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Applying to US Universities for Admission 精选

已有 17963 次阅读 2007-10-17 19:40 |系统分类:海外观察

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It is that time of the year again for admission application to US
universities. Offered below are some tips from the viewpoint of
someone who sits on admission committees.

About getting admission to study in the US
By
Y.C. Ho


1.Please realize professors receive many inquires every week.
While one does best to help, one cannot customize answers to all
your questions. Otherwise, one will have no time to do anything
else.
2.Financial support for graduate study in the US, whether
scholarship or assistantship is primarily due to individual professors
who invest in you ~US$60,000/year  (This is the cost of support a
student for one year. He gets this from his research contract or
from his department including overhead expenses). Consequently, He
likes to have some return on the investment (ROI). There are two
ways to get ROI:

The first approach is to have a large project that requires
a team.. The professor then employs master degree students to do
small, not so advanced, but necessary work. He promotes the
student to ph.d status if s/he shows promise. Such positions are
available at large universities, e.g., UIUC (U. of Illinois at
Urbana-Champaigne), MIT, Berkeley, etc.


The second approach is to admit the students directly to
ph.d program and invest $120k in him/her for the first two years
to study without getting any return. The student finally begins
to produce in the third and fourth year. There is a danger here
since the admission may be a mistake, or worse, student may leave
for better opportunities after getting his master degrees in two
years. In this case the professor have lost ~120K without getting
any return. While US is a free country there is the issue of
loyalty and obligation. I know more than one professor who swear
that he will never admit another Chinese student again.  Thus you
don’t want to burn the bridge after you have crossed it for those
behind you. Unfortunately, such unethical “get ahead at any cost
” attitude are not infrequent among Chinese students.  Remember
you are an unofficial ambassador for your country. What you do
in a foreign country reflect on your Motherland.

3.  Tips on application: Unless previously primed, an application
usually gets five minutes of attention before decision to deny or
further consideration. A professor must read at least 50-100
applications. Thus you must make your application stand out .
Try to correspond directly with the professor. Be specific in
you request and desires. Show that you have invested time and
energy in your research for graduate study. If you have invested
time, then the professor may reciprocate thinking you are
genuinely serious. Open ended question such as “please tell me
everything I need to know to apply” are impossible for a busy
person to answer faithfully. A good application, or for that
matter a letter/message, should always reader-centered and NOT
self-centered.
4.General requirements for admission to good universities:
TOEFL score over 600. GRE above 95%. Graduate from a well known
school in China. Recommendation letters preferably should come
from writer known to or calibrated by the person reading your
application. US university are aware of the problem of false
recommendation letters and/or student-composed- professor-signed
letters.




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