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About emotional

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  • Location
    Evanston, IL
  • Application Season
    Spring 2020
  • Program
    Developmental Psychology

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  1. From my experience, I learned that some programs use the AWA score as an indicator whether you meet graduate level writing. For example, in the dev psych master's program that I completed, if I scored below a 4.0 on AWA, I would have to take an additional writing course during the program. I also read somewhere on grad cafe that some programs use the AWA for nominations for fellowships and funding when you apply (not entirely sure about this). How about you send both scores? Some programs will take the highest scores in each attempt, but you should confirm that with the grad program coordinator. If I were to chose one of the two scores, I would choose the second set with the 4.0 AWA because all your scores would be above the 50th percentile.
  2. Ultimately this comes down to what feels right for you. If you feel contrived reaching out to a professor and don't think it would make an impact, I think that would translate into the message. I don't think contacting them prior to submitting the application is a make or break deal, unless it is explicitly mentioned in their program description. For example in UVA's developmental psychology program it says: "Prospective graduate students should visit the webpages of faculty with whom they are interested in working and contact those faculty members directly before applying." And if I recall correctly, Stanford has a strict 'do not contact the faculty' policy. Also, one of my current advisors who is a tenure-track professor mentioned that contacting her prior to the application doesn't make a huge impact, since she will read your materials anyways. It seems to be a grey zone, since there seems to be a lot of variation across programs and professors' preferences. For me, I do realize that it is pretty close to the deadline, but I am still in the process of contacting professors (juggling these apps plus a full-time job has been brutal). I framed my email to introduce myself, what interested me about their work, my research interests, and a heads up that I am planning to apply to their lab. It feels like a gamble with each email I have sent, but I agree with all that @amazingbutternutsquash mentioned in their earlier post. It has been validating and reassuring to get feedback from your faculty of interest, especially when they are enthusiastic and encourage you to apply. I even have one professor trying to schedule a meeting with me this late in the game! Also, some professors have been kind to connect me to their grad students, and this has been wonderful because their input has helped me get a better sense whether the culture if the program align with my values (which helped me tremendously with organizing which programs are my top choices). All of this to say, trust your gut and whatever you choose that feels right will be best for you and your application. Best of luck!
  3. Thank you for that encouragement! Definitely well-received on my end as I get back to my grind haha. If you click your username at the top right of the webpage, and then click on account setting, you will then see "Signature" on the left pane. You can update your signature there!
  4. Congrats on the huge leap in the quant score @goldenxpenguins! I am drafting my SOP to get to my letter writers by the end of this week. It feels so tempting to compare my progress to the other applicants here, and when I do, I feel far behind, since I am still drafting my SOP and still contacting POI's in my list to let them know that I will be applying to work with them. But I have to keep reminding myself that I am doing the best I can while juggling a full time job.. Anyways, I am rooting for you all here! I am starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel!
  5. I can truly empathize about the GRE. I've retaken this test over three times in the past 5 years, and I still feel like it is the weakest part of my application. In the past, I had a letter writer address my low GRE scores and talk about my other strengths that can indicate success in grad school. That might be worth a try if you have someone who can vouch for you in that way. I'm sure your research experience can be an element that can outshine GRE scores! I am keeping my fingers crossed for all of us.
  6. Definitely leaning towards not retaking it, and my colleagues also said it wouldn't be worth it. Wishing you the best on retaking the test! It will feel so liberating to get the scores you're aiming for, but also not the end of the world if you don't. I had to keep reminding myself that this is only one part of the application that doesn't completely summarize my success in a doctoral program.
  7. Happy to see activity on this thread! These past couple of months have been a whirlwind. Particularly, the last 6 weeks have been nuts, where I've been studying for the GRE and preparing that beastly NSF fellowship application. @goldenxpenguins I completely empathize, I felt like I was consistently revising my statements up until the deadline.... I am so relieved it's sent. Now, the occasional pestering of my LOR writers to be sure to upload their letters. Extremely excited to get this wrapped up this week. I wanted to get advice from people in this thread around the GRE. I just took the GRE today after prepping for 2 months, and I scored a total of 312: 153 (V) & 159 (Q). Only one school (UW-Madison, which is also my top choice) on my list gave minimum requirements for the GRE, which was a combined score of 310, so I am extremely happy about that. The other programs on my list did not list minimum requirements, but did share their admitted cohort GRE averages (ranges from 314 to 317). Is it worth it to prepare to take the test one more time in an attempt to improve my scores for a couple of points? I think the saving grace about my current scores is that both the verbal and quant are above the 50th percentile (thank goodness). Honestly... I am so fed up with this wretched test, and I am not sure if it's worth it to crazily study for another 3 weeks to increase my scores for a couple of points... Thoughts?
  8. I am also throwing my hat into the ring! Long-time lurker here, finally decided to participate in the GradCafe community! This is my second time applying for PhD programs, and I feel excited to give this another shot. For my first attempt, I felt pressured from my cohort mates and advisor in my developmental psychology master's program to apply to PhD programs. Ultimately, I didn't get any interviews or acceptances for my first round of applications. I was completely relieved that it panned out that way because I was not ready, and I knew I wanted to pursue a research project coordinator position before my doctoral studies. Now that I am wrapping up my second year as a project coordinator in an applied developmental psychology research lab, I am itching to go back to school, and I am taking this as a sign of positive juju flowing! My research interests are broadly around the interplay between cognitive and socio-emotional development in young children across different cultures. Specifically, I am interested in how young children experience and understand their own and others' emotions. The potential schools that seem like a good fit for my research interests are: New York University Penn State University University of Denver Cornell University UC Berkeley University of Virginia University of Minnesota Georgetown University As of right now, I am planning to get an early start on my application to make sure I give myself ample time to revise and get feedback. I am also planning to retake the GRE in the coming months. Now that I put this out in the universe, this is my first step to manifesting this dream into reality! Looking forward to support one another to get where we want to be! Cheers!
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