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Thread: PhD admission without interview

  1. #1
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    PhD admission without interview

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    Hello,

    At some places I read that if one doesn't get an interview offer till the mid-February the rejection is on the way. I have also heard of tales of students getting accepted without an interview. Also I have read on websites of good number of universities that an interview is not required to be considered for the PhD position.

    I searched this forum for this topic, with a variation of keywords, but I couldn't find a thread pertaining to this concern, so I created this thread. If anyone has seen a thread about this, it would be great if you could share it with us.

    I had contacted some professors in the late 2018, and they had said some positive stuff. Thus, I was optimistic about my chances this time, but it has been very silent so far. Is it a common practice to get positive responses from professors?

    If anyone is in the same boat as me, it would be great to connect and sail together.

    Does it help to send follow up emails to the department or professors of the universities in which we are interested in? Or is it better to just wait?

    Also, it would be nice to hear from you about the chances of acceptance if we have not received any interview invitations till now.

    Best of luck to everyone for this season.

  2. #2
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    Re: PhD admission without interview

    Quote Originally Posted by 2019averdocgrad View Post
    Hello,

    At some places I read that if one doesn't get an interview offer till the mid-February the rejection is on the way. I have also heard of tales of students getting accepted without an interview. Also I have read on websites of good number of universities that an interview is not required to be considered for the PhD position.

    I searched this forum for this topic, with a variation of keywords, but I couldn't find a thread pertaining to this concern, so I created this thread. If anyone has seen a thread about this, it would be great if you could share it with us.

    I had contacted some professors in the late 2018, and they had said some positive stuff. Thus, I was optimistic about my chances this time, but it has been very silent so far. Is it a common practice to get positive responses from professors?

    If anyone is in the same boat as me, it would be great to connect and sail together.

    Does it help to send follow up emails to the department or professors of the universities in which we are interested in? Or is it better to just wait?

    Also, it would be nice to hear from you about the chances of acceptance if we have not received any interview invitations till now.

    Best of luck to everyone for this season.
    I think I would not help to send e-mails to send follow-up e-mails to the professors and I also think that it's not a common practice to get positive responses from professors (the common practice would be to hear nothing )

    On the other hand, I feel you. I'm quite confused about the interviews, or not interview thing actually. For example, Wharton website states "they do not offer interviews before making decisions, and after they make decisions, they invite people for campus visit". But I also see people posting interviews with the same school (contradictory, kind of.) Some schools, like Haas, states that they do not have a "formal interview policy". Some schools explicitly say that they will invite for interviews.

    So, my friend, I feel the same confusion and hopelessness you have right now. But I approach this with the following way:

    - Schools that explicitly stating "no interviews" or "no formal interview policies", I'm still kind of hopeful even though I see Gradcafe posts. When I say hopeful, it is like, "OK, we are not dead yet."
    - Schools that explicitly states "there would be interviews" and I saw Gradcafe or Urch posts on these schools - those are like we are almost dead.
    - Schools that say nothing and no interviews posts on Gradcafe, I do not know. There is still hope!

    Actually, I will have some kind of hope until I get the decision letters of rejections (or offers).

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    Re: PhD admission without interview

    First, I know very well that it's very hard to wait for some news, and there isn't much to do about it.

    But it's way too early to give up hope. February is a very hot month for interviews, and even after that we see many cases of success. My own interviews when I applied were closer to the end of February, and I remember that very few users had concrete results during that period.

    If after a month from now you still don't get any interview, then I think perspectives are grim, but still not enough to give up hope. But in January? Things are just starting to happen.

    Maybe Urch does not keep very old threads, but back in 2016/2017 we had more users here, and we had more statistics about that kind of thing. If I'm not mistaken, about 50% of the interviews are in February.

    Different universities can follow very different procedures, including how interviews are done (if they are done at all). Even in the same universities, different departments have different ways to work. And within a department, different professors prefer to do things in a different way. There is no way to tell what they are going to do.

    From my experience, you also can't really trust what the universities' websites state. And when they say that an interview is not required, it often just means that professors are free to decide if they want to interview applicants or not. So, anything can happen, depending on what the faculty decides.

    About professors saying positive stuff, I don't know if it's common. But I guess a lot of applicants would get some positive feedback, because applicants are often very strong. The problem is that you may be strong, but there are also lots of other applicants that are strong too. All we can try to do is to guess if an applicant has a figthing chance, but it's very hard to be sure about who are the ones who will really get offers. This is one of the reasons that, even for the very strong applicants, a common advice here is to apply widely. A lot of factors can influence, many of them unknown.

    I see no reason to contact the department or the professors just because you haven't heard from them yet. If you have an offer, but are still waiting for other universities, then it may be worth a shot. I did that after I got my offer, and some universities replied saying I was rejected (but not many).

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