WHY international?

  • This has become our largest and most active forum because the physics GRE is just one aspect of getting accepted into a graduate physics program.
  • There are applications, personal statements, letters of recommendation, visiting schools, anxiety of waiting for acceptances, deciding between schools, finding out where others are going, etc.

cancelled20080417
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WHY international?

Postby cancelled20080417 » Sat Dec 08, 2007 8:46 pm

:o
Last edited by cancelled20080417 on Sat Jan 05, 2008 1:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

tnoviell
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Postby tnoviell » Sat Dec 08, 2007 9:00 pm

Theology, history, and philosophy is pure dirt? I would beg to differ...the whole point of these courses is to make you a well rounded individual, and I always saw these courses as a way to be able to communicate with individuals outside of my field. And boy, there are some internationals I have met who surely need to work on that...(aka, all work, no play makes you dull)

What makes you think that your US degree is going to somehow bring you down? There are many graduate schools in the US...

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will
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Postby will » Sat Dec 08, 2007 9:23 pm

I've had the same experience with some international grad students. It's not that they're bad physicists, but they are completely inept at talking to students in the classes they TA. Even the ones with very good language skills don't do much "outside the box" thinking, and if the student doesn't learn it from the exact same notes the TA learned it from, they give up.

The strong focus I had on philosophy courses as an undergrad has actually put me in a better position to understand high-level physics material and communicate it to people that probably don't care, for example, about functional analysis, but would like to know what the hell quantum field theory is.

Also, learning history is a good way to put context around the history of physics, which is a very important area to understand if you want to make serious contributions to the field.[/i]

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Postby vicente » Sat Dec 08, 2007 10:18 pm

You're complaining about your GRE Subject score when it's 850?

That score is not going to get you filtered at any school outside the top 5, even if you are an international student. I honestly do not know what you are complaining about.

Maybe if you were an international and you only had 700, then that might be a cause for worry.

But 850? That's over the 80th percentile of all people thinking of going into physics graduate school.

When you have an 850, there are more important things grad depts look at: GPA, TOEFL scores, research experience, and recommendation letters.

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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 12:41 am

Liberal arts+ PGRE= TOTAL BULL ***)
Last edited by cancelled20080417 on Tue Dec 11, 2007 10:46 pm, edited 3 times in total.

tnoviell
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Postby tnoviell » Sun Dec 09, 2007 1:17 am

RG, my friend, all I can say to that is that I am glad I did not go to high school where you did...

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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 1:27 am

ok, ok, u din believe me!
Thats fine! U can disagree with me
but when it comes to RESEARCH, LIBERAL ARTS SUCK!
THIS is my conclusion!

vicente
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Postby vicente » Sun Dec 09, 2007 2:05 am

So only top 5 schools are "good schools"? And your U.S. degree is useless because you can't get into a top 5 school? And that you might as well teach in a primary school in your home country instead of going to non-top 5 like Yale, UT Austin, Michigan, Columbia, and UPenn?

My prof went to a liberal arts college and he ended up going to Harvard for graduate school.

I am not feeling a lot of sympathy for you man, nor do I get what you're complaining about.

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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 3:17 am

Here is the CONCLUSION in the end:

RG is a total absent minded freak!
I hope this makes everyone happy now!
Liberal arts-yeah!
ok people!
Good luck with ur liberal arts!
TC

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butsurigakusha
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Postby butsurigakusha » Sun Dec 09, 2007 3:50 am

I personally feel that an education should not just be job training, but a process in which one also gains better understanding of society, culture, and values. I think that eliminating "liberal arts" education would be damaging to society and would impair the ability of scientists to function in society.

Based on my limited observations, I suspect that physics students are (on average) among the most well-rounded students at my college. The average physics student is able to have an informed political discussion with a political science major, discuss literature with English majors, appreciate music with music majors, and so forth. On the other hand, I doubt very many of them would be able to carry on any sort meaningful conversation about physics. This is why I am proud to consider myself a part of this group. People sometimes imagine that physics students are a bunch of nerds, but I don't think we are. Among my friends in the department, we have a wide range of interests. I've noticed that often people who are good at physics are also good at other things.

If you look at many of the physicists who have major impact, you will find that they understood a lot more than just physics (for example, Einstein). And I don't think many of them would agree that liberal arts education is useless. I think a physicist who doesn't understand politics, culture, or society, will not find much success.

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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 11:56 am

i really don understand where you guys are going with your discussion here!

My complains were:
1) Due to my liberal arts education I could not focus more on core Physics classes and ended up getting 850, which is a low score for me compared to my friends back home. It may be good for vicente, tnoviell and other people here, BUT it is NOT a good score for me, alrite. Thats jus me. (Can u believe there was a HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT from the US, last year who got 960 in Physics GRE, and he was not excited about his score. Go find it for yourself, his posts are there somewhere on this FORUM). (I am NOT talking about lazy asses, I am talking about hardcore score and harcore Physics!
If we know Physics, everything else come with it, history, philosophy, religion, politics and with real,very real Physics, smokin hot girls also come with it, go find it for urself if does, if u have not already done so!hehehehe)


2) Although my undergrad education in the US, I am treated like an international student when it comes to admission to the graduate school

These were my complains!

I hope all of us in this forum are NOT absent minded like me!! hahaha
Last edited by cancelled20080417 on Sun Dec 09, 2007 12:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 12:02 pm

butsurigakusha

my definition of NERD is:
A crazy ass who only knows politics, society, history, philosophy, Physics and is very good at discussing all these kind of ***, BUT DOES NOT REALLY KNOW THERE is something MORE in LIFE other than these ***!

I HOPE YOU ALL KNOW WHAT I AM TALKING ABOUT, if you are a guy( or a girl, doesnot matter)!

People, find it out for urself, what those extra things are!!!!!
Goodluck!

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Postby phoenix » Sun Dec 09, 2007 2:43 pm

Having interest in talking about all the above topics you listed has nothing conflicting with knowing other real things out there in the world...

On the contrary, if you fully understand and have a good grasp of the above fields' topics, that helps you understand better how this world works...or they even accelerates the your speed in learning new knowledge...

If you have trouble with understanding the inner beauty of courses of liberal arts...i would doubt whether you really appreciate (sometimes, even very often) the philosophical aspect of physics, where also the depth of the human wisdom lies...

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Postby AppPhy » Sun Dec 09, 2007 3:38 pm

I concur with RG in that it's hard for an international student studying at a US liberal arts school to compete with students studying at foreign institutions who have so much more coursework in physics, and can consequently do much better in the physics GRE.
However, to me such a scenario appears to be a drawback for international students only if they let it be so. My understanding of grad school admission, partly based on advice from faculty on the admission committee at a top physics graduate school, is that while GRE scores and advanced physics coursework may be important (depending on the particular institution in question), the emphasis is usually on other parts of the application like the letters of recommendation (LORs) and research experience. A low GRE score will most likely hurt an international student's application, but a good score won't get him/her in by itself at one of the top schools.
And I think international students studying in the US have the opportunity to really strengthen the LORs and research experience part of their application. Faculty making decisions give a lot more weight to LORs coming from people (and institutions) they are familiar with. At good liberal arts schools that encourage faculty-student interactions and that have research opportunities available, it's usually not difficult for international students to get good LORs and decent research experience.
However, if a student chooses not to make most of the opportunities available, it will naturally become very difficult to be admitted.

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twistor
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Postby twistor » Sun Dec 09, 2007 4:11 pm

I had a liberal arts education and I think I could've used some more physics coursework. In fact, I won't be able to take extra physics courses at my school because of ridiculous general education requirements like foreign language classes. Most of the lower level physics classes are geared towards engineering/pre-med students. Liberal arts education is a joke that goes back a hundred years to when the rich attended universities mostly for social networking purposes. Today a liberal arts education is quite useless as the job skills required to succeed require specialization and expertise in a field. The American educational system has not adjusted to fill this need and as a result we're churning out students who know a little about everything and a lot about nothing.

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will
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Postby will » Sun Dec 09, 2007 4:30 pm

Read the post above you. No matter how much we don't want to admit it... Physics is a field where your connections count. If people in your field like you, they're more likely to cite your paper over a competitor's. Your research is more relevant if people enjoy hearing you speak at conferences. There's a lot to be said for making friends and knowing the right people, and being articulate and knowledgeable outside of physics is a great way to get there.

Also, if you don't get a perfect score on the GRE it's your own fault (note, I didn't get one either). Your "undergraduate preparation" isn't sitting in there taking the test. You are. You either studied hard enough or you didn't. Simple.

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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 5:27 pm

"h
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tnoviell
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Postby tnoviell » Sun Dec 09, 2007 5:44 pm

RG,

I am a current graduate student, by the way. I hate to break it to you, but if you're a hard-nosed all science kind of guy, it's not going to get you far. How do I know? Because I've seen it. I've seen people from programs you want to be in, and the unfortunate reality is, not many people want someone who is socially inept. When you give a presentation, it has to be interesting, because regardless of your content, your audience will fall asleep. I can guarantee it. Science, and life in general, is about selling yourself and selling your ideas. That's something you're going to have to get used to.

By the way, when you hit graduate school, yes, generally the international students score very high on the exams in advanced courses, because they have taken them before. Does that make them better students? No, not at all. Graduate school puts everyone on the same page very quickly. The amount of work required in graduate school is staggering. The only difference between them and you is they may have a slightly less hellish first year.

By the way, your job is no more serious than someone who makes a living as a clown.

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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 5:56 pm

LIBERAL ARTS = TOTAL BULLSHIT
Last edited by cancelled20080417 on Tue Dec 11, 2007 10:45 pm, edited 2 times in total.

tnoviell
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Postby tnoviell » Sun Dec 09, 2007 6:10 pm

All I can say is: Enjoy your interviews :)

I wish you the best of luck, and I hope you make good science.

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Postby phoenix » Sun Dec 09, 2007 6:19 pm

RG, your posts have been very funny..
in one way, you complain those things you didn't do well with....
i mean, yes, you may have difficulties, so what? it's your choice whether to work harder or even much harder to get everything well done...or if you just can't handle them at the same time, just sacrifice some of them, your GPA liberal arts courses, or your time spent on hardcore physics...
GRE physics is just a joke in some sense, it doesn't measure the aptitude of students well...knowing advanced course content, even simply knowing how to fourier transforming functions, will never help you in GRE physics...it took me one week to prepare for the subject GRE because i had to handle GRE general...most of my friends have the same situation with them and we had almost no sleep in that week...and most of my friends got 990, 980,..i am not showing off or what, but remember, there are people who didn't sleep for a week or just one or two hours per day to prepare for a test in a rush...and they did well...we haven't learned any electronics, solid state physics, or particle physics, it turns out that even for those so called "advanced", ETS asks things more like common sense rather than sophisticated knowledge... YOU CAN BLAME NO ONE EXCEPT YOURSELF..
THE ONLY THING TO TELL IS: getting a perfect score doesn't mean anything, except that you not in the disadvantageous position; getting a bad score especially as an international (since you love to refer yourself to) just means you didn't work hard enough or you just suck..that's it..
i never mean to talk in such a rude way..but hey, you are just too disrespectful to others!!!!!
by the way, in my university, we have a lot of liberal arts requirements too..that absolutely takes away a bunch of time of my focus on physics, but as a human being, getting some sense of other aspects is very healthy and helpful...unless you are a freaking genius who has great talents for physics/maths, and definitely making contributions every other minute...well...distracting you may be an unwise thing to do..but you are just a normal undergraduate, you don't even know you are going to survive in your graduate school or have to drop out of it to find a job which may require your common knowledge!!!

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twistor
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Postby twistor » Sun Dec 09, 2007 6:41 pm

Studying for the GRE cannot patch holes in your education. Furthermore, it shouldn't be required. Isn't that the whole idea? After 4-5 years of physics education you shouldn't have trouble with the test, but so many domestic liberal arts students do.

Do you really think the problem is the capability of the students? People who come from other countries do a lot more physics than we do. They start earlier, they do it more rigorously, and they do it for longer. Domestic students can't possibly hope to catch up in a reasonable amount of time.

RG is right. While they do tensor analysis, we study French. While they study the standard model, we're taking classes on film. While they study condensed matter, we study art history. How can we catch up on our own?
It is simply not possible to catch-up in such a short period of time, and letting your grades suffer in other areas is not a viable alternative. In any case, unless you're going to be a museum curator, no job requires that you know art history. None! Liberal arts is a joke.

So, do you have no one to blame but yourself? No! As an undergraduate you expect that you are being educated in such a way that if you get A's in all your classes and do your classwork you can expect high-achievements on the GRE. The fact that that is not the case is the fault of the system, and is in no way a reflection of the students. After all, we are only as good as our teachers.

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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 6:48 pm

LA is total bullshit!
Last edited by cancelled20080417 on Wed Dec 12, 2007 1:58 pm, edited 2 times in total.

phoenix
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Postby phoenix » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:00 pm

well...i still recall in one question in Nov.3rd test, that is:
what quarks make up a proton(or maybe neutron)?
i guess that's not something you have to attend a particle physics to learn about...it's common knowledge...which you probably learn somewhere in the corner of your fundamental physics book for introductory modern physics...
i myself had two years in my own university..and spent a whole year (my whole junior year) in an exchange abroad program in US..i have both the experience with US system and Hong Kong system where i would receive my degree....and i myself actually from mainland china..which is a whole different story again from Hong Kong system...
the one year study in US while conducting research at the same time, i have to say, life in US is much much easier...as a US citizen/permanent residence/even international student studying in US like RG, you guys have many more great opportunities than we do...and as long as you worked hard to some extent, you are good to go...in US, i had also seen US undergraduate who doesn't need to revise for GRE subject..and did very well....

the point is:
(1) liberal arts courses shouldn't be the reason why you got a bad score
even if you are taking these courses NOW, you can choose to sacrifice them this semester, strategically speaking, they won't show up in the transcripts sent, why do you care? but GRE physics does show up!

(2) there EXIST both types of US local students, working very hard to score high and just being good at what they have learned and getting good score, if you are not the second one, you should choose to go first path...

(3) since you are international, and you seem to be so obsessed with all these training, learning advanced courses thing, i assume you received similar education in high school and you think that's the best way to success in physics field. then, i have to say, what makes you different after you come to US? i mean, as far as i know, the so called training in your words is usually the exercises students find for themselves, the training is a spontaneous thing, not required by homework...and even if not so, there are so many resources out there, books, online exercises, etc., you can do them yourself and check with the solutions provided...

(4) last but not least, actually this is the only point that matters, as long as you want this so badly, you will try to figure it out whatever it takes...if you couldn't make it, it's either your strategy's problem, or your own management problem...

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Postby phoenix » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:05 pm

to RG:
yeh, i did quite poorly..and i am very disappointed at ETS that only 97 percentile as highest is provided to me..
does this make you satisfied?
i post things usually just to get some information i need...very rarely i will writing things like that...seriously, i don't care a single bit what you think...i mean, hey, who are you?
and i just said something to tell you that complaining about your schooling doesn't help at all...and now i learn my lesson to shut myself up in front of a retard...

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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:14 pm

yeah!
There you go, ur real self is OUT!

You care no body's advice but you simply come to the forum to show yourself off!

Coz u think u r a true genius to already know( in 1 yr) that life for an international student is easy in the US!!
True genious!


For the independet training thing: for your kind information
I have two publications, one on AJP the other on Physical Review as a SOLE Author!!
Got it!
Yes i am a retard coz I got 850 in PGRE and the liberal arts is resposible for this low score!
Last edited by cancelled20080417 on Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:32 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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twistor
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Postby twistor » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:18 pm

(1) liberal arts courses shouldn't be the reason why you got a bad score
even if you are taking these courses NOW, you can choose to sacrifice them this semester, strategically speaking, they won't show up in the transcripts sent, why do you care? but GRE physics does show up!


Schools usually ask for one set of transcripts now and one more set when your final grades are in. Doing good on the GRE is not worth *** up your other grades.

(2) there EXIST both types of US local students, working very hard to score high and just being good at what they have learned and getting good score, if you are not the second one, you should choose to go first path...


The point is that you shouldn't have to work hard after 4 years of undergraduate work. You've worked hard enough!

(3) since you are international, and you seem to be so obsessed with all these training, learning advanced courses thing, i assume you received similar education in high school and you think that's the best way to success in physics field. then, i have to say, what makes you different after you come to US? i mean, as far as i know, the so called training in your words is usually the exercises students find for themselves, the training is a spontaneous thing, not required by homework...and even if not so, there are so many resources out there, books, online exercises, etc., you can do them yourself and check with the solutions provided...


Huh?

(4) last but not least, actually this is the only point that matters, as long as you want this so badly, you will try to figure it out whatever it takes...if you couldn't make it, it's either your strategy's problem, or your own management problem...


Knowning what it takes and having the time and resources to pull it off are two different things.

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twistor
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Postby twistor » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:20 pm

No one in the 97th percentile has any room to complain about their score. None!

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Postby twistor » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:26 pm

and i just said something to tell you that complaining about your schooling doesn't help at all...and now i learn my lesson to shut myself up in front of a retard...


As someone who with physics ability who didn't score well on even the quantitative section of the general test, I find your post extremely condescending and offensive.

Who are you to call others retards because their score is lower than yours?

Perhaps they may not have your particular gift for standardized testing, or maybe they aren't willing to put themselves in a week-long, coked-out haze for a week in order to prepare, but that certainly doesn't make you better than them.

Furthermore, you don't seemed to have quite mastered the English language yet. Maybe you should spend less time working on binge study sessions and more time working on your own personal shortcomings instead of coming here and insulting others.

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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:27 pm

Phoenix,

I REALLY THINK YOU NEED LIBERAL ARTS EDUCATION if you have not already gone through that training!

Then only i will understad the true importance of Liberal arts!!

U spent one yr in the US doing research only, and you are saying life is easy for INTERNATIONAL students!!
YOu make very nice conclusions! I think now I realize why liberal arts is important! It works VERY well for some people out there! hehehe

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will
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Postby will » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:35 pm

The point is that you shouldn't have to work hard after 4 years of undergraduate work. You've worked hard enough!


No! You haven't! They tell you what's going to be on the test and it's your business to learn it. There's plenty of domestic students that get 990s. It doesn't mean they're better physicists, no, but it doesn't mean that you were at a disadvantage either. You may have never said "I don't want a perfect score," but you didn't put in the effort required to get one.

Furthermore, you don't seemed to have quite mastered the English language yet. Maybe you should spend less time working on binge study sessions and more time working on your own personal shortcomings instead of coming here and insulting others.


RG isn't exactly Charles Dickens either. If you're going to say a liberal education which emphasizes language skills is a waste of time for physicists, you shouldn't be attacking people for their language skills.

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Postby phoenix » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:36 pm

to twistor:
i never said a single word to insult RG until he began to be rude...(at least, in my definition) and i will never call someone retard just because they didn't perform well on a test...and there is absolutely no reason to do that...

1. i have two other friends as far as i know got 990, one other 980, someone got similar, cant remember..i was really talking about MY FRIENDS

2. my english is not good, and i am aware of that...and especially when i type quickly, my typing errors come up frequently...apology if my english is bad

3. i said retard, just because there is someone keeping posting things (in a very not polite tone) and then keeping his attitude against everyone..as if everyone is trying to piss him off...on the contrary..who will spend some time reading the whole thread i believe do show some care in their way...

and if my wording in last message is insulting anyone who is reading this thread, i am very sorry..there is no possible way that i meant to offend anyone was not quite him/herself during the test...

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Postby phoenix » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:42 pm

i did take courses in USA last year, including psychology.
although i was having huge trouble memorizing those tough technical words in psychology..

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twistor
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Postby twistor » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:43 pm

RG wasn't insulting others but phoenix was. RG's issue was with liberal arts education, but phoenix's issue was with RG...

Liberal arts doesn't emphasize language skills; it doesn't emphasize anything, which is the problem.

It doesn't mean they're better physicists, no, but it doesn't mean that you were at a disadvantage either.


Sure it does. That's what I've been saying. Fewer physics classes which are less intense than in other places puts you at a disadvantage. Studying formulae won't make up for it.

And my score isn't in yet, so as far you know I may have gotten a 990. In that case it would be an achievement in SPITE of my education and not because of it.

cancelled20080417
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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:47 pm

i said retard, just because there is someone keeping posting things (in a very not polite tone) and then keeping his attitude against everyone..as if everyone is trying to piss him off...on the contrary..who will spend some time reading the whole thread i believe do show some care in their way...



Phoenix,

I am sorry to say this, but you def need lil bit of liberal arts now!

On this forum I am always talking to undergrads like my friends in my school here!
YOu came out of the blue, and without understadning the whole purpose of this thread starting ranting over on something else!!


I know Will is mad at me coz I never told him the citation for the ISING MODEl
Sorry Will, I cannot do that now, coz I am working on this paper!!
Last edited by cancelled20080417 on Mon Dec 10, 2007 12:49 am, edited 1 time in total.

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twistor
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Postby twistor » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:49 pm

phoenix:

Sorry about the riposte. Maybe it was a little hasty, but I thought you were attacking others who didn't score as high as you.

However, just because someone didn't score high on the GRE does not mean they didn't put in the effort to master the test.

Moreover, just because your friends studied for a week for the test does not mean that is the sole reason they did well. It is just as likely that they would have gotten 990's anyway, and the review just reinforced what they already knew.

My point is this:

If studying for the physics GRE (NOT studying physics, just studying for the physics subject test) is all it takes to get a 990 then we're wasting our time with this bullshit. If that is the case then anyone who studies basic physics can master the test, so what is the point?

The whole idea behind the test is to measure what you've learned as an undergraduate (this is, of course, debatable, and I would argue that it doesn't actually do that...) Thus no further studying should be required beyond what you learn in college. If more studying IS required, then it is a refleciton on your college and not on you. You will not to do as well as others who have more physics than you. It's very simple, really.

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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 7:53 pm

Twistor thanks for ur post,
there is at least somebody out there who hates liberal arts!
one two courses are fine, but we here in the liberal arts cannot major without aleast 11 liberal arts classes!
This was my whole point



I always use F*** word when I am talking to my peers, does this mean I am rude!

my rant is finally over! I give up
I have a test on tuesday!

Now next semester I have another liberal arts requirement to fulfill!
SENIOR CAPSTONE on GLOBAL >>>>what ever! F*** liberal arts! IThis IS WHAT I WAS COMPLAINING ABOUT!!
Last edited by cancelled20080417 on Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:29 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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will
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Postby will » Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:03 pm

You may have gotten a 990. I don't argue that. If you did, it's because you put in the effort for it, and I commend you. And yes, it may be "in spite" of your education... but it's the same for everyone else, even internationals, and I don't see why you don't recognize that. No one breezes through the test for a perfect score. Everyone has to work, and it's your responsibility to keep up. If other people have better classes, well, too damn bad. If you think you're good enough to get into a top-5 school, you should've done that work on your own anyway. I spent a month doing particle physics problems out of a very low level modern physics book, and there weren't any elementary particle questions on the test that gave me any trouble. It's not all about time or resources for the non-standard material, then, and if you can't self-teach introductory material you won't make it as a researcher anyway. That's the point.

I'm not saying this to be mean, I'm saying it because it's true. Also, the only reason to gripe is if you somehow expected a spot in a top-5 school. That's just unrealistic. There's some 6 billion people on this planet, and some of them are bound to be better than you no matter how good you think you are.

And finally, In the end your physics GRE score doesn't matter, for sure. It is the quality of your research that counts, and the quality of your research is, in fact, affected by your social network, and you will have learned to network better if you take anything away from a liberal arts education. If you don't, then you wasted four years, and that's a pretty silly thing to do and then blame on others.

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twistor
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Postby twistor » Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:13 pm

Unlike most international students I'm not getting a free ride though the American educational system. This means I have to work to support myself and this leaves little time for studying outside of what I already have to do. If you have that kind of time then kudos to you.

I pay good money for my education and I don't think I should have to compensate by doing it on my own. If I do, then I am wasting my time because I could have done that from the start.

As far as self-introductory material, at the leading edge of research there is no such thing.

Textbooks are written on things that are old news.

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Postby twistor » Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:18 pm

will:

Your post brings up an interesting point.

Why is it always the people who say that high-scores are a product of their own hard-work are almost always exclusively interested in ivy league schools?

If your own hard-work has led to your success, then why should it matter where you go?

This type of thinking is hypocritical. If your school doesn't matter then what's the difference between Harvard and state? Maybe the state school will offer you more money, in which case it seems more prudent to go there since the school you attend does not affect your success, according to your reasoning.

Self-study is no substitute for a high-quality undergraduate application.

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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:32 pm

Twistor,
in that sense, I am lucky coz I do not pay ANYTHING to my College!
I am sorry to hear that you work to pay for your College!
That must have been real pain in the ass!

People who go to good school say ranking of school doesnot matter! Yet, they do not want to study or do research in a state school, where they have a lot more funding than any private schools! what the heck is wrong with people!
JUS SAY GOOD SCHOOL MATTERS! Its that simple!


Ps. I am no more interested in discussing liberal arts and bullshit now!!
Last edited by cancelled20080417 on Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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twistor
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Postby twistor » Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:35 pm

Apparently this topic is very controversial.

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will
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Postby will » Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:36 pm

I'm not an ivy-league applicant. I'm a domestic student who is getting paid to go through my undergraduate at a giant state school because, despite my academic success in high school, I'm from a lower-middle class family and therefore despite growing up with often nothing to eat, the federal government decided my parents made too much money for me to get federal aid. I'd not have been able to afford an education unless it had been paid for by the state.

The graduate schools that I'm looking at are all public institutions. I'm firmly of the belief that it does not matter where you go.

So I think you are misreading my argument. As a domestic student, unless you have done absolutely tragically on the GRE, you have very little to worry about. That is, unless you feel you deserve a place at a top-5 institution. If you do, well, you knew exactly what was required of a strong candidate, and regardless of how you feel about the importance of their criteria, they are what they are. If you're so philosophically opposed to those criteria, don't apply there. That's what I'm doing and I feel fine.

What upsets me is that RG is so upset about his score not being competitive, as an international student, and he blames it on his education. If he considers his past four years as academic suicide, he had four years to correct that problem.

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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:42 pm

How could I have corrected the problem, WILL?returning back to my country or transferring to some other institution!

I HAD NO CHOICE, people!

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Postby will » Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:47 pm

You say your peers in your home country did better than you on the test. If that's what your goal was, then it seems silly to have come here for what you see as a worse education.

If transferring was not viable, then it is, in fact, up to you to put in the work that your peers at these hard-nose scientific institutions put in. They didn't sit passively in a class with a teacher pouring knowledge into their heads from a bucket. They worked hard, and you could work hard too, no matter where you are.

If your contributions to physics are what you say they are, then you really don't have anything to worry about with your GRE score, and you should be pleased to have had the opportunity to be more well read and socially adept then your hard-nose peers. If you didn't relish those opportunities, then you wasted your time. Other people applying to Harvard and MIT did not.

cancelled20080417
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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:54 pm

hahahah
funny
I don know why!

cancelled20080417
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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:55 pm

Will
plz don mind, I was trying to reach my 100 post! an this is my 99 th

cancelled20080417
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Postby cancelled20080417 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:56 pm

Ok
here it comes
my century!

Have fun guys!

I am quiting now!

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twistor
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Postby twistor » Sun Dec 09, 2007 8:57 pm

I think we're actually on the same page then, so I don't know what we're arguing about :)

I still think RG has a valid point, though. Chances are if he wasn't educated in America he would have a much higher subject score. In that case, it isn't fair to treat him as an international applicant since his education is the product of an American university.

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Postby will » Sun Dec 09, 2007 9:06 pm

Hm. I was reading your posts in a context of you being one of the posters upset at not being a shoo-in for a top spot, and now, reading more carefully, I realize that that was unfair. Apologies.

I'm still sticking to my guns that RG knew what was required of him, though. Even for an international student, an 850 is still a respectable score at the big-player state schools, places like Wisconsin or Michigan, and so it's not fair to blame his liberal arts education if he doesn't get into Harvard. We were held to the same standard.




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