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About Me


My Target Scores

  1. Hi! I am planning on applying for a PhD eventually, but I want to hedge my bets and apply to MA programs too. My math background is strong (4.0 applied math major), but I am missing some classes like Real Analysis, Calc IV, and other advanced, proof-based courses. I would absolutely prefer an MA in economics because stats/pure math does not interest me that much. Right now I plan on applying to Columbia, NYU, and Wisconsin's terminal MA programs. Do you have any other recommendations that could strengthen my PhD application? Thank you!
  2. Hi all, I have planned for some time to apply to PhD programs in economics a year from now after I finish a two-year RA stint. I’ve recently been debating, however, if I should also look into applying to political science PhDs. I’m primarily interested in political economy, so I believe that I would enjoy doing either program (although I realize that there are trade-offs in choosing one program over the other). I know that it’s not uncommon for econ applicants to also apply to PPOL PhDs, but I rarely hear of them also applying to political science programs. My question then is this - would it look bad in anyway to apply to both programs potentially at the same school(s)? I don’t want to give off the impression that I’m not serious/committed enough to one particular field, but it’d be nice to keep my options open and learn more thoroughly about the pros/cons specific to each department. Thanks for any advice!
  3. Hi there! As an undergraduate student graduating 2021 and applying in fall 2020, I am still struggling between several choices: either applying to a PhD program directly, or applying to a MA program at first, or applying to a full-time RA position to strengthen my profile. Therefore, I really appreciate any feedback from you so that I can understand better and make clearer decision. Undergraduate Degree: BAs in Economics, Mathematics, and International Studies from a 30-40 ranked private research university Undergraduate GPA: 3.96/4.0 GRE: Q 169 V 164 AW 4.5 Math Courses: Calculus (A), Linear Algebra (A), Differential Equation (A), Probability (A), Statistics (A), Introduction to Proof (A). Plan to take Real Analysis in my Senior year. Econ Courses: Industrial Organization (A), Econometrics (A), Grad Antitrust Economics (A) Related Experience: I believe this is my weakest part since I did not RA for any professor. I only TAed Econometrics. Letter of Recommendation: Not secured yet. I believe I can get one from the chair of the Econ department who taught me Econometrics, another from the professor that I TAed for, the last one probably from a professor who taught me Chinese Economy. Research Interest: Not sure yet. I am interested in Econometrics and Antitrust or Industrial Organization. My biggest concern is that my research experience is not strong. I was more inclined to find a job and apply to a PhD after working for a couple of years so my summer experiences were internships rather than research. However, the current situation interrupted my plan.
  4. Hi Im curently an undergraduate student and will be applying for econ PhD program of 2021 fall. Here's my profile and any evaluations will be appreciated! PROFILE: Type of Undergrad: top university in Asia but probably unknown in the US Undergrad GPA: 3.82/4.0 exchanged at a top 5 US econ department and got all A+ (4.0/4.0) Type of Grad: NA Grad GPA: NA GRE: Q 170 V 163 AW 5.0 Math Courses: Calculus(A+), Real analysis I(A), Linear Algebra(A), Complex Analysis(A+), Stochastic Process (A+), Applied Statistics (A+), Probability Theory (A-) Econ Courses: Intro to Econ(A), Intermediate Micro/Macro(both A+), Econometrics(A), Mathematical Economics(A), Macroeconomic Policy(A+), Environmental Econ(A+), Public Econ(A+), Game Theory, International Trade, Economic Growth(All A) Other Courses: not very relevant Letters of Recommendation: 1 from a top 5 econ department, took class and did well, RA'd for half year, editor of a field top journal, knows me very well. 2 from a top 5 econ department, very prestigious professor, RA'd for almost a year, but less technical. 3 from my thesis supervisor, taught me econometrics, RA'd for 1.5 yrs, knows me very well I'm still looking for another backup option. Research Experience: Current and previous research all related to monetary economics, which is great to make a consistent background I think. Another research experience in development economics. Basically for my LOR writers. Teaching Experience: NA Research Interests: Monetary Economics, Macroeconomics, International Finance Other: I'm going to take PhD level micro or macro next semester but have not determined yet which one to take, probably macro which more relevant to my research interest. Also will take analysis II or ode/pde to enhance my math background. I do not have any publication or conference experience. I will do my thesis next semester but probably will not mention in my application. I appreciate any advice in terms of what universities I shoud aim, and any chance I get into a top 10? Thank you guys!
  5. Hi! I was just wondering whether it would like better to do a masters in a business-related field before applying for Phd in business programs at prestigious/good universities (e.g., Harvard, INSEAD, Wharton, and so on). It seems like that many b-schools do accept students with only undergraduate-level education, but is this the norm? I have heard from somehow that it is actually rare for undergraduate students going straight to PhD in business programs, but an associate professor at a prestigious b-school told me that he would not recommend having a masters degree before doing the PhD. So really, I have been completely overwhelmed by these two opposing views. To make matters worse, there are just too many business-related master's programs (MIM, aka Masters in Management; MBA; Master of Research in Business, aka Mres), and I have basically no idea what to do: should I skip the masters? Or should I have one before applying? If so, which? Taught masters or research masters? Therefore, I was wondering if someone of you would be so kind as to share his/her personal experience/opinion with me. And here I would like to offer my point of view. In my humble opinion, I think doing a masters, although not necessary, can be of huge help. It seems to be evident that when the admission officers at any university review a person's candidacy for a phd program, one of the most important factors taken into consideration would be the person's research background: what he is interested in? what has he studied/published so far? And it is really hard to imagine that an undergraduate student would have the same level of understanding of a field and research background that a masters student have, which denotes that the former will be in an unfavorable position when being considered. As for which masters to opt for, I would say that a taught masters is the best option for anyone wanting to enter into a phd program, since the students are given a lot of freedom to pursuit their interests. Might I know if my understanding and conclusions are correct? Might I know if there are actually some benefits in applying as a bachelor? Thanks for your time and reading! Any suggestion will be highly appreciated
  6. After 8 years of graduate school, I made it to the other side. Because of anonymity I'm not going to share the school with everyone, but I'm beyond excited about it. It's in a dream location for my family and an ideal environment for my research and teaching. This forum definitely got me through the whole process of applying and even through the first few years of my program. I know I haven't posted much recently, but I still check up on the site every day. Good luck to those of you applying and to those of you in programs, keep your heads down and work hard. Further, and I can't stress this enough, a PhD is not for everyone. Leaving academia is not a failure. I know of a ton of people who left and are happier because of it. I also know of a ton of people who didn't leave and really wish they did. Industry is not a failure regardless of what you think and perhaps what your faculty will tell you. It's your life, you only get one, don't do something that makes you miserable.
  7. Hi everyone. I am applying to finance PhD this year, and I would appreciate if you could give any advice on my profile. Thank you so much in advance! Applying to: PhD in Finance Test Score (GMAT): V44 98%, Q50 85%, AWA 4.5 43%, Total 770 99% Undergraduate: Bachelor in Business Administration; GPA: 3.81/4.00 Graduate: MSc in Finance; GPA: 3.97/4.00 Math/Statistics: Analysis, Stochastic Process, Math for Economics, Econometrics.. Work Experience: 4 years in the financial industry. Research Experience: - Master thesis in finance, co-author with my advisor, published in a low ranked journal (tier 3). - Three working papers, co-author with advisor and a PhD student, submitted to finance journals. Teaching Experience: T.A. in an MBA Class (only one semester..) Questions or Concerns: - I have already submitted my application to top 50 schools, and I am wondering whether I should consider applying to schools outside of the top 50 as well. - I didn't take core math courses, such as Calculus and Linear Algebra, although I've taught myself those topics. Would it be an issue?
  8. As a PhD applicant, I am working while taking a PhD level course part-time. I am getting a B and I don't have time to improve my grade due to working. The school I am applying to only requires me to include schools that I attended for more than a year, not every single course that I took from any university. The course is a hardcore course with B as average. If I am applying to top 5 programs, would this grade help me or hurt me? My whole profile is here: https://www.www.urch.com/forums/phd-economics/161313-profile-evaluation-help-needed-non-traditional-applicant-weak-coursework.html
  9. Hello everyone, Apologies if this question has already been asked but I've been unable to find the thread if it has. When submitting a statement of purpose, is it generally recommended that you start off with "Statement of Purpose", include your name, the department that you're applying to or anything like that? I mean outside the main body of text as a title or header, obviously you mention where you're applying to in the statement itself. Or do most people just submit it as an unformatted essay (apart from paragraphs) on the basis that all of the other information is linked to your application online?
  10. How much of publication at a say, second-tier journal help for PhD admissions in economics? My advisor thinks it's worth a shot, and I might try to publish my senior thesis (or hopefully at least R&R) before applying to PhD programs. If you have any thoughts on this, it would be great if you could share! (Just for a reference, here is my previous profile evaluation: https://www.www.urch.com/forums/phd-economics/160696-profile-evaluation.html)
  11. Hi guys, I am an international applicant and wonder if anyone in here applying to UNC? I tried to email the business school to ask about my application status but never got a reply. Anyone emailed them too and got a reply? Thanks!
  12. I am applying for mgt Ph.D. in penn state. They offered the code 2660 which does not match any school. GMAC said there should be a 7-digit code. I have asked Penn state from email but they did not reply. Anyone applying to Penn state as well? Thanks a lot!
  13. One of my profs suggested possibly getting a funded MS in Econ from Oregon State, which would mean taking the core PhD sequence they have and then applying to grad programs to better my chances. What do you think of this approach? Any thoughts would be great.
  14. Hi everyone, I'm applying to a few top EU PhD's and some RA positions. Previously, I have completed an MSc in Econ from one of the top schools in Europe. While my BSc grades are great (not a known uni though), my first term grades in the MSc were somewhat poor, but got better and in the last term quite good. Last year, I got rejected from a great RA position based on my grades (they said this was the reason when I asked). This was after doing the coding test and an interview. I didn't have my last term (best) grades at the time of applying and interviewing. I have RA experience from two positions, and currently doing another MSc. The rough start was due to some lack in math background and overall a big hike in difficulty, but as I mentioned grades got better as I got used to it. My question is: how do I treat this in the cover letter? I feel like I should mention it somehow but ofc I don't want to emphasize the negative too much as I think that my profile is otherwise quite competitive. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
  15. Hi all, Any input appreciated! Test Scores (GMAT): 700 (44Q, 41V, 6 AWA, 8 IR) Undergrad GPA: 3.7 at Top 10 Business School in United States Work Experience: 3 years in consulting @ Oracle Concentration Applying to: Strategy Number of Programs Applying to: 8-10 programs in Top 25 Dream Schools: HBS, Stanford, Berkeley, UCLA, USC Have experience in quantitative and analytic research. Have strong written and oral communication skills (should help in writing a top-notch personal statement). Have references from tenured professors from my undergrad business program. Thoughts on my prospects of gaining admission to a top 7, top 15, top 25 program? How many programs should I be applying to and which schools should I be targeting? Is focusing on a higher GMAT my only recourse (this may delay applying until next year)? Best, Neda
  16. There are plenty of resources out there on applying for the NSF in other fields (sample proposals and stuff), but haven't found many in Economics. Do any of the community members here have suggestions for applying for the fellowship, particularly the personal statement piece of the app? One of the things I've been told to emphasize is the 'Broader Impacts' of the project that go beyond the field of economics itself and into interaction with people in everyday life (so something beyond "this model has implications for policy"). If I'm writing a proposal where I present a specific model with a specific application, how would I write about something like that?
  17. I recently took my GMAT after some on/off studying for a few months, and I'm wondering if I should re-take it? Is it worth the extra effort? As I mentioned when I posted before, I am planning on applying during the 2019 cycle, so I still have quite a bit of time, so I could definitely fit in a re-take for the GMAT. I scored a 720 (49Q, 40V, 6 IR, 6 AWA) on the test. I'm planning on applying to the top schools for their Accounting PhD programs. Just to summarize some stats about myself for people who didn't see my past posts, I am at UofT, and I'm finishing up my fourth year. If all goes well, I should end with a 3.92 GPA (realistic, considering the courses I'm taking next year). The main reason I would want to re-take it is to increase my Q to either a 50 or 51, as the percentile for a 49 is quite low. I have taken some math courses throughout my Undergrad, which include: Calculus I & II (92%), Statistics (91%), Linear Algebra (96%), Intro to Proofs (91%), Multivariable Calc. (90%), Real Analysis (TBA) So, I just thought I'd get some opinions on whether or not I should re-take my GMAT? I know that if I study for another month or so, I can at least get it up to 730-740 (anything beyond that would probably have to do with how lucky I am in terms of the types of questions they give me). Thanks in advance!
  18. Undergraduate Institution: Simon Fraser University (Canada) Major: Economics Minor: None GPA: 3.31/4.33 Type of Student: International Upper Division Courses: Calc I (B), Calc II (B-), Intermediate Macroeconomics Theory (A), Intermediate Microeconomics Theory I (B+), Intermediate Microeconomics Theory II (B-), Intermediate Econometrics Methods-seminar course (B), Statistical Analysis of Economic Data (B), Linear Algebra (C+)GRE: 159V, 160Q, 4.5W Recommendation Letters (I plan to request the following. See note below): -well-known economics professor who taught me Advanced Macroeconomics Seminar (A-) -Economics Development Seminar (A) -Econometrics Methods Seminar (B) Previously I asked these 3 professors for reference letters for graduate economics programs & was accepted to all of them. However, I didn't attend graduate school due to personal reasons i.e. mandatory military service in Taiwan. I've now changed my mind and decided to go for Statistics. Applying To: MS Statistics (Rutgers) , MS Statistics & Data Science (University of Houston) Skills: R, Python Research Experience: Public Policy Professor - co-author for academic journal article using statistical analysis discussing civil service culture I know my GPA is quite low, but I've been told that: 1. SFU is known for its relatively harsh grading scheme i.e. the percentage who get grades in the "A" range are quite low- 10% or less I've been told. 2. SFU is a still relatively top ranked school in Canada so unless you're applying to top ranked grad programs with these grades, I should still have a chance.
  19. Hello! I am a recent graduate with a BSc in pharmacy from a foreign university (however, I am a US citizen). My goal is to apply direcetly to PhD programs in the US and pursue a career in academia. However, I've been accepted to a (one year) PharmD program at my alma mater and I have the opportunity to work at a hospital pharmacy, and now I'm facing a dilemma. I'm hoping that anyone with experience in or knowledge of applying to PhD programs would be able to help. Would completing a PharmD degree (in a foreign university) give me an advantage when applying for PhD programs? This would be compared to applying with just a BSc. Or would it be more beneficial for me to work at a hospital pharmacy during this year while I apply? Basically my question is if the PharmD versus work experience would be more favored by PhD admissions committees. Sorry for the long post, and I hope someone can advise me. Thank you!
  20. Hi all, I will be attending UCL’s MSc in Economics from this September and would like to hear some advice about applying to the American schools after the MSc. My primary aim is to apply for the T20 schools at the U.S, even though I am also thinking of doing a Ph.D in the UK. 1. As far as I know, UCL would offer places on their MRes / MPhil + Ph.D programme conditional on getting a distinction in their masters programme. Which one do you think is better? (i) Applying straight after graduating UCL’s masters, or (ii) stay with UCL for another year – based on the assumption that I finish the coursework with distinction - with their MRes and apply after their MRes grades (which would just take an extra year) Put in other words, do you think studying MRes-level courses in UCL helps in graduate admissions in the U.S? On one side, it might be beneficial to show that I’m capable of surviving the graduate-level studies. But then, (i) I guess studying a Ph.D level course might be ‘too much’ since you will re-do the masters level coursework and (ii) I can run the risk of failing the MRes or being on the borderline threshold for passing – which I guess is not a really positive signal to the adcoms. (thus neutralizing the distinction-performance at Msc courses...) 2. Just the general question - Do you know any UCL MSc graduates who proceeded into the American PhDs, arguably into the top 20? Which schools should I be aiming for if I happen to attain distinction? – How well is UCL regarded in the states? Any inputs would be welcomed Many thanks in advance.
  21. When applying for research positions in the summer after sophomore year, I will also be considering applying to JPAL in India (since I live there). How should I rank this in priority vs a research opportunity at my university (top 10 PhD econ) or a Fed internship? Assuming that development economics is an interest of mine (if not the dominant one).
  22. After graduating a decided to work a couple of years before going to grad school. To up my chances I decided to take a summer school class before applying to grad school, but had to withdraw mid term because of health reasons. Do I need to send this transcript or not when applying?
  23. Hey everyone - A quick shoutout to the regulars on this board. I have learned so much over the last 2 years from everyone and I just wanted to say a quick thanks! Background: I considered applying in the fall of 2017, but I received a job offer as a CFO of a really awesome company and decided to take it. I have no regrets as I have learned a great deal moving from public accounting to the private side, and definitely enjoy my job. However, I still have an itch to continue my education and am once again considering applying for a Accounting PHD program. Test Scores (GMAT/GRE): I have taken the GMAT practice test and received a 680. However it is due to a high V (42, 96% Percentile) and a low Q (40, 47% Percentile). One of my main questions is for the schools I am targeting (please see below) is this a disqualification. If so, if anyone has any clue of min. Quant score for these type of schools, please let me know! I plan to study for the next few months and take the exam in June.. leaving time for a retake in July or August. Undegrad GPA: 3.7 - State School Graduate GPA: 3.7 - Same State School Research Experience: None Teaching Experience: GA for two semesters and would fill in for professors, if that counts? Work Experience: Worked part - time for a local CPA firm for 3 years in college. Upon applying I will have worked for approx. 1 years as an audit associate at a large regional firm and 1 year as a CFO of a multi-state company with NI of approx. $2M. Concentration Applying to: Behavioral What made you want to pursue a PhD? As a GA I was exposed to the doctoral staff on faculty and truly enjoyed the way they went about there jobs and how much they cared for the students. I was able to fill in a few times when professors had to miss class and really enjoyed the teaching aspect. I was also the accounting tutor in college for all undergraduate students. I understand the research is the main goal of a PhD, and I am also excited about this, as I have never really been challenged in school and would love to push myself to the extreme. However, the true reason for wanting to become a Accounting Professor is having the ability to truly help others and build great relationships with staff and students. I know Letters of Rec. are important and I have already confirmed I can get up to 3 letters from Accounting professors. One of the three was just appointed to the State Board by the Governor if this is given any extra weight. I am not interested in going to a top tier school, it is probably not even possible, rather my main focus is staying in the Southeast due to family,etc. I have researched many different schools (Alabama, Kentucky, Georgia State, Louisiana Tech, Ole Miss, Georgia Tech, Emory, South Florida etc) and would just like my opinion on my chances.
  24. After 2-3 years of lurking, I'm finally applying to PhD programs and I'm super excited! First off, I want to thank this community and especially its active members. Honestly, I had no idea where to start when I first decided I wanted to apply to PhD programs in the US, and thanks to this forum, I feel I was really able to improve my profile over the past years. Test Scores GRE: 333/340. Q167 (92%), V166(97%), AW 5.5 (98%) TOEFL: 120/120 Undergrad GPA Two bachelor degrees in unrelated fields (Law/Public Administration) from a European University, GPA 7/10 and 8/10 ~ 3.0/4.0 and 4.0/4.0 (according to Stanford's converter) Graduate GPA Master of Science in HRM from a top European business school, GPA 9/10 ~ 4.0/4.0 (graduated summa cum laude), including a semester exchange at a top 10 US business school Research experience 1) Part-time RA in behavioral health economics in a social/behavioral science dept in Europe, resulted in a paper that's now under review 2) Part-time RA at an economic research organization, resulted in a published research report (non peer-reviewed) 3) Part-time RA at an economics dept in Europe, resulted in an honor's thesis that was nominated for an award in organizational psych (supervisor is one of my letter writers) 4) RA at a top 10 US business school - one of the schools I'm applying to - with a very well-known prof in decision-making (one of my letter writers), 10h/week for one semester 5) RA at a top 10 US psychology department - one of the schools I'm applying to - with a very well-known prof in decision-making (also one of my letter writers), full-time for one summer 6) Currently a full-time RA at a marketing dept in a top European business school for this academic year, has so far resulted in a conference submission that's under review Teaching Experience Full-time TA for a year, tutored courses in social/behavioral science (including Psych) and qualitative research methods Applying to: 9 schools, 12 programs. Organizational Behavior @ HBS & Stanford GSB Decision-making / Behavioral Science @ UCLA Anderson, UChicago Booth, Wharton, Carnegie Mellon Management @ Berkeley Haas & UCSD Rady Psych & Marketing @ Penn Social Psych @ Harvard, Stanford & Cornell Dream schools: All of the above! I'm specifically targeting faculty members that I really admire for their work. I'm mostly worried about my undergrad degrees being too unrelated to the disciplines I'm applying to (especially for the Psych programs, although I know that that's not the main expertise of the people in this forum), my undergrad GPA, and lack of quant/stats courses. As I'm only applying to dream schools, I'm still wondering whether I should add two schools as a back-up where I feel I have a stronger chance of getting in. These two European schools are also very strong, but I feel slightly less affinity with the faculty members. Hope everyone's had a great Thanksgiving and is back on track with their research! :)
  25. Hi there! I was wondering if I could get some advice about what kind of chance I stand with Ph.D. Admissions. GPA Undergrad and Grad: 3.6 GRE: 167Q/162V/3.5A I have recommendations from my thesis advisor from my MS in Finance and from the finance department chair who I spent a lot of time with setting up my dual degree program so that I could graduate with both a BBA and Masters in Finance. As for math classes and the like, I've taken Calc, and then 3 different levels of statistics, the last of which was grad level statistics. I'm extremely stressed because you look at the admissions numbers and they're like "Yeah we get 5000 applicants but we only like to admit about 2" so I have no idea if I'm applying to schools where I have a chance or not! The schools where I'm applying are: Imperial College University of Mannheim Columbia University of Reading University of Rhode Island Drexel University Newcastle University NYU Are these reasonable schools for me? Or am I aiming too high? I'm so stressed, please help me.
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