upcoming interview!


Hi everyone, I've been reading this forum for a while now but this is my first post. I have an interview for a PhD on Monday and I'm a bit nervous and confused because I'm not sure what to expect. I've applied for a studentship at the same university where I am currently doing my MSc and the supervisor is my current MSc tutor and is supervising my dissertation. I mentioned a while ago that I would be interested in doing a PhD and when this project had been arranged and the funding was secure he basically told me to apply for it. So I did and got offered the interview. He also told me that the work experience placement I am doing this summer (also whilst trying to write a dissertation - not good for stress levels) would be very helpful because it means that I wouldn't have to spend as long learning to program the model that I will be using because I'm currently working with something similar and therefore would be able to get into the interesting research part sooner rather than faffing around learning how to use the computer.

The main reason I'm feeling like this is because I will be interviewed by someone I have known for the last year and I have no idea what level of formality to expect because so far the relationship has been fairly relaxed. Also in the email from the admissions department inviting me to the interview said that if I am able to stay on campus for a while after the interview (it's in the morning) there would the opportunity to go to lunch with Dr XXX. So without sounding too cocky I think I may stand a chance of getting this but I don't want to get my hopes up too much.

Sorry for rambling on a bit, I was just wondering if anybody else had been in a similar situation e.g. staying with same supervisor and being interviewed by them.



It sounds like you're in with a good shot. I was interviewed by my 3rd year undergrad supervisor for a PhD with him and whilst the interview itself was still fairly formal (mainly due to the other member of the panel) it was a little less stressful for me because I knew that he already knew what I was capable off. It felt a bit like I had one less person to impress at interview. I think my situation was similar to yours as well because originally I let him know I was interested in applying for one of the general semi-funded PhD places the department had, and if I did I asked if he would be interested in being my supervisor. He was all for it and then later when he secured specific funding for himself asked if I wanted to switch my application from the general position to his specific one.

So, I'd expect it to be as formal as normal. You'll still be aiming to impress more than just your potential supervisor but with the background you mentioned it sounds a little bit like they've lined you up as a firm candidate for the phd. The lunch is interesting as well but I wouldn't read too much into it though as a lot of interview processes involve staying for a tour of the department/Uni or in some case taking the candidates for lunch/dinner.


Hi Peljam, thanks for your reply, it makes me feel a little better. I'm going to try and read a couple of relevant papers to refresh me on the topic and hope that I can think of something intelligent to say tomorrow!