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Thread: Profile Evaluation_Fall2019_OB

  1. #1
    Trying to make mom and pop proud
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    Profile Evaluation_Fall2019_OB

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    Hi All. I am applying for both Social Psych (4) and OB programs (11). I believe that I am a strong candidate but the GRE has been my biggest stressor. I just took it this morning and my scores were absolutely devastating. I have been studying for ~3 months and my finals scores were worse than the scores from my first practice test 2 months ago.

    Test Scores
    (GMAT/GRE): Verbal (73rd) Quant (42nd)

    Undegrad GPA: 3.87 from a large state school, Psychology major
    Graduate GPA: N/A
    Research Experiences: I worked as an RA in two neuroscience labs for 2 years. I was a McNair Scholar where I conducted a thesis research project that is much in line with my interests. I have been a lab manager at a top 20 US b school for the last year where I have worked closely will OB researchers and researchers in CB and Accounting.
    Teaching Experience: N/A
    Work Experience: Nothing relevant other than my current research position. I took two years off during undergrad and worked in retail full time.

    Concentration Applying to:OB/Social Psych
    Number of programs planned to apply to: 15
    Dream Schools: Columbia, UCLA, Northwestern


    Other Questions:

    What made you want to pursue a PhD? I want to pursue a PhD because I really really enjoy research and believe it is extremely powerful. I am a first gen student, the first in my family to even graduate high school, so having the opportunity to pursue a PhD is something I never even thought was possible. Interests aside, it would be life changing for myself and my family.


    Questions or concerns you have about your profile? I am freaking out about the GRE. My goal was to score 160 (70thQ, 86thV) but after taking the exam I am truly beginning to wonder how I am going to bring up my score roughly 15 total points in about 6 weeks time. My first applications are due November 26th so the latest I would feel comfortable taking it again would be the end of October. I have been told by people whose opinions I trust that 160 on both sections should get me past the first cut. Does anyone have any further thoughts on this? Also--Any words of advice on bringing my score up. I cannot afford a tutor, I could barely afford to take the test once and am seriously considering trying to take out a loan to get my scores up somehow.


    Any additional specific questions you may have:

  2. #2
    An Urch Guru Pundit Swami Sage
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    Re: Profile Evaluation_Fall2019_OB

    I'm not in OB, but everything looks pretty good besides the GRE score. You need to do something to retake it and do better. I think the expected value of investment in the GRE is very high for you, but I'm personally very debt averse, so I have a hard time recommending taking on debt to take the test. I bet you can come up with a few hundred dollars to test again and get some different study materials. A study partner would be a great way to do this for cheap. Find someone else that is aiming relatively high and study with them.

    What happened? Were you close to your goal on practice tests?

  3. #3
    Eager!
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    Re: Profile Evaluation_Fall2019_OB

    I struggled with the GRE. I ended up taking the GMAT and getting a 700+ score. The quant section was much easier on GMAT then GRE at least for me. Id be happy to give you some tips

  4. #4
    Trying to make mom and pop proud
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    Re: Profile Evaluation_Fall2019_OB

    That GRE score is going to be really, really tough to overcome. I would recommend trying the GMAT or looking into a new study strategy for the GRE. I know people who have gotten into PhD programs with low 600s on the GMAT so I think it is achievable for you although it may take a couple of tries. If you don't think it is realistic to get to the 160 mark, then I would suggest reaching out to some professors in your B-School and take advantage of the networking route.
    Don't be discouraged if you don't get accepted this year. Sometimes it takes a couple of tries. Management PhD admissions are tricky because they tend to only accept a couple of students a year and an applicant at the top of the list in one year may not even make the waitlist the following year.

  5. #5
    Trying to make mom and pop proud
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    Re: Profile Evaluation_Fall2019_OB

    Thank you everyone for your responses.

    It unfortunately does not make sense for me to take the GMAT because I am also applying to social psych programs that only take the GRE. I have registered for Magoosh and am going to stick to a strict study plan for the next 6 weeks and hope to bring my quant score up significantly.

    I thankfully have excellent letter writers who are well known (and have worked with many of those who I am hoping to work with) in the field. I will be asking them to send out emails to their close colleagues to look out for my application in the case that I can't bring my scores up to get past the first cut.

  6. #6
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    Re: Profile Evaluation_Fall2019_OB

    I understand where you are at! This may not be of any help beyond knowing that you are not alone and hopefully it serves as some motivation to get to studying:

    I have a decent profile (I'm not a McNair scholar...but have a masters and years of professional experience as an institutional researcher) and scored probably the same as you on the GRE last year (157v 151q). I was devastated b/c all I did was study quant! Anyway, I was tentative, but my recommenders said go for it anyway, so I applied to 2 strong programs and 2 less prestigious programs. I know that's not many, but I didn't receive even a phone call. So, I took a break and focused on work throughout the summer, then decided last month to go for it again this year! I'm retaking the test in October, and hopefully with a score bump, updated SOP, resume, & LOR, I can get offers from one of the 15+ programs I'm applying to!

    Study hard! Taking the test once already should pay off considerably though (at least in your nerves)!

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