PhD Preparation - What to Wear?



I have an interview for a PhD this Tuesday, and am not sure whether to go with my suit or just go very smart/casual for the occassion? Does it make a difference in the end? Are UK professors at all impressed by what you wear? I am curious because I keep getting different suggestions from family and friends and am still in limbo over how to present myself on the day.

Appreciate any advice I can get,


Goodness, I went straight from work so was in my work clothes, and in the lab I work in, its jeans. Mind you, I did know the people doing the interview from my MA days, and they wear jeans too! :$. If you don't know them I would go somewhere in the middle, but it may depend upon the subject.


I guess it's worse to be overdressed than underdressed in these situations, but I'm guessing you could get away with a smart shirt on plain black trousers for this sort of thing.. Works differently for women! :D


nothing wrong with making a good impression by dressing smart, they will appreciate it. i would lean towards "smart" it shows you care about your appearance and made an effort. but smart shirt and tie sounds good too. if you're not comfy in a jacket.

Avatar for Eska

If I were a bloke I'd go for the suit every time. If it defo feels too formal when you get there you can just slip the jacket off. But, yes, the suit every time.


Thanks for the feedback, I appreciate it.

I am under the impression that a suit would be the best option in that the interviewers recognise the effort made, however as far as comfort goes, a smart shirt and tie would go alot it's a close one to call really, but I'm probably leaning more towards the suit and tie option just to be on the safe side (even if in truth in the end it wouldn't make much of a difference)!

My only concern is the psychological effect of having to feel "over-dressed" for the occassion, in particular when you enter the room and see the interviewers!...


Depends on the subject area. I recently went for a Med Sci one, so a suit was appropriate. If I'd gone for something more engineering related, I'd have dressed down a bit.