2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

  • 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.

User avatar
sergioyapa
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Feb 22, 2017 11:00 pm

2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby sergioyapa » Fri Jun 23, 2017 4:00 pm

This is the most useful resource PhysicsGRE has to offer. If you have used this information in the past or are currently using it to help decide upon schools, I highly suggest you help out and post your own profile once you have applied to schools. Future members of this forum will find it very useful! Don't be shy!

Copy and paste the template below in your reply to keep the formatting.

______________________________________________
[b]Undergrad Institution[/b]: (School or type of school, such as big state, lib arts, ivy, technical, foreign (what country?)... Overall Reputation in Physics?)
[b]Major(s)[/b]:
[b]Minor(s)[/b]:
[b]GPA in Major[/b]:
[b]Overall GPA[/b]:
[b]Length of Degree[/b]: (Are you graduating after 3, 4, or 5 years?)
[b]Position in Class[/b]: (No numbers needed, but are you top? near top? average? struggling?)
[b]Type of Student[/b]: (Domestic/International, male/female, minority?)

[b]GRE Scores [/b]: (revised or old version?)
[b]Q[/b]:
[b]V[/b]:
[b]W[/b]:
[b]P[/b]:


[b]TOEFL[/b]: ([b]R[/b]: , [b]L[/b]: , [b]S[/b]: , [b]W[/b]: )


[b]Research Experience[/b]: (At your school or elsewhere? What field? How much time? Any publications (Mth author out of N?) or conference talks etc...)

[b]Awards/Honors/Recognitions[/b]: (Within your school or outside?)

[b]Pertinent Activities or Jobs[/b]: (Such as tutor, TA, SPS officer etc...)

[b]Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help[/b]:

[b]Special Bonus Points[/b]: (Such as connections, grad classes, famous recommenders, female or minority status etc...)

[b]Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter[/b]:

[b]Applying to Where[/b]:

[u]School[/u] - Department - Research Interest [color=#4000BF](Feb. 28: WILL ATTEND for Ph.D. Accepted via website/email + $Xk Fellowship + $XXk/X month TA)[/color]
[u]School[/u] - Department - Research Interest [color=#00BF00](Feb. 14: ACCEPTED for Ph.D via website/email + $Xk Fellowship + $XXk/X month TA)[/color]
[u]School[/u] - Department - Research Interest [color=#FF0000](Feb. 23: Rejected via website/email)[/color]
Last edited by quizivex on Sat Sep 23, 2017 1:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: sticky'd

yeshuamo
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2015 6:50 pm

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby yeshuamo » Sun Sep 17, 2017 7:44 pm

Undergrad Institution: Current bachelor's: Large state school, OK physics, spectacular astronomy. First bachelor's: top-30 large private university.
Major(s): Physics. First degree: Business and English.
Minor(s): Math.
GPA in Major:
Overall GPA: 3.71 (Current degree), 3.47 (First degree)
Length of Degree: (Are you graduating after 3, 4, or 5 years?) 2.5 + 4 for the first bachelor's
Position in Class: ~90%
Type of Student: Domestic white female

GRE Scores :
Q: 161 (88%)
V: 164 (87%)
W: 5.5 (98%) (yes mom, you read that right)
P: 580 (24%), retaking in October


Research Experience: (At your school or elsewhere? What field? How much time? Any publications (Mth author out of N?) or conference talks etc...)
2+ years with the same professor in Cosmology (my entire time I've been in school for physics)
1 year in computational astrophysics (concurrent with the above while it lasted)
1 year + in experimental biophysics (hello) (concurrent with the two projects above)
1 REU in computational radio astronomy
1 REU in cosmology (computational and instrumentation)

No pubs :eyeroll:
4 posters
5 talks

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: 2 merit-based awards in science/physics, 1 award for scholarship and character from a national lab, best undergraduate poster, 4.0 GPA congratulatory kudos, departmental award from my literature department during my first degree

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: Officer in two physics minority engagement clubs, I've done a bunch of outreach, volunteered at a cancer hospital for a year, have volunteered as an observer for a cosmological survey for a significant number of nights

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help: Fluent in Russian, which comes in handy more often than I'd expected. I take acting and improv classes and actively work on my public speaking skills, so my talks generally receive praise. I have a massive amount of writing experience compared to most applicants. Oh, and two years of full-time work experience (as a writer).

Special Bonus Points: two grad classes (1 was ultra-relevant to my grad school interest, completed with an A; the other is one of those courses physics grad students take in their first year. Grade TBD). Female. I have 6 eager recommenders and have encountered a number of cosmologists hearing good things about me from other scientists before meeting me, so I have little doubt that LORs will be my biggest strength. A few faculty at the schools I'm applying to have mentioned "putting in a word on my behalf" to the admissions committee.

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter:
Not sure how much impact this can have, but I am a preceptor for calculus-based physics, worked as a math and language arts tutor at public inner city schools for two years. I also mention that I am good at graphic design in my CV, which should be evident from my talk slides in the portfolio that some schools accept.

Applying to Where:

Harvard - Astronomy - Cosmology
Princeton - Astronomy - Computational Cosmology
Yale - Astronomy - Cosmology
Chicago - Astronomy - Cosmology
UC Berkeley - Astronomy - Cosmology
Stanford - Physics - Cosmology
Ohio State - Astronomy - Cosmology
Pittsburg - Physics - Cosmology
Carnegie Mellon - Physics - Computational Astrophysics
UC Santa Cruz - Astronomy - Cosmology
Michigan - Physics - Computational Cosmology
Durham University (UK) - MSc in Physics - Cosmology
University of Florida - Astronomy - Cosmology or Computational Astro
UC Irvine - Physics - Cosmology

911876gev
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Sep 20, 2017 12:02 pm

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby 911876gev » Wed Sep 20, 2017 12:32 pm

s
Last edited by 911876gev on Tue Oct 17, 2017 7:40 pm, edited 2 times in total.

neurotal
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Sep 20, 2017 1:12 am

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby neurotal » Wed Sep 20, 2017 6:19 pm

Undergrad Institution: Huge midwestern R1 school, top 50 school in physics
Major(s): Honors Physics
Minor(s): History, Astronomy
GPA in Major: 3.54 with a slight upward trend
Overall GPA: 3.61
Length of Degree: 4
Position in Class: Slightly above average amongst my honors classmates.
Type of Student: White American male

GRE Scores : (revised or old version?)
Q: 162
V: 165
W: 5
P: 640 (Apr. 2017), 750 (Sep. 2017)


TOEFL: N/A


Research Experience: 1.5 years measuring decay rates of radioactive isotopes looking for solar influences. Lab group is mainly concerned looking for DM. 1 paper, stuck in internal review by collaboration.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Small research award that I did nothing with.

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: Spent a year teaching Physics I labs with high marks from organizers.

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help: ?

Special Bonus Points: Have taken honors coursework, I guess.

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: Nothing exciting.

Applying to Where: We'll see...
Last edited by neurotal on Fri Oct 13, 2017 9:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

albuser
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun May 15, 2016 2:50 pm

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby albuser » Sat Sep 30, 2017 3:20 pm

Undergrad Institution: State technical school - top 30 in physics
Major(s): Physics
Minor(s): Mathematics
GPA in Major: 4.0
Overall GPA: 3.95
Length of Degree: 3 years
Position in Class: Top
Type of Student: Domestic white male

GRE Scores :
Q: 170 (97%)
V: 166 (97%)
W: 4.0 (60%)
P: 950 (90%)

Research Experience: One year spent working on computational astrophysics at home institution - two poster presentations at national conferences. REU at Cornell in experimental condensed matter physics. Six months (and counting) in condensed matter theory at home institution working on unconventional superconductivity, expecting publication soon.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Silver Medal in University Physics Competition, departmental scholarship, travel grant for conference.

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: President of SPS chapter for one year, TA for one semester (Diff Eq).

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help: Hoping to attend the Boulder School in 2018 if that counts for anything.

Special Bonus Points: Some connections at various places through advisors and past instructors. Two of my letter writers are well-known in condensed matter and generally well accomplished. Grad coursework in QM, stat mech, algebraic topology, differential geometry, complex analysis.

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: Graduating early for financial reasons and due to lack of activity in my area of interest at undergraduate institution. Despite my GRE writing score (lol) I know how to communicate effectively and will have a well-crafted personal statement.

Applying to Where: All for CMT - QPT, Holographic Duality, Topological Order

Stanford - Physics
Harvard - Physics
MIT - Physics
UIUC - Physics
Princeton - Physics
Caltech - Physics
Cornell - Physics
U Chicago - Physics
UMD - Physics
Last edited by albuser on Sat Nov 18, 2017 2:37 pm, edited 6 times in total.

lizphys
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Jul 17, 2017 11:59 am

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby lizphys » Sat Sep 30, 2017 7:58 pm

Undergrad Institution: Large public school, Top 5 Physics/Astrophysics
Major(s):Physics and Astrophysics
Minor(s):
GPA in Major: 3.1 Physics, 4.0 Astrophysics
Overall GPA:3.3
Length of Degree: 3 years(graduating early)
Position in Class: top of the middle(lol)
Type of Student: domestic white female

GRE Scores : (revised or old version?)
Q:162
V:165
W:4
P:not taken yet!





Research Experience: Lead author on theoretical astro paper, worked on it for 2 years with one professor and a postdoc.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: nope

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: researcher/project engineer for an R&D aerospace company
Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help: nope

Special Bonus Points: I'm a girl and my 3 recommenders range from famous to very well respected

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: nope i am a very average person. i just like space a lot.

Applying to Where:

UT Austin
University of Washington
Harvard
Columbia
UC Berkeley
UC Santa Cruz
UC Santa Barbara
Arizona State
Boston University
U of Maryland

User avatar
sam1608
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2016 4:24 am

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby sam1608 » Sun Oct 01, 2017 1:15 pm

Undergrad Institution: No reputation in physics (India)
Degree: Bachelor of Engineering
Major: Electronics & Communication
Length of Degree: 4
Overall GPA: 7.80/10
Position in Class: Dunno (honestly, didn't care)

Post Graduate Institution: No reputation in physics/astro (India)
Degree: Master of Science
Major: Physics
Length of Degree: 2 (2nd year ongoing)
Overall GPA: 9.52/10
Position in Class: Top

Type of Student: International Male

GRE Scores (Revised): 307
Q: 157 (66 %ile)
V: 150 (48 %ile)
W: 3.5 (42 %ile)
P: 700 (50 %ile) (Oct, 2015); Reappearing for Oct, 2017


TOEFL (iBT): (R: 28, L: 30, S: 28, W: 28, Total: 114)


Research Experience:
  • Upcoming paper presentation at an international conference (observational astronomy).
  • Project at an international astronomy school/workshop (observational astronomy).
  • Four months (still ongoing) in theoretical astrophysics, working on magnetars; a paper in progress.
  • AstroSat data analysis workshop (UV & X-ray).


Awards/Honors/Recognitions:
  • Merit scholarship (PG).
  • Best dissertation award at a dissertation based course in astronomy & astrophysics.
  • That's all folks!

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: -

Special Bonus Points: Yea, I wish... :roll:

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter:
  • Have taken up a lot (>30) of MOOCs on Coursera and edX.
  • Took up a 100-hr dissertation based course in astronomy & astrophysics.

Applying to Where: All for astronomy/astrophysics

Rochester Institute of Technology - AGNs/SNe
Florida Institute of Technology - Binaries/AGNs
Indiana University - Binaries/AGNs
University of Massachusetts, Amherst - AGNs
University of Iowa - Stellar/AGNs
Texas A&M University - SNe
University of Utah - AGNs
University of Maryland, Baltimore County (Applied Physics) - AGNs
University of Western Ontario - AGNs
Wesleyan University (Masters) - X-Ray Binaries
Vanderbilt University - Stellar Evolution
Last edited by sam1608 on Sun Oct 29, 2017 2:40 am, edited 8 times in total.

confromotron
Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Oct 01, 2017 2:44 pm

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby confromotron » Sun Oct 01, 2017 3:17 pm

Undergrad Institution: Big State school, ranked ~15 for physics
Major(s): Doubling in Physics and Anstronomy
GPA in Major: 3.72
Overall GPA: 3.65
Length of Degree: 4 years
Position in Class: No clue
Type of Student: Domestic asian

GRE Scores : Taking in October
Q: 163 (84%)
V: 160 (86%)
W: 3.5 (42%)
P: 900 (84%)





Research Experience:
- About 1.5 years in a condensed matter lab using atomic force microscopes. Helped to ease the probe making process, which we did by hand since we had the AFM running a unique set-up. Measured some cool ferroelectrics.
- About 8 months doing antenna modeling at an engineering lab affiliated with my school. Used some simulation software, and lots of Python.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: University Honors a couple times (basically earning 3.5+ in a semester)

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: Just the research positions I held.

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help: None

Special Bonus Points:
-Condensed matter lab professor is well known, won a couple prestigious awards.
-All letter writers are established researchers for 15+ years. (Not sure if this is special, or bonus)

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter:
-Got a paper coming out from the condensed matter lab I worked at
-The engineering lab position I held was invite only
-Looked into quantum information myself and found a strong interest in the subject. Ideally I want to study the application of quantum materials in quantum computers. (No bias towards theory or experiment)

Applying to Where:

UT Austin - Physics - Condensed Matter
UIUC - Physics - Quantum Information
Caltech - Physics - Quantum Information
Berkeley - Physics - Condensed Matter
Stanford - Physics - Condensed Matter
Princeton - Applied Physics - Materials Science
UCSB - Physics
Waterloo - Quantum Information
University of Maryland- College Park - Physics - Quantum Information
Georgia Tech - Physics
Rutgers - Physics
Last edited by confromotron on Mon Oct 30, 2017 1:56 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Byzantium1453
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun May 07, 2017 9:21 pm

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby Byzantium1453 » Sun Oct 01, 2017 4:56 pm

Undergrad Institution: Flagship State University, top 20 in physics
Major(s): Physics
Minor(s): None
GPA in Major: 3.5, significant downward track. I had a rough junior year.
Overall GPA: 3.4
Length of Degree: 4 years
Position in Class: average, maybe a bit lower
Type of Student: bog standard domestic white male

GRE Scores :
Q:164 (87%)
V: 170 (99%)
W: 6 (99%), I'm not illiterate!
P: 740 (58%) on 4/17, 820 (72%) on 9/17, might retake it again in October

Research Experience: Have worked at the same AMO/Quantum information lab for over three years , worked there for three summers and during the school year. The PI's are the departmental chair and another respected scientist. It's a new lab, and I've been here since the beginning so I have done everything from designing circuits, to optics, to programming, to plumbing. We are finally doing science, and might get a paper out soonish if all goes well.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Some scholarships, if that counts.

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: None that I can think of at the moment

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help: not really relevant but was in Honors Humanities program and wrote a book

Special Bonus Points: took a grad level stat mech class last semester, and am taking another grad level course this semester. My PI's who I will ask to write my recommendation letter are well known, one is departmental chair, and they seem to like me.

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: Nothing of note

Applying to Where?: Not quite sure. I'm going to go for experimental AMO, but am waiting to winnow down my long list of schools till after my PGRE scores are finalized
Last edited by Byzantium1453 on Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

JAY
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Sep 19, 2017 10:28 am

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby JAY » Mon Oct 02, 2017 5:36 pm

Undergrad Institution: Medium-sized Public University, Not known for physics
Major(s): Physics
Minor(s): Mathematics
GPA in Major: 3.80
Overall GPA: 3.77
Length of Degree: 4 years
Position in Class: Top-ish
Type of Student: Domestic male

GRE Scores:
Q: 164 (87%)
V: 161 (88%)
W: :!: TBD :)
P: :!: TBD :)


Research Experience: 1.5 years of research, with no published works (yet!) and 1 conference talk.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Various merit-based scholarships and honor societies

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: I did an REU at a fairly well-known university. Also, officer in school's physics club.

Special Bonus Points: I was able to meet with the professor who I'd like to work under at one of my top-choice universities.

Applying to Where: (Will post AFTER I send in applications!) :wink:
Last edited by JAY on Tue Nov 14, 2017 3:28 pm, edited 3 times in total.

Supratik Sarkar
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Oct 04, 2017 11:47 am

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby Supratik Sarkar » Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:12 pm

Undergrad Institution: 10th best Indian university in QS ranking. No known reputation.
Department: Electronics and Telecommunication Engineering
GPA: 9.2/10
Length of Degree: 4 years
Position in Class: No clue.
Type of Student: Male

GRE Scores : Will give PGRE in October
P:


TOEFL: Not given


Research Experience:
3 summer research internships-
1. On Quantum Statistics in an institute of repute,
2. On Deep Learning in an institute of repute,
3. On Quantum Optics and Quantum Information Theory in Paris, France in one of the top labs of Europe. May result in a publication.
1 project on Quantum Dots at home university.
Lot of experience in robotics and coding.
No publications yet.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: No
Pertinent Activities or Jobs: Convener of the university Science and Robotics Society.

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help: Top 0.1% in Biology in India among all Higher Secondary examination givers. Don't know if that counts.

Special Bonus Points: I don't know if these count -> One recommender very well respected, Internship in France...
Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: Strong interest in Quantum Optics, Quantum Computation and Information Theory.

Applying to Where:

I will be applying to Canada and Europe. Only a few of these univs need PGRE.
Univ of Waterloo - IQC - Physics - Quantum Information
Univ of Toronto - Physics
Ottawa - Physics
McGill - Physics
TU Delft - Applied Physics
ENS Paris - Physics
Ecole Polytechniue - Physics
LMU - Physics
KU Leuven - Applied Physics
TU Munich - Physics
Gottingen - Physics
Europhotonics

finesagan
Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2015 3:04 am

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby finesagan » Thu Oct 05, 2017 10:40 pm

Undergrad Institution: Small state school
Major(s): Physics & Math
Minor(s):N/A
GPA in Major: 4.0
Overall GPA: 4.0
Length of Degree: 4 years
Position in Class: top-ish
Type of Student: white domestic male

GRE Scores :
Q: 165
V: 159
W: 3.5 (might retake)
P: 850 ( waiting on October results)


Research Experience:
1 semester, I researched a combinatorial game based on numerical semi-groups.
1 semester, I classified, enumerated and proved some general results about comminiscule Coxeter groups.
2 years, I have worked on various projects dealing with colloidal functionalization, mono-layer production, actuation and propulsion of micro-scale structures and many body interactions of colloidal particles.
1 summer, I did an REU in theoretical soft matter physics analyzing floppy modes of elastic lattices (surprisingly complex and relies heavily on algebraic geometry).

Sadly, I have no publications out, but one is in preparation. In total I have given 3 talks and 1 poster presentation.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Goldwater honorable mention, a couple math and physics scholarships within my university, and the usual honors (Sigma Pi Sigma, Phi Kappa Phi, Deans, etc.).

Pertinent Activities or Jobs:
I tutor students in Calculus, Proof Writing, Mechanics and Electromagnetism.
I have been or am the T.A. for Quantum Mechanics I and II.
Finally, I am the president of our university's SPS chapter.

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help:
I participated in a summer school in algebraic geometry the summer of my sophmore year. Not sure what this will mean when I apply to physics graduate school.

Special Bonus Points: I've done a lot of outreach outside of SPS. I've taken 6 graduate math courses (my school does not have a graduate physics department :cry: ), and plan to graduate with a total of 9. I've done credited independent studies in differential geometry (with a view towards GR), particle physics and quantum field theory (if anything I hope this shows my initiative).

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter:
Bilingual? Winning smile?

Applying to Where:
All for CME/CMT with a focus on soft matter
REACH:
Stanford -
Yale -
UPENN -
U Chicago -
Cornell -
UIUC -
CU Boulder -

Less REACH:
University of Washington -
UCSD -
University of Michigan -
Wisconsin-Madison -
NYU -
UT Austin -
OSU -

Least Reach:
UC Davis -
University of Arizona -
Last edited by finesagan on Sun Nov 05, 2017 8:51 pm, edited 4 times in total.

yougivemeahadron
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Oct 06, 2017 6:06 pm

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby yougivemeahadron » Fri Oct 06, 2017 6:47 pm

Undergrad Institution: medium state university w/ no grad program
Major(s): Physics
Minor(s): Math
GPA in Major: 3.99
Overall GPA: 3.99
Length of Degree: 4
Position in Class: Top
Type of Student: Domestic White Male

GRE Scores : (revised or old version?)
Q: 169 (96%)
V: 157 (76%)
W: 4 (60%)
P:

Research Experience:
1. One year of experimental biophysics -- one nth author publication
2. One semester of computational biophysics
3. Three years (including summers) of AMO laser-matter stuff -- two nth author publications
One poster presentation
One talk

Awards/Honors/Recognitions:
Dean's List every semester
Other school specific stuff idk

Pertinent Activities or Jobs:
Private tutor for two years
TA for two years
Physics Club VP
SPS President
OSA Treasurer
Supplemental Instruction Leader

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help:
Volunteer & Outreach

Special Bonus Points:
First generation I guess

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter:
I do band

Applying to Where:
Stanford - Physics - AMO
U Chicago - Physics - AMO
UC Berkeley - Physics- AMO
Columbia - Physics - AMO
CU Boulder - Physics - AMO
UCLA - Physics - AMO
Northwestern - Physics - AMO
Michigan - Physics - AMO

Predictions: Maybe accepted to 3-4? No idea
Last edited by yougivemeahadron on Mon Nov 06, 2017 7:12 pm, edited 12 times in total.

pistachion
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2017 2:35 pm

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby pistachion » Mon Oct 09, 2017 2:52 pm

Undergrad Institution: small private liberal arts
Major(s): physics and mathematics
Minor(s): ~
GPA in Major: 4.0
Overall GPA: 4.0
Length of Degree: 4
Position in Class: top
Type of Student: domestic, asian american

GRE Scores :
Q: 166 (91%)
V: 164 (94%)
W: 4.5 (82%)
P: 780 (65%) on 9/16/17. retaking in october, have been taking practice tests like crazy



Research Experience:

1. Summer after sophomore year + spring of junior year: Application of AdS/CFT correspondence to chiral phase transition in QCD. Second author (out of two) paper in Phys. Rev. D, and posters at APS DNP Fall 2016 and 2017 meetings. Have made some progress towards second paper.

2. Summer after junior year + fall of senior year (will continue into spring): Inflationary leptogenesis in Chern-Simons modified gravity. No paper, but worked closely with PI who is applying for NSF funding and wants to publish in this area. Scheduled to give a talk at a regional conference. Will become honors thesis in physics.

3. Fall of senior year (will continue into spring): Representation theory of diagram algebras. This is research with a math professor going towards an honors thesis in math. Will present poster at JMM.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Goldwater honorable mention (2017), dean's list, internal scholarships, summer research fellowships, travel grants for APS conferences.

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: Precepted linear algebra, object oriented programming, math and politics, and abstract algebra. Grading for quantum mechanics. Am a mentor through a program at my school created to help women and minority students in stem fields.

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help:

Special Bonus Points:

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: Unfortunately I haven't taken any grad classes because my school is so small. But, I will have done ~5 independent studies (either research or self-study or both) by the time I graduate. I've tried to incorporate mathematical aspects of physics into final projects and things in math classes (e.g. fibre bundles for my topology project). I want to communicate that I have maxed out the opportunities available to me at my school. I have done research with my three recommenders so they know how I work.

Applying to Where: All for Hep-th (particle or nuclear theory/phenomenology)

UT Austin
UW Seattle
UMD College park
University of Minnesota
UW Madison
UM Ann Arbor
Stony Brook
Last edited by pistachion on Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:35 pm, edited 3 times in total.

xuning
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Oct 14, 2017 10:04 pm

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby xuning » Sat Oct 14, 2017 10:32 pm

Can't believe it's my turn. Hope it goes well.
______________________________________________
Undergrad Institution: Large private school. good reputation in physics.
Major(s):physics
Minor(s):CS
GPA in Major:4.0
Overall GPA:3.98
Length of Degree: 4 yrs
Position in Class: probably top. We don't rank.
Type of Student: international female

GRE Scores :
Q: 170 (97%)
V: 165 (96%)
W: 4 (60%)
P: 990 (94%)


Research Experience: 4 semesters and 2 summers in the same lab. Have a co-authored paper but there're >10 authors. One poster.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions:one poster award and one research grant. I have a Hackathon award too.

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: TA for 4 diffferent physics classes. SPS officer for 2 years, engineering frat. Technical assistant for the physics lab director.

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help: hackathon and a project team in CS. I do asteroid and comet searching and have certificates.

Special Bonus Points: female and first generation college student. My research has collaborators in many schools so the LOR will probably help a lot. I've been on telecons and meetings with people I'm hoping to work for. My research results also circulate within the collaboration. Hope they recognize me!

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: nah can't remember any

Applying to Where:

Harvard - Astro - AstroEx
Princeton - Physics - AstroEx
MIT - Physics - AstroEx(LIGO)
Caltech - Physics - AstroEx(LIGO)
Stanford - Physics - AstroEx
UCB - Physics - AstroEx
Cornell - Astro - AstroEx
Upenn - Physics - AstroEx
Johns Hopkins - Astro - AstroEx
UChicago - Astro - AstroEx
Michigan - Physics - AstroEx
UIUC - Physics - AstroEx

Potentially CU Boulder and UCSD as safety, but probably not. Application is expensive.
Last edited by xuning on Fri Nov 03, 2017 4:04 pm, edited 3 times in total.

sumotongs
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Jul 18, 2017 4:05 am

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby sumotongs » Mon Oct 16, 2017 1:23 am

Undergrad Institution: Well known South Asian university, OK reputation in Physics
Major(s): Engineering Physics
Minor(s): --
GPA in Major:3.2
Overall GPA:3.2
Length of Degree: 4 years
Position in Class: Near top
Type of Student: International male

GRE Scores :
Q: 170 (97%)
V: 164 (94%)
W: 3.5 (42%)
P: 930 (88%)


TOEFL: 118 (R:30 , L:30 , S:30 , W:28 )


Research Experience: 3 years in theoretical condensed matter physics, one publication (1st author out of 2) in Phys Rev E, another under review.
2 years in mathematical physics, no publication.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: 2 external undergraduate research fellowships.

Pertinent Activities or Jobs:--

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help:--

Special Bonus Points:--

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter:--

Applying to Where: (Will apply for theoretical condensed matter physics)

MIT
Harvard
UC Berkeley
Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Michigan, Ann Arbor
Cornell
UC Santa Barbara
UC Los Angeles
Princeton
Boston University
Notre Dame
Last edited by sumotongs on Mon Nov 13, 2017 7:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

fznfire
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2012 12:53 am

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby fznfire » Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:03 am

Undergrad Institution: Liberal Arts
Master's Institution: Liberal Arts
Major(s):Physics and Mathematics (undergrad); Astronomy with planetary science conc. (Masters)

GPA in Major: 4.00 (Undergrad); 3.75
Overall GPA: 4.00 (Undergrad); 3.86
Length of Degree: 4+2
Position in Class: above average.
Type of Student: International

GRE Scores :
Q: 170
V: 158
W: 4.0 :mrgreen:
P: Taking on Oct 28


TOEFL: Not taking it.


Research Experience:
Luckily found three planets at the end of this summer in K2. Paper accepted for AJ. Have a idea for a second paper. Hope to get it out before I graduate but not before the application.

Worked with a large group at Princeton. Was included as co-author in 4 papers. Also took a year off after graduation to work at the telescope in Chile. Good exposure to life as an instrumentalist.

Undergraduate research and thesis focused on cold plasma. The work led to publication of 3 papers. Some of my experimental work is still being modeled, and probably can lead to a fourth paper.

Short term projects at CERN, and in AMO. But not much panned out of them.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions:
Co-valedictorian of my class. 8)

Pertinent Activities or Jobs:
Active in SPS. Was elected local SPS president for two years.

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help:
None

Special Bonus Points: Developed connection to some places. Know some of the potential advisors personally.

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter:

Applying to Where : Tentative list so far

University of Colorado
University of Texas, Austin
Cornell University
Yale University
University of Washington
University of Washington
University of California, Riverside
University of Toronto
Ohio University, Columbus

IMPRS
Last edited by fznfire on Tue Oct 31, 2017 9:27 am, edited 1 time in total.

milogoestogradschool
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Oct 25, 2017 3:38 pm

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby milogoestogradschool » Thu Oct 26, 2017 9:10 am

Undergrad Institution: Small state school with little to no physics reputation.
Major(s): Physics
Minor(s):
GPA in Major: 3.98/4.0
Overall GPA: 3.85/4.0
Length of Degree: 4.5
Position in Class: Top 1
Type of Student: White Domestic Male

GRE Scores : Revised
Q: 164 (87%)
V: 159 (83%)
W: 4.0 (60%)
P: 750 (60%)

Research Experience:
-Small projects at home institution in an attempt to start up a now research-scale biophysics lab.
-2 years doing single molecule biophysics research at a nearby R1 university. Culminated to honors thesis.

Awards/Honors/Recognition:
-Two competitive research grants from home institution.
-Handful of smaller semester research grants.
-Departmental honors in physics.
-Physics valedictorian award.

Pertinent Activities or Jobs:
-Introductory physics tutor for 2 semesters.
-Introductory physics TA for 1 semester.
-Vice president of SPS chapter.

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help: Presented research at APS and Harvard NCRC.

Special Bonus Points: One writer is fairly well known in the field.

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: Didn't start physics until third year of undergrad. Took a year off and am currently working as an optical engineer. Don't know if those help or hurt my application.


Applying to Where: Experimental Biophysics // Experimental Condensed Matter everywhere.


Yale University - Physics
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor - Physics
Michigan State University - Physics
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill - Physics
University of Massachusetts, Amherst - Physics
Iowa State University - Physics
University of Notre Dame - Physics
Lehigh University - Physics
University of Maine - Physics
Last edited by milogoestogradschool on Fri Nov 17, 2017 12:33 pm, edited 2 times in total.

straightwhitemale
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Oct 26, 2017 3:54 pm

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby straightwhitemale » Thu Oct 26, 2017 4:11 pm

Undergrad Institution: Small liberal arts state school, not a big physics rep
Major(s): Physics & Chemistry
Minor(s): Mathematics
GPA in Major: 3.832
Overall GPA: 3.887
Length of Degree: 4.5
Position in Class: Near the top
Type of Student: see username

GRE Scores : revised
Q: 164 (87%)
V: 160 (86%)
W: 5.5 (98%)
P: 790 (67%)


TOEFL: N/A


Research Experience: 2 REUs. One in nuclear physics (UMass Dartmouth), one in high energy physics (Duke). No publications. Presented at DNP conference (HI, 2014) and multiple research symposiums at school

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: 2 REUs, Departmental Honors, Deans list

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: Physics Tutor, Chemistry TA, Optical Engineer

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help: Scholar Athlete

Special Bonus Points: Auditing graduate classes

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: not much else

Applying to Where:

UC Santa Cruz - Physics - High Energy/Condensed Matter
UC Davis - Physics - High Energy/Condensed Matter
UC Los Angelesl - Physics - High Energy/Condensed Matter
UC Irvine - Physics - High Energy/Condensed Matter
UC Riverside - Physics - High Energy/Condensed Matter
UC San Diego - Physics - High Energy/Condensed Matter
Texas A&M - Physics - High Energy/Condensed Matter
Baylor - Physics - High Energy/Condensed Matter
Arizona State University - Physics - High Energy/Condensed Matter
Florida State University - Physics - High Energy/Condensed Matter
University of Florida - Physics - Chemical Physics
Brandeis University - Physics - High Energy/Condensed Matter
University of Massachusetts Amherst - Physics - High Energy/Condensed Matter

CanIHasPHDPlz
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Oct 27, 2017 10:52 am

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby CanIHasPHDPlz » Fri Oct 27, 2017 11:09 am

Undergrad Institution: Midwest Liberal arts school known mostly for its Business and Engineering
Major(s): Physics, Math
Minor(s): None
GPA in Major: Physics (4.0), Math (3.89)
Overall GPA: 3.97
Length of Degree: 4 years
Position in Class: No idea. Probably near top.
Type of Student: Domestic straight white male.

GRE Scores :
Q: 165 (89%)
V: 162 (91%)
W: 3.5 (42%) :roll:
P: 770 (64%) (will retake in October)


Research Experience: 18 months in a biophysics lab. 1 conference. 2 publications with 1 more on its way. 2/3 as first author.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: A few scholarships. Nothing fancy.

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: Was a UA for one semester for a Psychology professor.

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help: Not that I can think of.

Special Bonus Points: One of my recommenders is a Michigan alumnus. We'll see if that makes any difference.

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: Nope. Not really.

Applying to Where: (Expressing interest in HEP/condensed matter)
Main Schools:
Indiana
Penn State
Michigan
Wisconsin
Case Western (CWRU only has a $7.50 application fee!)
===================================================
Safety Nets:
Texas A&M
William & Mary
Last edited by CanIHasPHDPlz on Fri Nov 03, 2017 1:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

scarman
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Oct 30, 2017 11:26 pm

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby scarman » Mon Oct 30, 2017 11:39 pm

Undergrad Institution: Large state school, ~ #20 in physics
Major(s): Physics, Mathematics, Astronomy
GPA in Major:
3.83 Physics
3.50 Math (proof-based courses killed me. I got Bs in both real analysis and abstract algebra)
~3.7 Astro (it depends on how you calculate it since so many physics classes count towards the major)
Overall GPA: 3.77
Length of Degree: 5 years
Position in Class: N/A
Type of Student: Domestic Native American/White Mix, Male

GRE Scores:
Q: 164 (87%)
V: 158 (80%)
W: 4.5 (82%)
P: 890 (83%) :D (literally took this 3 times - first 680, then 740, then this. Conquering by Khan, Anderson is a must!)


Research Experience:

2+ years in CME (in superconducting quantum computing)
1.5 years in computational cosmology (seemingly non-intersecting, I know)
1 REU at UChicago in CME (also superconducting quantum computing)
1 cosmology publication in preparation, first author
1 cosmology poster to-be-presented
No pubs or presentations in CME, just the REU

Awards/Honors/Recognitions:
None really, I didn't seize the opportunities to apply for a lot of them.
I did get the Fred and Mary Koch Foundation Award, but that doesn't really mean anything.

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: NOTE: Only putting on what's going on my application, lots of people seem to include stuff that admissions committees don't even know about.

One 2-year part-time job as a science blogger for an environmental science company, which I guess counts as a science education and communication bonus.
One 1-year paid writing position for a college-prep company aimed at gender and racial minorities, so education + diversity points I guess.
President of physics club for one year, outreach coordinator for another.
Been a tutor through the physics club since Freshman year.

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help:
(to be filled)

Special Bonus Points:
Strong letters (4 total, all about research - no "they did well in my class" crap)
Strong SoP (life experience that I get to emphasize)
Taken almost every physics elective offered (solid-state, atomic, optics, electronics, even a quantum information course)
3 grad classes (GR, a group theory course offered through the physics dept, one astro course on radiative processes)

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter:
I studied abroad in Australia for a semester, idk if that has any affect.

Applying to Where:
Mostly CME, high emphasis on superconductivity and quantum computing. Some computational cosmology (CC) programs.

NSF GRFP :

(In approximate order of hopelessness)

MIT- Physics - CME
Stanford - Physics - CME
Harvard - Physics - CME
Princeton - Physics - CME
UC Santa Barbara - Physics - CME
Caltech - Physics - CME
Urbana-Champaign - Physics - CME
Yale - Physics - CME
UC Berkeley - Physics - CME
Cornell - Physics - CME
Maryland CP - Physics - CME
UChicago - Physics - CME
UCLA - Physics - CME
Michigan Ann Arbor - Physics - CME
Columbia - Physics - CME
Northwestern - Physics - CME
UC Boulder - Physics - CME
UMinnesota - Physics - CME

---------------------------------------------

UC Santa Cruz - CC
UMinnesota - CC
Michigan Ann Arbor - CC
Massachusetts, Amherst (?) - CC


Important take-aways:

masterwindu
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Jun 02, 2017 5:27 pm

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby masterwindu » Tue Oct 31, 2017 12:39 pm

Undergrad Institution: UK university ; Top 5 in Physics
Major(s): Theoretical Physics
Minor(s): None
GPA in Major: 89/100
Overall GPA: 89/100
Length of Degree: 4
Position in Class: Top
Type of Student: International male (asian)

GRE Scores : (revised)
Q: 164
V: 162
W: 4
P: 990


TOEFL: Exempted


Research Experience: One numerical project, working on high dimensional QHE for my final year project

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Internal prizes for obtaining first class marks every year, top in cohort last year

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: Nope

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help: Nope

Special Bonus Points: Taking GR, QFT at the master level

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: Nope

Applying to Where:

All for CMT

Caltech - Physics
Princeton - Physics

Chicago - Physics
Illinois at Urbana Champaign - Physics
UC Santa Babara - Physics
UC Berkeley - Physics
Maryland - Physics

Penn State - Physics
CU Boulder - Physics

medphys761
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Nov 10, 2017 9:05 pm

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby medphys761 » Fri Nov 10, 2017 9:21 pm

Undergrad Institution: State School, average for physics
Major(s): Physics
Minor(s): None
GPA in Major: 3.7 / 4.0
Overall GPA: 3.73/ 4.0
Length of Degree: 4 years
Position in Class: Near top
Type of Student: Domestic white female

GRE Scores :
Q: 168 (94%)
V: 164 (94%)
W: 6.0 (99%)
P: Waiting for scores

TOEFL: Not Taking

Research Experience: Started research first semester freshmen year on experimental particle physics with the ATLAS group at my university. Spent a summer at CERN, completed a visualization software project that is currently available for use by ATLAS physicists, and gave a poster presentation at APS April Meeting.

Sophomore year started working with a medical physicist on research outside my university. Will be submitting a paper (first author out of 4) for publication this month but won't be anywhere near publication by application time. Project is about 90% all my original work so I'm hoping my letter writer can attest to my research ability. Also trying to get another medical physics paper on ArXiv before applications are due.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: About 5 small scholarships and research fellowships but nothing national

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: Bio 1 TA, tutored high school physics and college physics 1 and 2 for two semesters

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help: My GPA in later classes are much higher. Only 1 B past modern physics and it was a B+

Special Bonus Points: I feel that I have 3 really strong letter writers; all can talk about research I've done

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter:

Applying to Where:
Almost all for CAMPEP approved medical physics. I've noticed that there's not much representation for medical physics on here so I hope this helps! :D
University of Wisconsin, Madison - Medical Physics
UCLA - Medical Physics
U Chicago - Medical Physics
University of Minnesota - Medical Physics
Stony Brook - Medical Physics
Wayne State - Medical Physics
Purdue - Medical Physics
UC Berkeley - Bioengineering
Last edited by medphys761 on Fri Nov 17, 2017 2:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

brucewayne
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2016 8:51 am

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby brucewayne » Sun Nov 12, 2017 7:36 am

______________________________________________
Undergrad Institution: Masters from largely Engineering Institute (well known in my country)
Major(s): Physics
Minor(s): N/A
GPA in Major:
Overall GPA: 7.89/10
Length of Degree: 4 years
Position in Class: Average
Type of Student: International Male

GRE Scores : revised
Q: 153
V: 166
W: 3
P: 840


TOEFL: 112 (R: 29, L: 29, S: 26, W: 28)


Research Experience: 6 months Masters Thesis and One Year Project Assistant in same lab. Applications are all to the same research topic focusing on Experimental implementation of Quantum Information.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: None

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: None other than the research experience.

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help: None (At least none that I'm putting on my application)

Special Bonus Points: A strong recommendation letter I guess.

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: The Project I worked on probably let me develop some of the exact independent skills necessary for the work that I will probably do during my PhD.

Applying to Where:

UCSB - Physics - Quantum Information
UCB - Physics - Quantum Information
Yale - Physics - Quantum Information
University of Chicago - Physics - Quantum Information
Northwestern University - Physics - Quantum Information
MIT - Physics - Quantum Information
Washington University in St.Louis - Physics - Quantum Information
Umass Lowell - Physics - Quantum Information
University of Maryland - Physics - Quantum Information
University of Wisconsin-Madison - Physics - Quantum Information

msdecaro
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Nov 21, 2017 12:19 am

Re: 2018 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

Postby msdecaro » Tue Nov 21, 2017 5:28 pm

Undergrad Institution: Public University in California, fairly well known but not a top school
Major(s): Physics
Minor(s):
GPA in Major: 3.6 / 4.0
Overall GPA: 3.6 / 4.0
Length of Degree: 4 years
Position in Class: Not sure
Type of Student: Domestic white male

GRE Scores : (revised)
Q: 161 (78%)
V: 152 (56%)
W: 4.5 (82%)
P: (Score not received yet)

Research Experience: Nine months of research in HEP-ex at my school in an ATLAS group. Another four months SULI internship. No publications.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Only dean's honors.

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: None

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help:

Special Bonus Points: Good rec letters.

Applying to Where: Mostly HEP-ex with some astro-particle (neutrino, dark matter), specified below. (Topic, group)
Rejected Waitlisted Accepted
------------------------------------------------------
UCSD (HEP-ex, CMS and XENON1T)
UCSB (HEP-ex, CMS)
UCLA (HEP-ex, CMS and XENON1T)
UCBerkeley (AP, LUX and LZ)
Caltech (HEP-ex and AP, CMS and NOvA/DUNE)
UArizona (HEP-ex, ATLAS)
Wisconsin-Madison (AP, ICECUBE)
UMichigan (HEP-ex and AP, ATLAS and SNOLAB)
UPenn (HEP-ex, ATLAS)
Cornell (HEP-ex, CMS)
------------------------------------------------------

Still adding to list. Good luck everyone!




Return to “Prospective Physics Graduate Student Topics”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests