The numbers don't add up..

roman
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Oct 23, 2008 7:08 am

The numbers don't add up..

Postby roman » Sat Oct 25, 2008 1:33 pm

Hi first post, don't mean to be too moany etc etc...
I also took the October test and came here to see how other people found it. The general feeling I'm getting is people seemed to think their versions were rather easy and they went well. My point is... where are the people who didn’t find it easy?!?

Personally, I found it pretty hard (which is how I found most of the practise ones tbh) and only answered around 50/60 with more than a few guesses. Good luck to the people who found "October 18, 2008 a good test" but I can't help noticing 34 posts out of 832 views is not a huge response. And I couldn't even be bothered to check if this accounts for multiple-posters.

Doesn't the very definition of the scaled scores mean that for all the lucky people hoping to get 800+ there will be 80% of test-takers who won't have this accolade?? (Incidentally, if this is not what the scaled score actually means, this does not bode well for me on the quantitative section of the general GRE!) So just in case any of them, like me, are wondering if there are people here who didn't find it so easy and are now expecting a score anywhere between the 500's to the (very low) 700's, I thought I'd be the first to say YES, YOU ARE NOT ALONE!!!

cato88
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Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2008 12:46 am

Re: The numbers don't add up..

Postby cato88 » Sat Oct 25, 2008 2:56 pm

According to the average on this board most people score above 750 .

JohnWillkins
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun May 11, 2008 6:27 am

Re: The numbers don't add up..

Postby JohnWillkins » Sat Oct 25, 2008 3:57 pm

I am not sure about how they scale the scores on the PGRE, but I would bet that the crowd around here isn't the average by any means. Lots of people probably use the PGRE to help them decide where to apply to grad school, and here we have a lot of people aiming relatively high. There are lots of schools that aren't on the top rated lists that have graduate programs in physics, some may not even require a PGRE score, so the people who have the 500's or 600's probably took it on a whim to see if they could do it and see if it's worth apply to higher caliber grad schools, or maybe they took it too early and have time to retake it, etc.

People also commiserate in different ways... some people with a 500 or 600 would post to say so, but others might see the good bunch of scores posted by others and not post because they thought it was embarrassing.

And all those views could be from curious folk like myself who haven't taken it, just looking for general feelings about it as preparation for when we do take it.

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G01
Posts: 75
Joined: Thu Aug 21, 2008 7:54 pm

Re: The numbers don't add up..

Postby G01 » Sun Oct 26, 2008 5:30 pm

The people who post on this board are not an accurate cross section of the people taking the physics GRE.

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gliese876d
Posts: 57
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 12:51 pm

Re: The numbers don't add up..

Postby gliese876d » Sun Oct 26, 2008 7:49 pm

so the people who have the 500's or 600's probably took it on a whim to see if they could do it and see if it's worth apply to higher caliber grad schools, or maybe they took it too early and have time to retake it, etc.


I find this quote rather condescending. *I* certainly did not take this test on a whim, but spent months preparing with the practice exams, I have done my homework about which schools I want to go to, and I am a decent student with a decent GPA. However, some people are just no good at taking these kinds of standardized tests. I will admit I'll be lucky if I got a 600 on the PGRE that I took Oct. 18th. I too found it tricky--ETS lays so many traps for you to fall into if you are prone towards test anxiety. That doesn't mean people like us will not make good graduate students, or do not understand physical concepts, or have not done their absolute best at being conscientious and preparing and studying hard.

And while many might be aiming pretty high on this board, I've seen an awful lot of users aiming at "decent" but not top notch schools. All of those require PGRE scores for your application, and I personally know a few Pitt grad students who got in with deplorable scores--and we rank 48th, so we're still in the top 50.

People also commiserate in different ways... some people with a 500 or 600 would post to say so, but others might see the good bunch of scores posted by others and not post because they thought it was embarrassing.


I, personally, think this is a better explanation. To Roman, you are not alone!

slugger
Posts: 96
Joined: Fri Oct 17, 2008 2:12 am

Re: The numbers don't add up..

Postby slugger » Mon Oct 27, 2008 1:28 pm

Hey man,
I took it the 18th and thought it was really hard, and i prepped quite a bit. one of the other dudes that took it that morning said he only answered 45 questions; i did a bit better with 60, but not nearly as well as i was doing on my practices. i just want to beat 50%...fingers crossed.

JohnWillkins
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun May 11, 2008 6:27 am

Re: The numbers don't add up..

Postby JohnWillkins » Mon Oct 27, 2008 7:34 pm

gliese876d wrote:
so the people who have the 500's or 600's probably took it on a whim to see if they could do it and see if it's worth apply to higher caliber grad schools, or maybe they took it too early and have time to retake it, etc.


I find this quote rather condescending. *I* certainly did not take this test on a whim, but spent months preparing with the practice exams, I have done my homework about which schools I want to go to, and I am a decent student with a decent GPA.


Sorry, I didn't mean to make it sound that way. I haven't even taken a practice exam so I was really just pulling numbers out of nowhere. All the programs I have browsed have simply said "Physics GRE required/recommended" but they don't seem to give recommended scores as often as they do for the GRE general test, so unlike the GRE I have no clue what's really reasonable :oops:

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gliese876d
Posts: 57
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Re: The numbers don't add up..

Postby gliese876d » Wed Nov 12, 2008 11:21 pm

JohnWilkins,
It's no problem; I'm just kinda bitter about the whole GRE hoop that must be jumped through to prove our worth as potential graduate students, you know? I mean shouldn't our records speak for themselves if we have good grades and research experience and scholarships, etc. from a decently-ranked school? For me, the whole standardized test thing is just a psychological barrier, and says nothing about what I actually understand...

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Helio
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2007 7:11 pm

Re: The numbers don't add up..

Postby Helio » Wed Nov 12, 2008 11:41 pm

i must say that people that people are a bit full of themselves. you would be surprised how the test turns out. People say they doubt around 20... one gets a 870 the other a 750. I felt it was harder that the 0177 exam so somewhere in the 9277 range of difficulty. i have heard of people expecting 700s and getting 910. i answered 85 and have doubts on another 15 so i am not sure how i did. i hated how it seemed thermo heavy, sometimes and at others the questions were like.... i am used quadratic equation there... and they give me both options great...

I am paranoid about it. i hope for tomorrow

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secander2!
Posts: 264
Joined: Mon Oct 27, 2008 12:25 pm

Re: The numbers don't add up..

Postby secander2! » Thu Nov 13, 2008 5:02 am

I too am paranoid about it. I answered about 90 questions... which seems great! But then you have to take into account the fact that on every practice test, I got 1/3 of the questions I answered wrong... so that right there puts me at a 50 raw score... hmmmm, not quite as hot. Oh well, we'll see soon enough!




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