LastStar007 wrote:Edited. Got a 730 (57%). Mostly I'm looking for how many of these schools to apply to, because 20 seems like too many.
Well, if you are applying into high energy theory and got a 730 PGRE (good but not too competitive for high energy theory), it is best to apply to 20 schools, especially since your list is full of top heavy tier schools, given of course your goal is to get into a top tier school. If you are more interested in mid tier universities (I mean, who is though?), I would take a couple of the top tier schools out for a mid tier university to increase safety. I know it is a lot of money but I think your hunch is right. If you go look at all of the past acceptances and rejections in high energy theory, you will see that it is quite competitive for the top tier schools. You will probably
But I can only draw conclusions from the limited sample of data in this forum, take my words with a grain of salt. Maybe someone else with more experience can give their input.
Edit: It is safe to bring it down to 15 schools if you knock out some top tiers. Otherwise, I wouldn't change the list as high energy theory, unfortunately, has a reputation for cutthroat competition. Better safe than sorry. But if you don't mind the prospect of a gap year and do not want a mid tier university, you can you can bring the list down to 15.
I don't want to sound too pessimistic, your application is good overall but it is the subfield you are applying to that you ought to be careful for. Positions are limited and competition is high, so they may weed people out based on a PGRE score (I know, not a fair predictor of ability but life isn't fair either lol).