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EileanDonan

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  1. Honestly, I have to wonder what would happen if we all (non-psych included) collectively refused to take and/or send in our scores to programs. Would that be enough of a final push against the GRE, or would schools just shrug and not accept students for a year? Sigh.
  2. This occurred to me as well. 10-15 schools at 27$ a pop = 270-405$ saved! I can use that to apply to even more schools (and subsequently receive more rejections...)
  3. As much as I would rejoice to see the general GRE go by the wayside (with perhaps the exception of those with a poor GPA taking it), I'm afraid that, for those schools that make it "optional", there will still be a negative bias for those applicants that did not include it. If the ad comms are deciding between two otherwise equal candidates , but one took the test and the other didn't, what's stopping them from selecting the person who did submit test scores, simply because that's the only filter left to them? I don't see how keeping submissions optional as opposed to completely unrequested and unaccepted will encourage fair consideration for all applicants.
  4. What are everyone's thoughts on reaching out to PI's whose labs you had previously applied for, either as a grad student or a RA, but were ultimately rejected (not for any discernibly terrible reason)? Come fall it will be anywhere from .5 - 1.5 years since I had any contact with them/their lab. Kind of awkward, but I'd hate to remove some otherwise great fits from my list, and I'd like to start dropping some email feelers in a few months...any good ways to rebuild a connection? Or have I just inadvertently shot myself in the foot? 🙃
  5. I definitely am, I imagine some changes in the process will be inevitable this year. Likewise, I also think some schools will be having a harder time than others. If anything, I believe this situation really underscores the importance of considering a fair number of programs and applying to as many as is reasonably possible. I have about 30 schools that I'll be whittling down over the coming months.
  6. I appreciate this, thank you. One thing that I've been trying to focus on recently is developing my (otherwise very strong) research interests beyond the abstract. Would you be willing to offer some advice on ways to better conceptualize interests and translate them into more specific talking points, especially in order to maximize goodness of fit come application time?
  7. I'm glad to hear the first part, it's nice to know that I don't have to entirely rule myself out necessarily. Unfortunately, I've been trying to land a full-time research gig for over a year now - things are just so insanely competitive, even if you did have a good experience in undergrad.
  8. Hi everyone, I'm curious to hear some thoughts as to the most advisable ways of addressing poor circumstances that impact academic performance and opportunity. I've been caught in a rather difficult situation myself. I had a lot happen during my undergrad, including loss of an immediate family member concurrent with effective financial ruin for my parents. Long story short, this resulted in me taking on considerable student debt I was never intended to have. Because of my financial concerns, I wasn't able to take advantage of a lot of some of the same sort of opportunities that a lot of my psych student peers had. Although I actually managed to maintain a high GPA, I wasn't able to do things like completing a senior thesis because I needed to graduate a semester early to save money (staying longer would have incurred significant additional cost). This latter fact especially bothers me now because it seems a given that every clinical psych Ph.D. program (my goal) applicant has completed an undergrad thesis. I'm worried about having to compete against everyone in a way that I can't really compensate for - should I even be bothering to try? It goes without saying I can't afford an MA (including the additional time cost). Unfortunately, there is a 0% chance of a serious independent project on the horizon for me now. I'm afraid of POIs seeing my app and immediately throwing it out because I didn't do a thesis, thinking I was too unmotivated (extremely untrue) or lazy to challenge myself. Honestly, I think a lot of my undergrad experience threw off my ability to compete in the post-BA world. Is there a graceful way of acknowledging this gap and mentioning I couldn't complete a thesis due to unfortunate financial issues beyond my control? Or is there another route I should be considering? Some way of emphasizing other strengths in spite of what I'm lacking? Any helpful suggestions, or thoughts from those who have been through a similar situation, would be really appreciated. I've had a lot working against me, and I'm just trying to find a way forward without giving up my dream. Thanks!
  9. Thanks so much! I appreciate having a more directly relevant perspective. Cheers on the UGeorgia admit by the way, I've been looking at that program myself. Good luck on your program!
  10. That's great, thank you! If you don't mind one last question: I have no concrete programming projects from undergrad or time in the lab, so I was thinking of putting together some data analysis project (cleaning data sets, basic statistical analysis) on Github and linking it to my resume. Would this be a sufficient alternative demonstration of ability for PIs? I'm assuming MOOC course certificates don't mean much realistically.
  11. I can echo this, I see programming ability being mentioned on a fair number of RA/coordinator openings, especially of the neuro or cognitive variety. I've been using some of my extra lockdown time to work on Python via various online resources. Does anyone here have any concrete suggestions as to what specific programming skills are considered desirable within a lab? Not trying to hijack the thread, but I think this sort of advice would benefit everyone in this situation.
  12. Hi! I'm hoping to apply this fall as well, although I don't feel I can definitely say I will between the economic effects of the pandemic and the current status of my CV. I've been splitting my time between volunteering in a lab at my local university, working at a facility for women offenders, and non-relevant remote work. Definitely not ideal, but I've been applying like crazy to full-time research jobs as I find them! I should redo my GRE, but recent developments have really taken the focus off that for the time being. I'm also aiming for clinical programs, particularly with a forensic specialty. I have 12-15 schools of interest, from Texas A&M and Nevada-Reno to Penn and Yale (you can only dream...) I'm hoping at the very least to be able to apply to the non-crazy-competitive schools this year. I graduated from a small college with smaller research output, so it's been something of an uphill battle for me.
  13. I've been starting to wonder this myself. I had considered that perhaps schools might (hopefully) be more lenient about requiring scores this coming cycle, but learning that the Educational Torture Senter ETS is allowing for at-home test-taking, I think schools may very well forge ahead as usual. Especially since we may see an influx of applications this fall , schools will want every means of filtering at their disposal.
  14. I'm in the same boat - I've been volunteering in a lab since around October and have been able to do some basic work remotely, but I feel that I've really been stagnating (and not just because of the lockdown). I've been active in applying to full-time positions for about a month now. I've had a little preliminary interest, but the challenge of securing something will be greater than ever. I am likewise anxious about how this situation will impact funding and competitiveness of programs (at least those worth applying to!) I suspect that impact will vary somewhat between universities, however, for example NYC schools might take more of a hit than state universities in the south or midwest. I have been planning on applying this year, but at the rate I have been going my CV won't be competitive enough, especially considering I'll be up against so many others, and I'm doing clinical! I can't afford to do an unfunded program, and time is really not on my side.
  15. I am likewise concerned about the long-term economic effects - in my case, how will this affect funding for future programs? It's only March, and I'm growing highly concerned about my chances for applying this fall, by which point I'll already be two years out of graduation. Grad school can't be pushed back forever, and my BA alone isn't what most people would describe as particularly useful...
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