondering whether this is part of a general trend. As such information might be useful to the profession as a whole, please consider sharing any knowledge you have regarding increases or decreases in the recent volume of applications to the PhD and ..
Many graduate programs set aside a time for all prospective students to visit and learn about their departments and universities. Lauren Leydon-Hardy, a philosophy graduate student at Northwestern University, writes in with some information about one aspect of their “recruitment weekend”:
When I visited Northwestern as a prospective student in 2011, I used an opp..
How does your department evaluate graduate students as they progress through the PhD program? One common method is an annual letter from the department to the student, based on a discussion about the student at a faculty meeting. How informative are these letters? What kinds of information do they provide? My sense is that comparative information (rankings or sortin..
The American Philosophical Association (APA) has overhauled its graduate program guide. It used to be an annual publication. Now it is a regularly updated searchable website. Mike Morris, the APA’s communications and marketing manager, writes:
The Grad Guide now offers the ability to search by multiple criteria, including areas of specialization, degrees offered,..
Under the so-called 5+2 program, humanities graduate students at Irvine will receive additional funding designed to push them through course work and their dissertations within five years. Those who finish within that time frame are eligible to apply for an up to two-year, teaching-intensive postdoc. Assistant adjunct professors, as they’re called, will receive rela..