I applied in-person and the process took a day - interviewed at UCLA in September 2009.
Interview Details – Interviewed with potential PI's throughout department. Each interview went for ~30 minutes and ran through resume - talked about previous research experience and why I was interested in their specific lab.
Also met with all the post-docs and graduate students currently in the lab. Talked with each one individually for ~5-10 minutes and they explained their project at a higher level.
Interview Question – Why do you want to join my lab and not "lab x"? Answer Question
I applied online and the process took 12 months - interviewed at UCLA in January 2009.
Interview Details – I emailed to Professors at UCLA. A few of them replied back to my emails. One of them showed considerable interest and asked me to apply for graduate school. After my application, he didn't reply to my emails any more. I was going to another university and finally he got back to me saying that he doesn't have funding for that year, and he is going to nominate me for department fellowship. I received the department fellowship for the first year of my graduate school, which is not very much different from graduate student researcher position. The only difference is that the money comes from department grants, not Professor's grants.
Interview Question – Why did you not decide to come to USA for your Master's degree. View Answer
Negotiation Details – I had to deffer my offer for three months because of visa issues, and they accepted easily.
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