Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Q&A: Where should I do my PhD?

I recently received the following question (edited for anonimity):

Hi Eva
Hope u r doing well..?
Recently got 2 offers for Ph.D program, one from University Nr 1 in Australia and the other from University Nr 2 in New Zealand with Full Funding.
In march 2016, i had sent an email to the professor from University Nr 3 in the USA requesting him to take me as a Ph.D student in the department of SomeKindOf Sciences. After 5 months he replied to me asking to submit application as soon as possible for Spring 2017 bcoz he is fully ready to take me as a Ph.D student in his department. I have submitted my application for Ph.D program under his Supervision.
Now, my question is which country i should select among these 3 countries, i am in confusion right now..?? Please do suggest. Thank u so much..!!

Here's my answer:

Dear Reader,

Thank you for reaching out to me through my blog.

As I understand it, you have the choice between 3 universities for your PhD, and one of them is fully funded? In that case, I’d say, go for the fully funded option. If all of them are funded, I’d recommend you to pick the project that you feel most excited about – 3 or 4 years can be a long time. The university itself does not matter that much – as long as you publish and get the chance to travel to a few conferences, the ranking of your university is not that important.

Another element to consider: if you are planning to move to the USA long-term, the school in the USA might be your best pick.


  1. I'd personally recommend to talk to some other people who know those labs (current students, or even better alumni who might talk more freely with you), and not only the professor. You don't want to spend years in a place with a terrible atmosphere, which sadly happens too often.