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Schools Do American universities accept (new students) for second Ph.Ds?

  • Thread starter Eagle9
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200
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Hello people :oldsmile:

I am the Ph.D student in one of the eastern European countries dealing with Neuroscience, I hope I will graduate soon.

But I would like to gain second Ph.D degree abroad, if possible in USA. But I have heard that American universities do not accept the persons who already have got Ph.D degree for their (second) Ph.D program? Is it correct? And is there any age restrictions in USA? :oldeyes:
 

ZapperZ

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But I have heard that American universities do not accept the persons who already have got Ph.D degree for their (second) Ph.D program?
Who told you that?

Zz.
 

CrysPhys

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Hello people :oldsmile:

I am the Ph.D student in one of the eastern European countries dealing with Neuroscience, I hope I will graduate soon.

But I would like to gain second Ph.D degree abroad, if possible in USA. But I have heard that American universities do not accept the persons who already have got Ph.D degree for their (second) Ph.D program? Is it correct? And is there any age restrictions in USA? :oldeyes:
Are you considering a second PhD in Neuroscience; or a PhD in a different field, such as Physics?
 

StatGuy2000

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@Eagle9 , I'm not sure where you have heard this, but what you state isn't true. American universities do accept people who already have a PhD to pursue a second PhD, so long as that second PhD is in a distinct, separate field.

For example, if you already have a PhD in Neuroscience, you cannot earn a second PhD in Neuroscience (this may be relevant for you since in your earlier posts you had expressed interest in pursuing research in computational neuroscience). However, you are able to apply for and be (possibly) accepted into a second PhD in, say, Computer Science or Applied Mathematics.

(Of course, whether you are accepted depends on whether there is sufficient space and funding available to accept you into that second PhD program.)
 
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Who told you that?
If I remember correctly – one of my friends who is now living in USA, we were talking about this issue and she told me this, hence I wanted to check if this is correct or not.


Are you considering a second PhD in Neuroscience; or a PhD in a different field, such as Physics?
Now I am dealing with neuroanatomy (actually the program where I am studying now is called “Cellular Neuroscience”, but what I am exploring is connected with rats’ behavior and their brain’s exploration, so it is closed with (neuro)anatomy) and what I want is neuroscience, but a different subfield – brain’s highest cognitive functions, such as computational neuroscience or brain-computer interface. So, the field is different or not? It is slightly different :oldsmile:


For example, if you already have a PhD in Neuroscience, you cannot earn a second PhD in Neuroscience
So, as I said, my current field and future, desired one are slightly different. Not the same, but slightly different. Do American universities have some rule that directly forbids to accept new student if their/my interest are such different? The point is that the topic of exploration on the second PhD program SHOULD/WILL NOT BE first program’s continuation.
in your earlier posts you had expressed interest in pursuing research in computational neuroscience
Yes, I wrote about it. Actually to be precise – my interest is brain’s highest cognitive functions, this implies computational neuroscience and brain-computer interface (what else? is there something else in this subfield?). It is different from my current PhD program and exploration topic.
So, such “little” different matters or not? :oldeyes:
 

StatGuy2000

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@Eagle9 thanks for clarifying. The thing about computational neuroscience is that this area is an interdisciplinary field where people come from a variety of different backgrounds, so people who work in research in, say, computer science, applied mathematics or electrical engineering (among other cognate areas) could work in areas related to computational neuroscience.

If your interest is in the area of brain's highest cognitive functions, one area you could focus on is in artificial intelligence/cognitive science, so a PhD in, say, computer science or electrical engineering could be a possibility.
 
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Choppy

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Not sure if this helps or not, but in my field, medical physics, it's not uncommon for people who have PhDs in another sub-field of physics, to enrol in a master's medical physics program so that they can build up the skills and knowledge base needed to enter the professional field.

So rather than looking to enroll in an entirely new PhD, you could simply look to pick up the necessary coursework to get into your new field, maybe with a master's degree, and then look for post-doctoral opportunities in the area that interests you. There's no point in spending another 4-6 years on something that may be accomplished in only 1 or 2.
 
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If your interest is in the area of brain's highest cognitive functions, one area you could focus on is in artificial intelligence/cognitive science, so a PhD in, say, computer science or electrical engineering could be a possibility.
Maybe :oldsmile: but I have got biological background, not computer and/or electricalю So, I would still prefer to receive (new) PhD in (neuro)biology since my interest is brain's highest cognitive functions and not computer’s intelligence :oldeyes:


So rather than looking to enroll in an entirely new PhD, you could simply look to pick up the necessary coursework to get into your new field, maybe with a master's degree, and then look for post-doctoral opportunities in the area that interests you.
So, new master’s program, you say? I thought about it, but as I know most of American PhD programs include master’s program and there is no separate master’s program/degree that lasts 2 years. Or maybe I again have wrong information? :rolleyes:
 

Choppy

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So, new master’s program, you say? I thought about it, but as I know most of American PhD programs include master’s program and there is no separate master’s program/degree that lasts 2 years. Or maybe I again have wrong information?
Yes, I believe that's the case for a lot of schools (at least for physics), but that's not the case for ALL the schools the US. I'm sure there are MSc programs at reputable schools you could find if you looked for them. Another option might be to consider other countries. In Canada, for example, it's a lot more common to have the MSc and PhD as distinct degrees. Here's a list of Canadian programs in neuroscience.
 
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Yes, I believe that's the case for a lot of schools (at least for physics), but that's not the case for ALL the schools the US.
Ok :oldsmile:
So, my question is still open – my current PhD (sub)field can be a bit different from future PhD (sub)field, but will it make problems for applying to new PhD program? Probably it will better to ask to that university where I would apply to. :oldeyes:

Another option might be to consider other countries. In Canada, for example, it's a lot more common to have the MSc and PhD as distinct degrees. Here's a list of Canadian programs in neuroscience.
Thanks a lot, Canada is very good option, I hope they do not have some restrictions, regarding age or educational background. :smile:
 

CrysPhys

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To OP:

I don't know enough about your research fields to advise you directly, but here are two points to consider.

(1) Do you want to pursue a second PhD in the US specifically to enhance your list of credentials on your resume for a future job hunt, or do you just want to pursue a different line of research?

(2) If the latter, you might want to explore whether to can go directly to a postdoc position, if you have sufficient skills and experience that a professor in your target new field of research desires. E.g., one of my mentees got her PhD in EE, with a specialization in optoelectronic devices. She got a postdoc with a professor in biomedical engineering working on implantable sensors. Although my mentee had no specific experience in implantable sensors or bioengineering, the professor needed someone with skills and experience in electronic and optical devices. My mentee learned the necessary bio and bioeng background in the course of her postdoc.
 

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