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  1. That is good to hear. Like I said, I'm very interested in spatial stats, but I was hoping to get to explore other areas as well. I'm sure the coursework will largely satisfy that curiosity, but it does feel daunting to commit to a specific area of research so early on. Is this a valid concern to have, or am I overthinking it? Do you also think going for the MS would not meaningfully bolster my profile?
  2. @bayessays, I didn't apply to that full list, but I did cover quite a range. I am still waiting on replies from a handful of PhD programs like Ohio, but assume the chances of those coming through are not huge this late in the process. I have to wonder how big of a factor my subpar GRE Q might've been or if I didn't get the SOP quite right--both things I could hopefully correct before next time. I also had it in mind to try and get a paper at least submitted while at Oregon to boost my chances, though I know accomplishing that wouldn't a given. Apparently they have sent a few students to top 50 PhDs recently, but since I can't know what the rest of their profiles looked like, I'm inclined to believe you if you think the MS wouldn't do much for me. I definitely want to keep the academic career options open if possible and I'm fairly certain I could work with the bigger names at Mizzou. Given that, it sounds like spending the time at Oregon would only be dragging things out at best and counterproductive at worst with the increased competition every year.
  3. I'm trying to decide between a PhD offer at U. Missouri and a funded 2-year MS at Oregon State. I am interested in Bayesian ecological and spatial statistics, so I think Missouri would be a really good research fit. However, one big hesitation I have is that, due to the pandemic, I didn't get to visit Missouri and get a feel for the department and location. I've spoken to faculty and students, but there's definitely no substitute for an in-person visit before moving somewhere for 5 years. I've also seen people caution on this forum that research interests are likely to change over the course of a program so it can be risky to choose a smaller, specialized department based on what I expect to be interested in. Taking the MS offer seems to have the benefit of letting me explore my research interests before re-applying to PhDs with more certainty and with a stronger profile. I also was able to visit OSU and liked the location. Since a PhD is my ultimate goal, though, maybe it's better to just take the offer I have in hand rather than gamble on the admissions process again (the next admissions cycle could be more competitive, getting straight A's in the MS will be easier said than done, etc.). Also, if my interests stay fixed, then I would have just wasted time not going straight to Missouri since I'm not aware of too many other programs with such a strong focus on the areas I mentioned. I'm not sure how much weight to give each of these considerations, so I would really appreciate some outside perspective from the more experienced members here. I'd appreciate any general thoughts others can provide on these two departments, as well. Thanks in advanc!
  4. Oh wow, my mistake. This whole time I've meant 2020. You read my mind. I'll add Duke back on. And I don't know how I missed Michigan. I'll definitely apply there.
  5. Hi again, With deadlines getting closer I was hoping to get some advice on a more detailed list of schools. Two important updates that affect my application: I don't think the paper I am working on will be submitted by the earliest deadlines, and I scored a 164Q/167V on the GRE. Could anyone shed light on whether it is worth taking again? It seems like the general quantitative cutoff mentioned on this forum is 165. It'd be a pain to do it for the few point increase, but if the current score precludes me from even being considered by most schools on my list, then obviously there is no choice. I find it tough to label departments as reaches or safeties with any certainty, so I'll just list them roughly in the order of their rankings. I took @bayessays advice and am trying to cast a wide net in the 25-50 range, with a few lower ranked. There are a few places I'm not considering for geographic reasons, but just in case are there any obvious Bayesian departments I am missing, or any reaches I should outright remove to save myself the application fees? NCSU Iowa State UC Davis UCLA Ohio State Rutgers UC Irvine UT Austin UPitt Mizzou UCSB Oregon State UCSC Columbia Biostat Penn Biostat Minnesota Biostat Thanks again for any advice.
  6. This is incredibly helpful advice. This sort of feedback is hard to come by without many connections in the field, so thank you both. I'll definitely be adding funded masters programs to my list. @bayessays, just to clarify: do you mean I should apply to these for their MS programs, or that I could reasonably apply for their PhD programs as things stand now?
  7. Thank you for the reply! The school has a contentious history with US News and supposedly has a deflated ranking as a result of not readily providing surveys, certain numbers, etc. I threw in the comment to justify not providing a more precise ranking, but it probably wasn't the most necessary detail. It's hard for me to tell how well the rigor of the coursework compares to that at a ranked university. The sequence of topics seemed typical in both Math Stats (using Wackerly) and Analysis (using McDonald/Weiss), but there's a possibility the difficulty of assignments and exams didn't line up with that of a tougher university. How much of a "penalty" can I expect if the content is judged to be less rigorous? This is why I thought taking the subject GRE might be particularly helpful.
  8. Hi all, I am planning to apply to stats PhD programs for Fall 2021, but wanted to ask for an evaluation early to calibrate my expectations for where to apply, and to see if there is anything else I should absolutely do in the coming months while I still have time. I would like to get into a PhD program, but am willing to put the time into a masters if that's what I have to do based on my profile. I'm open to biostats departments but I enjoy math and theory, so I don't want to settle for a program that's too applied if I don't have to. Type of Student: Domestic, White Male Undergrad Institution: Small LAC (Known for lack of grade inflation and not playing the rankings game FWIW.) Major: Linguistics GPA: 3.3 Relevant Courses: Calc I (A-), Calc II/Intro to Analysis (B), Calc III (B-), Linear Algebra (B+), Intro Stats (A). All of the math classes were largely proof-based. Further non-degree coursework at Directional State U (quarter system) GPA: 3.96 UG, 3.66 Grad Classes: Real Analysis I,II (A, A), Math Stats I,II (A, A), Applied Regression Analysis (A), Applied Diff Eq. (A), Group Theory (A), Numerical Optimization I,II (A, A), Computational Methods in Stats (Grad) (A), Bayesian Statistics (Grad) (B+) Additional Info: I'm a fairly good coder. I did a decent amount of CS coursework with good grades and worked for several years in industry doing NLP/ML. GRE General Test: Taken several years ago before the additional math coursework. Expect to retake with a higher quantitative soon. Q: 163 V: 170 Programs Applying: Statistics Research Experience: Working on an applied ecological stats paper with the professor I took Math Stats and Bayesian Stats with. Letters of Recommendation: One from undergrad thesis supervisor, one from professor I'm writing the paper with, choosing the third between the professor I took Numerical Optimization with (would probably be generic) or my work supervisor (has a PhD, but not in math or stats). Coding Skills: R, Python, C/C++ Research interest: Bayesian stats Main questions and concerns: I had weak undergrad grades, taking math outside of my major. I've developed more mathematical maturity since then and taken a lot more courses, though at a less than stellar institution. Will that upward trend be enough to make up for my undergrad performance? If I can do well, will taking the GRE subject test help convince admissions committees of my mathematical ability? Are there any other major holes I should try and plug by the end of the year? With the non-degree school being on a quarter system, I don't have a huge choice of classes I could take before applying in the fall. Would one more quarter of Real Analysis make much difference? I'm having a very hard time getting a sense of where I stand. Would I have a shot at PhD programs at the lower end of the top 50 like Mizzou, UCI, UPitt, Ohio State, or Rutgers?
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