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WAMC: What Are My Chances

Discussion in 'Psychology [Psy.D. / Ph.D.]' started by Therapist4Chnge, 12.15.09.

  1. aMusingsBlog

    aMusingsBlog

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    SDN Members don't see this ad. (About Ads)
    Here is the background story before I get into my question...

    I recently graduated from a pretty good state school. Good GPA but AVERAGE GRE scores (~1200). I have research experiences in a number of different labs.

    I applied to graduate school last year, but sadly (probably like some of you) did not get in the first try. In light of that, I landed a great job as a research assistant full-time.

    Now onto my question:

    I am now in the beginning stages of my applications. In doing so, I find myself full of anxiety and dread... maybe i'm a bit jaded from my rejection last time... or is it a warning sign?

    i know that i eventually want to do a phd in clinical, but the question is should i do it now or wait a year?

    There are pros and cons to both

    PRO THIS YEAR:
    1. My letters from my undergrad will not be too outdated
    2. I still feel like a student/am still in student mode
    3. I will get it over with since getting letters from some advisors is as bad as pulling my teeth out (any suggestions for that too??)
    4. I may not have these doubts later on this year and regret not applying... who ever knows?
    5. I don't want to be too old when I graduate... i hate my stupid biological clock!

    PRO NEXT YEAR:
    1. My letter from my current job will be better (since I would have worked there longer)
    2. I will save more money
    3. I will probably retake the GRE
    4. I will be able to enjoy my 20's a little more
    5. Maybe the extra time will squash my doubts... (i do have many, like am i smart enough? is that REALLY what I want to do? i hate reading, will I overcome that? etc)

    I think that's about it! What do you think????
     
  2. krisrox

    krisrox

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    It doesn't seem like any of your pro's are good reasons. Unless you have a really narrow research focus already, I say wait. And this is coming from someone who DIDN'T wait. I think if you give yourself a year to get it all together, you'll be fine. Don't put pressure on yourself.
     
  3. mjj5029

    mjj5029

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    I'm a undergraduate senior applying to clinical Ph.D programs this December.

    Undergrad GPA: 3.8, 3.8 in psych
    GRE: taking in October, usually do well on standardized tests

    Research Experience:
    2 semesters working in a cognitive psychology lab as a junior.
    4 months over the summer working in a clincial lab (anxiety related).
    Currently in a clinical developmental psychopathology lab.

    Recommendations: Should be strong ones. 1 from each professor that I have worked for as an RA.
     
  4. Yellowbrickroad

    Yellowbrickroad

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    Krisrox, do you regret not waiting?
     
  5. krisrox

    krisrox

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    I don't... because I got into a great program. If I didn't get in anywhere I would have definitely regretted it. I felt ready- no doubt about it- but I could have benefited a lot from an extra year.
     
  6. rehabit

    rehabit

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    I'm an under represented minority McNair scholar with a 3.9 gpa. My undergrad record is pretty solid (honors program, mcnair thesis, oral and poster presentations). I've taken the GRE 3 times and scored in the same range each time 1080 ish (510v and 570q best test) with many months of preparation in between. I feel that I don't have it in me to take it again. Is there any chance competitive programs will consider my application? Does being under represented maybe offset the gre score screening process? Oh I did get a 760 on the psych GRE but many of the schools I'm interested in don't consider the psych gre. HELP!
     
  7. jnine

    jnine

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    IMO, you'll have a shot but it's essential that your SOP contains a good brief explanation why your scores do not reflect your potential. Explain briefly (no more than three sentences, I think) and focus on the good things. :luck:

     
  8. Markp

    Markp Clinical Psychologist

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    So let me get this right, and I don't mean to sound insensitive, you are asking if your minority status will offset your poor GRE performance?

    Do you think it should?

    Do you have a compelling reason that your minority status is holding you back from achieving on the GRE? Perhaps if you had a reason that your minority status prevented you from performing well on the GRE, then perhaps it could be a factor.

    Let me ask you this, if there were 2 minority candidates, one with all your stellar qualifications and a great GRE score and one with a repeated poor performance on the GRE, which one do you think should get in?

    Does it matter if one is Hispanic or Black and the other is Asian or a sexual minority like a homosexual? Which minority status is worth more? How many GRE points should your minority status be worth?

    Do you want to get in so badly that you are willing to be accepted over someone who has achieved higher scores than you?

    The reason I ask all this is because, in general, I think you have some excellent credentials. Would you want those erased because some other more valued minority presented themselves for evaluation? I know this is not the question you asked, you asked if your minority status was enough to overcome a poor GRE performance.

    I personally don't think it is nor do I think it should be. I do think that your other achievements might be and certainly illustrate that you are a dedicated and serious student, focus on what matters, your achievements.

    Mark
     
  9. Syzygy117

    Syzygy117

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    With those numbers and experience you didn't even get an interview?
     
  10. pinkballoon

    pinkballoon

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    3.8 GPA, 4.0 Psych, 1220 GRE

    Over a year of clinical experience working as group facilitator

    So far, three months in lab (will have a solid calendar year before next fall), senior thesis underway (doubtful it will be complete when applying - original research based on group therapy), listed as author on a poster that's been submitted.

    Not looking at top research programs mainly interested in counseling and clinical programs mostly in the south and mid-west in affordable locales.

    Interests are addictions, post-traumatic, emotional suppression, and group therapy.
     
  11. jnine

    jnine

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    Mark,

    I think the real reason you responded was to promote your anti-affirmative action perspective. The person asked if their minority status would help them. And it might.

    If english is someone's second language than the GRE verbal score might not be a good indicator of their ability. GRE should be an indicator of potential for success and interpreted in context. It should not be interpreted as an IQ score or as a rite of passage, etc.



     
  12. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus

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    I think there are fair questions from both sides.

    As for the GRE....it can be a rite of passage (not that I agree with it), as 99% of people in graduate school had to suffer through it. I still remember debating between the paper v. computer option (yay transition year!)...and I am happy to have it done and gone. :laugh:
     
  13. Markp

    Markp Clinical Psychologist

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    "Do you have a compelling reason that your minority status is holding you back from achieving on the GRE? Perhaps if you had a reason that your minority status prevented you from performing well on the GRE, then perhaps it could be a factor."

    I think that pretty well covers what you were trying to say. As much as you might recoil, IQ is not a fair measure of intellect either, but the GRE is the one that schools have chosen to use as a standard measure of student quality.

    This is not my choice or your choice, but the choice of those who make the decisions regarding whether a student is or is not qualified to attend graduate school. I have commented numerous times regarding it's validity as a measure of student quality.

    Now regarding my "anti-affirmative action" stance... Why not define for me how many points minority status is worth and what particular minorities should be valued more than others? It's racist, it's sexist, and it's wrong. What about religious minorities? Religion is protected just like gender and race, so should Jews (a religious and historically persecuted minority to be sure) be given a preference on their entrance exams? If so, how much? What is a holocaust worth?

    If you feel that affirmative action based on phenotypes is appropriate, well that's flat out racism based on biological characteristics. Nothing else... because it doesn't take into account whether English was or was not their first language. Being a Mexican-American doesn't mean that English is my second language, nor does it mean that I speak Spanish, just as being white and non-Hispanic guarantees that I learned English first or that I don't speak Russian fluently. Who is at a greater disadvantage, the Russian immigrant in the poor part of DC or the Mexican-American who grew up in the mid-west?

    I think my questions are reasonable and fair. If you have a valid reason you did poorly on the GRE, sure, you should get a second look. However the color of your skin is not a valid reason, unless you are suggesting that people who are of color simply are incapable of performing as well as Whites. I reject that flawed logic. Hooray for social justice... make everyone equal...

    Mark
     
  14. Syzygy117

    Syzygy117

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    @Markp

    I think you would enjoy this video. Great arguments in regards to affirmative action
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AUhReMT5uqA

    I agree with you affirmative action is very flawed and fits the definition for racism/sexism etc. But I think it is important to support different ideas/people in settings where you may not otherwise have them. Pretty much fundamental for a quality academic institution. I still don't know if affirmative action is the best way to do that. :confused:
     
  15. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus

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    What a wonderful video.

    We should probably get this back on WAMC....but anyone interested in further AA discussion, the Political Forum (a sub-forum of The Lounge) has plenty of AA threads. That part of SDN has much more 'laxed moderation, so be warned. ;)
     
  16. rehabit

    rehabit

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    Well I didn't ask anyone's opinion as to whether it was "right" or "fair" I just asked if a school has a GRE cutoff will they maybe consider my application because I'm a diversity case.

    You may be erudite and urbane but I guess you forgot something your momma probably taught you a long time ago, if you don't have something nice to say then don't say it all.
     
  17. Syzygy117

    Syzygy117

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    [​IMG] :laugh:

    Can't take a little constructive criticism brah?
     
  18. O Gurl

    O Gurl

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    1. I am sorry you had to suffer through a rather insensitive (and downright bitter sounding) assault for asking your question.
    2. I agree with jnine, that an explanation in your SOP might be in order. Esp. if you had a similar story in terms of your SAT/ACT scores and have apparently rocked undergrad. ;)
    3. I would further suggest that you speak openly and honestly with one of your letter writers, as they can likely make a better case for how your actual class/research/work performance far exceeds your standardized test scores. Do not feel alone or discouraged. It sounds like you have a lot of positive attributes and accomplishments. GRE scores are only ONE piece of the puzzle.
     
  19. GNC

    GNC

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    Was wondering what you all think..

    I am currently an undergrad thinking of applying for grad school in the coming months. Overall GPA 3.94 with a BA in psych, took part in an honors program and did an honors thesis on child development (sort of like a mini dissertation). I have presented my work at a few conferences and some more coming up. Also I am in the process of publishing my paper too. Received a few scholarships/apprenticeships and some other various awards. Have held a steady job all of college (outside of the psych field)

    I will have 2-3 great recommendations. 1 from my advisor/mentor, 1 from my second advisor who taught the honors program and 1 from a professor I have worked with.

    Haven't taken the GRE's yet, but planning on taking them early October cramming for them now. (what is considered a solid score? I have talked to a variety of people and am told varying opinions.)

    I am thinking of PhD in clinical/counseling programs.
     
  20. erg923

    erg923 Psychologist-Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)

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    Its a forum pal..thats whats its for, peoples opinions.

    Your motto of "if you don't have something nice to say then don't say it all" needs to change rapidly if you want to be part of a profession which requires constant evaluation and feedback of your skills, learning and performance. People will tell you things that are not good (or that your not performing well at) ALL the time during your grad school career. Thick skin is a requirment in this profession. High level academica (no matter what the dicipline) is often this way...

    Btw way, I was equally surprised at the seeming insinuation that because you are "of color", that you hoped this offset your low GRE score.
     
    Last edited: 08.31.10
  21. O Gurl

    O Gurl

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    Ok... I am not going to go too far down this road, b/c as the mod already pointed out, there is a place to discuss political issues. However, I feel it necessary to point out that one of the things I enjoy most about this forum is the generally respectful and welcoming tone set by all of us who participate. Never before have I seen anyone attacked for asking a question. This is a WAMC thread. Even if someone comes on here and says they have a GPA of 1.0 and has no idea what a "shrink" does but wants to know their chances of PhD/PsyD admission, they would deserve to be addressed with respect or not at all.

    To that point, this is now the second time that someone has strongly hinted that they somehow know more about Rehabit than the very few points he/she shared with us. You have no idea what his/her minority status is and yet people are clearly assuming he/she is talking about race. Even if that were the case, you still do not know anything else about his/her story. As someone already pointed out, it may even be an issue of second language which would legitimately impact standardized test scores as would someone's K-12 school disctrict which is often influenced by race and/or SES (I can't believe I am having to explain this on a psychology forum, btw).

    As for Rehabit's original question, my response to him/her is the same I would give to a straight, white, Christian, male in the same predicament: that test scores are NOT everything. That does not mean that minority status alone will in anyway ameliorate below average scores, but it is my belief that a "hard stats" approach to admissions is ridiculous. It just so happens that schools have to make an initial cut based on SOMETHING and it happens to be GPA and GRE because they are convenient. With that being said, we all know that looking good on paper does not a good psychologist make. If a person with outstanding scores and GPA is socially awkward or perhaps intolerant/ignorant in terms of multicultural issues, he/she would likely have a harder time in a psychology graduate than a person with less than stellar test scores. Therefore, a great deal of subjectivity is involved in the selections process. One thing I think any reasonable person can agree on is that it is in a selection committees' best interest to choose the best potential trainees and try and move the field in a positive direction. That includes prior experience, test scores, GPA, personality, work ethic, and yes, diversity.

    *getting off soapbox*
     
  22. Markp

    Markp Clinical Psychologist

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    I think I was quite clear in exploring a number of different minority statuses and not focusing on any particular one. Rather I focused on asking which was most valuable, something no one has dared to answer yet. Although I did suggest that ones based on a phenotype might be the weakest evidence of diversity of all the minority categories.

    I have no idea what minority group the person belongs to, however minority status alone should not be sufficient to offset a poor GRE score. Regardless whether that minority is gender, ethnic, religious, race or based on some other lifestyle or belief.

    Back to your regular thread, before I miss the rest of Glenn Beck.

    Mark

    PS - The Harvard Video is great, I enjoyed it, Thanks!
     
    Last edited: 08.31.10
  23. erg923

    erg923 Psychologist-Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)

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    I think it's fairly obvious that the person was talking about their race (ie., "under-represented minority" means race 99% of the time when we talk about it in the US). But even if not, WHATS THE DIFFERENCE! What minority status should offset a GRE score in and of itself!?
     
    Last edited: 08.31.10
  24. O Gurl

    O Gurl

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    As you can see, we agree on the point in bold. Let me reiterate that all we know of Rehabit is what he/she shared with us. He/she has an excellent GPA, honors research experience, research productivity (presentations/posters), and good subject scores. Clearly not some hopeless prospect hoping to use the minority card to gain admission-which, to be honest, is an unlikely scenario given the fact that admissions are so stringent and there are so many well-qualified minorities. Again, the people in charge of making these decisions have far more to lose than any of us. It is safe to assume they carefully consider who they admit and within those considerations are LOTS of factors. MY point is that there are plenty of other subjective factors (e.g. personality upon interviews) that some might feel like is an "unfair" reason to offer admission to a person with a lower GRE or GPA than another person. I am simply pointing out that for very valid reasons, wanting to sustain diversity in the field may be one consideration, but clearly not the most important. Do any of you really think that an admissions committee would use that as a sole reason to admit an unqualified person? Really? Assumptions that this happens have always been strange to me...
     
  25. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus

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    MOD NOTE: Okay people...back to WAMC...... -t4c
     
  26. GingerTex

    GingerTex

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    WAMC...
    GREs 1300-1400 range, working on getting it over 1400 now
    Strong research experience with labs at good 3 different, good schools over the past 5 years including 1 pub accepted with 2 or 3 in prep, one poster
    GPA 3.7, psych 3.8
    Almost 2 years volunteering on a suicide crisis hotline and some additional clinical experience with kids

    But: I'm limited to LA and NYC areas (husband's job). I've applied twice already with no acceptances (2 interviews straight out of undergrad, only applied to LA schools last year).

    Chances? Any suggestions on how to bridge the location or research interest match challenges? Should I apply to a master's program this year too in case I don't get in? (Not sure I can bear a 4th round...)
    Thanks!
     
    Last edited: 02.09.11
  27. Markp

    Markp Clinical Psychologist

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    Unless you are below the averages for where you are applying... In general, I think you are wasting your time, but if the school expects 700+ on both sections, then hell ya... go for it!

    Define strong? Were you working on an R1 grant, or some smaller grant, when we start talking the upper range of things then splitting hairs becomes more important... were you a lab manager, or just a worker? That kind of distinction can be important at the outer limits. (I assume since you want to have a 1400+ GRE score that this might be the case... Yes, LOL, academic profiling.)

    That's too bad since an EXCELLENT suicide researcher at USUHS is in the DC area only a few hours away from NYC and she was trained by Aaron Beck. If your scores are that good and you could somehow swing DC, you might want to approach Dr. Marjan Holloway at USUHS. She is an expert in suicide and suicide intervention. She's fantastic and perhaps one of my favorite professors at USUHS. The $29k stipend for civilian students is attractive as well.

    I would expand your search a little if possible. Sure, if your spouse must live in NYC or LA, that's a challenge, but DC is really only a train ride or $20 bus ride away on the weekends.

    Good Luck!!!!

    Mark

    PS - I apologize in advance for promoting my school, but I really love it and it offers some great opportunities.
     
    Last edited: 09.02.10
  28. ab2844

    ab2844

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    Hi all. Please bear with me, I really need some advice! :confused:

    I just took the General GRE this past Saturday. I got 690 math and 500 verbal. I'm graduating with a BS in Applied Psych from NYU this January. I'm mainly applying to PsyD programs, but also a few masters and PhD. I'm really not very excited about any PhD programs because I have no interest in research. I want to be a psychologist with a private practice in the distant future with some hospital work and such a long the way. At the moment, I'm trying to assess my chances of getting into the programs I want and I'm also trying to figure out whether I should retake the GRE.

    I'm taking the Psych subject test in October. If I were to retake the general GRE it'd be after that.

    Thanks to NYU I have some clinical experience which I hope will trump the fact that I have no research experience - at all. I volunteered on an acute in-patient psychiatric unit at a hospital for 3 months last Spring. This Fall I will be volunteering at a women's shelter for women over 45 who have had or still have mental illnesses. Also will be about 3 months (unless I choose to stay there longer even after I graduate in January.)

    Though I don't have any research experience, nor do I like research from what I know of it, I might try to get on a research team after I graduate. I will have an 8 month period between graduating and starting grad school (hopefully) so I'd like to use that time wisely.

    The two main programs I hope to get into are Rutgers and Yeshiva, both for clinical psychology PsyD's. The more I hear and read about Rutgers, the more it becomes a reach school. I'm also applying to the EdM in counseling at Columbia's teachers college and possibly the masters at NYU and Brooklyn College. Another PsyD I'm looking into (more so after reading a bunch of threads about it here) is LaSalle University.

    Currently I have a cumulative GPA of 3.4, hopefully a 3.5 or higher by the end of this semester.

    So, what do you think my chances are relative to the programs I'm applying to? Do you think I should retake the general GRE?

    My main doubts about retaking the GRE is that I'm worried that while picking up vocab to raise my verbal score, my math might fall. I was sort of happy with my 690 considering it was my personal best (out of all the practice tests I took, 650 was my highest. The highest in verbal I've gotten was 540, so not too far off from the real test.) Also, it's my last semester and I feel like I'll have enough to do with filling out applications, writing essays, taking classes, and studying for the psych GRE, without having the headache of studying for the general GRE, again. So if you think I could get away without it, please do let me know. (At the moment, the only program that is really making me consider retaking it is Rutgers.)

    Thanks so much, I really appreciate any advice I can get!! =]
     
  29. mixolyd

    mixolyd

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    What did you end up choosing?

    I think paper tests are still available, at least that's what the GRE site indicates. I'm actually debating this myself.. I heard that computer tests get harder the better you do, so I'd much rather do paper if I could :cool: I know, I know.. taking the easy way out! haha
     
  30. Student4Life0

    Student4Life0

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    Hi! So, first off..let me warn you that I am only a masters student, and will also be applying to doctoral programs for fall 2011. I am no expert, so take what I say with a grain of salt. However, I have spent the last year doing A LOT of research regarding programs and admissions, and I have gotten a lot of advice from supervisors/professors. So here is my take on your situation...

    1. If you do not like research, do not consider a PhD. Research is an integral part of the degree, and you will do a lot of it. It sounds like this degree would not be a good fit for you.

    2. Even though a PsyD is less research focused and more clinical, don't let that fool you...you will still be doing research. You will still be required to do a discertation. If you are considering Rutgers...start liking research.

    As far as Rutgers..it is a reach. I have been told by one professor and by my supervisor that I would be more than lucky to get in, and that "almost no body gets in." Thankfully, my professors don't bull**** me :)

    You're probably wondering if this is a testament to my own skills/academic record. It is not. Rutgers is referred to as "the Harvard of PsyD programs." From what I have heard, it is partially funded (which is rare among PsyD programs) and it is exceptional. They also get aprox 400-500 applicants per year, while most other programs seem to get between 150-300.

    Am I still going to try to apply to Rutgers? Absolutley. As well as Uha, Hofstra PhD, LaSalle, Widener, Nova, Roosevelt, and a few counseling PhD programs. A few of these programs may be a reach, but all you do is try right?

    Btw...a bit about me...I am a 2nd year MA clinical student, 3.9 GPA, horrendous GRE scores from 2 years ago (retaking in a month), research experience from 2 diff professors labs, volunteer work in an outpatient clinic, and currently in a year long 20 hour per week clinical practicum at a very well respected research site. And Rutgers is still a big reach :(

    My advice to you would be to forget the PhD programs, consider re taking your GREs, and broaden your list of schools. My current list of programs is 10, and I have been advised that it would be wise to find a few more. And even though you hate it...you really should grow accostumed to research. And remember...research is important. You wouldn't want to be using treatments that have no efficacy behind them, would you?
     
  31. jdawgg

    jdawgg

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    Would just like to point out that we have a WAMC (What Are My Chances) thread for this sort of thing.
     
  32. GingerTex

    GingerTex

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    Thanks for the feedback. Yes, I was primary coordinator for an R01, and also helped organize and write an R21 that looks likely to be funded. I'm pushing my scores because I can't take any chances... rejection is a funny teacher.

    Thanks for the info about Dr. Holloway. I am thinking about applying in DC, as I went to undergrad there at AU, but the cost of moving the husband to NYC and paying to live in DC myself is more substantial than we could handle. I have a school in New Jersey and a couple in NY outside the city on the list too, am also stretching LA to include Santa Barbara and San Diego. Hopefully that'll help (?? (eeek! so stressed... and it's only September))

    :xf:
     
  33. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus

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    Yup....moving.
     
  34. erg923

    erg923 Psychologist-Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)

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    Honestly, you would have no chance at ph.ds program due to your lack of research experience. But more importantly...

    With all due respect, I hope you are aware that the original purpose for the psy.d model of doctoral training was to simply increase clinical practica training (this was a time when ph.d programs didn't necessarily offer alot of practicum training. This is no longer true, fortunately). It was NOT intend as an outlet for people who hate research. Research and leaning to think like a scientist are the root/heart of this dicipline. If you really haver no interest in it, then you should do something else. Even psy.d programs require students to produce something during their 4-5 years. You wont be competitive for the internship match if you dont. Phds are also your competition there remember. Almost all psy.d programs will also have you do a dissertation (scaled down). You are not going to escape conducting (at least some) research, science, and statistics in this field..... and if you want to, then you shouldnt be in it in the first place. So just keep this in mind...
     
    Last edited: 09.03.10
  35. velvsop

    velvsop

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    This question is not about my chance of getting an interview or acceptance, which I know is a combination of many factors, including luck.

    Rather I am more concerned about getting past the "first cut." From my understanding, schools use numbers to whittle down the giant application pool to a sizable number and then never look at numbers again. Is this right?

    Anyway:

    UG GPA: 3.3, strong upward trend, double majored in Psychobiology (premed courses) and English literature and completed both majors in four years

    GRE: 1530 total (still waiting on AW score)
    760 (Quant)
    770 (Verbal)

    Have not taken the Psych GRE yet.

    Any insights into whether the above numbers would get me past that initial cut, or even any insights about the cut process itself.

    Thanks!!
     
  36. krisrox

    krisrox

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    Your GPA is low, but it should make the cut. Especially given your upward trend and your extremely strong GRE scores. There are some schools that might cut off at a 3.5 GPA, but tough luck if they do. You also need some good research and clinical experience, a killer statement, and a focused research interest- yes, even for the first cut.
     
  37. velvsop

    velvsop

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    Thanks, krisrox.

    Is there any way to go about figuring out which schools would use the 3.5 GPA cutoff? Would schools publish that information or would they be willing to disclose such cutoff criteria if I were to email admissions? Also, I had heard in the past of some sort of equation schools use to combine GRE and GPA into a numerical score..is that true?

    It seems like I was misinformed about the "first cut" process. I had heard that it was numbers alone that would shave off a huge chunk of applicants (i.e. 150 out of 300), and then factors like research interests, experience, SOP, etc would whittle that down as well. If all of those factors are taken into account in the first cut, then what do they look at in subsequent cuts?

    Any more opinions/ideas appreciated.
     
  38. all4theglory

    all4theglory

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    >>>
     
    Last edited: 01.11.11
  39. Markp

    Markp Clinical Psychologist

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    Do you feel that you were given bad advice?

    What are you going to do about it now that you are concerned?

    Seems a little late to be second guessing yourself... My advice is to stop worrying about what you cannot change. I think you'll be fine at plenty of programs. I had a 560 V 740 Q, mind you this was 3 years ago, but I had no problems getting plenty of interviews and I don't think the thesis helped, just having the research experience seemed to be enough.

    Mark
     
  40. psich

    psich

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    Mark, would you mind if I ask how much research experience you had?
     
  41. Markp

    Markp Clinical Psychologist

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    Just over a year and a half. I finished my undergrad in 5 semesters, so I only had two years in school. I didn't even plan on going to a graduate program until the end of my first semester. This made it a little tough to play catch up, so my research experience was rather limited.

    Mark
     
  42. all4theglory

    all4theglory

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    Well I'm not really sure if it was bad advice...I'll have to wait and see. I was just concerned because a colleague of mine went through the application process last year and during interviews they spoke about her senior thesis. I guess I'm more looking to prepare myself if that were to come up in an interview. That's good to hear about the gre too. Thanks for your advice!
     
  43. psypipe

    psypipe

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    Hello
    I am new to this forum,I have been reading for a while and have found this forum to be a great source of information.

    I am a psychology major at fsu(republic of Panama campus).I am in my freshman year and have taken 8 classes so far(I did spring,summer full time).I had a hard time my first two semesters beacuse I was suffering from mild depression but thanks to my psychologist I am alot better and currently working to enter a doctoral program in clinical psychology.

    I could have gotten good grades but was not very focused.I have a 3.45 GPA and 3.9 psychology GPA (3 courses).I know I have to get research experience,clinical experiece,improve my gpa and study for the GRE.The problem is: there is no research in Fsu Republic of Panama or any university of Panama for that matter.So I cant do research until I get transferred to the main campus (Tallahasse).I will get transferred by spring semester of my junior year.

    My questions are :

    Since I cant do research for now, I was thinking of gaining clinical experience.Fsu republic of Panama is not in the US so I was wondering if clinical experience outside the Unites States counts when im applying to a Doctoral program? Do you think its worth my time? or should I not bother and do other things like study for the GRE?

    My other question is: do you guys by any chance know if Fsu is well regarded in their undergraduate psychology program? Does it matter from which undergrad program one is coming from when applying to Doctoral programs?
    I decided to attend Fsu beacuse it has a abroad campus in my country, but I am not sure how it compares to other psychology undergraduate programs.

    My third question is : Yes I know 3.45 is not good enough , I still have 3 years to get that fixed. If I get my Gpa fixed to lets say a 3.7 or 3.8 by the time I graduate, do you think I will still have a chance at a top Psyd funded school like Rutgers or Baylor? or will my bad start decrease my chances? also if I dont get accepted to these programs and do a MA in clinical psychology and apply again, would doing the MA help me get in the second time?

    I know I made this post long,I just wanted to see your opinions.
    Thank you for reading my post and commenting!
    Im sorry if I made grammar mistakes , English is my second language
     
  44. Markp

    Markp Clinical Psychologist

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    A little bit can't hurt, volunteer for a suicide hotline, community shelter, domestic violence shelter, or something similar, you don't need to spend a lot of time doing this but a little would certainly be helpful. It is more important to have a good GPA and GRE score.

    As far as undergraduate work, there is nothing wrong with graduating from FSU, Talahassee. As a matter of fact, people even get admitted from lower ranking universities to good clinical Ph.D. programs and Psy.D. programs. Florida State University is considered a solid national university, as such you won't be at a disadvantage should you graduate from there with a 3.5 or better GPA. I went a much less prestigious school and still got interviews at Baylor and other good programs.

    Don't worry about it if you transfer and graduate from the main campus.

    I don't know if having a MA will be helpful, sometimes it is, and sometimes it's not. It won't necessarily hurt your chances but I think it's nicer to get into a Ph.D. or Psy.D. program and just make the jump from undergraduate to doctoral program.

    If I were in your shoes, I think my plan would go a little like this.

    1. Focus on my GPA and some light volunteer work.
    2. Start prepping now, 1 or 2 hours a week learning GRE words.
    3. Take 1 practice GRE a quarter to see where you are and learn the test tricks. Really dissect what you did wrong.
    4. Plan to transfer to FSU's main campus.
    5. Once there get research experience, find a good mentor, and start going to conferences.
    6. during your junior year really start narrowing down your interests and take the GRE at the end of your Junior year, just in case you need to take it again before it's too late.
    7 Fall of your senior year, begin applying and hope for the best. If all goes well you can get into a graduate program. It's tough, but you can do it.

    Mark
     
  45. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus

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    mod note: ALL questions about application viability should be posted in the WAMC thread. Moving. -T4C
     
  46. alb0409

    alb0409

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    My undergrad GPA was low - like a 2.9 but I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and I also had to deal with my mother's depression so that really dragged me down. ONce I figured out what I wanted to do - get my PhD in clinical psychology, I decided to go back to school and take a boat load of courses in psychology - since I majored in Public Relations. The courses I have taken so far are Intro 1&2, Human Sexuality, Developmental 1&2, Abnormal, Research and Stats. I have about a 3.8 or 3.9 in my psych courses.

    I have worked in a professional environment in DC for 3 years now. Not psychology related but anyone who says my experience here couldn't be related to psychology hasn't spent an hour in my job ;)

    I will have 3 LORs - 1 from a professor, 2 from my bosses

    Psychology Honor Society

    Will take the GREs twice

    Currently looking for some research experience which is very difficult to find working full time - that's going to be what kills me, I know.

    For my personal statement, should I mention my mother's depression contributing to low grades initially in undergrad? I hope my new GPA with my psych courses will prove my motivation to turn things around.

    Any and all help is greatly appreciated.
     
  47. psypipe

    psypipe

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    This is fantastic advice, thank you :)
     
  48. GNC

    GNC

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    anything? :D
     
  49. futureapppsy2

    futureapppsy2 Ed Psych PhD student Moderator Gold Donor

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    I think you'll have as good as chance as any, though I'd reconsider taking the GRE so late in case you want too re-take. Everything else looks very good! Good luck! :luck:
     
  50. Markp

    Markp Clinical Psychologist

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    Do it right, take them once and get the score you want.
    I might state that she had an illness, I wouldn't go into detail, not needed. She needed help and your grades suffered. Explained with adequate detail. Mark
     

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