Signup date: 18 Nov 2015 at 11:56am
Last login: 24 Aug 2020 at 11:49pm
Post count: 2100
If you want it, go for it, and do everything you can to improve your application. You could apply for as many opportunities as possible to increase the chances of getting accepted.
When I was applying, I watched Pursuit of Happyness for inspiration/motivation. People can get what they set out to achieve even in the face of massive obstacles. At the same time, it is always useful to have a Plan B in case it takes longer than anticipated, or you don't feel able to keep on trying thanklessly.
Just an encouraging story... I know someone who was accepted on a highly competitive BSc programme at a Russell Group university when she had no A levels or equivalent, and no evidence of study in the past 4 years (which was the requirement for mature students). Her application obviously impressed them so much that they thought: screw the protocol. And now she is doing a PhD!
Hi batangkilljoy... It sounds like you want to quit more than you want to continue? I would quit then if I were you. I don't think you would have to worry about explaining why you changed your mind about doing a PhD. Plenty of people change their mind, and the earlier on is probably the better.
About your reasons 2, 3, 7 & 8 (and maybe even 1 - after all, it isn't THAT long distance). If these are genuine reasons for wanting to quit (rather than just justifying/adding to the argument to quit), I can tell you that those things do get easier (they did for me at least). There is a massive learning curve / getting settled curve in starting the PhD. I'm now in the middle of my second year, and things have got easier in that sense not harder. The challenges are different now - they tend to be more methodological and more enjoyable.
But it all boils down to what you actually want! Do you want the PhD or not? Don't be scared of/worried about quitting if it isn't what you want. Less time wasted is better. But equally, rise to challenge and get determined about things if the PhD is what you want.
Hope this is a tiny bit helpful.
If going to a top 5 uni is important to you then you should go for that one - otherwise you'd probably regret it based on what you've said.
As others are also saying here - yes, you can get non-research jobs with an MRes. The MRes is geared toward research (hence the name) but not to the exclusion of everything else. Some or most of my peers from the MRes have gone on to do non-PhD/non-research jobs.
It is hard to advise without seeing it. A 30% cut isn't actually too bad though - just make your points and mention details more succinctly... use one sentence to wrap up multiple points/examples.
Does it have a clear structure? Is there some blurb at the start that could be cut/reduced?
Save a copy of it and then be really ruthless. Less is often more!
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