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munch22

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  1. It’s always been the case that applicants have to reach some arbitrary threshold, but beyond that no one really cares how far above someone is. It will be the same this year for students who submit. You are significantly overstating the role the GRE plays in a regular year beyond that threshold.
  2. A PhD In political science is designed to get you a job as a researcher and Professor primarily. Yes, a PhD in political science will teach you tangible skills you can take and get good jobs in Data Science, government, etc. I won’t say don’t do it like some people will, but you have to come to the terms with two questions: 1) the job market for tenure track position sucks And may not improve anytime soon. Are you ok with not getting a tenure track position? https://mobile.twitter.com/tylerreny/status/1293175667702497281 2) if you are targeting an industry job, are there other routes other than a PhD that could get you to your industry job quicker and sooner without years of low pay and long hours? admissions are going to hurt this year I think come September and October a lot more departments are going to pull the plug. Even if you still decide to apply, just make sure you are comfortable with your answers to the two things above. The shifts in academia are only going to make things harder.
  3. You can prep somewhat in two weeks. The best practice is learning the strategies to take the test, taking the free practice tests ETS has online, and getting comfortable with the format. That is doable in two weeks. You’ll see your scores go way up each time you take it and get more familiar. Even if you don’t use these scores it is good to experience what the actual GRE is like because it is a somewhat grueling in my opinion. Also, don’t listen to anyone about these “arbitrary“ cutoffs. Do your best and aim for 160+ but don’t let people freak you out about just not being competitive for good programs if you don’t get 160. I had more than my fair share of luck with a section below 160 and plenty of people have gotten rejected with perfect scores.
  4. No one on this forum has any idea what an admissions committee will do or what the best course of action is. It’s going to vary by school as well. Talk to the advisor you are closest with to find out the best course of action, especially if you are at an R1.
  5. Job opportunities will differ significantly graduating from Wagner and SIPA versus Pace or CUNY. To be honest, I’m not really sure why you are looking at MPA schools at this stage in your life/career. SIPA is pretty clear they want students with 3-5 years work experience and others are going to be the same. This forum can help, but I think you need to do some more research on the specific programs from their websites. I also don’t think it’s necessarily smart to limit yourself to just one city. There is always plenty of time to circle back and get a job in NYC if that is your dream to live there.
  6. Depends on what sort of data work you want to do. If you are interested in research questions that may use big data, the more the better. Normal data sets with maybe a few thousand observations you would be fine with 8GB
  7. Hahah yeah that’s just not true. GPAs lower than 3.5 make it significantly harder to get into a top 20, but not impossible. I really think your best route is trying to find a research based position related to your interests. In my opinion, the added value of a masters is low, especially for someone with a strong academic record from a top political science program. I know you are worried about not having a background in Comparative- so take more classes at Cornell! You can also explore these things on your own. Public opinion/behavior research Is also dominated by the American context, so having a background in undergrad in American doesn’t necessarily eliminate you from contention or being able to show interest if you combine it with some comparative classes this year. My biggest piece of advice though- GO TALK TO YOUR PROFESSORS! You go to a school with a top PhD program, who read applications every time and have colleagues at almost every top PhD program. They will be able to advise you way better then any of us (including me) on what you should do.
  8. Your verbal scores are good enough for top 20/top 10, especially with your math background. Focus on your SOP and writing sample.
  9. It’s a good question to ask your DGS/POI before accepting an offer. Really depends on the school and what the stipend policies are for the university. Usually the university and the graduate school have some sort of guidelines, and then departments can either use those or something more then those. It is important to read your offer letter careful and figure out if all five years are guaranteed, what the conditions of maintaining funding are, etc.
  10. Yup every university is considering it for sure to avoid the information provided in the articles you linked about the mass panic and rush that happened this semester when courses flipped all of a sudden. I know my university will have a final decision probably late June early July. To be clear, I’m not looking for a tussle. I am looking to provide people with accurate information. I’m a current student at a top 30 with a few colleagues at other top 30s. I have a parent who currently works in some capacity (not polsci) at a top 30 polsci university and used to work at another top 30. My point being- I have gotten a pretty good pulse of how programs and schools are adjusting to this shift From hearing information from these sources. This pandemic is going to affect cohorts for years on end, and that is a fact. I hope my posts can provide honest information about what is going on. The realities of what we face are this: fewer jobs will be available in the future, more students will have to take 6/7th years because they can’t do fieldwork (Depending on sub field but this still effects the whole department), and universities are either going to have to expand department budgets or cut future cohort sizes. It will be more competitive to get into specific schools. Im not trying to be combative - I’m trying to express the realities we live in today (the focus of this forum, which is a very relevant topic for current and future applicants).
  11. All good- almost all the articles you had posted said they were edited yesterday (probably based off the provost’s updated comments) so I think that caused some confusion. Definitely think adding those links contributes an important conversation about what is going to happen.
  12. This was in reference to things being more competitive. Nothing you said changes the fact that there will still be fewer spots open to perspective students next year.
  13. That is a journalist extrapolating. Read the provosts update on Cal State Fullerton’s Website on April 22nd: Clarification on fall semester from Provost Pamella Oliver: It is the complete hope of Cal State Fullerton to have traditional instruction in the fall. But like every university in America, we are working through the many unknowns of the current pandemic. There were reports I said that Fullerton is cancelling classes and going fully virtual for the fall. Let me be clear, that is false. What I said is -that we need to prepare for all variables. http://coronavirus.fullerton.edu
  14. I don’t see where it says it is confirmed they will be online in the fall from any quotes from the administration. It appears the journalists have extrapolated that. They are just making plans.
  15. This is going to make this significantly harder. There is nothing you can do about it now, unfortunately, but from the school side I know of multiple top 20 programs considering cutting their cohort size in half (and a few that are considering no graduate students next year, this isn’t definite yet and will probably follow the same path as Duke did this year). The squeeze on departments is more so than just state funding/department financial health- the restriction on elective surgeries for hospitals has but a financial bind on every university with an academic medical center. Next year will be the hardest year for admissions since the recession.
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