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urgent!! need your input!

Discussion in 'Psychology [Psy.D. / Ph.D.]' started by psychgirl86, Dec 23, 2008.

  1. psychgirl86

    2+ Year Member

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    Hi Guys,

    I am currently appplying to M.A. in clinical psychology programs. Here's the setback:

    My GPA is 2.65 because i used to be a biology major and did horribly in organic chem, physics, etc. My psych GPA is fairly well. around a 3.0

    I have tons of clinical experience (three internships, couple volunteering)
    I also have research experience in developmental psychology and have presented at a convention.

    My GRE combined score is 970. I have decent recs and personal statement.

    Does anyone know what my chances woudl be of getting in?? Do you know any good programs in M.A. clinical psychology??
     
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  3. psychgirl86

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    ANY replies from experience would REALLY help! i'm freaking out here :( really want to get into a good program
     
  4. blindblonde

    blindblonde U.S. citizen, Dutch Ph.D
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    First of all, I am no expert if you will get in or not get in. I am a M.A. general psych student, so I can only base it on my experience. Your clinical experience and your research experience is good. However, you need a better GPA and GRE. A low GPA can be overlooked if you had a better GRE score. I believe my program rarely accepts anyone below a 1200 GRE. I think it would be worth retaking the GRE if possible. The sense that I get from admissions committees is that GPA and GRE scores are a first hurdle, and then they will look at the rest of your application. With your current GRE and GPA, you risk committees not looking at the rest of your application (which sounds pretty good by your description) because of those two scores.

    Good luck!! :luck:
     
  5. Jon Snow

    Jon Snow Senior Member
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    I personally know PsyD students who have gotten in with sub 900 GRE scores. I'm sure that's the exception to the rule, but anything around 1000 should be suitable for a masters program. The GPAs are low, though, in combination. I think, given the experience, they should have a shot. What is the career aspiration here?
     
  6. biogirl215

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    Jon Snow,

    What kind of PsyD?
     
  7. somemom

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    I know a girl with very similar GPAs who did research with a prof in a program she liked. She then was encouraged to apply to the masters and got in, probationary, and was funded as an RA initially and a TA after a while.

    I do know she was over 1200 GRE though I don't know how high and I believe others in her program were lower scored, so, maybe.....but try to get involved in research with a prof you would like to work with, do it as a volunteer and prove yourself before he risks anything on you.
     
  8. biogirl215

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    Somemom, was that clinical or other (cognitive, experimental, personality, etc.)?
     
  9. psychgirl86

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    My GRE 460 verbal and 510 quant

    one school says GRE verbal score of 40% will be helpful. my percentile is 50%. you think i should submit the scores?

    i'm so nervous and need to get in somewhere :(
     
  10. WannaBeDrMe

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    I'm rarely harsh on the board but I'm getting ready to toss some tough love your way. Blame my bad day... ha...

    You need to consider the following...

    1. What are your plans beyond your masters degree?

    2. How much money are you willing to spend?

    3. Can you travel/relocate for an acceptance?

    4. Are you capable of better grades/better scores?

    5. Why do you "have to get in somewhere?"

    Once you know those answers, I might be able to offer some better suggestions. Your scores are low across the board. Without knowing you, I can't say whether or not that's an accurate reflection of your ability levels. You need to be realistic about your ability level before you choose a program.

    You don't want to get stuck at a school with sub-par training just b/c they accept someone with poorer stats when you are capable of much, much better performance.

    It's not the end of the world if that is your true ability level but you need to match accordingly... you'll need to pick a program that stimulates you but will not overwhelm you and challenge you to a point of failure. Many people fall apart in grad school... picking the wrong program probably has a lot to do with that (my guess, no facts to back this up)...

    Also, you don't want to retake the GRE if you truly can't do better... nothing will look worse than 5 attempts, same score, or worse scores...

    Your grades are NOT horrible... they are above average and you could probably get into law school with a decent LSAT... you could likely get into several liberal arts grad programs too... but for clinical psychology, things are quite competitive...even at the master's level in a lot of places...

    There's a lot of people in between the 4.0, 1600, multi-published golden boy applications and where you fall with 3.0 and some volunteer experience... and those people all want to get in somewhere just as badly as you do...

    Now, to that last one, why you want to get in... if it's for any other reason than you like the field of psychology... don't do it, take some time and explore your options.

    My suggestions: I think your bio background is an advantage... sell it that way. Even though your grades weren't grade, they were better than average by definition and you were bound to have learned some stuff in the classes regardless of your grade... use your personal statements to describe how valuable that time was to you and how that directed your interest in psychology... if that's what happened...

    There are lots of programs that will let you in... but you don't want to just go somewhere b/c that's the one that would accept you... sell yourself as someone with potential to grow, contribute, and integrate into the new environment with strengths... not focusing on what went wrong in undergrad

    my undergrad gpa was not a 4.0... not at all... but I get more action now than my 4.0 classmates... it's about what you learn and how you apply it... in the end... we all take different roads to get there...

    good luck and keep us posted on your decision, happy holdiays.
     
  11. TJNYM

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    Its hard to say, it all depends on what the school wants. I was sort of in the same boat, I too started out as a health sciences major and took a bunch of science courses- organic chem, physics, bio - which killed by GPA. After I switched to psych my GPA was a lot better, but b/c of the rough start my overall GPA was much lower than I wanted it to be. My psych GPA was good though (around a 3.95), so that helped me bigtime in getting into grad programs. I don't know if your psych GPA really would give you much of an advantage to other applicants, but your experience with internships is a huge plus. And you can try and use your sciences background to your advantage, that your more well rounded, etc.
     
  12. Jon Snow

    Jon Snow Senior Member
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    . . .a university based, relatively small (in terms of class size) professional school program that has been mentioned many times on this website.

    PsyD programs will always be easy to get into because the motivational source is driven by profit not quality.
     
  13. WannaBeDrMe

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    Fixed that for you! :).
     
    #12 WannaBeDrMe, Dec 25, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2008
  14. Jon Snow

    Jon Snow Senior Member
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    Fine, fine.


    Most PsyD programs will be easier than most PhD programs to get into because the motivational source is driven by profit not quality.
     
  15. WannaBeDrMe

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    Ok, I'll concede with the following...

    Some PsyD programs will be easier than most PhD programs to get into because the motivational source is driven by profit not quality.

    I have to keep optimism in at least one area or I'm going to bury myself head first in the sand and hide until 2029.
     
  16. Cigolon

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    This sounds very similar to a situation one of my undergraduate research assistants was going through a few months ago, including the presentation and scores. I'll tell you what I told them.

    Clinical psychology is difficult, even at a masters level and the low GRE coupled with the low GPA is going to make it difficult to get noticed without something that stands out in a very serious way. I've seen professors openly question if the person is truly as committed and capable as they need be in order to complete the graduate work. I know at my M.A. they wanted an 1100 GRE. otherwise I think you should listen to wannabedrme's advice.
     
  17. myelin

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    I personally know someone who had a sub 3.0 UG GPA, 900 range GRE, but lots of research experience. They went to a MA program for 3 years, got accepted to a Clinical PhD program, and are now completing their predoctoral internship at an ivy league school. This game is not always all about the numbers.

    So, rather than smashing your dream to bits, I think that you would be a good candidate for a MA/MS program. You can message me if you're interested in my suggestions for programs that would give you a good look and a second chance.
     
  18. psychlove

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    As far as GRE's...the correlation between how well a person does in grad school and their GRE score is found to be 0 yes 0. I have a professor very adamant about ignoring GRE scores and focusing on GPA and other info--letters of rec, personal statement etc

    If you apply to enough schools you will find others who agree about the GREs being questionable measures of performance.

    Therefore, your only stumbling block appears to be the low GPA. Most schools agree that anything below 3.0 won't get a second look. Most want at least 3.5..even for just a master's. Perhaps more research experience would ease this? Or applying to a general psych program?
     
    #17 psychlove, Jan 19, 2009
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2009
  19. 2BeAProfessor

    2BeAProfessor AttemptedAdmission to PhD
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    Your best bet would be a rural area university that has an MA in psychology...that would be considered a huge change but if rural practice suits you - that would help.

    Also, try a PsyD program that plans to be accredited - they may want you to give your GRE again though.
     

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