Is irrelevant research worth noting?

astroboy
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Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2009 1:23 am

Is irrelevant research worth noting?

Postby astroboy » Tue Oct 06, 2009 4:41 am

If you're a Physics major and are applying to various astrophysics grad school programs, is it worth noting that you've had a paper published in Environmental Biology?

cooper
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Joined: Wed Jul 08, 2009 4:57 am

Re: Is irrelevant research worth noting?

Postby cooper » Tue Oct 06, 2009 9:14 am

I find it hard to believe that there is simply no overlap between the skills needed to conduct research in Astrophysics and other fields. That being the case it would be good idea to mention it. The admissions committee would probably think of it as evidence that you are capable of conducting research in Astrophysics. At the very least it can't hurt you to mention it. The most the admissions committee would do is ignore it, they certainly wouldn't hold it against you.

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grae313
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Re: Is irrelevant research worth noting?

Postby grae313 » Tue Oct 06, 2009 3:09 pm

This has been answered before. Just think about it and use your common sense. Of course, if you have any research experience at all, highlight it. Explain in your SOP how the skills you learned in doing research will apply to your graduate research in physics. There are a lot of general skills such as defining new research problems and working on something without a known answer that are very important.

shafatmubin
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Joined: Mon Feb 15, 2010 2:52 pm

Re: Is irrelevant research worth noting?

Postby shafatmubin » Mon Feb 15, 2010 2:54 pm

How about research advice in something like European history? Would it help if one has been an advisor to students of European history in college?

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grae313
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Re: Is irrelevant research worth noting?

Postby grae313 » Mon Feb 15, 2010 7:57 pm

Again, I'm just using my common sense here. It's not going to be as good as having conducted scientific research, but it's better than nothing and worth mentioning.

You need to convince a group of people that you will be awesome at graduate school, and graduate school is mostly research. The best way to convince people of this is to show them good evidence that you possess the required skills and the required motivation. If you can spin your research experience or any past experiences, no matter how remotely related to physics, in such a way as to demonstrate that you possess in spades the skills that will help you in graduate school, it will be to your advantage.




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