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Thread: Average masters, excellent undergrad performance - how should I apply to PhD?

  1. #1
    Trying to make mom and pop proud
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    Average masters, excellent undergrad performance - how should I apply to PhD?

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    Hi guys,

    I am planning to apply to PhD in Economics programs this fall. But the thing is, I am only an average student from a top US master's, which severely limits my chances of admission to top 30. So, I am thinking about applying as if I had no master's education and just an undergraduate degree. This idea looks fine to me as I was one of the top students at my undegrad institution in Asia, and even got a PhD offer from Texas-Austin at the time (I declined it at the time because I was way too confident about myself). What do you think?

    If I had performed better in PhD courses - I took 4 of them and got B+ in all - what I have done at my master's could be considered very good. I wrote a quality capstone paper and have been an RA since June. But the GPA of 3.50 ruins everything.

    I am also considering full-time RA positions. But can those compensate for my average master's performance? And if yes, how much? Will top 30 be my ultimate limit?

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    TestMagic Guru Moderator
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    Re: Average masters, excellent undergrad performance - how should I apply to PhD?

    Do not hide the master's, doing so is academic fraud. You could be "booted" from a PhD program if/when they find out you lied.

    Four B+'s in PhD courses is not a deal breaker. It likely does limit you to schools outside the top 20 or so. If your letters are good and your research is solid, someone will take a chance.

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