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Casorati

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  1. It doesn't hurt to mention their name in SOP or reach out to them briefly before applying. But most schools admit students at the department level so contacting them/mentioning their names in SOP won't affect your chances in general. Also, students typically choose their supervisor(s) during the second year and I don't think you need to stick to a particular area. It is generally easy to switch research areas in statistics as long as you have strong math background.
  2. I don't think these schools are much better than McGill either. Maybe Purdue/UIUC are comparable to McGill. I would say schools like Wisconsin/UNC/Penn State are a tier above McGill.
  3. Northwestern has a very small statistics department and it might be hard to get in because of its general prestige. Rutgers has a good statistics department with a wide range of research areas. However, I still think McGill is a better option than Northwestern and Rutgers.
  4. For top schools your score may be too low. For some lower ranked schools your score may be ok but still on the lower end. You should shoot for at least a 165, otherwise I wouldn't submit the score.
  5. I am not sure why you say that U of T is the top 1 school you want to go, but for biostatistics, U of T is not at the same level as Waterloo/UBC/McGill. Also it is an unfunded program so it wouldn't be hard to get in. I imagine that the admissions at UBC and Waterloo would be more competitive since they are fully funded and have better reputations.
  6. I would assume you attended McGill for undergraduate and master's. If you are pretty sure you can get into McGill's PhD program, it only makes sense to apply to better schools than McGill. With that said, I would not apply to SFU and Pitt. Biostat at Duke and Brown are relatively new and despite their low ranking, it would still be difficult to get in because of their general prestige. Other schools in your list are reasonable targets I think. Given your strong performance in advanced math courses, I think most schools will overlook your D in linear algebra and B- in intro statistics so I woul
  7. Since you are applying to your own school's PhD program, even if you change to p/f they can still see your performance. I would suggest you go through everything covered in class and do as much as practice you can. If you show major improvement in the final exam, I think you could end up getting something better than a B+. Also a low grade in one course won't kill your application.
  8. I wouldn't worry about your scores. Your scores are good enough for everywhere.
  9. Master's admissions are not super competitive. Since you are from a top school and have extensive math background, I can see you getting into everywhere for master's. You could even get into some top 30s PhD programs given your profile.
  10. Biostatistics is still statistics with more emphasis on medical data. The bio prefix is misleading since biostatistics has little to do with biology. I have not taken a single course in biology and I still did and probably will do research in biostatistics.
  11. Many schools have made the GRE optional this year so you don't need to submit the score if that's the case. For other schools, 157 is indeed too low and I would shoot for at least a 160.
  12. Everyone will go to the best possible school he/she can and most professors would be happy if you end up going to a better school and it's not unusual to apply to many schools.
  13. You could ask your current supervisor at Waterloo if he/she is willing to take you as a PhD student. If your goal is to obtain an academic position then I don't think Toronto biostatistics is a good fit for you. It's a very applied program and the academic placements are pretty bad.
  14. A lot will depend on your undergraduate institution. If you attended a top 5 school in China, with your record, you might have a shot at tier 1 schools you listed and I can see you get into some tier 2 schools. Otherwise, I would cast a wider net. For biostatistics, Waterloo has a better reputation than Toronto. So if you are sure that Waterloo is your safety option, which should be since you did well during your master's, I wouldn't apply to Toronto biostat.
  15. I don't think it necessary to take a gap year to do research. Most statistics PhD applicants don't have meaningful research experience (publishing a paper) so I wouldn't worry about not having research experience. Your have very strong math background from a top school so I wouldn't worry about your grades in analysis and grades in economics won't matter much for statistics admission. I think you might get into a few schools you listed but for safety measure, I would also add schools at the level of Michigan/Duke/Wisconsin.
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