I applied in-person and the process took a day - interviewed at MIT.
Interview Details – Very friendly, in-person interview after email communication. I sent an email to the PI after hearing from an acquaintance that they would be searching for TAs, and after a couple of weeks of email correspondence, I had a phone interview with the PI. A few weeks later, I traveled to MIT to have an in-person interview with several members of the lab.
Interview Question – As expected, challenges of research Answer Question
I applied online and the process took 3 weeks - interviewed at MIT.
Interview Details – Phone interview, followed by in-person interview.
Interview Question – No crazy questions, they just wanted to make sure that I was qualified for the position and my resume checked out. Answer Question
Negotiation Details – The position is grant funded, so there was no opportunity for negotation.
I applied online and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at MIT in March 2011.
Interview Details – Good communication between the HR department and the job poster and the candidates. Affirmative action is in full force at MIT, making it particularly difficult for highly qualified white male candidates to get positions, which is unusual since the gender ratio at MIT is very even and about 80% of the population is not white.
Interview Question – what are your long term goals? Answer Question
Negotiation Details – very little negotiation allowed, salaries strictly set by HR.
Very Easy Interview
I applied online and the process took 4 weeks - interviewed at MIT in August 2012.
Interview Details – I was hired for a biomedical research position in a professor's lab. My hiring process seemed very informal, especially compared with my interviews for industry positions and former job at a company. A week after applying, the PI contacted me, and we had an agreeable conversation over the phone. About a week later, he arranged for some other folks in the lab to meet me, show me around and take me out for lunch. None of the questions were very difficult and I was given the impression that an offer was likely given that I was invited in in the first place. Things moved quickly with an offer; I received a verbal offer from the PI, and he asked for my thoughts, got a sense that I seemed likely to accept, and sent me a formal offer a week later. I was working in the lab 2 weeks after my in-person visit. The process was curiously simple, and I would caution others not to assume this is a reliable pattern from lab to lab.
On the downside of "informal", starting at the lab was a bit awkward. On the plus side, a grad student did take initiative to help me get situated, and someone had put together a welcome packet- more than my others before me had gotten. But there really wasn't much by way of official "orientation" or a clear message or timeline concerning what I needed to do to appropriately integrate into the lab.
Interview Question – Nothing stands out. Nobody really went for the tough questions. Answer Question
Negotiation Details – I didn't really manage to negotiate.
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