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View Full Version : So here's a question: what do you reckon are the typical cut-offs used?



Karina 07
09-03-2007, 03:14 AM
The other day I was surprised by a comment about how top schools slash the 800 or so applications they get down to a reasonable number to read more in depth.

And now I'm wondering: so how do you reckon they do this? Has anyone ever heard anything concrete about this?

(I'm just now wondering if some of my applications basically never saw the light of day, considering how little/crappy math I had.)

750+ GRE, or some such, undoubtedly. And then... the presence/absence of the "bare minimum" math (since occasionally someone without linear algebra or without real analysis slips in, I'm not sure how they'd count this).... Maybe school name, honestly. I don't know, what are your thoughts?

Presumably, my guess above would still leave them with way too many applications to reasonably review, so it's maybe more drastic....

shootermcgavin7
09-03-2007, 04:56 AM
Simple answer: Too many applications, too little time.

Karina 07
09-03-2007, 05:20 AM
Simple answer: Too many applications, too little time.

What, not why :).

SquareSquare
09-03-2007, 07:19 AM
I reckon it's like this (http://www.concurringopinions.com/archives/2006/12/a_guide_to_grad.html). Or maybe departments secretly hire a gorilla to do the job, since they (gorillas) seem to be pretty good at investing (http://gorillatrades.com/). No offense intended.

SquareSquare
09-03-2007, 07:28 AM
Ugh, I read it for a second time (Veroniquaz!) and think it's better to elaborate on what I mean.

Admissions for departments is pretty much like picking stocks. There are some blue chips, some junk stocks and the rest is somewhere in the middle... The posts on this board show that adcoms can be pretty random in their decisions and it's probably a reasonable strategy for them. So, how they do it? I don't know. And I doubt knowing the exact procedure would help anyone on this board...

Zavera
09-03-2007, 04:17 PM
IVY league schools check where you are from. If you are not from a highly ranked school or other IVY league they toss your application. I got this straight from several director's mouths too

asquare
09-03-2007, 04:34 PM
IVY league schools check where you are from. If you are not from a highly ranked school or other IVY league they toss your application. I got this straight from several director's mouths too
And I personally know Americans in/recently graduated from econ PhD programs at Ivy League Schools (Princeton and Harvard) who did not attend top-ranked undergrad institutions. An undergrad degree from a top-ranked school helps, but we have existence proofs that it is not necessary.

Before taking Zavera's claim too seriously, remember that this is the same poster who claimed "The Cornell faculty doesn't help their students get jobs, nor do they even care. I got that straight from the graduate director's own mouth (http://www.urch.com/forums/phd-economics/55391-reasons-schools-poor-placements.html#post363913)."

To the OP, I suspect that there is some minimum GRE score. Someone probably takes a quick look at applications below that cut-off to see if there is something else that makes the applicant worth considering, and a top-ranked undergrad school or LOR from a very well known economist might move an application from the "discard" to the "consider" pile.

SquareSquare
09-03-2007, 05:20 PM
Before taking Zavera's claim too seriously, remember that this is the same poster who claimed ...

Pretty sharp guy.

asquare
09-03-2007, 05:37 PM
Pretty sharp guy.
At any rate, he apparently gets a lot of face time with grad program directors, and has a knack for getting them to say inflamatory things :tup:

shootermcgavin7
09-03-2007, 06:34 PM
What, not why :).

In reading too quickly and misreading your post....I think I just proved my statement.

SquareSquare
09-03-2007, 07:18 PM
At any rate, he apparently gets a lot of face time with grad program directors, and has a knack for getting them to say inflamatory things :tup:
Actually I was talking about you... I mean you remember who said what!

Zavera
09-03-2007, 08:11 PM
And I personally know Americans in/recently graduated from econ PhD programs at Ivy League Schools (Princeton and Harvard) who did not attend top-ranked undergrad institutions. An undergrad degree from a top-ranked school helps, but we have existence proofs that it is not necessary.

I got into IVY league schools too even though I am from a small time University. It's become famous people from those University's made sure my application was read. If they hadn't, it would have been in the trash, which is where it was before my contacts told them to take a look at me.



Before taking Zavera's claim too seriously, remember that this is the same poster who claimed "The Cornell faculty doesn't help their students get jobs, nor do they even care. I got that straight from the graduate director's own mouth (http://www.urch.com/forums/phd-economics/55391-reasons-schools-poor-placements.html#post363913)."

What reason would I have to lie? It doesn't benefit me at all, and I have no campaign to destroy Cornell :rolleyes:.
On a side note, STOP STALKING ME :p

KingOfConvenience
09-03-2007, 11:26 PM
Zavera, no offense, but I didn't need asquare's research to remember you as one with fantastic claims of precious knowledge. I discounted accordingly.

Zavera
09-04-2007, 09:22 PM
Zavera, no offense, but I didn't need asquare's research to remember you as one with fantastic claims of precious knowledge. I discounted accordingly.

No offense taken. If you choose to be ignorant, that is your own choice.

apropos
09-05-2007, 01:27 AM
I am too busy to go through all Ivy League job market candidates to confirm or deny Zavera's claim, but I remember a while ago I was looking at Cornell's job market candidates and where were some Americans coming from undergraduate institutions without a strong brand name. However, the prestige of the undergraduate institution should not be underestimated. I agree that other things being equal, if you come from a well-known research university, that boosts your chances at the top schools. I don't think this has to do just with the brand name. Large, prestigious research universities tend to have better selection of courses, tougher, more rigorous courses, better peers, better research opportunities, better opportunities to get a LoR (and advice) from an accomplished research economist, etc.