Q：Do I need work experience to apply for a PhD degree? As an undergraduate student, can I apply directly for a PhD degree? Because I heard that a PhD degree could usually get scholarship, but a master’s degree’s offer often comes without a scholarship. I am loving doing research during my undergraduate academic years, and my family isn’t all that rich, so I think a PhD degree is a better option for me. Many thanks! (博士需要工作经验吗？作为一个本科生，我是否可以直接读博？因为听说博士有全奖，硕士奖学金少，我本科很喜欢做研究，家里也不是很有钱的那种，所以觉得博士是更好的出路。)
A：For the most part, work experience is not required in order to apply for a PhD program, but research experience in the field you are applying to is important. If you are applying to a business-related field, then they might want to see that you have work experience. As I mentioned in some of my previous answers, admission to a PhD program largely depends on whether your research interest closely matches the research interest of a faculty member you would like to work with. When you are applying to work with a specific faculty member, he or she will want to see that you have some experience doing research and have some advanced knowledge in the area.
Many of the PhD programs require students to first complete a master’s degree prior to starting a PhD program. I encourage you to visit the departments’ websites of the schools you will be applying to in order to find out if they require applicants to their PhD programs to have first earned a master’s degree and if they also require any type of work experience.