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HoJu90
12-31-2014, 06:31 PM
I have posted a couple times during slow days on the forum but never got any interest, thought I would try one more time.

Hello everyone, I'm hoping to get some insight on how I can improve my profile for PhD admissions next cycle and what range of schools would be realistic for me, I'm currently thinking 25-45 with several applications both over and under added in. Any advice or comments would be appreciated. I'm not one to really talk too much about myself so if you need any more information please just ask and I will provide it!

PROFILE:
Type of Undergrad: Top 50 USNWR Undergrad, Unranked Econ Program

Undergrad GPA: 3.76

GRE: Haven't taken it yet

Math Courses: Calc I/II/III(CR, CR, B+), Discrete Math (A), Linear Algebra(B+), Real Analysis (A-)

Econ Courses: Intro to Macro/Micro (A/A), Intermediate Macro/Micro (A/A), Econ Stats (B+), Econometrics (A), Game Theory (A), Environmental Econ (A-), Mathematical Topics in Economics (A), History of Finance (A), Honors Thesis (A)
Other Courses: A few finance classes

Letters of Recommendation: 1 from Yale Econ PhD on my thesis committee. One from U Chicago PhD, my thesis
adviser. One from WVU PhD, knows me well and have taken a few classes with her.

Research Experience: Honors thesis and one year RA at the Antitrust Division.

Teaching Experience: TA for Intro to Macro

Research Interests: Applied Micro, IO, Experimental, Behavioral

SOP: Haven't written it yet, assume i will tailor it for each school

Concerns: Few math classes with mediocre grades

Other: Do you have any suggestions on how I can improve my profile? My current plan is to take DIffeqs and Probability Theory at a local university, and hopefully perform well in them, between now and when I apply. All my math grades were basically squeezed into my last semester of college after learning of the rigorous math training needed to succeed in a PhD program. In retrospect I should have taken them at a slower pace post-bacc, but what is done is done. I don't know what sort of extra info I should give so if you have any questions that can help you give more informed advice let me know.

Applying to: Not sure. Between ranks 25-45?
Also looking for information on MA programs in North America.
THANKS!

publicaffairsny
12-31-2014, 06:52 PM
I have posted a couple times during slow days on the forum but never got any interest, thought I would try one more time.

Hello everyone, I'm hoping to get some insight on how I can improve my profile for PhD admissions next cycle and what range of schools would be realistic for me, I'm currently thinking 25-45 with several applications both over and under added in. Any advice or comments would be appreciated. I'm not one to really talk too much about myself so if you need any more information please just ask and I will provide it!

PROFILE:
Type of Undergrad: Top 50 USNWR Undergrad, Unranked Econ Program

Undergrad GPA: 3.76

GRE: Haven't taken it yet

Math Courses: Calc I/II/III(CR, CR, B+), Discrete Math (A), Linear Algebra(B+), Real Analysis (A-)

Econ Courses: Intro to Macro/Micro (A/A), Intermediate Macro/Micro (A/A), Econ Stats (B+), Econometrics (A), Game Theory (A), Environmental Econ (A-), Mathematical Topics in Economics (A), History of Finance (A), Honors Thesis (A)
Other Courses: A few finance classes

Letters of Recommendation: 1 from Yale Econ PhD on my thesis committee. One from U Chicago PhD, my thesis
adviser. One from WVU PhD, knows me well and have taken a few classes with her.

Research Experience: Honors thesis and one year RA at the Antitrust Division.

Teaching Experience: TA for Intro to Macro

Research Interests: Applied Micro, IO, Experimental, Behavioral

SOP: Haven't written it yet, assume i will tailor it for each school

Concerns: Few math classes with mediocre grades

Other: Do you have any suggestions on how I can improve my profile? My current plan is to take DIffeqs and Probability Theory at a local university, and hopefully perform well in them, between now and when I apply. All my math grades were basically squeezed into my last semester of college after learning of the rigorous math training needed to succeed in a PhD program. In retrospect I should have taken them at a slower pace post-bacc, but what is done is done. I don't know what sort of extra info I should give so if you have any questions that can help you give more informed advice let me know.

Applying to: Not sure. Between ranks 25-45?
Also looking for information on MA programs in North America.
THANKS!

Add research into your plans before the next application season, add a topology class if available, and develop your econ knowledge through self study or a graduate level class if possible. All coursework should be taken in the fall semester so grades will be on your transcripts. A GRE quant score of 165 will complete your profile. Also, apply a little wider. there are many good programs between 45 and 76. I think you have a good chance at a satisfactory result.

Food4Thought
12-31-2014, 09:05 PM
Since you are interested in applied micro, you should feel comfortable casting a wider net than 25-45, for those spots will be very competitive. Many schools ranked 50-75 can still do a great job at teaching you to become an applied microeconomist. The probability class is good, since you want to do quant related stuff; diff eq is useful, I guess (I hate macro).

To comment on publicaffairsny: the topology class would be useful for micro theory courses, but it would be risky given your concern of mediocre grades. If you are at all concerned that you would do poorly (not get an A), then the potential harm may outweigh the knowledge earned.

What have your letter writers suggested? Have you talked with them at all? They probably know where comparable students have been able to go, whether it be PhD or Master's program, etc.

HoJu90
01-01-2015, 08:43 PM
Thanks for the advice guys. Do you think it would be necessary for me to look into MA programs in order to place decently? Do you have any information about that?

to2012
01-01-2015, 09:43 PM
Looks good enough for my top 40 program.

Food4Thought
01-01-2015, 10:10 PM
Thanks for the advice guys. Do you think it would be necessary for me to look into MA programs in order to place decently? Do you have any information about that?

Depends on your definition of "decent." If decent means top-20, then you're probably gonna have to do something spectacular. I don't know how a MA would help, but I highly doubt your current profile is competitive for a top-25 program.

publicaffairsny
01-01-2015, 10:19 PM
Refer to some of the recent threads on research output by program. The chance of being a good researcher is similar no matter where you go. I think if you can get into a program now the opportunity costs of a masters are not justified.

Food4Thought
01-01-2015, 11:15 PM
Refer to some of the recent threads on research output by program. The chance of being a good researcher is similar no matter where you go. I think if you can get into a program now the opportunity costs of a masters are not justified.

I agree. Personally, I would only do a Master's if my decision was between Unranked PhD and Ranked PhD. It's pretty likely that OP will be able to get into a ranked program.

PhDPlease
01-02-2015, 12:14 AM
I would apply directly to PhD programs. I think 25-45 is reasonable and you'd likely get in somewhere in that range.

If I were you, I would feel that the risk of not doing well in topology might outweigh the potential benefit of taking it (esp if you are interested in applied micro), but you would know your abilities best.

Also if I were you, I'd go right to the PhD. The issue with an MA is that unless you are near the top of the MA program at a good place, you might not end up at a much better program than if you just apply right off the bat.