Grad school prospects for a not-so-great student?

pharnarnst
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Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2012 2:51 am

Grad school prospects for a not-so-great student?

Postby pharnarnst » Thu Nov 08, 2012 3:06 am

I'm applying to grad schools and am hoping to get a better gauge on which ones (if any) I may get in to and hopefully narrow my list down.

Stats:
Undergrad: BS Physics at a top 40 school
GPA: 3.0 (Phys & overall)
pGRE: Waiting for results (Expected ~700)
GRE: Yet to take (not worried though)
Research: Meh... I've worked in a non-linear dynamics lab for about five semesters but my research is lacking. I've worked on the same project the entire time and have yet to get any good results.

In short, I've slacked off way too much in undergrad (both academics and labwork). I have two decent to great rec letters and (possibly) a third from my research professor. But considering my performance I'm not sure how well that will go.

Also, I'm legally blind, if that matters at all.

Currently I'm interested in complex systems/non-linear dynamics/biophysics as specialties (and maybe CM too). Because of my lack of sight, my professors recommend I do theory. But I've also been told that you really have to be the best of the best for that, which, I doubt I am.

Schools:
U Colorado Boulder
U Washington
Carnegie Mellon
UC Davis
Boston U
UT Dallas
Texas A&M
UI Chicago
Vanderbilt
Tufts
U SoCal

Any thoughts are greatly appreciated.

Thanks.

Catria
Posts: 353
Joined: Fri Oct 26, 2012 4:14 pm

Re: Grad school prospects for a not-so-great student?

Postby Catria » Mon Nov 12, 2012 9:08 pm

If Tufts was a (low?) reach for me, with a 3.67 GPA, and no research experience, from a top-5-in-Canada undergraduate physics program (Tufts acknowledged that a Canadian top-5 undergraduate program is of a high standard) then Tufts is a reach for you, since your research experience is subpar.

kangaroo
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Re: Grad school prospects for a not-so-great student?

Postby kangaroo » Wed Nov 14, 2012 8:22 pm

Catria wrote:If Tufts was a (low?) reach for me, with a 3.67 GPA, and no research experience, from a top-5-in-Canada undergraduate physics program (Tufts acknowledged that a Canadian top-5 undergraduate program is of a high standard) then Tufts is a reach for you, since your research experience is subpar.


You need to stop make Tufts happening. You would have gotten into Tufts easily, period. Tufts is a subpar program, they would love to admit someone with your credentials.

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quizivex
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Re: Grad school prospects for a not-so-great student?

Postby quizivex » Wed Nov 14, 2012 8:54 pm

Tufts would easily admit both of you out of appreciation for giving them so much attention on a public physics forum. The Tufts: dream or reality? thread has probably made hundreds of previously unaware physics students find out that there exists a school called Tufts and that they have a graduate program.

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Tom Joad
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Re: Grad school prospects for a not-so-great student?

Postby Tom Joad » Wed Nov 14, 2012 10:22 pm

It's true, I had thought Tufts was some Canadian university or something when they first mentioned it.

Catria
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Joined: Fri Oct 26, 2012 4:14 pm

Re: Grad school prospects for a not-so-great student?

Postby Catria » Thu Nov 15, 2012 9:18 pm

BU and CMU seem to be almost out of reach.

kangaroo wrote:You need to stop make Tufts happening. You would have gotten into Tufts easily, period. Tufts is a subpar program, they would love to admit someone with your credentials.


Really? Do that website count students that withdrew their apps as rejects?

http://www.physicsgrad.com/university-p ... university

Tufts would easily admit both of you out of appreciation for giving them so much attention on a public physics forum. The "Tufts: dream or reality? thread" has probably made hundreds of previously unaware physics students find out that there exists a school called Tufts and that they have a graduate program.


There has to be a reason why Tufts showed up in my talks with my profs about school selection... now, expect Tufts' selectivity to increase (even though their program may not get any better, but personally, I think Tufts is on the rise)

At least the people admitted and attending won't be treated like numbers and the grad student-faculty ratio is like 1:1.

blighter
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Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2012 6:30 pm

Re: Grad school prospects for a not-so-great student?

Postby blighter » Thu Nov 15, 2012 9:32 pm

Fine. Tufts is a good school. But you don't have to go around telling everyone that it is a reach for them. He has U Washington on his list, for crying out loud. And you are pointing out that Tufts is a reach for him?

Etranger
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Joined: Tue Jan 03, 2012 9:38 am

Re: Grad school prospects for a not-so-great student?

Postby Etranger » Fri Nov 16, 2012 2:19 am

quizivex wrote:Tufts would easily admit both of you out of appreciation for giving them so much attention on a public physics forum. The Tufts: dream or reality? thread has probably made hundreds of previously unaware physics students find out that there exists a school called Tufts and that they have a graduate program.


Hilarious.

I love this place. It makes me happy.

Catria
Posts: 353
Joined: Fri Oct 26, 2012 4:14 pm

Re: Grad school prospects for a not-so-great student?

Postby Catria » Fri Nov 16, 2012 11:21 am

blighter wrote:Fine. Tufts is a good school. But you don't have to go around telling everyone that it is a reach for them. He has U Washington on his list, for crying out loud. And you are pointing out that Tufts is a reach for him?


At least Tufts is reachable for him. As with most doctoral programs, the people for whom Tufts is not a reach often seem to be a lot better than a 3.0 with subpar research experience.

U Washington is a reach too...




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