Strongly recommended PGRE

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dashapdv
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2012 4:55 pm

Strongly recommended PGRE

Postby dashapdv » Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:19 pm

You are all probably tired of such questions, but I can't stop myself from asking, sorry.
Some programs I'm considering say what gre physics is not required but strongly recommended. Particularity I talking about Stony Brook, Toronto MS (they don't need gre at all).
I've got alright application in general (I think). But my PGRE is sadly substandard. Do you think should I send it? Will it harm me, what do you think?
My score is 710 (58%). Am also international (russian) female applying mostly to ex-HEP.

bfollinprm
Posts: 1197
Joined: Sat Nov 07, 2009 11:44 am

Re: Strongly recommended PGRE

Postby bfollinprm » Mon Dec 03, 2012 1:58 am

In the US, strongly recommended PGRE means you should explain in your application (in your Statement of Purpose, most likely, unless they have a special place in the application to explain it) why you didn't include it. Being an international student, where sometimes the PGRE test center is hard to get to, can be a good excuse. If you don't have a good excuse, you should send it. It won't hurt you anymore than not sending it in will; your score is not exactly terrible.

Elsewhere, there's no need for the PGRE at all, it's a test predominantly (exlusively?) used in the United States.

Source: UC Davis admissions chair, an institution who does not require the PGRE, though "strongly recommends" it.

dashapdv
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2012 4:55 pm

Re: Strongly recommended PGRE

Postby dashapdv » Mon Dec 03, 2012 3:01 am

Aha, then I suppose I don't have a choice. It makes everything easier :)
Thanks a lot for such a quick reply.

TakeruK
Posts: 813
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 3:05 pm

Re: Strongly recommended PGRE

Postby TakeruK » Mon Dec 03, 2012 1:47 pm

Just to provide an alternate answer: Caltech's Geological and Planetary Sciences option only "strongly recommended" the PGRE. I know some students who did not take it and there was no questions about it. Since it's too late to take the PGRE for this application season, if there are some schools you really want to apply to but they list the PGRE as "strongly recommended", you could go ahead and apply anyways (or ask if it's okay for you to apply without a PGRE score). I think if the PGRE isn't required, then they would want to see some other evidence of strong physics background (e.g. GPA).

dashapdv
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2012 4:55 pm

Re: Strongly recommended PGRE

Postby dashapdv » Mon Dec 03, 2012 3:52 pm

Thanks for reply. The problem is what I have my PGRE (see above), but I don't know if it's normal or bad for international student. Almost everyone here has higher scores, so I am inclined to think what my application would be better off without it.
I know what people got into good schools with such scores and I am going to send it to good schools too, but if I have choice not to send it maybe it's better not?
This is my dilemma.
But I would probably listen to bfollinprm and send it or they might think I failed it completely or something.

TakeruK
Posts: 813
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 3:05 pm

Re: Strongly recommended PGRE

Postby TakeruK » Mon Dec 03, 2012 6:23 pm

Sorry, for some reason, I completely missed the point that you already took it!!

My score was even lower than yours (53rd%) and I took it twice (first time was 44th%, 3 years ago). I took bfollinprm's advice and sent it anyways. I figured that if they only list it as "strongly recommended" then they probably won't care if it's bad. I'm now attending that program.

I agree that you should send it anyways if you already took it, except for Toronto. Canadian schools don't really need it at all, and when I applied for MSc programs (in Canada), I didn't report my 44th% score.

dashapdv
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2012 4:55 pm

Re: Strongly recommended PGRE

Postby dashapdv » Tue Dec 04, 2012 3:08 am

Thank you! Yes, I think you are right. I'm going to send it too.




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