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Programs Is taking to many classes bad for app. to PHd?

  1. Dec 21, 2008 #1
    Somebody told me recently that taking too many class looks bad because "it seems" that taking fewer classes shows that the student is concentrating more in depth.

    I want to take 5 this coming semester. I naturally would think that this is helping me become more qualified (taking a harder load). Assuming I get all A's either way, which is better for a student in a masters program right now who wants to apply to a PhD school in a year?

    Thanks for your input.
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 21, 2008 #2
    I think this is incorrect advice. Lots of presently ongoing research occurs at the overlap of disciplines (ex. materials science). When I was a member of a graduate selections committee, after looking for strong performance in coursework in the primary field, I looked for strong performance in coursework in related fields. I often bumped up my reading of the application by ~0.5-1 points (on a scale of ten) if I saw complementary work (or a minor or major) in a second (or even third) field.

    Granted, you should still perform well in those additional courses... and have time for research experiences. More classes won't make up for a poor GRE's, a poor GPA and no research.
  4. Dec 21, 2008 #3
    How do graduate committees usually feel about a low bachelor's GPA (with a couple F's that were repeated so that the GPA did not count) and then a high masters GPA? Say, 3.3 then 3.9 respectively.
  5. Dec 24, 2008 #4
    I'm going to agree that this advice isn't only wrong, it's illogical. As long as you have the time to do everything needed, there's no reason NOT to take as many courses as you can handle.

  6. Dec 25, 2008 #5
    Thank you for your replies. I am taking as many courses as I can right now. I am learning more that way.
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