View Full Version : Question regarding reapplying to Econ programs

11-15-2007, 03:39 PM

I will be applying to a number of Econ PhD programs this year. I had previously applied to 3 Econ programs at Columbia, Yale & Maryland for the Fall 2006 admissions cycle and been rejected by each one of them. Since then I have taken 4 grad level courses in Vector Calculus, Linear Algebra, Probability & Applied Regression Analysis at my university and secured an A in all of them.

My question is that if I now had a choice between reapplying to a school where I had applied before (say Yale) versus another school which is similarly ranked and I hadn't applied before (say Brown), which should I go for? Am I likely to encounter some sort of a reaction from the adcoms at Yale saying that "We did not like you the first time around; we don't want to take a look at you again" or would they be genuinely open to seeing my improved credentials? The problem is that I can apply to a finite number of programs and I am having to make that call between schools where I had applied to in a previous cycle versus schools that I hadn't applied to.

Thoughts/ comments would be much appreciated,

11-15-2007, 05:07 PM
I believe you have a clean slate going forward. I know of people who applied in one cycle, were rejected, took a year to strengthen their credentials, reapplied the following year at some of the same schools, and were accepted. It sounds like that's exactly your situation.

11-15-2007, 05:28 PM
Good to hear that. My situation is actually somewhat different from what you described. When I had first applied in 2005 for the Fall 2006 cycle, I was in the third semester of my MBA program. However as I knew that a math background is critical to success in any Economics PhD program, I signed up for these 4 grad level Math & Stat courses in the fourth and final semester and then ended up getting an A in each of them. As I was rejected by the places which I had applied to, I took up a job in consulting and here I am back again applying for the Fall 2008 admissions cycle. Did not take an year off really but did do a couple of things in the interim which hopefully would strengthen my profile & improve my chances.

Other thoughts/ comments on reapplying to the same set of schools versus choosing schools anew?

11-15-2007, 06:56 PM
I guess you are applying to different programs in different universities, so I don't see any problem. In your SOP you can say that you had been thinking to apply to a phd in economics since 2005.. etc.

11-16-2007, 02:11 AM
If I read your post correctly, you only applied to 3 schools.

You should apply to between 10 and 15, at various rankings... 2 or 3 reaches, 2 or 3 safeties, and the rest of the schools at about the region you are shooting for. Columbia and Yale are both top 10, Maryland is top 20, and many perfect applications get rejected from those schools.

Brown is only at the upper 20s in terms of ranking, much lower than Yale, but the Ivy League name makes it difficult to get in. Think Boston University and other schools of that caliber.

11-16-2007, 06:45 PM
The advice above is right on: go ahead and re-apply to the three schools you applied to last time, but apply to more than those three if you want to have a good chance at getting in somewhere.

11-17-2007, 06:50 PM
Actually I am applying to a much larger set of programs. However since my background is more applied (read less econ training as I have an engineering undergrad followed by an MBA), my main focus is business economics programs at B-schools. However there are too few good ones out there and hence I was applying to some places which are good in International Trade.


butler blue
11-18-2007, 10:55 PM
To be honest, I doubt the adcoms won't remember that you applied. Think about what you would remember if you were on an adcom. I doubt you would remember who you rejected last year (or probably even who you accepted). Thankfully, this works in your favor as a repeat applicant.