Originally Posted by Psychadelic2012
Kapp, the OP said s/he has 3 years of research experience. Why the emphasis on getting research experience before applying?? That seems to be the least of the OP's concerns!
I donít think her research experience is the weakest part of her application, but I think it needs work. My recommendations were aimed towards helping her make the most out of her time so she can craft a solid application package to the committee. The thing that struck me while reading her post is that it seems that she lacks focus and direction. Because Iíve received consistent advice that an applicantís career thus far needs to make sense and follow a particular theme, I believe that addressing the research would help her in that regard.
Unless she wants to do neuropsych or DD research, I donít think that her research experience will be a significant boon for her overall application. Will it satisfy requirements? I think so. But I think she needs something more to compensate for her poor academic background, especially since didnít mention having any presentations, publications, or otherwise. If thatís true (that thereís no tangible evidence of research potential after three years of experience and a masterís degree), I think thatís significant.
Anyway, all of these things will greatly help her application and I think will put her over the top if she does work in a field specific to what she wants to study in the future. In my opinion, it is not enough to have simply any type research experience anymore; committees want people who are focused and know what they want. I did not get that sense from reading her post. Why would they want to pick her over many other applicants who have spent years studying what they want to do, with the grades and research experience to back it up?
OP - My advice was only meant to guide you in the right direction. Good luck.