The beginning of the PhD journey: The PhD Application

A successful PhD application is the beginning of the PhD journey and a work well begun is always half done. Here are some tips with which you can boost up your chances of getting your PhD application accepted:

  1. Have your research about the course, university, subject and other related factors before applying. You must have a criteria over which you evaluate universities, programmes and supervisors so that you are in a position to choose the one that suits your needs in the best way.
  2. If you have a prospective supervisor in mind, brilliant! Make informal contact with him, preferably in person so that you are able to seek his feedback over your proposal, at least briefly before you submit it with the application.
  3. The application process varies and is different from university to university. Make sure that you have read it thoroughly so that you have all necessary documents in place before submitting to the university
  4. Filling of the application form is a meticulous task so it must be done very carefully. Make sure you read it thoroughly and someone else proofreads it for you too. Carelessness can lead to typographical, spelling or grammatical errors that can actually create a bad impression on the screener or anybody else who reviews the application form
  5. Wherever in the form, you find the scope and the opportunity, emphasise on your qualities that would actually help you to shine out as a successful and independent researcher. In this attempt, be honest and do not exaggerate else it may completely bring down the good impression that you were trying to create.
  6. If there is a need to select references, make sure you select them carefully as after all this report could actually make all the difference. The referees you include should be chosen carefully and should be aware about your plan so that upon cross checking they aren’t taken by surprise. Also ensure they have a copy of your CV so they know your skill and strength area well, in case enquired.
  7. Most of the time in your PhD application, the critically important thing that should be devoted maximum time is the research proposal. Treat it as important as the PhD itself with all formatting and content in place.
  8. Do not forget to proofread your document thoroughly, yourself as well as from someone so that even the smallest of errors can get done with.
  9. Adhere to the deadline!!

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