Overall, I'm generally nervous as to whether or not i'm actually competitive. I don't know if my GPA or modest test scores will detract too much from my application. Curious if people think that time to finish degree and coursework completed are more important/carry enough weight to overcome the GPA gap? Should I be applying to more backup schools and if so, do you have more suggestions?
Undergrad Institution: Well respected public university in top 20
Major: Honors Physics, Mathematics
Major GPA: 3.8
GRE: Q:168 V:158 W:5.0 P: 860 (80%)
Letters: One from research adviser that I have published with in computational material science, 2 from former research advisers that should all speak well of me.
Research Experience: 1 REU during previous summer that led to publication, 6mo in Gravitational Theory which will be put towards my Senior thesis.
Completed my double major program over the course of 3 years (not sure if that will be viewed as positive or negative).
Have done well taking 3 Grad courses in my last year at my Uni (QFT, GR, and Grad QM)
Places applying (All Condensed Matter Experimental unless denoted):
UCSB: Experimental Particle
Wisconsin- Madison: Experimental Particle
UIUC: Experimental Particle
Maryland- College Park
University of Rochester: AMO