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European master -> Ph.D in USA

  1. Jul 16, 2012 #1
    I am one year away from completing a master in Dynamical Systems (previously I have a Bachelor in Engineering Physics) at the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Sweden. It is considered a top school in Sweden but in international rankings you will have to look way down the lists to find it. I have started to think about applying to a Ph.D program in Electrical Engineering for next year and would like to do it in the states. The problem is that I don't know what chances I have to get in, or how high I should aim. The dream would be to go to Berkeley or another top-school in California.

    The swedish system is quite different. Usually you apply to a 5-year Bachelor+Master program and then you already have a master when applying for a Ph.D. Also, the students are not very involved in research so I probably lack in research experience. Especially compared to 2nd-year Ph.D's in USA.

    Short bio:
    I had 100% A's in my Bachelor's degree. My master will have some B's and a C, but the average is still high. I have done a one-year exchange at École Polytechnique, a top french school. I did summer research at Caltech last summer which resulted in an accepted conference paper I presented recently. This summer I am doing another project at Polytechnique, with a bit of luck and blessing from my mentor it will result in a publication. I think I can get three strong letters of recommendation from my mentors in these projects and a contact at my home university. I can most likely get a very decent GRE Math score, but most EE programs don't seem to require it so I don't know if it would be a plus. I will be a tutor in a freshman Linear Algebra course during the autumn.

    Is it an advantage to already have a master when applying? If admitted, can I expect a shorter time until graduation? Europeans doing a phd in the states are especially welcome to answer.
    Which US schools are strong in Electrical Engineering (specifically Dynamical Systems and Control)? Where could I have a shot at getting admitted?
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 31, 2016 #2
    It's almost 4 years late, but I'm interested in what you may have found. What have you found about the way it works when transferring from an European Master to an American PhD? And is it easy to get into a PhD program? Perhaps it's better to get directly into an American PhD?
  4. Mar 31, 2016 #3

    Vanadium 50

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  5. Mar 31, 2016 #4
    I don't still master the forum well. Thanks for the warning, Vanadium 50.
  6. Mar 31, 2016 #5


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