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Equilibrium
02-14-2008, 10:24 PM
So we get a lot of stuff about the top end here, but seeing things like it's great to get admitted to UT-Austin is frankly awesome.

How many people(especially ones with less than 100 posts and no signatures to report such info), are applying for PhD programs from 20-60 pretty much exclusively?

I would be interested in any applicant's information on the application process or thoughts and opinions on programs like(but not limited to):

UT-Austin
UBC
University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign(UIUC)
Michigan State
Toronto
Penn State
Carnegie Mellon
John Hopkins
Indiana
Boston College
Indiana
Queen's U

Seems like Duke(brutal admissions this year I can see), Rutgers, Georgetown and all the Californias, Ohio State as well as a few others have gotten a lot said about them, partially because there are several people applying to these places who have heard something so far. I am hoping there are more schools represented by applicants on this forum outside of these and the top 20 schools as ranked on econphd.net

So, for lurkers, or those who just haven't posted much, or even those who just haven't heard from anyone yet, are there many others out there that are applying to these schools or would at least have information on them? Please let me know.

zwicker
02-14-2008, 11:19 PM
I also am targeting the 20 - 60 rank schools. Unfortunately there is usually no talk about these type of programs. People in here seem to believe that grad school is only worth it if you go to a top 10 program. I recently discussed this with a professor at a top 3 school and his opinion was that schools ranked in the 40-60ish range are still worth attending.

Whats the current opinion on university of Arizona and Texas A&M, whose better? are these schools on the way up or down?

Equilibrium
02-14-2008, 11:48 PM
Well from a placement standpoint, its a bit less of a circuitous route to a tenure track position if you get your PhD at a top 10-15 school. But if you look a little more into people at universities such as large state universities, Illinois, Texas etc..., you see a lot of assistant profs and profs from places like Purdue, or North Carolina, and a lot of other people who went to schools, even recently, in the 30-60 range. I just did this myself to confirm at a few schools by clicking on every few links to faculty profiles and seeing where/when these people went to school.

A placement at a larger public university that is even just average in economics wouldn't be so bad for me, so in fact an offer from some of these same schools to go to their PhD program isn't so bad either.

It's just a bit of a downer to see that most people applying in this range don't always post a whole lot here when the whole point is to share information regardless and encourage. Although it has been noted in a few posts that this year's TM forum crowd is as diverse as ever, it is not as though people bound for top 10 schools are being snobbish, they're just really excited, hopefully the rest of us are as well.

Equilibrium
02-15-2008, 12:07 AM
TAMU gives pretty awesome records of their placements, a mixed bag, but it seems of those who chose academia, they got good results, in fact pretty great considering how much faith people place in rankings

Past Placements - TAMU EconWeb (http://econweb.tamu.edu/past_placements.asp)

Equilibrium
02-15-2008, 12:09 AM
Arizona also great placement website, sending almost exclusively to academic placements

Placements: Doctoral Program: Economics : The Eller College of Management at the University of Arizona (http://economics.eller.arizona.edu/doctoral/Placements.aspx)

ward
02-15-2008, 12:31 AM
Arizona is very strong (or at least have a lot of active researchers) in Micro Theory, IO, Econometrics and Experimental. In fact, I'd be suprised if you could find many programs in the 20-60 range with as many experimental people as Arizona has. But I'm sure there a few. Arizona Areas of Specialization (http://econ.arizona.edu/doctoral/specialization.aspx)

Plus, it is probably hard to beat the winters in Tucson.

Mr.Keen
02-15-2008, 12:34 AM
TAMU and Arizona have solid programs. If you like marco and econometrics I would place TAMU above Arizona. The main reason I did not apply to TAMU was that my wife would never move to College Station.

pevdoki1
02-15-2008, 12:36 AM
But Arizona has Prescott (if we are talking about ASU)!!

I don't know how many students he takes, but I imagine that if you want to study macro, that's a pretty good adviser to have :p

Mr.Keen
02-15-2008, 12:38 AM
I meant University of Arizona. ASU has Prescott, you are right, but they lost Manuel Santos.

AstralTraveller
02-15-2008, 12:46 AM
What do you guys think of UC Santa Barbara, VirginiaTech and Arizona State?

One of my recommenders spoke very highly of ASU. He said that the program is really solid overall, and that he thought the town would be a great place to live.

Of course UCSB sounds to many people like "getting a PhD at the beach", but I found they have some great professors (Finn Kydland in Macro no less).

And about Virginia Tech, well, they have Aris Spanos in Econometrics, but I know very little of the program itself.

What are --in your opinion-- these programs' main strengths and weaknesses regarding specialization fields? I'd really love to know.

.

Olm
02-15-2008, 01:04 AM
Wow Astral, that is some list. Makes me feel like I didn't apply to enough schools ;)

Nymaj
02-15-2008, 01:44 AM
Michigan State has been making moves to further beef up their Metrics and Labor. Solon leaving Ann Arbor to go to MSU made an already strong group of labor economist even stronger.

bertthepuppy
02-15-2008, 01:49 AM
Michigan State has been making moves to further beef up their Metrics and Labor. Solon leaving Ann Arbor to go to MSU made an already strong group of labor economist even stronger.

I think I still would have trouble moving to East Lansing.

On a side note, I think I'm going to have trouble deciding if I get into a bunch of similar ranked schools: i.e. UIUC, UNC, Ohio State...

Luckykid
02-15-2008, 02:08 AM
Total*TOM**US**PHDS***School
32****8****11***13***Michigan Ann Arbor
84****17***28***39***Ohio State
95****32***34***29***Michigan State
96****41***34***21***U of Iowa
100***49***27***24***U of Virgina
100***29***28***43***Penn State U
114***45***36***33***U Indiana Bloomington
119***50***41***28***U of Arizona
128***60***41***27***Vanderbilt
132***40***44***48***Texas A&M
156***62***36***58***Purdue
162***67***44***51***Arizona State
171***66***60***45***Vtech
185***58***60***67***U Georgia
188***77***55***56***Iowa State
194**105***48***41***NC State U
194***81***60***53***Florida State
194***84***60***50***University of Houston
205***99***60***46***University of KY
209**123***48***38***Rice
215***98***60***57***Oregon
218**114***60***44***U of Mass
228***93***60***75***U Connecticut
275**154***60***61***U of Tenn
281**134***60***87***Milwaukee

Here is my list of schools, The rankings aren't weighted so the totals are rough but you get the idea. I used, Tom Coups Rankings, 2006 US Rankings, and PHDS Rankings of placement, citations, publications and reputation. The colors are based on Tom's evolution over 5 years, the schools in dark red are tanking dropping anywhere from 50-100 rankings in 5 years. The blue ones are rising and dark blue are rising fast.

So far I have not heard from any school but KY, which I got accepted with funding.

IDK if this helps anyone but I thought I would share.

Andronicus
02-15-2008, 02:11 AM
I think you hold the TM title for most programs applied to this cycle.

econphilomath
02-15-2008, 02:17 AM
HOLY SHITE

I always thought you were joking about applying to 20+

I think you DESERVE an admit just for credibly signalling the intensity of your preferences!!

Luckykid
02-15-2008, 02:33 AM
HOLY SHITE

I always thought you were joking about applying to 20+

I think you DESERVE an admit just for credibly signalling the intensity of your preferences!!

No I wasn't joking, Just a few more paychecks and all the apps/gre scores/transcripts are paid off. I dropped U CO Boulder so Its 25 schools now out of an initial list in the 40's. If you think about it though the benefit of getting accepted to a school that is slightly better is very high when you take into account, funding/ location/life time earnings despite a low probability it takes an extremely low probability to hit the present value cost of $60-$100. The only thing that stopped me from applying to more was that I felt bad for my letter writers.

In addition to that I have a spotty GPA at a low ranked school. Good LORS, some late math and late GPA bump; and a fair Q low V and AW score. So depending on what some schools weigh I would be an instant reject or good candidate...unlike some of these super student TM'ers.

Roy

zwicker
02-15-2008, 02:38 AM
I applied to 14 schools andI thought I was way above average. What about averyone else, how many schools is the average person applying to?

If more people are applying to more and more schools each year it should open up more waitlist oppurtunities.

bertthepuppy
02-15-2008, 02:43 AM
I applied to 14 schools as well. Mostly in this range.

econphilomath
02-15-2008, 02:43 AM
No I wasn't joking, Just a few more paychecks and all the apps/gre scores/transcripts are paid off. I dropped U CO Boulder so Its 25 schools now out of an initial list in the 40's. If you think about it though the benefit of getting accepted to a school that is slightly better is very high when you take into account, funding/ location/life time earnings despite a low probability it takes an extremely low probability to hit the present value cost of $60-$100. The only thing that stopped me from applying to more was that I felt bad for my letter writers.

In addition to that I have a spotty GPA at a low ranked school. Good LORS, some late math and late GPA bump; and a fair Q low V and AW score. So depending on what some schools weigh I would be an instant reject or good candidate...unlike some of these super student TM'ers.

Roy

I'm sure its an optimal strategy, but you have to admit it is a
colossal achievement! I am willing to go out on a limb and project a 50+% admit ratio for LuckyKid. Just a random prediction...:tup:

pevdoki1
02-15-2008, 02:44 AM
I kind of regret not applying to Boulder because I think I might enjoy living in that place. I always wanted to move to a mid-sized town surrounded by beautiful nature that has a friendly atmosphere, clean streets etc, and this is the impression I get from Boulder (of course, I would visit first, as I've never been there :D). The University isn't highly ranked, but for me "location happiness" is as important as department quality.

On the other hand, I've been to Ithaca many times (it's close to where I am now), and I love that town, so if I get into Cornell (which I won't), I'll be completely content. One can only dream...

macroeconomicus
02-15-2008, 02:57 AM
I think I still would have trouble moving to East Lansing.

On a side note, I think I'm going to have trouble deciding if I get into a bunch of similar ranked schools: i.e. UIUC, UNC, Ohio State...



Easy. First of all visit each school to meet with faculty, students, etc. See the place. Then make your choice based on your interests in economics and impressions of the department. Schools ranked in that range tend to be relatively thin in many areas. Sometimes the choice is pretty clear if you can pin down your priorities in economic fields. However, if you haven't decided which fields you want to pursue then go to the biggest department with the best environment (that includes student morale, the surrounding city, and such).

macroeconomicus
02-15-2008, 03:07 AM
Total*TOM**US**PHDS***School
32****8****11***13***Michigan Ann Arbor
84****17***28***39***Ohio State
95****32***34***29***Michigan State
96****41***34***21***U of Iowa
100***49***27***24***U of Virgina
100***29***28***43***Penn State U
114***45***36***33***U Indiana Bloomington
119***50***41***28***U of Arizona
128***60***41***27***Vanderbilt
132***40***44***48***Texas A&M
156***62***36***58***Purdue
162***67***44***51***Arizona State
171***66***60***45***Vtech
185***58***60***67***U Georgia
188***77***55***56***Iowa State
194**105***48***41***NC State U
194***81***60***53***Florida State
194***84***60***50***University of Houston
205***99***60***46***University of KY
209**123***48***38***Rice
215***98***60***57***Oregon
218**114***60***44***U of Mass
228***93***60***75***U Connecticut
275**154***60***61***U of Tenn
281**134***60***87***Milwaukee

Here is my list of schools, The rankings aren't weighted so the totals are rough but you get the idea. I used, Tom Coups Rankings, 2006 US Rankings, and PHDS Rankings of placement, citations, publications and reputation. The colors are based on Tom's evolution over 5 years, the schools in dark red are tanking dropping anywhere from 50-100 rankings in 5 years. The blue ones are rising and dark blue are rising fast.

So far I have not heard from any school but KY, which I got accepted with funding.

IDK if this helps anyone but I thought I would share.



This ranking doesn't make sense to me in the sense that if you already have some sort of blurred idea about which fields you want to pursue, then you could simply drop a bunch of schools from this list simply because they don't offer your field or are relatively mediocre in that subject.

bertthepuppy
02-15-2008, 03:09 AM
On the other hand, I've been to Ithaca many times (it's close to where I am now), and I love that town, so if I get into Cornell (which I won't), I'll be completely content. One can only dream...


My brother did his undergrad at Cornell, and I visited for a weekend. It was so boring, and in this time his friends informed me that Cornell has the highest suicide rate...they said "you walk up a huge hill, in the rain, just to fail an exam." I applied there anyway.

Also, pevdolki you applied to UT-Austin. Austin's a very livable city. If I get in there, I would be tempted to go there over other, higher ranked schools I think.

pevdoki1
02-15-2008, 03:15 AM
My brother did his undergrad at Cornell, and I visited for a weekend. It was so boring, and in this time his friends informed me that Cornell has the highest suicide rate...they said "you walk up a huge hill, in the rain, just to fail an exam." I applied there anyway.

Also, pevdolki you applied to UT-Austin. Austin's a very livable city. If I get in there, I would be tempted to go there over other, higher ranked schools I think.

Yeah, I've heard great things about Austin (the city) - that's one of the reasons I applied :D

Your experience with Cornell seems to different from mine.. I don't know anyone who went to school there, but I hung out in the gorges a bunch of times, had a few dinners in Ithaca cafes, visited the campus, and always left the town with a really good impression :hmm:

I think I'd go to Austin over any other schools on my last, barring Cornell. I suppose I'll also be obligated to go to Minnesota if I get in, but I'll be completely scared to go there. I'm almost certain I won't get into any of these places, though, so this conversation is taking place in dream land :D

Luckykid
02-15-2008, 03:15 AM
This ranking doesn't make sense to me in the sense that if you already have some sort of blurred idea about which fields you want to pursue, then you could simply drop a bunch of schools from this list simply because they don't offer your field or are relatively mediocre in that subject.
I agree somewhat but I don't know what schools are good at what and I don't know what I want to do. The consensus is that grad econ is a lot different then undergrad econ so come grad school I may hate the fields I like now. The only thing I can sway on is that I am not a fan of econometrics, however I had taken the course with a nill calc background and was more lost then the people in the forest running from the Duke monster.


I'm sure its an optimal strategy, but you have to admit it is a
colossal achievement! I am willing to go out on a limb and project a 50+% admit ratio for LuckyKid. Just a random prediction...:tup:

It was a lot of runs to the printer, a lot of manila folders, and a lot of stamps...in that respect it is an achievement...lol

If I do get into 50% of the schools I am going to by TM a beer to celebrate!

Roy

apropos
02-15-2008, 03:20 AM
There are rumors that Purdue might have some faculty changes (people leaving or joining faculty). I don't want to post additional details now because nothing is set in stone. However, things will be probably clearer a month from now, so I'll come back to post the details. Last year two senior professors left, Abrevaya(metrics) to Texas and Camera(macro) to Iowa, but the department hired only two new assistant profs to replace them (one from BU in metrics, one from Stanford, public econ), so I think what happens this year will be important to see where this school is heading (e.g. is it able to attract good senior faculty or not?).

sonicskat
02-15-2008, 04:34 AM
I've heard some things about this range of schools, especially since I was applying in it last year...

Kydland has left (or is about to leave) UCSB to go back to Carnegie Mellon. I was told by my current professor, who was an advisee of Finn's several years ago.

I know Prescott at ASU is also the department chair and is involved in the minn fed, so I don't really know how much time he has to advise anymore. They do have Rogerson there...which is definitely something to consider. Unfortunately I didn't get in.

I haven't really heard Rice that much...which I actually liked a lot. They treat their graduate students well and are improving the department (macro side). Supposedly they just hired the latest genius grad from UT Austin.

UVA here is also looking to signficantly upgrade in Macro (about to hire a endowed chair) and we will have a new senior macro coming from duke next year. We're also looking in a bunch of other fields.

Hope this helps.

dr_Shpak
02-15-2008, 09:24 AM
I applyed to 16 schools, but after the 7-th i was so tired of all this applications, how did you do so many ?

AstralTraveller
02-15-2008, 11:28 AM
I've heard some things about this range of schools, especially since I was applying in it last year...

Kydland has left (or is about to leave) UCSB to go back to Carnegie Mellon. I was told by my current professor, who was an advisee of Finn's several years ago.

I know Prescott at ASU is also the department chair and is involved in the minn fed, so I don't really know how much time he has to advise anymore. They do have Rogerson there...which is definitely something to consider. Unfortunately I didn't get in.

Thanks for the super update!

Interesting......didn't know Kydland was leaving UCSB. And about Prescott at ASU, well, with the MN FED position he holds and the Chair....this is why I didn't even bother to name him :hmm:

Does anybody know about Virginia Tech? How does it rank? (I figure it must rank well beyond the 60th slot, and I'm not thinking about EconPhD.net, but about "general perception"). Maybe somebody can attest something about the quality of the program....

Equilibrium
02-15-2008, 12:06 PM
Easy. First of all visit each school to meet with faculty, students, etc. See the place. Then make your choice based on your interests in economics and impressions of the department. Schools ranked in that range tend to be relatively thin in many areas. Sometimes the choice is pretty clear if you can pin down your priorities in economic fields. However, if you haven't decided which fields you want to pursue then go to the biggest department with the best environment (that includes student morale, the surrounding city, and such).


If you do know that you're interested in Labor, Firm Finance, I/O, Public Economy and or game theory, UIUC has at least a few prof I know of that are very good(this is assuming they don't go for better offers as finance people are going to get a ton of great offers that public schools like UIUC will refuse to match in the coming job market cycle: ie this summer)

Nymaj
02-15-2008, 01:34 PM
UIUC is very strong across the applied micro fields...but living in Urbana. :hmm:

kartelite
02-15-2008, 03:13 PM
I know Prescott at ASU is also the department chair and is involved in the minn fed, so I don't really know how much time he has to advise anymore. They do have Rogerson there...which is definitely something to consider. Unfortunately I didn't get in.



UVA has Prescott as well...

Smileysquared
02-15-2008, 03:33 PM
Applying to 20 plus schools must be a real task....I only applied to three and I have already gotten into two of them. I think it is also alot easier when you apply for scholarships as they go through the application process for you in some cases....I thought it took so much time to fill out these three applications....I really don't know how you can complete so many. Good luck to you.......

Equilibrium
02-15-2008, 03:37 PM
UIUC is very strong across the applied micro fields...but living in Urbana. :hmm:
what would your concerns be about urbana?, there is also the champaign side of town

Nymaj
02-15-2008, 03:55 PM
I have driven past the university and also talked with many students who have graduated and also are currently there. I know for us future economist we will be too busy to take part in any kind of extracirricular festivities. But my friends who are non economist they like to have a decent time. From their experience Urbana/champaign is not that great of a place to live. Ann Arbor, Columbus, Madison, of course Northwestern, and even Iowa City from the feedback and my experiences are much better places to be than Urbana. I'm just talking about as far as things to do. With my friends I may have a selection bias but I can only go off the information that I have. But I have friends from all Big Ten Univeristy and no one has ever said anything positive about living there. The school is great but life there sucks for them. On the positive side Chicago is about 2.5 hours north and St. Louis is about 3 hours south. Come to think of it, a majority of the people I know from UIUC are from Chicago. That may explain why they feel the way they do.

Equilibrium
02-15-2008, 04:03 PM
captures the essence of UIUC in a nutshell: a lot from Chicago, decide CU isn't so great for the social scene, biased towards those who have a whole lot at their disposal back home for stuff to do. hope they were the ones buying up ther tickets to 3 Days Grace and Breaking Benjamin concert at the Assembly Hall on monday, maybe i could convince them they'll have to find good entertainment other places since it doesn't compare to the big city. LOL, not dissing on them at all, I can empathize, you were spot on with your post but it's all relative.

FYI: cost of living is decently low here, might offset the drive to chicago or StL in search of better things to do when you have free time during grad school, oh wait, does that exist?

bertthepuppy
02-15-2008, 04:04 PM
II know for us future economist we will be too busy to take part in any kind of extracirricular festivities.

I don't think I'm as worried for myself as the significant other that will be moving there after the first year. He's finishing his law degree and will need to find a place that he can practice law other than college student DUI cases...

apropos
02-15-2008, 04:18 PM
Most of big 10 college towns aren't great (but not too bad either), not just U-C. I live in West Lafayette, have visited Bloomington and East Lansing, and talked to people who live in U-C. They're all basically similar in many respects, and I can't imagine Iowa City being much better or worse than this bunch. Any differences are marginal. The only really good Big 10 towns are probably Madison, Minneapolis, Evanston/Chicago, and perhaps Ann Arbor. On the bright side, crime is minimal, cost of living is low, and these little towns are fairly compact and well suited for college lifestyle. You don't need to get out of town to do any of your shopping. Most big 10 universities bring a good selection of cultural events to campus during normal academic year. Chicago is 2 hours away from U-C or West Lafayette. So, if you feel bored there, having a car could be handy.

Living here year-round will probably get boring indeed, specially if you're single. I intend to seek employment elsewhere during summers.

Equilibrium
02-15-2008, 04:22 PM
FYI: I know of many good lawyers in Urbana Champaign area, my father went to law school here, there are MANY opportunities for members of the law community to even teach seminars at the law school's institutes. I know of one lawyer in particular who even tried a case in front of the Supreme court involving some class action involving the public school system in some way or another here in the CU area. Unless your significant other is planning on taking a spot on UIUC's student legal affairs staff, i'm pretty sure he won't be left with only DUI cases to choose from.

bertthepuppy
02-15-2008, 04:33 PM
FYI: I know of many good lawyers in Urbana Champaign area, my father went to law school here, there are MANY opportunities for members of the law community to even teach seminars at the law school's institutes. I know of one lawyer in particular who even tried a case in front of the Supreme court involving some class action involving the public school system in some way or another here in the CU area. Unless your significant other is planning on taking a spot on UIUC's student legal affairs staff, i'm pretty sure he won't be left with only DUI cases to choose from.

Oh I didn't mean U-C in particular, I just mean it's something to think about in general with schools that are in the middle of nowhere (i.e. Iowa City from my understanding). He works for the Public Defender now and wants to do criminal law, so he would like to work somewhere with a high crime rate. We're going to need to reach a compromise somewhere obviously...

Equilibrium
02-15-2008, 04:41 PM
I was just giving a plug for U-C, hopefully a little something to look into, maybe some interesting info that there is a very diverse socioeconomic demographic in the CU area and surrounding counties/towns, it's less of a college town than you might think when you consider looking for a spot with need for criminal lawyers

TruDog
02-15-2008, 05:22 PM
There is absolutely nothing wrong with living in some of the smaller cities of the Big Ten/Eleven. The cost of living is low, crime is low to nonexistent, there are plenty of events going on around campus and in the community, and there are fewer places to spend your small stipends. Besides, MWG will consume a heck of a lot more of your time than any possible big-city distraction.

Areas like Chicago and Minneapolis are nice, if you enjoy millions of people, astronomical expenses, and the feeling that you're living in a cubbyhole. I've lived in both big cities and small towns, and I greatly prefer the latter. There's something about the friendliness and laid-back nature of small-town Midwesterners that can't be beaten, in my opinion.

Equilibrium
02-15-2008, 05:26 PM
TruDat TruDog, again it's all preference, for those looking for big city feel, obviously many big 10 school's aren't the choice, but that doesn't mean you can't also have an opinion on the academic side of things

more in general I think that if a few of the big 10 schools not named wisconsin and michigan would be more willing to shell out some money, their phd programs would be much better or at least actually reflect the rankings they get primarily based on a few productive researchers and their reputations as being research institutions

Nymaj
02-15-2008, 06:07 PM
I prefer mid size towns or little big cities. Not to big but big enough not to be small (if that makes any sense). I'm from a small town, so big cities like chicago are to fast for me. But I don't wanna be anywhere remotely like home. That would suck.

bertthepuppy
02-15-2008, 06:17 PM
You are right about personal preference. It's all about being able to find the balance/managing your time properly. I did my undergrad degree at George Washington Univ, which is right in the middle of DC. I think I actually studied MORE...you're just able to use more resources (i.e. library of Congress and endless sources which could be really helpful come dissertation time). Also, you see more interesting things on the way to class, and you can go for runs (if you're into that) around the city for inspiration when you need a break. I studied my butt off, but you can't really beat studying on the National Mall...

Fermat
02-15-2008, 06:30 PM
I think cities like Charlottesville and Chapel Hill are the perfect size cities to go to school in. They're mid-sized cities that have strong ties to the universities, but there are still lots of activites and things to do that are not related to the university. I was undergraduate in Charlottesville and would love to be back there for another 4-5 more years. Currently, I'm in Clemson, SC which more or less is the University population and then a few thousand more. The town of Clemson in incredibly boring, but it is cheap to live here. I feel like anytime I want to go see a band or go out in a bigger city, I have to drive at least an hour; what a pain.

macroeconomicus
02-15-2008, 11:58 PM
TruDat TruDog, again it's all preference, for those looking for big city feel, obviously many big 10 school's aren't the choice, but that doesn't mean you can't also have an opinion on the academic side of things

more in general I think that if a few of the big 10 schools not named wisconsin and michigan would be more willing to shell out some money, their phd programs would be much better or at least actually reflect the rankings they get primarily based on a few productive researchers and their reputations as being research institutions

This comment is somewhat puzzling. Are you saying that say UIUC's, Indiana's, Iowa's, or Michigan States's and similar big-10 schools' ranking (say based on usnews for example) is somehow not well deserved? Are you saying they should really be number 50 or 60 instead of being in 28-35 range? I don't buy this. When I look at their rankings, the non-big10 schools in that range are UNC, UC Davis, UCSB, TAMU, etc. Their econ departments have a similar size, similar reputation, about as many star faculty members, and placements are about the same

In terms of money, yes, many of the lower-ranked big ten schools could have attracted more faculty if they had spent more money on their econ departments (is that a surprise?). At the same time, note that most of them are state schools, and most of the time their budget is very tight. They certainly would have hired more of the star faculty members if they could afford it. Another BIG problem that all the big 10 departments face (except Minnesota, NWU, and Michigan) is that as it was already stated, they're usually located in small and medium sized towns in the middle of corn fields. I can see that a lot of qualified potential job candidates simply wouldn't want to live there (not just because of their preferences, but also things like two body problem. e.g. What do you do if your spouse is an investment banker?)

Equilibrium
02-16-2008, 12:08 AM
i actually meant more along the lines of a place like an Indiana or UIUC or michigan state could mean the ranking of 30 or say 40 or 50 much more comparable to some of the say schools in the 20s, and rankings would only be low by virtue of a lot more really high quality schools. IE: UIUC at 25-30 is deserving, but if they lost a few professors rather than say gained a few professors, they would probably drop several ranks in a hurry, whereas gaining a few more top notch people would make the say 18-30 range pretty much a lot more equal rather than a few places standing out because they're willing to go after a few more prof even at higher costs.

macroeconomicus
02-16-2008, 12:17 AM
I have trouble parsing what you're saying.

Equilibrium
02-16-2008, 01:36 AM
schools like MSU or UIUC could solidify their rankings and make a case for the top 20 rather than say 25-35 if they would shell out some bucks to at least keep a few of their best staff, get one or two new ones. I'm agreeing with your assessment that they don't normally do this, i'm saying this makes it actually a pretty tenuous situation for them to stay where they're at given some states' budget crunches in higher education. for the time being their rankings are deserved

Equilibrium
02-17-2008, 05:22 PM
okay, so deviating from the last few posts(no more on what big 10 schools should do on hiring)

what are people's opinion on who the best schools in the big 10 are outside of michigan? how about more specifically for someone interested in I/O, game theory, micro theory and possibly development economics?

jazzcon
02-17-2008, 07:51 PM
Penn State. Their placements say it all. And I think there best placements have been in Micro Theory/IO. I don't know anything about their expected performance in the future though (ie faculty changes, funding etc.).

vivek31
02-17-2008, 10:36 PM
Michigan State is probably the best in IO and development (if one excludes Michigan). I heard it has a large and strong group in IO and it is also good in development. I am not sure about abstract micro theory though. Maybe Penn State is a bit better in abstract micro theory.

vivek31
02-17-2008, 10:44 PM
As for overall ranking, (excluding Michigan) I would also place Michigan State as the best, closely followed by Penn State. Though Penn State has better placements.

Kelewele
02-17-2008, 11:06 PM
Does anyone know if the State schools' being poorer translates into less funding available for incoming students?

Kelewele
02-17-2008, 11:09 PM
as in a good many don't get any? Thanks.

Dannyb19
02-17-2008, 11:18 PM
Just a quick note to everyone who is about to have multiple offers. Attend the flyouts and ask about a COMPLETE list of placements. I have said this before.

Flyouts are important because you can get a feel for the lifestyle of the graduate students, the city, living arrangements, faculty interaction, etc. Many people will have different impressions of the same program, so it is important to find a place that you personally feel comfortable.

A complete list of recent placements is also important, some schools websites only publish there top placements - but the variance in placements is also important. So is attrition. If a school has 30 incoming students, and only graduates 6, how much does it matter that those 6 get great placements? That is for you to decide, but it is all information you should consider.

Good luck to all, and congrats to those who have received great admits from Berkeley, Caltech, Wisconsin, NYU, and the other fantastic successes TMer's have had this cycle!

Ibn Abbas
02-17-2008, 11:18 PM
I was wondering which schools are good or at least decent in Development Econ outside the top 20. I know Cornell, Brown, Yale, Berkeley are good but those are beyond me.

Anyone has ideas? MSU claims to be good in their website. What about places like Georgetown, IUB, Vanderbilt, UVA, UIUC, GWU, Penn state, Washington Seattle, BC etc?

In particular, I am interested in development microeconomics, the kind of work done by Angus Deaton, Pranab Bardhan and Chris Udry.

Anyone? :)

TruDog
02-17-2008, 11:19 PM
Does anyone know if the State schools' being poorer translates into less funding available for incoming students?

Quite a few students at public schools don't get guaranteed funding during the first year. Private schools tend to be much more generous.

macroeconomicus
02-18-2008, 02:40 AM
I was wondering which schools are good or at least decent in Development Econ outside the top 20. I know Cornell, Brown, Yale, Berkeley are good but those are beyond me.

Anyone has ideas? MSU claims to be good in their website. What about places like Georgetown, IUB, Vanderbilt, UVA, UIUC, GWU, Penn state, Washington Seattle, BC etc?

In particular, I am interested in development microeconomics, the kind of work done by Angus Deaton, Pranab Bardhan and Chris Udry.

Anyone? :)

Check UC Davis.

macroeconomicus
02-18-2008, 02:57 AM
Just a quick note to everyone who is about to have multiple offers. Attend the flyouts and ask about a COMPLETE list of placements. I have said this before.

Flyouts are important because you can get a feel for the lifestyle of the graduate students, the city, living arrangements, faculty interaction, etc. Many people will have different impressions of the same program, so it is important to find a place that you personally feel comfortable.

A complete list of recent placements is also important, some schools websites only publish there top placements - but the variance in placements is also important. So is attrition. If a school has 30 incoming students, and only graduates 6, how much does it matter that those 6 get great placements? That is for you to decide, but it is all information you should consider.

Good luck to all, and congrats to those who have received great admits from Berkeley, Caltech, Wisconsin, NYU, and the other fantastic successes TMer's have had this cycle!

I think the scenario you describe is highly unusual. I have yet to see a department with >25-ish entering class that graduates only 6 people on regular basis. The departments that take 25 students every year or so are usually the top 20 schools plus a few others (Texas, Virginia, TAMU, etc). However, when such things happen, it might be because the department simply allowed too many applicants with a relatively weak application to enroll. I don't think that's necessarily bad because such schools are giving weak applicants a shot to enroll and hopefully succeed at a kind of department at which they would have no chances otherwise. For example, I have heard a rumor that MSU was having a class of about 30 students 4-6 years ago but only 7-8 people on the job market in the following years for this reason (however, now they're aiming at enrolling 18 students or so putting more resources into them).

It's definitely a good idea to see the full list of placements. Though, I am not sure what you mean by a high variance. EVERY university has a high variance in placements, no matter how you look at it. In particular, it is normal for a school ranked 20-40 to have ONE placement at a big research university. While the rest of placements might be "good" by the definition of a lot of people (foreign universities, consulting, etc), the rest certainly don't compare to the top placement. I wouldn't pay much attention to what the bottom placement is because technically none of us is planning to be a bottom job market candidate 5 years later. Like it or not, academia is a very competitive environment. If you have this mood from the beginning that you will or might end up at the bottom of your class 5 years later, you might as well stop now and look for something else..

macroeconomicus
02-18-2008, 02:59 AM
okay, so deviating from the last few posts(no more on what big 10 schools should do on hiring)

what are people's opinion on who the best schools in the big 10 are outside of michigan? how about more specifically for someone interested in I/O, game theory, micro theory and possibly development economics?

Northwestern is in Big 10, so I would say Northwestern :)

nervouslywaiting
02-18-2008, 03:05 AM
I was wondering which schools are good or at least decent in Development Econ outside the top 20. I know Cornell, Brown, Yale, Berkeley are good but those are beyond me.

Anyone has ideas? MSU claims to be good in their website. What about places like Georgetown, IUB, Vanderbilt, UVA, UIUC, GWU, Penn state, Washington Seattle, BC etc?

In particular, I am interested in development microeconomics, the kind of work done by Angus Deaton, Pranab Bardhan and Chris Udry.

Anyone? :)

I talked to a prof at UVA before I submitted my apps. He said the dept was planning of hiring more faculties in development economics. That may be a good bet.

The other option is to apply to apply to the Applied/Agriculture Econ Dept. UIUC has a good Applied Econ Dept (I know many people from my country -- a developing Asian country) went there. Some others: Cornell, Wisconsin, Minnesotta. Not sure if IUB is strong in this field.

Dannyb19
02-18-2008, 06:35 AM
Macroeconomicus: I respectfully disagree.

While certainly a school taking in 30 and graduating 6 was an exageration, the point remains that it is important to look at attrition. I am not saying attrition should conern everyone, or by the same degree, but I do think it should be factored into the decision at some level.

Also, I think variance in placement is not as consistent as you think. I am not advising people to look at the top or bottom placement, rather the middle two quartiles. How does the average student from a program do on the market? Lets face it, the chance you are not the bottom student is the same as the chance you are not the top student. Some schools put students on the market who don't end up even getting jobs!

We may disagree, but I think these are major issues one should consider when electing a program, especially since there are really no second chances when it comes to econ phd's.

macroeconomicus
02-18-2008, 06:57 AM
Macroeconomicus: I respectfully disagree.

While certainly a school taking in 30 and graduating 6 was an exageration, the point remains that it is important to look at attrition. I am not saying attrition should conern everyone, or by the same degree, but I do think it should be factored into the decision at some level.



Yes, generally, I would say a graduating class of say less than 50% of the entering class should ring some questions. If you see that, talk to people, ask them what happened to the rest, etc.





Also, I think variance in placement is not as consistent as you think. I am not advising people to look at the top or bottom placement, rather the middle two quartiles. How does the average student from a program do on the market? Lets face it, the chance you are not the bottom student is the same as the chance you are not the top student. Some schools put students on the market who don't end up even getting jobs!
Again, those who don't get a job at all, are either bottom of the class or they just didn't play their cards right (looked for a wrong kind of job), or refused to accept whatever offers they had, etc.

Regarding the middle placements, I think those are important. I am just arguing with you about the fact that if the top placements are good, the middle placements are usually decent as well. I am just having a hard time finding a school that has an outstanding top placement that it can boast about but with outrageously bad middle placements. Unless you're looking at some elite schools that have exceptionally good placement record for even middle class candidates, what you're going to see in the middle placements in most cases are "lousy" academic jobs (non-PhD granting institutions), NGOs, foreign universities, central banks, some private sector jobs, some government jobs, etc. Those middle placements mostly reflect the relative strengths of the department rather than how good it is.

My point is that yes, it is important to look at all placements, but you usually won't see big surprises there. A big surprise would be when the average placement is a job at a community college or no job at all while the top placement is a tenure track position at a PhD-grating institution. I just don't see that happening.

phdphd
02-18-2008, 09:47 AM
I was wondering which schools are good or at least decent in Development Econ outside the top 20.

Development is a strong field at USC, best placement last year was a student of John Strauss.

butler blue
02-18-2008, 04:42 PM
For Georgetown, we do have a development field and two profs, Garance Genicot and Billy Jack, both of whom are micro people. If you're interested, you should check their websites. Genicot is much more theory than applied (compared to say Udry) publishes in JET and that sort of thing. Jack has done a lot with health economics in the past. We don't have anyone doing randomized experiments, though, (at least in the econ dept) if that's what you're interested in.

Ibn Abbas
02-19-2008, 02:39 AM
Great. Thanks folks for the info. Southern California was one program that completely slipped my radar.

I am going to do some more research and find some good fits. Thanks again.

avkuvalekar
02-19-2008, 03:53 AM
Hi,

can some of you post your profile here please? I am an engineering graduate from IIT working with an i bank in commodities IT. I am thinking of applying to grad school in 2009 or probably 2010. Given that it's a field change I am eager to know what is the general profile that people need toget into #20-60 as that seems to be the best bet for me.
My profile is as follows -

Undergrad - Energy Engineering (Dept of Elec Engg) from IIT Kharagpur
GPA - 3.0/4.0
MA Courses - MAI, MA II (grades 9/10 and 8/10 resp), Transform Calculus (7/10), ODE-PDE (6/10) , Computer Graphics (8/10), Compiler Design (8/10),
Switching Circtuis and finite automata (7/10) (All these are MA courses although the last 2-3 don't sound like :) )
Econ courses - Economics I - 8/10
Academic Achievements - UG Project awarded as the best undergraduate project in systems (I know that it's nowhere related to economics but might just add value in making it a point that this guy has the potential)
Cleared the regional maths olympiad and was amongst the 500 people selected to appear for the national maths olympiad.
Work Experience - A leading I Bank, working in Singapore office in commodities IT.
GRE - Not taken yet

I would like to have a general idea about the profile of the people who are getting into 20-60 so that I will have a general idea about where I need to work and what needs to be done etc.

Thanks!

Ecorleone
02-19-2008, 03:55 AM
What kind program are you thinking of??

TruDog
02-19-2008, 03:56 AM
Check out the threads stickied at the top of the forum. They're full of old profiles (mine included) and where students ended up getting accepted.

pevdoki1
02-19-2008, 04:02 AM
It seems to me like that profile would be good for an engineering MA, but there is absolutely nothing in that profile that would indicate success in an Econ PhD program

You need at least some course in intemediate micro and macro, econometrics etc., as well as some recommendations from economists that will be willing to say you'll be good at economics.

How do you know you'll like an econ. PhD program anyway?

asquare
02-19-2008, 04:05 AM
UMD is also relatively strong in development. I'm not sure if they fall just inside or just outside the top 20. They have a research center called IRIS (http://www.iris.umd.edu/) that does interesting development work, too.

Equilibrium
02-19-2008, 06:39 AM
Check UC Davis.
UIUC has some very good professors in Development, Akresh is an associate professor from i believe Harvard, teaches and researches about African Development. Prof Baer is now in the 5th ed or something like that in his text on Latin American development economics. Also, UIUC has a great Ag program which the Ag Cons Econ department will have good people to work with since it's related to a lot of development econ problems. Check out the faculty websites, just search UIUC econ and you'll find the department's website

Olm
02-19-2008, 07:08 AM
Hi,

can some of you post your profile here please?
Thanks!

Look at the top of the forum at the stickie posts. You will see profiles and results.

avkuvalekar
02-19-2008, 07:29 AM
@pevdok


It seems to me like that profile would be good for an engineering MA, but there is absolutely nothing in that profile that would indicate success in an Econ PhD program

ha ha, I know this. I know that nobody's gonna take me with this background which is why I am thinking of getting a masters in India. I just wanted to know if I stand any chance of a masters.ph.d. somewhere maybe 1-2 years down the line. As for my liking of economics, I have the standard UG textbooks, I have read them - Dornbusch Fisher, Hal Varian etc.
I do read the economic magazines and all. Again, I am not fully aware of the academic economics but then I am quite keen on a masters at least from where I will make a call on a ph.d.
I am fully aware that eco is tough, quite tough in fact to get into. In the past 2 years (last at the university when I read abotu finance, political economy a bit and this one, where working at an I Bank and looking at things closelt) I have somewhat figured out that what kind of work will I want to do and what it takes to get there. For whatever jobs that I am targetting, a Ph.D. is a must. Moreover, I have realised that I do love analytical, quantitative based subjects. So, I believe that I would enjyoy a ph.d.

Smileysquared
02-19-2008, 02:47 PM
I am confused. When I was working in PricewaterhouseCoopers I was working with an engineer from the energy sector who could do both financial and economic modelling and analysis. Don't you do things like Monte Carlo simulation etc? I know someone who did a double major in Maths and Econ and now is pusuing graduate studies in Engineering. It's up to you but if you want you can probably email someone from one of those universities you are interested in attending and ask for their advice.

avkuvalekar
02-19-2008, 04:09 PM
@smileysquared,
some engineers do but unfortunately I don't! :(
The other alternative for me therefore is to get into such companies (couretsy my background) and do the things that you mentioned. It's just that pay less, really less as compared to these ibanks who pay you like crazy for doing ****! :)

mogelsworth
02-20-2008, 07:29 PM
I was wondering which schools are good or at least decent in Development Econ outside the top 20. I know Cornell, Brown, Yale, Berkeley are good but those are beyond me.

Anyone has ideas? MSU claims to be good in their website. What about places like Georgetown, IUB, Vanderbilt, UVA, UIUC, GWU, Penn state, Washington Seattle, BC etc?

In particular, I am interested in development microeconomics, the kind of work done by Angus Deaton, Pranab Bardhan and Chris Udry.

Anyone? :)
My primary interest is development econ, though more on the macro/growth side. One of my profs, well known in international macro and growth, recommended the following "safety" schools: UBC, UWashington, UVA, Penn State, Syracuse and Ohio. I applied to all but Ohio. Have you checked out the faculty at the schools you mention?