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Thread: Profile Evaluation (PhD Marketing - CB) & Advice needed (esp. from XanthusARES ^^)

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    Profile Evaluation (PhD Marketing - CB) & Advice needed (esp. from XanthusARES ^^)

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    Hello everyone,
    I am an international student & I intend to apply for a PhD in Marketing (CB) this fall (2017 fall Ė 2018 matriculation).
    Iíd be grateful if you could help evaluate my profile and give me some advice on what I should do to enhance my application.
    Here are some information about me:
    Test Score: expected GMAT score would be in the 700-750 range (Iím studying for the test)
    Undergrad GPA:7.84 out of 10 (B.A in Foreign Trade Economics from a local university);
    Graduate GPA: 3.92 out of 4 (MBA from an international business school in Asia, T100 in The Economist ranking list). Concentration in Finance; I also passed the CFA level 1 exam.
    Research Experience: NONE (even though I did 2 researches at undergrad level Ė 01 won a research reward in a local competition; wrote a Thesis for my Master degree. Still, I donít know if those count much in the application)
    Teaching Experience: LITTLE (working as a T.A. for a language center for 02 years; T.A for financial accounting classes for 02 semesters)
    Work Experience: 7 years working in the industry in brand management positions


    Concentration Applying to: Marketing (CB focus)
    Number of programs planned to apply to: 10
    Dream Schools: T10, but itís just THE DREAM! Iím willing to apply to T50 and lower



    Other information:

    1. I want to pursue a PhD because I am interested in the intellectual motivation that an academic path offers. I enjoy both the intellectual challenges from doing pioneering researches and teaching. I choose Marketing (CB) because I really like to observe people and discover crucial insights about them.

    2. About my profile, I do have specific worries that Iíd like to ask for your advice:


    • What is the chance that I get admitted? What kind of schools would really accept me (T40, T100Ö)? Iíd really appreciate if you can give me specific advice on the schools that I should apply for (honestly, Iím very nervous and confused because I read in the forum that some people applied to low-ranked schools and didnít get acceptance nor reply from any).
    • Is there anything I can practically do from now until this fall to enhance my application? For example, I realize that my math background and research experience is not satisfactory, but I donít know if thereís anything I can do NOW to improve that.
    • Should I apply for a MSc course first to get the necessary preparation for a PhD later? If so, what courses (and what schools, if possible) do you recommend? Should I take a Master in Econs?

    3. Additional specific questions:
    - My undergrad school didnít issue official ranking for students; but in my batch, I was the top 5% of the class of 400. The only thing I have to prove is the old copy of the class scores, which had my name ranked as 16 from top down. Should I include this in my SOP?
    - At undergrad school, I did a lot of volunteer works; should I put these in my resume?

    Thank you so much!
    I also apologize for my long post. I just want to provide as much information as possible so that you can better understand me.

    All the best to you all!
    Ken

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    Re: Profile Evaluation (PhD Marketing - CB) & Advice needed (esp. from XanthusARES ^^

    Welcome to the forum. Glad you're here.

    Quickly on to your evaluation. Nothing about your application screams T10. Your lack of research experience will make it difficult to get into a T25, but I think that based on your expected test scores, GPA's and writing ability (judged solely on your post), you'd have a solid shot at a T50 right now.

    The nice thing for you is that it sounds like you are willing to put in some additional work and have the time to make a T20 a reality. So here's my suggestion. First ensure that you get at least a 730 on the GMAT. This will mean every program will at least look at your application. Second you need to get some research under your belt. There are a few different ways in which you can do this. The simplest and my suggestion, is to get a Master's. Go to a top program with great CB faculty and start doing research right now. Ideally an MS in Marketing would be great, but few top programs offer these. So you can do an MS in psych which will be helpful, or even an MBA assuming that the MBA gives you flexibility on which classes you take. If you do an MBA enroll in as few MBA courses as they will allow you to, and fill your schedule with psych PhD seminars, stats method courses, and all of the Marketing PhD seminars. Importantly, though, the point of your masters will be to gain research experience with top profs in our field and gain some valuable LOR writers. Make this your focus, but also keep that GPA above a 3.8. Try to go to a few conferences, and present some research there. This will make you stand out even more during the application process.

    Again I can't stress enough who you work with is almost more important than what work you do. An ACR presentation with a no name prof is worth less than a topic specific conference with Prof. Big Name. At this point I'm sure you're assuming that my only thoughts and concerns are about you playing the game to get into a program. But I have ulterior motives to suggesting you work with a big name prof. You have limited to no research experience. Working with someone who is extremely prolific will help you to better understand the research process. It will enlighten you into what our world looks like and help you to make a decision about to do next. A master's is a two year chance to get your feet wet before diving head first into this (which I feel I should mention historically you only have about a 50% chance of completing). Gaining experience will help you to make an informed decision.

    Other than that, if you are dead set on applying this fall, apply to 1 T10, maybe 2-3 T25, 4 T50, and 2 T100 programs. That will be a wide enough net with only 10 apps that you should have a decent chance. No guarantees of course, but I think a decent shot at a lower ranked program.
    Til now I always got by on my own
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    Re: Profile Evaluation (PhD Marketing - CB) & Advice needed (esp. from XanthusARES ^^

    i think lse has a research masters in marketing

    MRes/PhD in Management (Marketing)

    For CB people, intermediate micro should be enough. More likely, behavioral econs will be more relevant.

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    Re: Profile Evaluation (PhD Marketing - CB) & Advice needed (esp. from XanthusARES ^^

    Dear XanthusARES,

    Thank you SO MUCH for your quick response.
    I’d like to express my deep gratitude to you for such an informative, caring, whole-hearted feedback.
    You really made my day! I feel so much more encouraged to go on!
    I will sleep on what you mentioned and do my homework carefully before I come up with other questions, so that I won’t waste your time (and other members’ as well) ^^.

    All the best to you!

    Ken

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    Re: Profile Evaluation (PhD Marketing - CB) & Advice needed (esp. from XanthusARES ^^

    Dear Gecko,

    Thank you so much for your information.
    I will definitely check out the LSE course.
    I'm still a little new to the PhD journey, so many things are still news to me.
    I will do my homework first, but please allow me to ask "innocent" questions along the way! ^^

    All the best to you!

    Ken

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    Re: Profile Evaluation (PhD Marketing - CB) & Advice needed (esp. from XanthusARES ^^

    If I'm not mistaken, LSE MRes requires applicants to already have a masters (since an Mres is structured to lead to a PhD over in the UK). If you're looking for a behavioural econs mix, you can consider Warwick's Msc in Behavioural and Economic Science (Econs Track). I absolutely love this programme. The only reason I'm not attending it is because I can't self finance my studies and Warwick doesn't offer full scholarships to international applicants.

    Warwick is a tad expensive to attend but Coventry is a lot cheaper to live in compared to London.

    Edit: forgot to paste the link, even though I've copied it.

    http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/courses/depts/economics/taught/msc-behavioural-economics/

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    Re: Profile Evaluation (PhD Marketing - CB) & Advice needed (esp. from XanthusARES ^^

    Warwick has a beautiful campus in the English countryside with plenty of accommodation options inside the campus, unlike most universities in the UK, including my alma matter. Cost of staying in campus would be a lot cheaper than staying in London, and also cuts down travelling costs next to nothing.

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    Re: Profile Evaluation (PhD Marketing - CB) & Advice needed (esp. from XanthusARES ^^

    A lot of UK universities have research masters programs. If you are interested in decision making, look at University of Leed's MA research in their Centre for Decision Research. It is a pure thesis based masters without any compulsory coursework. Warwick has good behavioural researchers. Also look at Imperial College London.

    Outside of the UK, you may actively consider Hong Kong, not only for an M.Phil. but also for a PhD. You will get training which is at par with the best at places like HKUST. The Dutch universities also have research masters programs which you may check out.

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