doubts about applying for a phd, any chemistry phd students here?

posted
08-Jan-20, 13:16
Avatar for chemistrystudent2401
posted about 1 week ago
hey all

a while ago i posted about whether it would be worst applying for phds in the chemistry field given that i'm most likely going to achieve an 2.1 mchem this year
i decided i would but i'm having doubts because of other things
the only research experience i have is from my masters research project, i dont have research experience outside of uni, i have other work experience from internships but theyre not related to chemistry, do you think this would be a setback?
I was thinking of applying for other jobs this year, hopefully chemistry related and do a phd next year rather than start this year, would this be a good idea? taking a year out doing something else?
are there any chemistry phd students here? if so could i have a chat with you directly?
posted
08-Jan-20, 13:32
by pm133
Avatar for pm133
posted about 1 week ago
I've done plenty of both practical research lab Chemistry (almost 2 years between summer breaks and a years industrial synthesis placement) and theoretical Chemistry during my PhD so I can advise.

What would be the purpose of the year out in industry?
If it's to get lab experience I honestly wouldn't worry about that.
I'm not a big fan of doing a PhD without gaining a 1st or a very good 2:1 because having a solid theoretical background really is essential but that's just my own view. You should have few problems getting a position.

Personally, I think that if you really want to do a PhD you should go ahead and apply. If you agree to start in September you have a few months to fill any gaps in your knowledge and do some literature reviewing before you really get going.
posted
10-Jan-20, 14:14
Avatar for chemistrystudent2401
posted about 1 week ago
Quote From pm133:
I've done plenty of both practical research lab Chemistry (almost 2 years between summer breaks and a years industrial synthesis placement) and theoretical Chemistry during my PhD so I can advise.

What would be the purpose of the year out in industry?
If it's to get lab experience I honestly wouldn't worry about that.
I'm not a big fan of doing a PhD without gaining a 1st or a very good 2:1 because having a solid theoretical background really is essential but that's just my own view. You should have few problems getting a position.

Personally, I think that if you really want to do a PhD you should go ahead and apply. If you agree to start in September you have a few months to fill any gaps in your knowledge and do some literature reviewing before you really get going.


a break from academia really, i’ve never taken a gap year and i feel like this year would be a good time to take one. I want to do a phd but i’m not 100% sure i wanna start a few months after graduating. So would you say that i wouldn’t need to worry about getting more lab experience? i’m confident in the lab but i’m just worried any supervisor would look at the amount of lab experience i have and say i’d need to get more.
posted
10-Jan-20, 17:04
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 1 week ago
What are you getting out of the year in industry? I don't think you will gain that much other than a year of life experience. You can learn most lab techniques with a small bit of effort and there is no guarantee working in industry will give you the relevant lab experience. PhD application processes look more for ability than experience, as they can teach what you need. So if you want to do a PhD, I would apply now rather than gaining experience beforehand.

Also, if you want a gap year, take a gap year

PS: Experimental Chemical Engineer
posted
11-Jan-20, 06:04
edited about 29 seconds later
by pm133
Avatar for pm133
posted about 1 week ago
Wanting to take a break from academia is understandable but you'll be giving up a £25k job for one at £14k when you come back to the PhD so bear that in mind.

If you go for industry you should try and find a job which gives you the skills you think you are missing.
PhD supervisors are less interested in you having this experience and more interested in your academic record and availability.

You can make this decision knowing it's going to make no difference to your chances of securing a PhD position a year or two down the road.

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