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A Question about Princeton Physics

  1. Aug 19, 2010 #1
    I suppose this is a pretty stupid question, but how hard exactly is it to get in to Princeton's physics graduate program? (i.e. what the acceptance rate is, the GRE score requirements and means etc...) Thanks.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 19, 2010 #2

    diazona

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    I doubt there are any absolute GRE score requirements, but in practice, I'd guess physics GRE scores of admitted students are probably always above 900. I wouldn't be surprised if the median is a perfect 990. So the acceptance rate isn't going to be too high :wink:

    It probably has more to do with your research experience, basically how well you've been able to distinguish yourself in whatever your chosen field is. It'd be a good idea to get in touch with a professor who is doing the kind of research you want to do (or ideally, have already started doing) and see whether, based on your accomplishments, they might be interested in taking you on as a student. Having a professor who wants you in his/her research group is way better than anything else that might show up on your resume. (One thing I wish I'd been told about the grad admissions process is that it's more like applying to a specific professor's research group than applying to a school, especially at top universities)

    If nobody here is able to give you a more specific answer, I have a couple of friends in grad school at Princeton who I might be able to ask.
     
  4. Aug 19, 2010 #3
    Check your competitions.

    Everyone applies with 3.9GPA ish and I am guessing a few 4.0GPAers will pop up. Not to mention they probably have a lot of letters of rec from distinguished physicists. Yeah I agree, it probably is over 950 on their GRE.

    A lot of published research and I say most of them are from reputable alma maters. Don't get me wrong, I am sure there are equally successful applicants from less reputable undergrads, but just more will come from say Harvard, Yale, MIT, Cornell, Chicago, etc..

    Also, I heard that minorities have a different applicant and is rumored to be easier, not sure if that is true though.

    Then again, what do I know?
     
  5. Aug 19, 2010 #4

    Vanadium 50

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    I think that's a good question to ask of anyone providing advice. How much of this is first-hand and how much is guessing.
     
  6. Aug 19, 2010 #5
    Everything is a guess, but an educated guess?
     
  7. Aug 20, 2010 #6

    Vanadium 50

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    How exactly is this guess educated? And how does uninformed advice help the OP?
     
  8. Aug 20, 2010 #7
    Thanks guys =)
     
  9. Aug 22, 2010 #8
    http://www.gradschoolshopper.com/ is very nice. With it you can find pages like

    http://www.aip.org/gpb/pdf_files/137.pdf

    for most every school. Often they give average entering GRE scores (though it happens that Princeton's page above does not). From that page you can see that the acceptance rate is ~10%.

    I'd guess that the GRE score estimates above are too high; for example http://www.aip.org/gpb/pdf_files/107.pdf" [Broken] page lists the average entering physics GRE for a few years back as 892.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  10. Aug 23, 2010 #9

    diazona

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    Interesting. I know my personal experience isn't a great guide but I've never known anyone to get into a high-caliber graduate physics program like Princeton or Harvard with a GRE score less than 900. Even at Penn State, where I go to school, the median GRE physics score for my entering class was probably in the mid-800's (based on the scores I know of some other grad students), and Penn State is certainly less selective than Princeton.
     
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