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Should I retake GRE for Medical Physics (Master's)

  1. Dec 17, 2013 #1
    I just finished taking my GRE and I am a bit unsatisfied with my scores and am debating if I should retake it before the application deadlines. I got a 156Q and 150V... below is my resume thus far.

    I posted the following on here before.. so apologies for repeating the same post, but I felt it was relevant to determine if I should retake the GRE or not.
    I will be graduated soon from Marshall University with a B.S. in physics with an area of emphasis on medical physics. I will also have a minor in Chemistry. I am planning on attending graduate school to obtain my master's in the fall of 2014. So far I have:

    -3.49 overall GPA
    -Research - motion management in radiation oncology
    -Registered Radiologic Technologist (Associate's Degree)
    -Volunteered/Shadowed a 3-4 times in the local cancer center with the medical physicist and dosimetrist
    -Upon graduation I will have 2 semesters of chem, 2 semesters of organic chem, 1 semester of cell biology, 2 semesters of gen biology, biomedical physics, calc through DE, C++.
    -I'm not sure how much extracurricular activities matter in the selection, but I was in Marshall's marching band for a year and pep band for 2 years. I have also volunteered at a couple of local elementary schools to perform physics experiments to spark an interest in sciences to the kids.

    I would really like to get into any of the programs near Ohio and West Virginia that have residencies and the program, such as Duke (my top choice), Vanderbilt, Kentucky, Penn. If anyone could help me out on what my chances would be getting into one of these schools, I'd greatly appreciate it! I was told by the medical physicist that I am working with that my degree in x-ray will help me since I already have a strong background of how the clinical setting and radiation works. I am just curious as to how much this will help me since I'm sure these schools are probably really hard to get into and my GPA isn't as stellar as others. I am looking at other closer colleges too such as Cincinnati, Toledo, and Cleveland State, but they would would be my secondary choices because I want a program that has a residency. I don't want to run into any problems of having my degree and can't get into a residency, since I've been told that's an issue lately.
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 17, 2013 #2


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    The weight that different programs place on the GRE varies.

    I know it's not one of the schools you listed, but you might find this link for MD Anderson's program useful. Other schools may be slightly less competitive, but probably not too much so.

    As far as extra-curricular activities go, science-related volunteer work is likely to be seen positively, band-related stuff is not likely to have much of an impact.
  4. Dec 17, 2013 #3
    Ok thank you! I think I may try to retake it since I know that I can do better if I had more time to prepare and practice with timing (I ran out of time on both Q sections and had to completely guess on 6-8 questions without even reading them). Unfortunately, I will have to use these scores for Indiana, Penn, and VCU since their deadlines are Jan 15th and the retake scores won't arrive on time. I may just save my money and not apply to Penn because I read where successful applicants score in the 80% range on the GRE which I obviously didn't. I just hope my background in x-ray helps my weaker scores.
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