Fellow posters, speaking of TSE admission results, if I have applied only this week, do you happen do have an opinion on when they might respond?
I am also wondering what are my chances of a positive feedback, given my application date, but I guess that is an ambitious curiosity...
I appreciate your feedback, good luck!
I look forward to hearing from you Jasonblue, and thanks again man, I appreciate your help. Thanks to everyone commenting on this thread as well.
In addition to the statements of my two TSE classmates in this thread (I totally agree with them), I would like to refer to this thread where some of the mentioned points had already been discussed:
@kondratieff, Wow! seems that all of us are gathered here to protest against our school
I do endorse EVERYTHING that gkhn said! However, I'd be happy to provide some more info.
1. Not all profs are "bad". TSE does have some good profs who are good at (and care about) teaching, for example, my current supervisor for my thesis is quite nice to me. However, firstly, the good profs are a rare case, which means that no matter how, you'll always see some unpleasant profs who don't care about teaching at all. If you are lucky, you end up taking few courses with unpleasant profs; if not, you end up question about academia everyday and why the hell could such kind of profs get a job. In sum, I do not want you to think that all profs are bad here at TSE. Some of them are quite good, but unfortunately, they are just a very small portion.
2. Among those very few profs who care about teaching, again, a very small portion of them are approachable after class. This makes the total number of nice and approachable profs to a very small number.
3. Course levels are not low. If you don't make efforts, you won't get good grades for sure. However, if you do make efforts, in some cases you still won't get good grades, because grading is unreasonably tough (when I say "unreasonably", I literally mean some profs don't even give you a reason) and some profs won't even listen to you if you firmly believe that indeed solved the problem correctly. So, if you come here, when you take exams, be very careful, write exactly in the way they want/anticipate, otherwise, no one is gonna care about the injustice.
4. Kondratieff has mentioned in another thread he posted above: the exams are designed for the top students, if you are average (and considering point 3), making efforts or not makes no difference on the final score. And the grade of the course is only based on one final.
5. Then how do you learn?! Mostly through independent and peer studies. In class, you do your best, and then ask around your classmates after class if there are things you don't understand.
6. It's also my responsibility to tell you that not all students think like this. We do have one classmate of us (a crazy Chinese guy) who got the attention from the faculty and interacted with many famous profs a lot. However, if you ask around, 90% of the students will tell you the same as what we said (except French students who are probably used to the system). Whether you want to score for that 10% really depends not only on your academic super-excellence, but also on how you perceive your future luck at TSE (yes, you do need some luck).
7. Lastly, I need to remind you that what I have said is based on what happened this year. There is chance that this year is an outlier in the sample. Indeed, most of the profs for last semester seemed very inexperienced. and this semester has slightly improved. (SLIGHTLY!)
I tried my best to give you an objective view, but I hope you understand that every opinion has some bias. You should always try to hear from more people to balance the information.
Best of luck to your future PhD!
Last edited by Jasonblue; 03-09-2012 at 09:21 PM.
In: Tinbergen; Waiting: Oxford, LSE
Now, if you do not mind my asking, what would you say is it that allows students to perform well or not on the M2? I know that one's abilities do definitely play a non-negligible role, but apart from that, is there anything in particular that would allow students to cope better with the courses, as in a sound mathematical preparation or strong micro/macro background? If so, could you please recommend the courses that you would personally have chosen to improve your chances?
As kondratieff has pointed out, the exams are set in such a way that only the best get through. He also mentioned that the exams are designed so that people having done the M1 at TSE have a considerable advantage over the rest. Hence, would you say that going through the M1 would itself count as very good training?
I would be grateful if you could please help me with these questions mate. You cannot imagine how worried I am at present! Thanks a lot again for your help.
I was admitted directly into M2, and did not get through M1. But I agree that our classmates who went through M1 had some advantages, because on one hand, the M1 program is very rigorous (as far as you study hard and despite the poor teaching quality), and on the other hand, they have a lot of insider info.
To perform well on the exams, the rule of thumb is to study hard and pay enough effort.
Apart from that:
1. The most important: Talk to your classmates who took M1 or those in higher grade who took M2. Get some ideas of each instructor's personality and teaching style before choosing classes (core micro macro and metrics are mandatory for the first semester, so you don't have a choice but only to hope), and before taking exams. If those students tell you negative things about some profs, be warned that it may not be a good idea to take their classes, though some of them are great researchers. At TSE, there are many great researchers who don't care about teaching (I literally meant GREAT w.r.t their research)... So, checking their CV and publications is apparently NOT sufficient. Always try to get insider info.
2. Don't trust too much the tutorials. The tutorials are conducted by TAs separately for the corresponding classes. While it is always a dominant strategy to do your best on the problem sets, you should always bear in mind that the final exam might be very different from what you have done in the tutorials, and the exam problems can be very sporadic (honestly, I don't think profs spend much of their precious time making good exams problems).
3. Peer learning is very important. TSE does have many good students in their M2 program every year. Make friends with those who are both smart and friendly (willing to help), and discussions in many cases are more helpful than talking to some unpleasant profs.
4. At TSE, students don't have bargaining power at all. If you don't like a prof or don't agree with what he does, let it go... Always do your best on your part, and hope for the best.
5. Lastly, if you have any problems, talk to secretary Aude. She is the only one that every student respects (because she respects every student), and is respected by all the faculty members.
This is pretty much what I can come up with. You should always try to get more information from others.
In: Tinbergen; Waiting: Oxford, LSE
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