School asking the reason of decline

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mrfotih
Posts: 56
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2011 6:02 pm

School asking the reason of decline

Postby mrfotih » Sun Mar 23, 2014 9:14 pm

The school I have declined has asked me the reason of doing so and the name of the school i will be attending.
How common is this situation?
Do I have to respond them?

TakeruK
Posts: 815
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 3:05 pm

Re: School asking the reason of decline

Postby TakeruK » Sun Mar 23, 2014 10:48 pm

Do you mean a prof you have talked to directly is contacting you and asking? Or do you mean you got an "exit survey" from the graduate school?

If it's the first case, then it's not too rare, but unless I had a good connection with a professor, they didn't really contact me further after I declined their offer. You don't have to respond, but there is no reason not to. You should keep this response pretty vague, like "I decided to go to X in the end because it was a better fit for me." Don't criticize their program or say something like "Well you should have offered more money!" etc.

If it's the second case, then it is very common. Every school I declined sent a survey from the Graduate School. I believe them when they say the survey responses are anonymous and it's a good way for them to get feedback on help them make future decisions. I would say it is okay to be honest here. In fact, many of the schools asked me to tick off all the reasons why I preferred the school of my choice (with things like location, research fit, funding etc.). They usually asked where I ended up going and how much the other school offered. Obviously, keep any comments you leave professional and constructive, but I think being honest is fair here.

mrfotih
Posts: 56
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2011 6:02 pm

Re: School asking the reason of decline

Postby mrfotih » Sun Mar 23, 2014 11:15 pm

It was the graduate coordinator.

TakeruK
Posts: 815
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 3:05 pm

Re: School asking the reason of decline

Postby TakeruK » Sun Mar 23, 2014 11:30 pm

Well, then I would say that it doesn't hurt to tell them where you actually chose to go and why. I mean, they will probably see you again at conferences and there is no reason to try to hide from them! Just make sure you only mention positives in your reason and never say anything bad about any program. You can provide as much details in your reason as you are comfortable with, but probably best to keep it short and simple like my example above.




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