1. PF Contest - Win "Conquering the Physics GRE" book! Click Here to Enter
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Taking two offers - is it moral

  1. May 5, 2009 #1

    I have got offers to attend two master programmes in universities A and B. B is a university in top 50, A is a university in top 5. B is willing to give me a scholarship, but I have to answer in one month. If I accepted the A offer, they would tell me something about finances after some 3 months. What should I do - is it moral to accept both offers and go with the better one afterwards?
  2. jcsd
  3. May 5, 2009 #2
    I would get a second opinion on this but could you not describe your situation to A and ask if it is possible to bring forward their decision on finances.It does seem a bit unfair accepting both offers and then backing out of one mainly because you could be depriving someone else of an offer.
  4. May 25, 2009 #3
    I have tried extracting answer from A in every possible way - they are not willing to do it any time soon. What to do? Any arguments/opinions appreciated.
  5. May 25, 2009 #4


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor

    Have you tried just being honest? Tell them you have a scholarship offer at another university, but you would rather go to their university. However, unless you are given a scholarship, this will not be financially viable. Thus, since you have a deadline to meet, you would appreciate it if they clarified the scholarship situation asap, and at most in the next couple of weeks. If they don't get back to you, or they say you don't have a scholarship, then go to the other university.

    As for accepting two offers: I wouldn't. You never know what complications this may bring about in the future.
  6. May 25, 2009 #5
    Yes, I have done exactly that.

    It is a very important point - I completely agree.

    However, I should probably disclose two important facts:
    1. I have realised that scholarship from B covers only about 70% of living expenses.

    2. When applying for A I have selected an option that I will not enter, if I do not get the funding.

    Does that change anything?
  7. May 25, 2009 #6


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    It doesn't change the fact that accepting both graduate school offers (i.e., committing to attend both programs) is unethical. I suspect you'd think it pretty unethical if school B offered your funding to multiple candidates and rescinded their offer to you later.

    As for making a decision, look at it this way: unless you get more information from school A, you have an offer with 0% funding and an offer with 70% funding. I'd press for a funding commitment from school A and, failing that, accept school B's offer as late as possible.
  8. May 25, 2009 #7
    This is how I would look at it also. The question about morality is debatable, but it sounds like you consider it immoral to accept and wait for a better offer. I would feel that way also.

    The thing about grad level work is that the Professor you work with is as important (perhaps more important) than the school itself. Is there any way you can link up with the Professors that are in your area of interest. Maybe you can talk to them in person or by phone to get a feeling for which school is really better for you personally. Also, if you hit it off with a Professor at the "better" school, perhaps he/she can get you an answer (or at least an indication) sooner.
    Last edited: May 25, 2009
  9. May 25, 2009 #8
    That is a really objective way of looking at it.

    I have already tried that - he said he could not help me.

    As today is the de facto deadline, I am taking the B offer.

    Thanks for help, you've really made my choice easier :)
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook