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Development Studies: LSE, IDS or SOAS
Fizza Bangash posted a topic in Graduate AdmissionsHello, My name is Fizza Bangash and I recently acquired admission in Masters of Development Studies at SOAS, IDS and LSE. However, I am very confused about making a final decision between the three. IDS is the industry leader but LSE has a better international ranking. Another issue is my negligent basis in economics. I have heard that the program at LSE is econ-heavy. Is not having a foundation in Economics going to affect my studies at LSE or SOAS? At the end of it all, I want to acquire a thorough practical training on Development, and not just choose a university based on its ranking in research. I hope that isnt the case with IDS. I will REALLY appreciate some guidance regarding this.
Hey all! So glad I came across this place, its already helped me out a lot just browsing through other people's questions and answers. Now, I was wondering if anyone had any advice. Here's a little background: I just graduated from the University of S Andrews in the UK with an MA (hons) in Economics and International Relations (its a BA equivalent, even though its called MA). Grade wise I did very well, though I don't have any amazing work experience or internships to my name. I only decided to go on to grad school very late in the game and thus was limited in my choices by application deadlines. I ended up applying to the MSc in Political Economy of Development at SOAS (1 year) MSc in Global Politics at LSE (1 year), and MSc in Development Economics at the University of Göttingen (Germany, 2 years). I got into SOAS and Göttingen (waiting on LSE). Now I am trying to decide whether to a) go to Göttingen for two years, b) go to SOAS for 1 year or c) defer the spot at SOAS and get some work experience for a year while applying more widely in the UK (I'm thinking Int'l Dev @LSE, IDS @Sussex, possibly Manchester) and perhaps the US (SAIS IDEV, Columbia SIPA or MDP, Georgetown). My goal is to work in the development sector (development banks, ministries, agencies, NGO what have you) in a more practical capacity. I am not ruling out getting a Phd in the future (to avoid glass ceilings), but I'm not likely to become an academic. I'd like to ask the urch all-knowing community these questions: 1. After browsing the forum for a while and also speaking to Profs back home, it appears that SOAS, being considered 'heterodox', doesn't have a fantastic rep among academics (One Prof said they were "stuck in the 70s in terms of methodology and theory"). Also the Political Economy program is obviously not going to be very quant heavy, and SOAS already having a very non-quantitative approach, I was wondering if I'd receive proper training in the quant skills I might need in the future. How does it compare to Sussex or Manchester? 2. The MSc Global Politics at LSE is not what I would have applied to had the application for International Development still be open. It's a great brand, but is it worth the time and money to do a degree that is only somewhat related to the sector just for the brand? 3. I have also now read a bit about US programs. Obviously, these are competitive and expensive. What is the funding situation for Masters in the US? 4. Have any of you heard of the University of Göttingen, i.e. does it enjoy any name recognition outside of Germany? It's a great program in terms of content, but it is two years rather than one and I'm worried about it not being very well known. These should get us going, thank you very much everyone! If anyone has been to SOAS (which is still my likely choice at the moment) or the other two, I would love to hear from you! Thanks! Schajin