Hey all, I am interested in doing a program at my university that would allow me to take ~11-13 graduate courses (including three for research thesis) and get me an M.S in the standard four years one would get a B.S. I want to be the best applicant for a PhD program and I feel that if I left after three years I would not have had enough time for research and summer programs to get a really solid application. I also have great friends and a long time girlfriend, and Im not in too much of a hurry to grow up! However, I have heard that an M.S can be a black mark at worst and at best a waste of time because the PhD school will retrain you. Does anyone here have any knowledge of this area? Any advice about how an applicant with a solid M.S is viewed? I definitely would not be using the M.S as a springboard, my grades so far have been perfect. It would be more to become a stellar applicant. Thanks for any input, I appreciate it and there is really not much of this topic online.