The timeline you need to 3X your chances of getting into top PhD programsDec 29, 2022
The Timeline You Need To 3X Your Chances Of Getting Into Top PhD Programs
If you want to do your PhD, and get that fully funded position, you’re going to want to plan it out. After all, this isn't something you just wake up one morning and say “hey, I think it would be really fun to go back to school for 4 more years, why not get a PhD?”.
So, if you didn’t come to the decision to pursue your PhD lightly, why would you leave your application up to chance? Successful PhDs follow a timeline and execute key tasks that make them 3X more successful than the 20% national average. If you’d like to be part of the 20% that succeed, follow this timeline below.
Applying To PhD Programs Requires A Totally Different Timeline Than Undergrad.
Every single PhD hopeful has their undergrad degree (this is a requirement), and when they got their undergrad degree they applied successfully. Now, when they decide to apply for a PhD the thinking goes that it will be like undergrad, and hey I did pretty good there, so I should be fine.
The biggest difference when applying for your PhD is that you’re not applying to a school (I mean you are, but hang with me), you’re applying to work with 1 or 2 people on a very specific topic. This means you can’t just compile a list of top “Biology” programs, but instead need to find the programs doing the work you care about. Like finding the handful of people working on migration patterns of moths, versus the hundreds of Biology programs at top Universities.
Finding The Right Fit Will Take More Time Than Undergrad.
Finding the right people doing the work you care about takes time. And it sets those who succeed apart.
Imagine a hand written invitation to come to your next dinner party, with a detailed guest list, menu, and description of the music that will be played and how inviting the event will be. Now imagine a evite the spells your name wrong and says, “hope you can come to my party next Friday, it’ll be fun.” The personalized invitation makes it very easy for me to say Yes, and the generic evite makes it pretty easy for me to say No.
This is the same thing when you’re applying to PhD programs. You need to make it personalized and make sure there is a good fit before you ever apply. This process of finding the right programs usually takes ~6 months and should be completed ~6 months prior to your deadline.