A few days ago

To get a PhD?

To get a PhD in EECS do you have to be hard working? smart? or both? What about getting a PhD in Psychology, Political Science, Hisory, English?

Top 6 Answers
A few days ago
Dr. Evol

Favorite Answer

Lots of folks have already addressed your first questions, so I’m going to focus on that second bit about extracurricular activities.

PhD programs are an odd mix, in my experience. Some of them are incredibly competitive… much more so than say medical school, vet school, law school, and so on. There are programs, for example, in the sciences that I know that get over 2,000 applications each year, but only take one or two students. In contrast, I also know some master’s programs that take a dozen students each year out of their 15 or 20 applicants.

So as you might imagine, the answer is that it depends on the program to which you’re applying. If you want to get into one of those highly competitive programs, you’ll need a near 4.0, lots of experience (research related volunteering, meeting presentations possibly, etc.), extraordinary communications skills, and a passion that’s obvious to the admissions committee. The less competitive programs… well… those extracurriculars are less important of course.

Last point… those less competitive programs tend to be in fields where there are lots of jobs for people with master’s degrees in those areas. It’s not a universal law or anything, but generally, the folks who run graduate programs don’t want to take in more students than can get jobs. After all, it looks bad if you graduate 20 students a year, but only one gets a job. So expect some relationship to job availability as well.

Good luck working through it. Don’t hesitate to talk with your college professors! They’ve been through it and will be happy to talk with you (most of them will anyway).


A few days ago
Graduate school is much different than undergraduate school. In order to be admitted into graduate school, you must first have a solid GPA of atleast 3.0 and the GRE scores or GMAT for business schools. They have to be alteast at the 75th percentile.

Pursuing the Ph.D is hard work in any field. Ph.D’s in PhD in Psychology, Political Science, Hisory, English are harder to obtain than those in the Sciences due to the rigor of work in research methodology and content. You must gain experience in research and statitisics both qualitative and quantitiation. Then you must gain excellent communication skills both written and verbal. In addition, you must be able to articulate theory of your field and subject matter.

Earning a Ph.D has nothing to do with being smart or a hardworker, you must be a dedicated persistent worker.

My Ph.D is from a Research I university in Education – Socio-Culture and Curriculum with emphasis in ICT’s. It took me three years. I also have two masters in realted areas to information systems and education, which made the content, the research, and the subject easier to study and research.

Make sure you want to devoute a solid 3-5 years of study, research, and writing if you want the Ph.D.

its a great goal, go for. You can do it., Just trust yourself and be persistent.


A few days ago
You need to be hard working to get into and succeed in a PhD program, regardless of the discipline you study.

Work on your self-esteem. If you’re grades are good, work on them until they’re great. You really have to believe in yourself.

And don’t get ahead of yourself. If you want a graduate degree, focus on getting a master’s degree, then consider what you’re interested in researching and only then apply for a doctorate program. Don’t worry about extra-curriculars, focus instead on your experience and research interests in your application. PhD programs consist of a few classes plus tons of research and preparation for your dissertation. PhDs want to teach and do research. It’s a lot of work and you really have to love and be interested in what you’re doing if you want to stay sane and succeed, so don’t let the prestige of the degree convince you to apply if you don’t think it’s really what you want.

I have an old friend who was always at the bottom of the class in high school. However, after somehow getting into college, she worked her butt off and made school her priority. She got her PhD a couple of years ago, much to the surprise of everyone who knew her. So there’s a lot to be said about people who aren’t particularly smart but have the discipline to work really hard. If you can work really hard, anything is possible. Hard work can beat talent. Remember, baby steps!


A few days ago
Hard working is the key – grad school is a huge time committment. Smart – not so much, not crazy-smart at least, because the hard working will make up for what you lack in smarts. Usually.

Grad schools don’t really care about extracirculars. Actually, they expect you to spend all your time doing your grad school work, and probably don’t want to hear that you’re spending time elsewhere.

What really matters for grad school is your research background. Show them that you have a committment to the subject and are somewhat capable already.


A few days ago
Well off-course you’ll need to be smart and hard working Getting a PhD involve alot of research its not like a Bsc or a masters were you get to attend classes.

You’ll have to select a topic and research on it plus it has to add something new to whatever, has been out there already. but trust me to get a PhD you must have a Bsc and masters so you are already a smart hard working person. honestly I find politics and history very interesting subjects but they will involve alot of reading and writing.

good luck


A few days ago
To get almost any PhD you need to be both smart and hard working. And incredibily disciplined.