Does the idea of the highest expertise in a field of your choice, one that you are passionately dedicated to follow, challenge and excite you? It’s no brainer why anybody would want to pursue a PhD course – its highly rewarding with varied career opportunities in academia as well as the public/private sector. As the highest degree in the field of education, it does exactly what it says on the tin. Considering that logically, universities prefer applicants who are self-motivated with keenness and drive to produce positive results, boosting the universities’ ratings, you would have to go the whole nine yards to be able to get into that coveted course or university of your choice.Prior research experience can boost your PhD application
While eligibility for a PhD course invites discussion on primarily the academic front (performance metrics like GPA), it is increasingly being observed that even those with a less than satisfactory or low GPA may get their PhD applications accepted. What do these PhD applicants do right? -- They’ve had prior experience in research! Even though it’s not an absolute necessity, if you show familiarity in research (especially research that has been published), it can only positively affect your application.The interview
As humans we undeniably are quick to judge and your first impression may very well be the last if not done right. Introspect and think through about how you wish to answer well in advance because inquiries about one’s strengths and weaknesses are all too common and rightly so- to understand how well aware you are of what you’re capable of giving the institution. And nothing could be better than illustrating your strengths by recounting how they have enabled you to solve a previous research problem.The research question
Besides, the basis or your research problem is just as important. If you’ve worked on an unsolved problem, it may have a greater weightage and might be categorized as ‘practical experience’ rather than if you merely reapply existing knowledge to prove a hypothesis. Moreover, co-authorship, attending and participating in presentations and seminars also account for a superior PhD application.Experience counts
“Knowledge gained through experience is far superior and many times more useful than bookish knowledge.” - Mahatma Gandhi
A PhD entails more research and less armchair thinking. Book learning is merely a part of research. Additional experience in research is associated with creativity and how it consequently helps in theoretical application. Sadly, many students that apply for PhD still believe that mere reading and grades can substitute for experience. In fact it is also recommended that one wait for about a year before they start with their PhD applications and have to commit around 3-5 years entirely for research. During this period you can try getting a taste of the life of a PhD student by taking up a research job/ working in a laboratory and consulting with those who have already had experience in the field, introspect and understand how comfortable you are in it or if you would rather prefer an alternative career path that would still be personally fulfilling.
In the midst of the ever-growing PhD applications, how does yours stand out? Having a thorough understanding of a second language (bilingualism is cool) obviously contributes to what appears to the beholder, a promising application. Alternatively, having previous research edited to match the sensibilities and requirements of the academic establishment of your choice helps create an impressive persona. English being the lingua franca all around the world, has resulted in a number of English editing services being offered particularly for academia which can be availed of for this very purpose.Resume for PhD application
While nobody expects you to come up with a Motivation letter, displaying Faustian enthusiasm and thirst of knowledge, without a doubt, convincing people about what motivates you, your skills, struggles and a plan of how you overcome it may very well be a essential. Moreover, after narrowing down on the University and department of your choice, it is possible you may be asked to submit an academic CV for your PhD application. Ensure that your resume elaborates on skills of project management, leadership, teamwork, effective communication, and meeting deadlines, all of which form an important part of your PhD course. Most of all, your PhD application should sufficiently be able to convince whoever reviews it that you already have been prepared to do quality research which eventually gives you an edge over other applicants.Learn more
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