Ok! So 222 views but no reply...would appreciate any hint/advise/suggestions. It need not be to the point or exact.
(A) I am planning to join PhD in Pol Science and looking for a good univ with qualitative and inter-disciplinary stress. My PhD topic will be focused on 2-3 localities in India. It will broadly cover issues of political representation and citizenship issues among a religious minority group. So could you please suggest good universities for me to go to?? It'll be really great help!
(B) Also please evaluate my profile assuming I will get average GRE & TOEFL (say not enough for top 10 but enough for top 10-40) and suggest how to cover my weak points.
1) I have done my BA (Hons.) Social Work and MA in Social Work from the best universities in India with 67% and 63% marks respectively (Don't know what GPA those will be!).
2) I have also published in one of the most important journals of India (though not a peer reviewed journal), have a chapter in a Routledge Book and co-authored a book with a prof from my MA univ (local publisher). All my Publications are related to my PhD interest.
3) I also have 2.5 years of RA exp related to my PhD interest.
4) My letter of recommendation will be: 2 from Social Work (from the best social work institute here) and 1 from my employer-supervisor who is in the top Govt. body for policy making currently with Indian govt. I can vouch for all the letter of recommendation to be personal and intense.
5) My SOP will, am sure, reflect my commitment and relevance for my PhD interest. Though linking it with faculty interests might be difficult.
(C) Importantly, How is the UMich Joint PhD in Social Work and Pol Sc, Michigan State Univ's Pol science and Univ of Chicago...Does anyone knows of their drawbacks or strengths/uniqueness??
Thanks a ton!
Hope this is not too late. You can look up usnews.com for rankings of grad school. I would also add UC Berkeley to your list. If I were you, I would focus on working on your research proposal and clearly articulating your research questions. Try to identify profs who specialize in your area of interest (in this case religion, I guess) and then apply to those graduate schools. Some names that come to mind are Chibber (Berkeley), Varshney (Brown), Willkinson (Yale). Other people that work on India are: Prerna Singh who is at Harvard's department of govt. She was Atul Kohli's PhD student (I think). Speaking of Atul Kohli, he is at Woodrow Wilson School (WWS). You have already mentioned Chicago - they have Lloyd Rudolph and Susanne of Rudolph and Rudolph (who have worked extensively on Indian politics) UPenn has an exclusive center devoted to research in India. Devesh Kapur U Penn. His recent work (along with Pratap Bhanu Mehta) has examined the role of institutions like bureaucracy, the parliament etc. in India. Also, Kanchan Chandra is at New York University.
You also also want to apply to schools which have a south asia focus. The following is a list, arranged in no specific order:
Brandeis-South Asian Studies ProgramWellesley College South Asia Studies
Tufts Center for South Asian and Indian Ocean Studies
Yale University South Asian Studies Council
Columbia University South Asia Institute
Cornell University South Asia Program
North Carolina Center for South Asia Studies
Syracuse University South Asia Center
University of California at Berkeley
University of Chicago South Asian Languages and Civilizations
University of Michigan Center for South Asian Studies
University of Pennsylvania South Asia Regional Center
University of Texas, Austin
University of Virginia Center for South Asian Studies
University of Washington South Asia Program
University of Wisconsin, Madison
The South Asian Politics Seminar by Brown, Harvard and MIT
Centre for Advanced Study of India - UPenn
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