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2012 Graduate School Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

  1. Nov 24, 2011 #1

    Simfish

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    Gold Member

    Not sure how to disable BB-code here - please feel free to edit.

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

    GRE Scores (revised/old version):
    Q:
    V:
    W:
    P:


    TOEFL Total: (if applicable, otherwise delete this)

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

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

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

    Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help:

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

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

    Applying to Where:

    School - Department - Research Interest
    School - Department - Research Interest
    School - Department - Research Interest
    ______________________________________________
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 24, 2011 #2

    Simfish

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Re: 2012 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

    University of Washington (top-5 in atmospheric science, where I'll be getting most of my LORs from)
    Major(s): Astronomy, Physics, Math
    Minor(s): Applied Math
    GPA in Major: 3.77 Astronomy, mid-3's in Physics (but that is still pending til the end of the quarter)
    Overall GPA: 3.58 for last two years (overall is in 3.0-3.5 range, but still pending)
    Type of Student: Domestic Parrot

    GRE Scores:
    Biology: 810 (89th percentile), completely self-studied without taking any courses asides from a grad-lvl neurophysiology course
    Cellular & Molecular Biology: 82nd percentile
    Organismal Biology: 89th percentile
    Ecology/Evolution/Population Biology: 91st percentile
    GRE Physics: Pending
    General GRE: Pending

    Research Experience:
    Several years. Two publications (although in papers with numerous coauthors where my role wasn't that significant).
    Latest research is exoplanetary atmosphere research

    Awards/Honors/Recognitions:
    - National AP Scholar (8 self-studied APs)
    - Early Entrance @ University of Washington

    Pertinent Activities or Jobs:
    - Attended a grad-student summer program (CASS 2011 - http://www.ifa.hawaii.edu/UHNAI/CASS2011/ ) as an undergrad last summer
    - Quora Reviewer (have really built up the science sections on Quora up over the last few months), and am a top answerer on Astronomy, Biology, Neuroscience, Planetary Science, Atmospheric Science, Animal Behavior, Scientific Research, and Academia
    - Panelist on Reddit AskScience, supporting member on Physics Forums, and also active on Astronomy Stack Exchange (and several others). In other words, I'm one of the most prominent users on all the astrophysics-related communities on the Internet

    Special Bonus Points:
    - Grad-lvl courses in Neurophysiology, Planetary Atmospheres, Objective Analysis (aka Digital Signal Processing), High-Performance Scientific Computing, Numerical Linear Algebra, Causal Modelling (in statistics), Chinese Geography, and Ice/Climate (atmospheric science) - all with 3.4 GPA or above
    - I think I really helped my case by contacting professors (more so than most others), given that some of them invited me to call them, and that our research interests were extremely similar.

    Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter:
    - My overall GPA got nuked by my idiocy when I was 16, but I'm still glad I did early entrance.
    - There are also numerous other factors, but probably best not to mention them now)

    Applying to Where: (this is probably a preliminary list that needs to be expanded)
    Mostly programs with active professors who do 3D modelling of exoplanetary atmospheres.

    Strong definites:

    Berkeley EPS -
    Caltech GPS -
    Caltech Environmental -
    Columbia Astro (or EES, depending on PGRE score) -
    MIT EAPS -
    UCSC Astro (or EPS, depending on PGRE score) -
    Arizona Planetary -
    Chicago Geophysical Sciences -
    UCLA ESS -
    Washington Atmos -

    Maybes:

    Harvard EPS -
    Princeton AOS -
    Cornell Atmos -
    Oregon State COAS -
    Penn State Astro (or Meteorology, depending on PGRE score) -

    May also consider George Mason CSI, Brown Planetary, Colorado, JHU Planetary, WashU, and a few others (especially environmental science departments). There's also a very small chance I could go for Caltech Astro, Chicago Astro, and numerous other Astro depts, and Oceanography is a possible other option.
     
  4. Nov 24, 2011 #3

    jtbell

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    Staff: Mentor

    Re: 2012 Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

    This looks like it's for applications to graduate school, so I've edited the thread title accordingly.
     
  5. Nov 24, 2011 #4
    Thanks for making the thread, its interesting so far to read about these things. Unfortunately, I don't have anything to contribute as I'm still a sophomore! Happy thanksgiving.
     
  6. Nov 24, 2011 #5
    I don't have all of this information ready yet, but I'm posting everything I do know, and will edit in the remaining information later. My physics GRE score just came in a few minutes ago.

    I like the idea of this thread, even though it's a direct ripoff of the physicsgre forums. :-p

    Undergrad Institution: Liberal arts school, small physics department with no reputation
    Major(s): Physics
    Minor(s): N/A
    GPA in Major:
    Overall GPA: 3.8
    Position in Class: Near top
    Type of Student: Domestic male
    GRE Scores (revised/old version):
    Q: 165 (93%)
    V: 164 (94%)
    W: 3.0 (11%) :frown:
    P: 710 (57%)


    Research Experience: A few semesters working on two projects, both with the same professor in my department. First project was on the gamma ray background and the impact a hypothetical dark matter candidate decaying would have on the background. The other project involves solar system tests of the equivalence principle. No publications, but I will have a poster at the Near Field Cosmology conference this Tuesday.

    Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Within the school: Edward I. Rubendall Physics Achievement Award for the Outstanding Senior

    Pertinent Activities or Jobs: Three semesters tutoring, three semesters as a grader.

    Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help:

    Special Bonus Points:

    Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: I'm a slightly older student, at 29 years old.

    Applying to Where:

    University of Maryland - Physics - Chaos
    School - Department - Research Interest (this is a placeholder for now)
     
  7. Dec 26, 2011 #6

    Simfish

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Update:

    Undergrad Institution: University of Washington (top-5 in atmospheric science, where I'll be getting most of my LORs from)
    Major(s): Astronomy, Physics, Math
    Minor(s): Applied Math
    GPA in Major: 3.77 Astronomy, 3.76 for all Physics courses beyond freshman year (but it drops when I include my bloody freshman year)
    Overall GPA: 3.58 for last two years (overall is in 3.0-3.5 range, but still pending)
    Position in Class: Unknown as school doesn't report. But I am definitely the strongest student in the Astronomy department.
    Type of Student: Domestic Parrot

    GRE Scores:
    Q: 167 (95%)
    V: 166 (97%)
    W: 6.0 (99%) - for all the time I wasted on Quora and CC, this was the reward for it all.
    Biology: 810 (89%), completely self-studied without taking any courses asides from a grad-lvl neurophysiology course
    Cellular & Molecular Biology: 82%
    Organismal Biology: 89%
    Ecology/Evolution/Population Biology: 91%
    P: will give later as I'm still ashamed of how little time I put into it, but competitive enough for 1.5-tier Astronomy programs


    Research Experience:
    Several years. Two publications (although in papers with numerous coauthors where my role wasn't that significant).
    Latest research is exoplanetary atmosphere research

    Awards/Honors/Recognitions:
    - National AP Scholar (8 self-studied APs)
    - Early Entrance @ University of Washington

    Pertinent Activities or Jobs:
    - Attended a grad-student summer program (CASS 2011 - http://www.ifa.hawaii.edu/UHNAI/CASS2011/ ) as an undergrad last summer
    - Quora Reviewer (have really built up the science sections on Quora up over the last few months), and am a top answerer on Astronomy, Biology, Neuroscience, Planetary Science, Atmospheric Science, Animal Behavior, Scientific Research, and Academia
    - Panelist on Reddit AskScience, supporting member on Physics Forums, and also active on Astronomy Stack Exchange (and several others). In other words, I'm one of the most prominent users on all the astrophysics-related communities on the Internet

    Special Bonus Points:
    - Grad-lvl courses in Neurophysiology, Planetary Atmospheres, Objective Analysis (aka Digital Signal Processing), High-Performance Scientific Computing, Numerical Linear Algebra, Causal Modelling (in statistics), Chinese Geography, and Ice/Climate (atmospheric science) - all with 3.4 GPA or above
    - I think I really helped my case by contacting professors (more so than most others), given that some of them invited me to call them, and that our research interests were extremely similar.
    - Attended the AGU 2011 meeting (will probably really help my Chicago chances as I had substantial interaction with two there, but effects will probably be neutral everywhere else).

    Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter:
    - My overall GPA got nuked by my idiocy when I was 16, but I'm still glad I did early entrance.
    - There are also numerous other factors (I'm an exceptionally unusual applicant), but probably best not to mention them now.
    - Intense interdisciplinarity may help with earth/atmospheric/planetary science programs (even though it may be seen in a negative way by other programs)

    Applying to Where: (this is probably a preliminary list that needs to be expanded)
    Mostly programs with active professors who do 3D modelling of exoplanetary atmospheres.

    Fully committed:
    Caltech GPS/ESE -
    Chicago Geophysical Sciences -
    Columbia Astro -
    Columbia EESC (they've allowed me to apply to both depts) -
    MIT EAPS -
    Washington Atmos -

    Will most likely apply:
    UCSC Astro -
    Brown EPS -
    Yale Geophysics -

    Maybes - later deadlines, so I'll have some more time to decide:
    Arizona Planetary -
    Cornell Atmos -
    Penn State Astro -
    Colorado
    George Mason CSI
    JHU Planetary

    Decided against applying:
    Berkeley EPS -
    Harvard EPS -
    Princeton AOS -
    Oregon State COAS -
    Wash U
    UCLA (apparently I used the deadline for the wrong program lol...)
    Michigan (deadline too early)
     
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