Decision Decisions Decisions...

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What is the most important factor when choosing a school?

Rank
5
19%
Research
14
54%
Student Funding
1
4%
Faculty
1
4%
Location
4
15%
Course List
1
4%
Other
0
No votes
 
Total votes: 26

funkoliteus
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Feb 06, 2008 10:36 pm

Decision Decisions Decisions...

Postby funkoliteus » Sat Feb 09, 2008 10:54 pm

Soon, we will be left with a decision: which school do I chose? You may already have chosen a school, but what is the factor that most heavily ways into your choice: rank, research, student funding, faculty, location, course list, or other.

So far I have been accepted to McGill University in Montreal for medical physics. I am still waiting for a decision from Wisconsin and Houston.

I would love living in another country and at the same time attend a well respected program. However, if accepted to UW or UT, would my adventurous attitude create regret in the future?

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grae313
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Postby grae313 » Sat Feb 09, 2008 11:01 pm

This is really tough in the poll sort of format because really many of these things are very important and need to be taken into account. It also depends somewhat on what you want to do afterwards. If you wanted a tenure position at a top university then perhaps prestige/rank might be more important than if you planned to work in industry, in which case you might be looking more at research and industry connections.

For me, I'd have to say that research and faculty are most important. Tied for second place would be rank, money, and location!

tnoviell
Posts: 235
Joined: Sun Nov 05, 2006 10:31 am

Postby tnoviell » Sun Feb 10, 2008 12:41 am

Go to a place that you can see yourself living for 5-7 years. Graduate school is going to be a lot of stress, and additional stress such as hating where you live can really make things go wrong quickly. Make sure the environment jives with your personality, and all that jazz. On your interview weekend you'll get a good idea, most likely, especially if you're around graduate students. Much can be learned from their demeanor...

I would say factor in everything - they're all interconnected.

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grae313
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Postby grae313 » Sun Feb 10, 2008 12:44 am

to those who don't know: take note when tnoviell speaks! He's in grad school and knows what he's talking about.

tnoviell
Posts: 235
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Postby tnoviell » Sun Feb 10, 2008 12:48 am

I'm just a fool living in a fool's world.

funkoliteus
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Feb 06, 2008 10:36 pm

Postby funkoliteus » Sun Feb 10, 2008 1:23 am

Good advice tnoviell. So I guess when I go visit I will look for needle tracks on the graduate students' arms and hope they are clean....hehe :)

tnoviell
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Postby tnoviell » Sun Feb 10, 2008 1:27 am

Ask them questions and gauge their responses. It's very easy to spot unhappiness...

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quizivex
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Postby quizivex » Sun Feb 10, 2008 1:31 am

If you're lucky you might get a straightforward answer, "I *** hate this place and I beg you not to make the same mistake I did."

But as tnoviell said, most likely you'll have to read between the lines...

tnoviell
Posts: 235
Joined: Sun Nov 05, 2006 10:31 am

Postby tnoviell » Sun Feb 10, 2008 1:33 am

No, you'll never get a response like that, trust me. I've been on interview weekends, and I can tell you that you're going to have to read between the lines.

funkoliteus
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Feb 06, 2008 10:36 pm

Postby funkoliteus » Sun Feb 10, 2008 1:35 am

No, I completely agree. I have lunch with graduate students at my school often and they just sit and eat their chimmy chongas and talk about x box. Boring! If I was visiting I would definitely sense something off balance.

tnoviell
Posts: 235
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Postby tnoviell » Sun Feb 10, 2008 11:28 am

They sound like a boring crowd.

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twistor
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Postby twistor » Sun Feb 10, 2008 9:47 pm

Location, location, location.




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