Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Speedy Doctoral Application

I started researching doctoral programs in the spring 2016. I stumbled upon my program at the end of February of 2017. I knew I missed the priority deadline for summer 2017, so I inquired about a summer 2019 start date (the program admits every two years). The program director responded letting me know that I could still apply for summer 2017. As I look back at it, I still can't believe that I was able to complete the application in the time that I did while working full-time, teaching part-time, traveling for work, managing my son's basketball team, dealing with a child in the terrible twos, and helping my husband prepare for the LCSW exam. Whew! I did it!

  • Letters of Reference - I contacted three people familiar with my work to write letters of reference on my behalf. One person was my instructor for a couple of my undergrad courses in English Ed. At the time, she was a graduate teaching assistant (GTA), but now she is professor of English. My current supervisor wrote a letter for me. My previous supervisor for my adjunct teaching job wrote the third letter.

  • Statement of Goals - I revised my statement of goals. I wrote a few last year for other schools I considered, so I tweaked this one to reflect my current research goals.

  • Writing Sample - Thanks to Google (gmail) I was able to retrieve my master's degree project from almost 12 years ago. I had a blast reading my research interests from back in the day. Fortunately, it's relevant to research I plan to do now. In 2005, I graduated from the University of Kansas with a master's degree in Curriculum & Instruction with an emphasis in English Education. My master's project was on Writing Across the Curriculum. I examined Writing to Learn and Writing to Display Learning approaches to WAC. 

  • GRE Prep - I studied for the GRE. I bought a prep book and reviewed every night. I watch YouTube videos and put a daily vocabulary app on my laptop.

  • GRE- On April 1st, 2017, I took the GRE! I'm thankful I won't have to do that again!

  • Completed Application - My complete application was sent to the Graduate School Admissions department.

  • Interview - I received an email on May 1st asking me to participate in an admissions interview. Unfortunately, technology was not my friend that day (May 3rd). I was supposed to participate in an interview with two faculty members via Google Hangouts. Well, my laptop would not connect to the internet and our new computer didn't have Hangouts installed on it. However, we were able to have a phone conversation. Fortunately, it went well.

  • 2nd Writing Sample - One day after my interview, I completed the writing portion of my application. I had 45 minutes to write on a prompt provided by the program committee. Even though, I excel in writing, the experience was still nerve-wrecking. 
    Preparing for my grad school interview! Revisited my statement of goals!

    My computer would not connect to the internet and I couldn't download Google Hangouts on my husband's computer. Nevertheless, I was able to conduct a phone interview.

    May 8th, 2017 - I got into grad school!

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